On a windy and overcast day, Wilcot’s cricketing heroes arrived to play Kennet Valley at their ground in Lockeridge. With a couple of last minute drop-outs, the Captain was concerned that, for the first time this season, he wouldn’t be able to field a full team. Graham Newland had kindly stepped in last minute to fill one gap but we were still one player short as the start of play approached.
The Captain won the toss and elected to bat on what initially appeared to look like a fairly docile wicket. On padding up, however, it became apparent that the Captain’s opening partner (and his son) were missing in action; assumed waylaid by an overly eager pre-match warm up. Chris Powell, set to bat at 3, stepped in to the vacant opening slot and so Wilcot started their innings with only 8 batsmen to call on and so a solid start was required to make up for the apparent lack of players.
With the Captain doing his best to give his wicket away, it was a miracle that the opening pair made it to the 11th over without loss but Chris was then bowled by one that kept low. By this time, the Captain’s original opening partner had finished his rigorous match preparations and found his way to the crease. Thankfully, Ted had bought two sons with him, instead of the one that was on the starting line up and with second son Wilfred thankfully stepping in to fill the last gap, Wilcot now had the full compliment of players.
Ted’s match prep had clearly not had the desired effect as he was soon making his way back to the clubhouse. Sadly, wickets continued to tumble with the only resistance being offered by the Captain, Andrew & Callum Marshall (who’s enthusiastic calling was a lesson to the rest of the team and was reportedly heard in the next county!).
Wilcot’s total of 108 felt woefully short. What had first appeared as a docile wicket was anything but with variable bounce and turn offering a great deal to the bowlers. Tea was therefore taken with a feeling that this wasn’t necessarily a foregone conclusion.
Ham, chicken, and ham & cheese featured amongst the sandwiches on offer with some Kit Kats, Mini Rolls and a variety of Swiss Rolls featuring on the sweeter end of the spectrum.
Given that the wicket definitely had something in it for the bowlers, the team took to the field with a sense of optimism and opening duties were given to Callum Marshall and Max York to get things underway.
Both bowled well but even with the first wicket being taken in the 11th over by Max (being very well caught at Mid Off by Wilcot debutant Josh Duckworth), Wilcot were not able to stem the flow of runs and Kennet Valley were 73 for 1 going into the 12th over.
Ted Cartlidge was asked to bowl the 12th over which was greeted reluctantly on account of a shoulder problem. This was clearly a ruse to lessen the captain’s expectations as Ted bowled a fantastic opening over, taking two wickets for no runs. Boyed by these wickets, Wilcot felt an opening and with two further quick wickets being taken by the Captain and one more by Ted, the momentum swung and suddenly an upset felt on the cards.
Sadly, Kennet Valley bats Floyd and Mackay steadied the ship and the winning runs were hit in the 17th over.
Clearly our lack of runs cost us the match. However, a tricky wicket meant that a small total was definitely defendable. Another 50 runs only may have been the difference between loss and victory.
Ironically, what let us down last week (bowling & fielding) was excellent today.
The Captain is hopeful that all elements will combine to find a winning formula for our next fixture vs Westbury next Sunday.
Watherston. J Caught 36
Powell. C Bowled 9
Cartlidge. T LBW 0
Newland. G Caught 1
Duckworth. J Bowled 0
Marshall. A Caught 10
Cartlidge. S Caught 0
Marshall. C Caught 11
Yorke M Caught 5
York, C Not Out 2
Cartlidge. W Caught 0
Marshall. C 4 0 20 0
York. M 5 0 36 1
Cartlidge. S 3 0 21 0
Cartlidge. T 3.4 1 17 3
Watherston. J 2 0 6 2