Surrey Trust League
Dulwich 189 for 9 (40 overs)
Stoke D’Abernon 122 all out (35 overs)
Dulwich won by 67 runs
Stoke’s Academy were still missing a few of their leading players, but the team still put in a credible performance, notably in the first half of each innings, against an older and stronger opposition in Dulwich.
The hosts chose to bat on winning the toss, but found progress slow as Keegan Weideman and debutant Banji Moore bowled economically; Moore making the dream start when Neve clipped his first ball to Ben Holder to square leg.
Moore conceded just nine runs in his first six overs and bowled a very good line outside of off-stump, prompting comparisons to Adrian Mills, (action and away swing, not pony tail), and on another day might have found several edges.
Ben Holder continued the good work, locking down another end and conceded just 24 runs in his eight overs. The pressure he created led to Fleet charging down the wicket only to be bowled.
Opener Rostami had found accumulation difficult, (although oddly he didn’t get much of the strike), and only got his score ahead of the overs count when he hit the last ball before the mid-innings break for four; however he was out soon after when he hit a return catch to Ian Hopton.
At the other end home skipper Johnson scored off what balls he could, but saw three more partners disappear as Slade gave Hopton more catching practice off his own bowling, then Glen was stumped by Hugo Solway.
Johnson continued to run well, he also hit the innings’ only six, and this inspired other batsmen to run more aggressively as well, and on reflection too many runs were stolen as the fielders, some of whom would not have fielded for any more than 20 overs, started to wilt in the heat.
Returning bowlers suffered as more runs were scored in the closing overs, necessitating the death overs being shared by Hopton and Ralph Coleman. Hopton collected a fourth wicket to finish with 8-1-45-4.
Johnson reached fifty when an edge didn’t go to hand, but was run out soon after when he was beaten by a good throw from the deep by Holder. Coleman also effected a run out with a direct hit to account for Balmforth, and then he equalled Ollie Hood’s club wickets total when Balmforth chipped to James Trower.
An untidy final over with no-balls, (again Stoke need to examine the extras conceded count), allowed George to hit a quick 18. He fell to a great catch in the deep by Kerslake, but the innings closed on 189 for 9, a decent total on a pitch that, according to the home umpire, was reported following yesterday’s Championship match.
After tea Dan Gluckman and Hopton made a great start against some of the quickest bowling Stoke had seen in all their years in the Trust League. The ball did fly through and the keeper & slips were close to 30 yards back. (See pictures taken from the scorebox – apologies from SDCC for the lack of quality.) Balmforth was excellent behind the timbers and it was a great contest to watch whilst it lasted.
The pair added 48 in nine overs before Gluckman edged a ball from Reeves to Balmforth. Hopton hooked left-arm quick Glen for a four and a six, but was run out for 36 when he pushed a single to Neve and was beaten by a good piece of fielding.
From this point the scoring rate declined as Stoke got stuck in the middle overs against spinners Swanson and Geroge, and a short burst from Rostami who also bowled with good pace. Kerslake clubbed a four but this would be his only scoring shot, Holder edged Rostami to Balmforth, and the last two senior batsmen, Trower and James Corbishley, both fell for single figures scores looking to push on.
Wickets three to eight fell for the addition of just 28 runs as the younger players all perished trying to hit the spinners; Swanson gobbling up 5 for 14 from his eight overs.
Ed Ashwell clubbed three fours in a final act of defiance, but he edged to slip with the total on 122 to close the match in the 35th over.
Again, encouraging signs from a group of emerging players against a good unit that had their usual posse of coaches working with their players before, during and after the match.
The long trip back from Dulwich was a little quicker than usual with the World Cup Final on, and the chat in the car was that there were many positives despite defeat. A few things to iron out, but this young side will have learned a lot from the experience, and the challenge for them is to reverse these scores and turn enthusiastic performances into victories.
Stoke have bye-week next week before travelling to Spencer on the 27th July.
Scorecard Link : http://sdacc.play-cricket.com/view_results_details?id=11859632