Another mixed bag

Posted by Tony Edwards on 20 July 2017

Sparsholt suffered their second home defeat of the season to Trojans after losing the toss and fielding first on another excellent surface at The Norman Edwards Ground. 

Trojans got off to a steady start with Le Bas and Boyd putting on a 106 for the first wicket before Boyd was caught at mid off by Sam Kennett of the bowling of Nick Doubell for 55. Whilst Trojans never really got away from Sparsholt they continued to accumulate steadily throughout their innings, Syed Mahmood making a patient and crucial 61. Mahmood was supported by a series of small contributions through the Trojans' order eventually closing on 223. A total that Sparsholt would have felt at the halfway point was well within their grasp. 

That sense would have been heightened as the Sparsholt got off to a flier with Frith in particularly finding the fence with regularity before Haworth fell for 16 with the score and 65 and then by Frith for 55 off 51 balls with the score on 72. David Banks and Sam Kennett rebuilt from there and Sparsholt still seemed to be moving steadily towards their total. Trojans however bowled tightly throughout, conceding only 4 extras and restricting Sparsholt to the occasional boundary and providing few opportunities to rotate strike. 

When Sam Kennett and Banks both fell Sparsholt's middle and lower order found themselves trying to manage a spiralling run rate, pressure built and wickets tumbled. The innings closing on 203 for 9, with Mahmood picking up a crucial 4 for 39.

Sparsholt 2nds travelled to Medstead on Saturday and on winning the toss elected to field. The opening pace attack of Phagami (3 for 36) and Haidur Ali (1 for 29) bowled well followed up by Pryce (3 for 42) and Wilkinson (2 for 20) restricted Medstead to 194 in their 45 overs.

On a difficult wicket Sparsholt got off to a good start with Steggall 16 and Skipper Gough21 taking on the bowling on Gough hitting 5 fours. When Gough departed Phagami came to the crease and with supported by Druce 9 and Pryce 27 closed in on the Medstead total. When Pryce was caught, Haidur Ali fell quickly it was left to Mungo Patterson to assist Phagami in chasing down the total with Phagami making a solid 83 including 11 fours and 1 six.

Sparsholt’s third team hosted an Oakley’s second team at North Walls this past weekend. Coming into the fixture Oakley were unbeaten in the league.

Oakley won the toss and elected to bat first. James Dorwood and Joshua Williams opened the bowling; which was erratic at times giving keeper Stuart Barlow plenty of opportunity to show off his acrobatics. The wicket of Brundle fell in the 7th over when skipper Adam Trivett took a catch off the bowling of Dorwood. Within two overs the second wicket fell when Dorwood took the scalp of Savage with a lovely ball taking off stump.

With the openers out of the game, and the score being 44-2. Oakley captain George Lethaby joined Chris Morris at the crease, and they managed to strike a partnership of 76 before Lethaby (33) was caught behind off the first ball of George Ellis’ spell of bowling. Spalding next entered the fray and along with Morris continued to take advantage of their one-man advantage and work the bowling of Ellis, Trivett and Bannister to keep their run rate up before he was given out LBW from the bowling of Williams who had returned for his second spell. At this point the score was 217 for 4 and Morris had just hit his first 100 for Oakley in 2017. Warner came in and joined the attack, with him and Morris both playing some perfectly timed shots. James Dorwood returned to the bowling attack and Morris smashed a ball straight back over the bowler’s head, and into the waiting hands of George Ellis. Sapumanage took the place of Morris and scored a quick-fire 7 before being caught by County U15 player Jacob Hartley off of the bowling of Williams to end the innings.

In reply, Sparsholt knew that the required target of 283 was going to be an extremely tough challenge, so the team aimed to get as many batting points as possible. Club veteran Keith Whiting opening the attack with Jacob Hartley. Whiting looked to try and bat himself in with an aim to stay out there as long as possible, while Hartley playing the more attacking shots in the first few overs. However, Hartley was caught off the bowling of King in the sixth over, with Ellis following a couple of overs later.

At the ten over mark Sparsholt were 28-2 and Whiting was joined by Joshua Williams, Whiting took the more attacking role and hit some beautiful shots before injuring himself, and requiring a runner. Though the runner was only required for a few minutes as Whiting was given LBW off the bowling of King in the 14th Over.

At 44 – 3, Captain Trivett took to the field and was off the mark fairly quickly working with Williams to try and get back into the game, however, Williams chipped one into the air and straight into the hands of a fielder. Nick Dorwood was dispatched within 4 balls, and his brother James, made a quick 5 before being bowled by King who took 5 wickets on the day.

Sparsholt’s mid order batting attack was depleted as the 10-man team stood at 74-6 at 20 overs and it was down to the tail enders of Bannister, Barlow and Edwards to perform a miracle. Bannister managed to last finishing on 5 not out, while both Barlow and Edwards fell to some fine bowling from Sapumanage, who appeared to be a much faster bowler than the opening pair of Rabley and King. Sparsholt’s innings closed at 84 all out.

Next week Sparsholt’s first and third teams travel to Totton & Eling and Ramsdell respectively, while the second team host St Cross IV at the Norman Edwards ground. Sparsholt then travel to South Wilts in the quarter final of the Southern Premier League T20 on Sunday 23rd.

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