25th May 2009 - Match Reports.

Malvern CC 1st XI versus Barnards Green CC 1st XI BGCC 2nd XI vs Hagley

The May Bank Holiday Monday saw Barnards Green make the short trip to Regency Road to face local rivals Malvern Ramblers. The visitors high on confidence after a nail biting but confidence boosting win over Coombs Wood in the leagues’ Saturday fixture and Malvern hoping to erase the damage from their loss to Redditch. Home skipper Arnold who voiced the strength of his bowling attack in his pre season Gazette preview column was delighted to win the toss in overcast conditions and with covers on the pitch due to a short flurry of rain before the start hoped that his seam attack could make early inroads into the Green top order on a sweaty and green strip. Despite the early loss of Smedley who was bowled by a Poole in swinger with the score on 19 Malvern failed to take advantage of the swinging ball and helpful conditions as the experienced Francis struggled to live up to his skipper’s pre season plaudits as he sent down 12 wides in an expensive and erratic spell of 8 overs none for 57. Golder who had creamed and caressed a number of boundaries off the balls he could reach was joined at first drop by George Rhodes who started in fine fashion with an elegant leg glance his first scoring stroke. Adam Dovey replaced the expensive Francis and also struggled to bowl to the destructive Golder who by this stage had introduced expansive aerial shots to his arsenal as he reached a rapid and well deserved half century with yet another clubbed four. Skipper Arnold briefly stemmed the tide as he picked up the wicket of Golder with his slow medium pace offerings excellently caught by Mark Baugh however this respite was brief as first Rhodes and then Paddock took this as a challenge to further up the ante and propel the visitors to an imposing first innings total.Rhodes was soon celebrating his maiden Green half century as he mixed elegant and exquisitely timed drives with power and precision to brilliantly anchor the innings. Paddock hit the ground running as he immediately got to grips with the bowling and dispensed harsh justice to the bad balls on offer to destroy the figures of Poole 1-96,(14 overs) Dovey 1-80(17) and Arnold 1-40(7).When Paddock was dismissed for a brutal 70 from 40 balls Phil Harris immediately carried on where his former schoolmate left off to provide the necessary impetus to the last ten overs. Rhodes at the other end continued to impress as he powered through the 70’s and 80’s with a collection of boundaries however appeared to be running out of time for a maiden century. Needing 9 runs from the final 2 overs some excellent running brought him within touching distance, at this point the youngster showed no sign in the nervous nineties as he shimmed confidently down the pitch to Poole and dispatched the ball high over the long on boundary to bring up his ton with the poise of a veteran and he completed a fine innings with a pulled four off the final ball of the to set the home side an imposing 325 to win. Following the tea break the Green hoped that their seam attack could come up with the goods on a wicket that had clearly helped the batsmen despite its appearance and skipper Williams was not disappointed as his overseas import twice combined with wicketkeeper Binks to dismiss both openers with the score at 21. When Williams himself joined the wicket takers having Bendall caught by batting hero Rhodes for 17 he could not have imagined in his wildest dreams that Bendall’s score would be the highlight of the Malvern innings. Murphy and then Ford continued to scythe through the Rambler’s line up as some good catching and disciplined bowling accounted for the final seven Malvern wickets for the cost of just twenty runs. Despite an unfortunate misunderstanding between Smedley and Rhodes which led to a dropped chance Murphy picked up a well deserved 5 wicket haul when Hale was caught by Ford at slip, Ford himself picked up 3 late order wickets with his canny off spin. Murphy and Rhodes led the victors from the field as they completed an excellent 48 point weekend and with Worcester picking up the better of a draw with rivals Pershore the Green top the WCL 1st Division table with Malvern holding up the division in last place.

BGCC 324-3 Rhodes 108*, Paddock 70, Harris 42*

Malvern 59 all out Murphy 5-18, Ford 3-12





On Bank Holiday Monday Barnards Green CC Second Eleven hosted Hagley CC at North End Lane. Hagley won the toss and asked the home side to bat on what looked like a main road of a wicket. The evenness of the wicket helped the batsmen off to a flyer until Hooper (2) and then Doughty (22) got themselves out caught well both times in the covers. This loss brought Clarke (138) and Dean (22) to the wicket where they very quickly set about the Hagley bowlers with aplomb mixing classic cricket strokes with beastly biffs. Clarke, for the second innings in succession, was a joy to watch batting with a class seldom seen at this level. The score rattled along despite the fall of Dean as L. Hooper (58), Yorke (33) and Clack (18) all treated the visiting bowlers harshly. Doughty declared the innings closed in the 45th over with the total on 315 for 7.The Hagley innings got off to a good start with the batsmen able to exploit the gaps in the attacking field set quickly putting on 102 before the first wicket fell to Spencer (12-1-49). The old adage of ‘one brings two’ worked well as Hagley actually lost 5 wickets for just 55 runs with the spin of L. Hooper (15-4-80) and Doughty (12-2-32) working well in tandem. This flurry of wickets although positive for the Green had a negative effect on the game as the batsmen effectively ‘shut-up-shop’ in an attempt to stop the Green from winning. This tactic proved effective as the Green were unable to finish off their opponents and were, for the second time in three days restricted to a winning draw. Winning Draw to Barnards Green CC 2nd Eleven. 15 Points