Adwalton 1st XI V East Leeds 1st XI 12th May 2018
Report by Tom Chapman
East Leeds arrived at Adwalton CC, hoping to right the wrongs of their resounding defeat to Rodley the week previous. The usual short boundaries at Adwalton, combined with a fast outfield, decent batting track and sun up above meant a run fest should be in store for the travelling East Leeds faithful (a season high of five). We’d made two changes to the team which lost last time out with Jamie Blackbrow making his debut and Matthew Knight coming into the side to replace Aaron Pearce and the injured Adam Farnell. For the second game in a row it was a good toss to lose, which we unfortunately won, and elected to bat first.
Chris Cannings and Dean Atkinson continued their role at the top and are building a steady partnership which they’ll look to continue over the coming weeks. Cannings was the first to go though, caught at slip with the score on 21. That brought the man from Timaru, Jacob Naylor to the crease. He and Dean took the score to 92 before the second wicket fell, Dean caught and bowled for a well-made 28 and Jimmy Watling followed not long after leaving the score on 122-3. Jacob was going strong at the other end and put on a masterclass for our five fans, looking fluent throughout his knock and scoring runs all over the park. Jacob brought his 100 up off 87 deliveries, and it’s a compliment when I say he made it look incredibly easy, smashing some huge sixes along the way. Think he might be a player this boy…Unfortunately Jacob was dismissed the ball after he brought up his ton, bowled for 101, with the score on 173-4 with fifteen overs left in the innings. Jehan Rana and Tom Chapman added 50 quickly to the scoreboard before Tom was caught at long off for 28. Jehan kept scoring quickly (finishing 45 not out off 50) and was supported well by Jamie Blackbrown (18 off 12) and Ben Wilkinson (12 not out off 10) seeing us through to 277-7 off our 50 overs. A competitive score which would need some chasing but, at Adwalton, would also require a strong bowling performance to defend it.
Willy Storey (1-47) and Baz Hussain (1-38) opened the bowling and set the tone superbly, building pressure and looking like taking a wicket every over with the swinging ball. An early wicket from each end put East Leeds on top with Adwalton struggling on 29-2 after 10 overs, a score which didn’t do our bowlers justice. Adwalton counter attacked, and in what may have been a turning point, the Adwalton No.3 flicked a six into a neighbours back garden. Despite the normal etiquette enforcing that the batting team should retrieve a lost ball and Jamie asking the neighbour if we could have our ball back, the ball wasn’t returned to us. We lost a ball which was swinging and replaced it with a ball from the bottom of the captains’ bag which had seen much better days – advantage Adwalton. Despite the counter attack from two top batsmen, Baz went at less than four an over and along with Jimmy Watling (1-68 off 15 overs) started to re-gain an element of control. The game did however take another turn just before drinks when some foul play from the Adwalton crowd cost us a key wicket. The Adwalton No.4 had already passed fifty when he scooped Jimmy high in the air and straight down Willy’s throat, only for a loud cough to come from the crowd just as he was about to take the catch. This untimely cough caused Willy to drop the ball, leaving a black eye and quite understandably causing a fair amount of anger from our players. This was used as some motivation during the drinks break and within two overs Jimmy had a big wicket – that of Gareth Lee for 46 with the score on 128-3. Jacob had been introduced into the attack to bowl in tandem with Jimmy before drinks and he struck in the next over to remove Donohoe for 54 (fortunately that drop didn’t cost us much!) and swing the game back in East Leeds favour. The Spin twins kept the pressure up and Jacob (3-60 off 12) took two more wickets leaving Adwalton on the ropes at 162-6, still requiring a further 116 from the remaining seventeen overs. Then another turn in a game that had more ups and downs than a lift. There had been persistent rain for the best part of ten overs, which although never being hard enough to take us off, was making the ball very slippery and as such, bowling difficult. Jimmy and Jacob continued to bowl well with the Adwalton pair content to nudge it around for the time being, seeing the score to 190-6 (requiring 87) with ten overs remaining. The pair then decided it was time to go, and with conditions difficult to control the ball along with some increasingly suspect fielding the tide turned, for one last time, in the favour of Adwalton. Despite a late wicket Adwalton knocked our score off with two overs remaining, their number eight seeing them home with 68 not out off just 48 deliveries – a great knock.
At the end of the game we had eleven extremely disappointed individuals, which is a credit to us. Adwalton have improved massively over the winter and will certainly be up there at the end of the season. We should take it as a huge compliment that they feared defeat and wanted play to end when the rain was falling. All of our batsmen (even down to number ten) have scored runs over the first two games, and our bowling was fantastic against Adwalton until nature intervened. Had we won last week, I’m certain we’d have walked off the field on Saturday with twenty points to our name. Onwards and upwards to the double weekend next weekend.