Wyverns hold off spirited Saints
Jun. 21, 2009
James Trott's brilliant 92 was not enough to rescue All Saints as they slipped to another defeat against Wembdon Wyverns at home today.
Visiting skipper R Pigden won the toss and decided to bat, making the most of good conditions and playing his strongest suit with a strengthened batting side. Nevertheless, the Saints opening bowlers S Trott and M Nunns bowled quite brilliantly, beating the edge time and time again. The only problem was that anything that did hit the bat seemed to race to the boundary. Eventually, Nunns (3-42) made some in-roads with 2 wickets in his first spell, while J Trott (3-67) chipped in in just his second over after an excellent catch by D Seward. Luckless Steve (1-40) had to wait until the 11th over of an excellent spell to get any joy, but by that time, number 5 Keith Futcher had bedded himself in and was on his way to a big score.
In the absence of front-line bowler J Herbert, season debutants Shaun Wells-Burr and David Gillingham took responsibility with 8 overs between them. And with the exception of one or two loose deliveries, they did a good job. However, Futcher looked unbeatable after a shaky start, and bludgeoned 4 of Wyverns' 7 sixes on his way to 86 not out. The visitors had posted a formidable total of 226-8 at the close of their innings, but with a weakened bowling attack, it would not be plain sailing for them.
With the intention of seeing off the only first-string bowlers they had, Nunns sent out J Cole, D Seward and R Collins in the top 3. They just about did the job between them, but at 59-3 off 22, the target looked very distant. However, if the plan was to succeed then this was how, with J Trott at the crease already looking good and Nunns hoping to come in and help up the run rate. They had 23 overs to score 167. With the field spread, the only way of getting anywhere near the run rate was to try to score off every ball and hope for the odd boundary. The batsmen did their best, and with Nunns unable to find the rope, he dealt largely in singles, while James seemed able to blast the ball to the fence whenever the pressure seemed to be building. The pattern continued and enabled a rate of around 8 an over to be maintained. Every glance at the score seemed to give hope that the home side could actually pull this off. If these two could continue at the crease until the end, then the result was almost beyond doubt, but it wasn't to be. When Nunns fell for 33 in the 37th over, the score was 158. The partnership was 99 from 14 overs, and Saints were back in contention with batsmen still to come.
They hoped that Steve could erase his earlier bad luck and smash a few boundaries, but it continued and he was out first ball. James Wallace then needed to perform the same role as the skipper, and for a while it was working. However, just 8 runs shy of his maiden hundred, J Trott smashed one straight to midwicket who took the chance sharply. His departure signalled the end of any chance of winning, with the run rate climbing to around 10 an over, but it was a brilliant knock including 6 fours and 4 sixes. Wallace and Wells-Burr then played some lovely strokes in an attempt to reach maximum batting points, but fell just 1 short of the target. Still, 199-8 was the highest total this season and showed a great display of team spirit in trying to chase down a large total.
At the halfway point of the season, Saints had still managed to put 11 men on the team sheet each week, had won half their games and were enjoying their cricket. Still, another couple of victories just to get back on track would be nice!!
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