Thanks to Matt for this match report
This Sunday saw us take on our good friends from Barton Seagrave, with them travelling to us this time as we hosted the fixture for the first time. The Broxbourne pitch looked a belter to bat on, as Stu won the toss and chose to bat first. The Barton Seagrave side featured two of our own, with Matt and Chris ‘Skippy’ Wright (a reference to his former residence in Australia, as Matt was actually the skipper) hoping to get one over us.
In the gloom and drizzle, it was Mahender and Adam who opened the batting, with Mahender in particular taking advantage of the short boundaries with a couple of early fours off the opening bowling of Joe Pringle and Chris. It would be young Joe Pringle who grabbed the first wicket, forcing the outside edge of Adam to gully, 15/1, bringing Jesant to the crease. He too would take advantage of the good pitch and the small ground, thrashing some early boundaries also. Unfortunately, both openers would be back in the hutch after Mahender gave Chris a wicket, with a clattering of stumps, 33/2.
As the rain increased, batting looked tricky, however Jesant and Kosala looked very solid. Barton Seagrave turned to the seam bowling of the Gautham ‘the Doc’ Adusumilli and Dan Whitwell. Whitwell seemed to have the better of the batters, as Jesant in particular upped the anti against Adusumilli, as he rapidly approached a half century with some textbook shots across the ground. Just as he was about to raise his bat, he would lose Kosala as a partner, with Adusumilli being the second bowler to break the stumps. Kosala out for a useful 25 in a partnership worth 80.
The sun would begin to shine for the arrival of Ari as the bowling attack slowed with Matt and Jon Burrows turning their arms over. Burrows would be on the receiving end of many a flowing drive and clever legside blows as the run rate started to rise quickly. Jesant, who had passed fifty, was looking in fine form as he his fourteenth boundary of his innings, but as thoughts of three figures started to appear, he would be the third batsman to be bowled, this time giving Burrows a wicket. A magnificent 82 from only 80 balls! A fourth wicket bowled would quickly following with Matt spinning one through Dom’s defences, bringing Manish to the wicket at 168/5.
Manish and Ari would then pick up the running between the wickets as the overs started to run out and Barton Seagrave started to rotate bowlers. A quick run a ball 16 would be all for Manish as he was adjourned to be leg before to the leg spin of Joel Raynor, with Jonners following shortly after, with Pringle claiming his second and yet another bowler to take the stumps. Ari tried then to take the initiative and passed his fifty, although he would fall to Josh Smith with one shot too many, flat batting one to mid on for 51. A couple of late hits from Chris would finish the innings at 247/8 after 40 overs.
A strong score, but equally a strong pitch, so with Matt opening with Adam Roberts, there was still a long way to go in the game. So it was up to Ari and Chris to open the bowling. Roberts would become the first wicket, unluckily glancing a ball on to his pads and seeing the ball roll on the stumps to be Ari’s first wicket, 2/1. Ari would soon have Whitwell bowled with a beautiful display of bowling to leave Barton Seagrave 12/2 in the fourth over. He’d have another soon after with a great low caught and bowled to dismiss Rutvic Yalamanchilli. Chris was not having as much luck at the other end, having to see Stu pick out a ball from the bush (after Stu threw several in himself in the warm up), as Matt upped his intentions, along with new partner Smith. Stu then turned to the spin of Mahender, which would work instantly, with Matt being bowled for 19. 52/4 seemed a distance away from the near 200 more required.
It would prove the case as Chris would finally get some reward for some great swing bowling with Michael Barrett’s wicket. This allowed Stu to bring Jamie into the attack, which proved very successful, getting Adusumilli quickly. Smith, running out of partners, would go on the ultra-aggressive approach, but would see himself be stumped by Adam to give Mahender a second wicket and all but end Barton Seagrave’s hopes. Burrows would hole out to Stu on the legside boundary to give Mahender a third, before Jamie finished the innings dismissing Pringle and Wright to see Barton Seagrave bowled all out for 88 in the 19th over. Ari with 3-8, Jamie 3-12, Mahender 3-30 and Chris 1-35.
There was even time for a quick 15 over game, where Barton Seagrave’s 95 would be chased down successfully, thanks to a wonderful 41 not out from Nadeem, who had been twelfth man in the original fixture!
A thoroughly enjoyable day with many great faces seen from both clubs. There is already discussions about the next time we will see out friends from Northants! Thoughts turn to the Graces double header of fixtures at Broxbourne this Sunday to start our league campaign.