The 4th’s travelled to Chearsley for he opening league match of the season and came away with an impressive 9 wicket victory.
Banbury won the toss and with a strong bowling attack and the morning rain, decided to put Chearsley into bat. Although the initial overs were tight, Banbury failed to take a few early chances and the initial feelings were this could be a long day, particularly with one of the Chearsley batsman having scored over 1,000 runs last year at an average of 98. However, Clark Berry and Ian Woodworth bowled tight opening spells and the pressure finally told with Clark getting the first breakthrough. Once Woody trapped their key batsmen lbw for 9, it was a fairly regular (and slowish) procession of wickets as Chearsley were eventually all out (in the 42nd over) for 90. The bowling performance from Banbury was fantastic, with everyone contributing to the wickets, backed up by some great fielding from everyone. The pick of the bowlers were Clark Berry with 2-12 of 8 overs, Charlie Hill with 2-9 of 7 overs, Mark Pallet with 2-11 of 7 overs and the evergreen Mark Wright with 2-23 off 11 overs (including a stumping!). Woody, in his first game for the season took 1-19 of 9 overs and a spectacular run out from square leg while lying down!
After an excellent tea, Banbury started their chase. With the ball still doing plenty, it was a little hard to start with, but Adam Wirth and Mitch soon found their shots and moved to 40 off 11 overs, before Adam received a pearl of a ball from Nick Babington to be bowled for 18. This brought Charlie Hill to the wicket who seemed intent on finishing the game that over with several ‘air swings’ to get him started. However, Charlie and Mitch settled down to get Banbury home in the 18th over. Mitch finished on 46 and Charlie on 25.