Donnington v Wherwell (away, 31/05/2014)

Wherwell 1st XI travelled North to Donnington, a lovely setting though heavily affected by the bad weather the pitch whilst flat was clearly going to present a challenge for batters. Therefore when the toss was won by the home side there was no surprise when they asked Wherwell to bat.

Craig Beckingham and Jeremy Wickham made a slow but solid start under testing conditions, the outfield being slow meant boundaries were hard to find, Beckingham was first to depart for a gritty 17, this brought Stuart Taylor to the crease, it didn’t take him long to settle and once in to his stride the slowness of the outfield was bypassed as the first match ball was lost, down a rabbit hole most likely, in a nearby field. Wickham was content to play a supporting role and the 2 took the score past 100 with Taylor reaching 50 with a 6 taken on the boundary only for the fielder to fall back over the line. Spurred on by some friendly suggestions that he should buy a lottery ticket Taylor continued to dispatch the ball to all parts. Wickham departed for 35 but a brisk 17 from Alex Gladwyn kept the momentum flowing. There was no shock when Taylor bludgeoned a 4 through extra cover to bring up his 100 but this was followed by disbelief when the bowler slipped in delivery of the next ball and the resulting skidder found middle stump. Some late strikes and good running from Nathan Young (12) and Paul Whyton (12 n.o) saw Wherwell post a above par total of 208 for 7.

The Donnington response never really got going, opening the bowling for the first time Wherwells Babu off his shortened run due to the length of the ground! had the home batters struggling to see the ball never mind score a run, he was soon rewarded with wickets picking up 2 in his first spell and would ultimately complete a return of 10 overs 5 maidens 2 for 10, Taylor appeared stiff after his exertions with the bat but once into his stride he made the openers wish they were still in the pavilion, the first bowling change appeared to bring some respite for the home batters as they opened their shoulders and looked for boundaries, both T Oliver (16) and R Sheppherd (30) hit to the short boundary but fell to the ever improving bowling of Harry Trebert. The youngster bowled some unplayable balls in his 6 overs and took 2 for 29. With the top 4 all gone by drinks Donnigton effectively shut up shop and looked to bat out 45 overs with as few wickets lost as possible. Wherwell tried some options giving the leg spin duo of Gladwyn and Wickham a go, both got turn and bounce and wickets as a reward with Craig Beckingham also chipping in with 4-1-8-1 the result was never in doubt. Unable though to claim the full quota of bowling points as the home side edged their way a final total of 129 for 8.