In a tight contest between 2 sides at the bottom end of the table it was Banbury who came out on top against Horsepath 3’s.
Having lost the toss Banbury were asked to bowl in what promised to be a rain affected game, not a great start for deputising captain Chris Phillips. Banbury geared themselves up in the hunt for early wickets and thats what they got; the Horsepath opener being adjudged LBW and the first victim of Iffy Mahmood, shortly after Horsepath number 2 and former Banbury player James ‘ernie’ Ernshaw took a sucidal run to the rocket arm of Kieran Dolphin and was left foundering on his belly some 6 inches short of his ground, 12-2.
Banbury continued to push and apply more pressure, Iffy and Mark Pallett worked well in the overcast conditions and had the ball swinging nicely (even if Pallett’s bowling resmebled more of a widing country lane than a dead straight alleyway this week). Banbury looked to take control, with Horsepath on the ropes at 45-4 when the first shower of the day came in.
Continuing after the rain break was an important ‘session’ for both sides but again Banbury and Iffy struck as he chucked in an unplayable deliver to a left hander that cut him in 2. At the other end the introduction of Zaheer Abbas saw tha back of Cherwell league chairman and Horsepath skipper Clive Ricks with a very tidy in-swinging yorker.
Iffy however continued to put Horsepath to the sowrd and returned figures of 5-53 from a 15 over spell of fantastic seam bowling as Horsepath were dissmissed for 110 in 30 overs.
. Another bowling moment of note was Andrew Proctor’s first wicket of the season. Procy has struggled to find his bowling range since recovering from a bad arm break in the off season, but as the 12 yr old Horsepath number 11 walked out and duly walked back again Procy’s celebration was more in the lines of a Bret Lee 5’er, and warented an appology soon after. I wont mention the 29 wides that were bowled.
Banbury’s run chase did not start well as they were left slightly stunned at 10-2. However Kieran Scott, continuing his run opening the batting, played a very sensible and determined innings of 36* to steer Banbury home. Scotty was help along by Asif who chiped in with 15 and Iffy a good 25 down in the allrounder slot at 7 showing his worth to side again, but at 75-6 Banbury were a long way from home. Alex Mobbs, fresh from a mid summer break contributed a fantasic 13 as he and Kieran edged Banbury ever closer. Even though at 81-6 Skipper Phillips did find a need to inform his bowlers that "if you hadn’t bowled 29 wides we would have won by now…..Pallett!" a retort of "calm down cakes, I only bowled 11 of them" was met with a very witty "Shut up!" from the skipper as he started yet another nervous lap of the field.
With Mobbs gone and the score reading 105-7 Proctor entred the fray, but was asked to do no more than watch as Scott calmly knocked of the remaining runs for a 3 wicket victory and a much needed 25 points, which sees the 4’s moved up 1 place and now sit 1 point above Horsepath.
A big thank you to Rod Pearce for umpiring and from what i understand an apology to Mrs Pearce for postponing your trip to Portsmouth.
Banbury 25 Horsepath 8
(cakes makes no appology for inaccuracies of scores or spelling mistakes)