3rd May 2014 - Match Report.

BGCC 1sts vs Smethwick BGCC 3rd XI VS ASTWOOD BANK 3rd XI

Green triumph against Smethwick in nail-biting finish


Barnards Green 1st XI hosted Smethwick in their first home BDPCL Division One fixture of the season and were victorious in another close game.


BGCC won the toss and chose to bat – openers Adam Dovey and George Rhodes made steady progress against some strong seam bowling from Sheikh and Tahir. But it was spin that brought the breakthrough with the score on 44, when Diwan trapped Dovey lbw for 18. Alex Hepburn joined Rhodes and it was he who brought up the 50 in the 18th over with a fine cover drive for 4. First change bowler Shah bowled Hepburn (14) and then dismissed Andy Ford lbw for 3. Jamie Tapper was then given out stumped by Hooper of Anjum to leave the Green 79 for 4 with over 20 overs remaining in the innings.


Elliot Hennessy came to the crease and took full advantage of a free-hit to open his account with a huge 6 over mid-wicket. His partnership with Rhodes had taken the Green to 115 when Rhodes was caught behind by Hooper off returning opening bowler Sheikh. Debutant Rishe Umasuthan fell next bowled by Diwan without scoring before Crossgill had Hennessy caught by Sodhi for 32 which included 4 sixes.


The Green were128 for 6 with Kev Golder and Ash Brewer at the wicket.  This pairing put on a quick 40 off the Smethwick spinners which included two sixes over square from Brewer and a straight six from Golder of Crossgill. Crossgill had revenge when Golder miss-hit one to be caught by Diwan for 23 off 18 balls. A mix up caused Jon Dovey to run out Ash Brewer for 15 off 11balls. Dovey was last man out in the 49th as he was caught behind by Hooper off Tahir for 5 leaving Tim Williams not out 1.


With a modest total to defend the Green knew they would have to take early wickets – and that they did. Rishe Umasuthan took 3 wickets in his first 2 overs of English cricket. He bowled Hooper (0) before trapping both Mahmood (1) and Ahmed (0) lbw to leave Smethwick reeling on 21 for 3 after four overs. Jon Dovey replaced Hepburn and he also took 3 quick wickets - all lbw. Captain Sodhi (29) and overseas Diwan (0) fell in one over and Shah survived a hat-trick ball but went for 2 in Dovey’s next over. On 55 for 6 in the 13th over Smethwick were well ahead of the run rate – with wickets rather than overs being the main concern.


Anjum joined Sheikh and both played more confidently than their higher order colleagues. Hepburn in his second spell broke the partnership with the score on 84 as he clean bowled Anjum for 23. Tahir came to the crease, batting down the order at 9. He and Sheikh continued the good progress and formed the strongest partnership of the game – 50 in less than 13 overs. Captain Andy Ford rotated the bowlers in an attempt to break it. This seemed to work as Jamie Tapper had Sheikh well caught by Adam Dovey on the long on boundary for 45. Tahir continued to look dangerous as he and Crossgill took the total past 150 in the 38th over – leaving Smethwick just 27 runs needed in 12 overs. Jon Dovey returned and clean bowled Crossgill (14) in his 10th over to finish with figures of 4-26. Tahir dominated the strike protecting new batsmen Singh and took Smethwick to the brink of victory. But with the score on 171 just 6 runs short of the win he was brilliantly caught low and one-handed by Jon Dovey at mid-on for 43 off Andy Ford. This gave BGCC the full 20 points and took them to joint top of the league with 5 other teams!



BGCC get out of jail.


Retirements were broken and debuts were made as a new look 3rd team made their way to Hanbury for their league opener vs old rivals Astwood Bank on Saturday.


Skipper Jez Clarke lost the toss and was surprisingly given first bowl on the damp looking wicket.


Openers Hepburn (10-3-28-1) and Tyler (6-0-18-0) started well with Hepburn being particularly economical but with a long outfield and a slow low bouncing wicket a low score looked like it may be a competitive one?


It took the introduction of Smedley snr to make the break through bowling Clayton for 13. Everything about his spell was tight from his hamstrings, waistband to his line and length taking 2 for 7 off 9 overs meanwhile veteran Ratcliffe did a job at the other end conceding just 25 off his allocation.


Skipper Clarke (10-1-26-1)replaced Smedley when he ran out of steam and extracted good turn out of the wicket and eventually had Vernon well stumped by Dickenson for 48.


Hepburn returned to the attack and picked up his first league wicket for the club bowling Brind for 16.


Astwood Bank closed on 150-4 off their 50 overs.


Clarke and Smedley opened the innings for the first time together in 10 years and picked up where they left off Clarke dispatching the bad ball to the boundary and Smedley nudging and nurdling easy twos for even more comfortable singles.


Clarke fell for 34 with the score on 46 failing to find a gap with a full toss from his counterpart Haslam. This bought centre Forward Hooper to the crease he took no time to adjust to the conditions and went aerial from the off and it looked as though an early finish may be on the cards. Unfortunately change bowlers Boycott and Brind tied things down and the green started to stutter. Hooper was well caught after drinks for 38 and Smedley fell LBW off Brind for 25.


Lots of potential was left in the order at 98-2 but unfortunately Hepburn Loader Metcalfe Ratcliffe Dickenson and Smedley Jnr managed just 19 between them leaving the Green in deep trouble at 135 -9


With Rob Tyler and debutant MTFC club captain Joe Endacott left and still with 16 runs needed it looked as though the green had stolen defeat from the jaws of victory. However the straight balls were kept out and singles were picked up as wides and no balls were gratefully received. Eventually the green crept and limped over the line. Tyler 7 not out Endacott 3 not out.

Next Week the Green welcome West Malvern to Newland.