17 May 2008 - Match Reports.

Droitwich vs BGCC 1st XI

BGCC 2nd XI vs Droitwich

 Barnards Green 1st XI continued their league season away to Drotwich on a cold, damp day last Saturday.  With the previous couple of day’s rain the pitch was soft and green and on winning the toss it was no surprise when home skipper Andy Fletcher decided to ask the Green to bat first.Richard Williams and Kevin Golder started cautiously without really looking in much trouble despite the lack of scoring opportunities early on.  Mike Rogers then got a ball to bounce more than expected and Golder could only guide it to gully.  Liam Paddock belatedly opened his account for the season before being bowled for 20.  Rich Williams continued to graft hard and with boundaries hard to come by due to an especially thick and wet outfield passed a hard earned 50.  Tim Clarke continued his excellent recent form, immediately timing the ball beautifully along the floor and in the air and hit one straight six clean out of the ground and into the adjoining park.  Williams and later Clarke, also having passed 50, eventually fell attempting to increase the scoring rate.  Chris Smedley, who had run well between the wickets with the spritely Clarke and then Phil Harris, again fell just short of a half century.  With a rain delay stunting the Greens’ momentum in the closing overs they closed on 222 for 7.  This was an excellent score on a bowler friendly wicket with a very slow outfield. 

The Droitwich reply got off to the worst possible start when stalwart and experienced batsman Paul Bryan fell leg before to the highly impressive and ever improving Matthew Shimell before Spa had scored.  Shimell also removed Hamilton, with the aid of a slip catch from Tim Williams and Cartwright, played on in quick succession.  When Matt Brookes removed the unfortunate Connor, leg before to a ball which seemed to take an age to reach the batsman after gripping the seam in the wicket Droitwich were in deep trouble at 21 for 4.  This situation further deteriorated when Tim Williams bowled Andy Van Vuuren middle stump after he shouldered arms and then combined with brother and wicket keeper Rich Williams to have Wright caught behind, leaving Droitwich on 23 for 6.  Skipper Andy Fletcher then struck a series of mini partnerships with his lower order to hold the Greens’ charge for victory.  Thomas, Rogers and Davies all hung around with their skipper, giving Droitwich and outside hope of a draw.  Phil Harris managed to pick up 2 wickets with swing in both directions helping to overcome stubborn resistance and Chris Smedley also picked up one wicket to leave Droitwich 9 down for 89.  Here the Green had a first win of the season in sight.  However Karl Goddard joined Fletcher for the final 4 overs and resisted everything the Greens’ bowlers could muster.  Goddard very nearly suffered the same fate as Van Vuuren as the ball passed just millimetres away from the off stump when offering no shot.  However, the pair survived the 45th and final over and denied the Green victory.  Having outplayed their opponents the Green will be disappointed to not secure 24 points but will be pleased to have picked up 18 and played so well in a year when consolidation is a top priority.  Next week the Green entertain Eastnor at North End Lane and on Monday make the journey north to Netherton.

 

With the weather the exact opposite of the previous weekend, it was touch and go whether the game would go ahead following fridays deluge which had left puddles on the outfield.Once again the Green were indebted to Roy Mayo's hard work and the game started on time on a very green soft wicket.Captain Phil Spencer was shocked to win the toss and chose to field first, Ian Scullion bowled with his usual accurate nagging length often beating the bat and unlucky that the Droitwich umpires don't give LBW decisions, Steve Metcalfe opened the other end but after his catalogue of injuries failed to find his radar, he did pick up an early wicket thanks to the athletic Glenndenning's leg side take.Metcalfe was replaced by James Scullion who like his father bowled  a tight line and length both of them beating the outside edge on numerous occasions, Scullion snr bowled 16 overs taking 1 for 36 and Scullion jnr bowled 7 overs taking 1 for 20.  After 36 overs Droitwich brought up their 100 for the loss of 3 wickets, with wickets in hand they decided to hit out , the ball was often chipped in the air but always seemed to avoid the waiting fielders, Bevis 70no rode his luck on many occasions and remained unbeaten, R John made a patient 59, and the final tally was boosted by Thomas's liking for the short legside boundary he was 47no at the end of the 50 overs, Droitwich had somehow managed to reach 202 for 4 a score which looked very unlikely with 14 overs to go.

The Greens reply started brightly until Yorke was caught for a rapid 32 opening partner Scullion jnr soon followed for 5, Mark Hooper stroked 13 then when he was out the green collapsed Lewis Hooper 0,James Curtis 9, Nic Rogers 0, Louis Loader 5 leaving the greens reply in tatters at 78 for 7, this brought together the veteran partnership of Metcalfe and Scullion snr , they started watchfully and slowly increased the scoring rate, as the weather took a turn for the worse, the Droitwich team who had seemed happy to play in the rain when they were taking wickets now realised that this partnership was taking the green towards victory or at least over taking Droitwich's scoring rate and putting the home side in the winning draw position, a heavier burst of rain saw the evergreen Woodward lead his men off the field and the game finished with the Green 155 for 7 off 39.3 overs only 6 runs short of gaining a winning draw.The eighth wicket partnership off 77 between Metcalfe 53no and Scullion snr 24no had put the green back in the match and who knows what would of happened had the rain held off. For Droitwich fifteen yearold Jake Young bowled a fine spell of legspin finishing with 5 for 55. Droitwich gained 15 points and the Green 5

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