Sunday 16th April 2017
Stoke D’Abernon 144 all out (33.3 overs)
Sutton 146 for 6 (33.5 overs)
Sutton won by 4 wickets
Despite a spirited display in the field a Stoke Sunday XI line up including plenty of League players was left to rue a shortage of runs on a good pitch at Sutton.
James Trower won the toss and chose to bat; Peter Phipps and Malcolm Dickson added 17 before the latter, who hit the first two balls he faced for four and three, chipped to mid-wicket and departed for 9.
Phipps was joined by the captain and moved the total to 42 with little alarm before Phipps, (15), became one of three wickets for youngster Griffin when he edged to the cordon and the ball ended up in Foster’s hands via a deflection, possibly two.
Oliver Trower kindly stepped in to the final XI late in the week and having drilled one through the covers to get himself going, was next to depart for 7 when playing away from his body and edging Griffin to keeper Moore, just the fifth ball he faced. 51 for 3 was 82 for 4 in a matter of minutes when the elder Trower, who hit four nice fours, was caught at slip for 22 from 21 balls faced.
Griffin would finish with unusual figures of 6-0-57-3, his economy rate, or lack of it, suffering courtesy of aggressive field placements, or was it a reluctance of some of the more senior players to leave the cordon and join the ring.
Chief beneficiary was Jase Earl who carried his good form from pre-season nets to the middle and made most of his runs through his favourite scoring area. Rod Thomson stayed with him as the total moved to 115 by the mid-point of the 23rd over; but Thomson’s progress was cut short when he was bowled by debutant Premasinghe for 6; the bowler would go on to have a good all-round debut.
Stoke were in a precarious position at 115 for 5 but had batting depth, but things took a turn for the worse when, surprisingly, neither Kane Fullalove nor Deepak Malhotra were able to add to the total as veteran Hall, (6-1-10-2), dismissed them with successive deliveries.
When Earl followed in the next over, caught at the wicket off Premasinghe for a fine 57, (61 balls, 10×4); it was 124 for 8 with just Will Frost and the Townsend brothers left to post a defendable total.
As he did the previous day, Frost hit a couple of nice shots in his knock of 11; but when Premasinghe, (8-2-20-3), castled him with the last ball of his spell; Stoke’s final pair still had eight of the allotted 40 overs to bat.
A five wides from sixth bowler Schofield lifted the total to 144, but the innings closed two balls later when Ben T was caught trying to clear the infield. The last six wickets had fallen for 29 runs in just ten overs.
After tea Stoke needed early wickets to get any sort of foothold in the game, and they managed two early strikes when Earl knocked over Foster’s off-stump, then Oliver Trower took a great catch in the covers off Frost to account for Lewis for 5. 7 for 2.
Schofield and Ratnasapbathy were at the crease early, but showed why they had scored 1,541 runs between them last year with a rapid partnership of 43 in just under seven overs. The Townsend brothers bowled well in their first outing of the season, but the pitch, the quality of the batsmen and the wet ball after a brief shower left little margin for error.
Jack T picked up the wicket of Schofield, (28), when Earl made good ground at mid-on to take a fine low catch, (50 for 3); but the board continued to tick over as No.5 Nonis played positively, making 21, including the match’s only six, before he was caught at the wicket by Malhotra off the first ball delivered by Ben T following a switch of ends.
90 for 4, (Ben T 5-0-24-1), was soon 99 for 5 when Malhotra effected the stumping of Clarkson to give Fullalove his first wicket for the Club; but Stoke were running out of runs to play with and Ratnasapbathy was still going well.
They had a sniff when Ratnasapbathy, (33), eventually fell to a great catch at slip by Fullalove off the returning Earl, (6-0-33-2), to make it 121 for 6 in the 27th over, (Stoke were 121 for 7 at the corresponding stage); but this would be the last strike as Premasinghe, (27 not out), and Griffin, (14 not out), knocked off the remaining runs with little alarm despite some economical bowing by Fullalove, (5.5-1-17-1), Thomson, (3-1-4-0), and Frost, (8-0-22-1), the latter back in the groove after the previous day’s ring-rustiness.
Despite the result, we will benefit from both games played this weekend, and we’ll look to get more batting time, overs and fielding into our legs next week.
Our thanks for Sutton for their typically excellent hospitality – and for sourcing two umpires for this match to give them some early season practice. Hopefully we’ll have the same April weather next year to allow the continuation of this enjoyable fixture.
Photos from the game are on our Twitter Page : @StokeDabernonCC https://twitter.com/StokeDabernonCC