Report courtesy of Keith Sharp
On another warm and sunny afternoon Andy Phipps stood confidently to the middle to only walk back head in hands after once again lossing the toss on a green looking wicket (I think tails does fail). Put into bat Jamie Goldstein (16) and Andrew barnes (30) made a stead and good start, before Goldstein was trapped lbw.
This brought Mark Thorn to the crease who quickly got into his stride hitting 6 4s in a quick 30 before being bowled with a delivery keeping slightly low. Luke Reeve (43) was next in and started to play some lovely shots looking to take a firm grip on the game. Barnes was next to fall after a well built 30.
The skipper was next in to look to build on a solid start. Reeve was next to fall by a sharply taken catch falling just 7 short of what would have been a nice 50. In came Mike smith to the crease to hopefully build a good partnership with Phipps but unfortunatly Phipps fell quickly after Reeve.
Next to come into bat was Keith Sharp. Smith made a quick 26 with 2 4s and a 6 taking the score to 171. This brough Angus Beames to the crease who very quickly started to work the ball around well taking full advantage of any lose deliveries. Sharp started to increase his run rate too to put the opposition on the back foot and looking tired in the warm afternoon heat. Beames played beautifully and got to his 50 with 2 overs left with another strong shot for 4. The following over Sharp reached his maiden 50 for the club and both Beames and Sharp saw the score to 286 off the 45 overs with an unbeaten partenership of 115. A very competitive total with all making a contribution.
The bowling his been the strength so far this season with no more than 150 being scored by any opposition so far this year.
Finlay Jones (pictured) continued his fine start to the season taking a wicket in his first over swinging the ball beautifully and getting the opener to play on. He continued to bowl with consistancy and with great lines and lengths, swinging the ball into the right hander causing them trouble with almost every ball. He was well supported in the field as Barnes took a great catch in gully. He continued to take wickets and had the first 4 wickets taking the wind out of Eight Ash Greens’ sails and made the 286 look even further away. Jack Plumb was supporting and bowling really well and got a really well deserved wicket after clean bowling for the fithy wicket.
Jones then took his 5th wicket in his 6th over of his first spell capping a fine opening spell of 6 overs, 3 maidens for just 5 runs. Both opeing bowlers bowling 6 overs each and taking 6 wickets between them, Plumb finishing with figures of 6 overs, 1 maiden, 13 runs for 1 wicket, which does not show just how well he bowled, leaving Eight Ash Green with a mountain to climb.
With a change in bowling from both ends Luke Sanders came on and swung the ball away from the right handers from his first ball, causing the middle orderer no end of problems. Sharp supported well and both Saunders and Sharp kept the pressure on. Saunders then clean bowled the number 8 for the 7th wicket. Sharp with his first ball of his 3rd over took an a calm caught and bowled, then cleaned bowled the number 10 with his very next ball bring the injured Collins to the crease for his hat trick ball, which he played out well. With the 5th ball of his 3rd over the game was over and the 20 points won with a sharp one handed caught and bowled to finish the game.
The 3rds are looking strong this year and the pushing hard each week to keep the unbeaten run going, playing with a great team spirit with everyone making a solid contribution with either bat ball or in the field.