Adrian Mills by MHS

2nd XI well beaten by Cheam

Saturday 17th June 2017
Travelbag Surrey Championship Division 4 – 2nd XI Competition
Cheam 2nd XI 239 for 8 declared (50.5 overs)
Stoke D’Abernon 2nd XI 112 all out (34.4 overs)
Cheam 2nd XI won by 127 runs

Stoke’s 2nd XI were missing a few of their first choice team and fell to a disappointing defeat at the hands of Cheam who now have three wins in a row after losing their first four games.

Stoke fielded first on the warmest day of the season so far. Duncan Elder took two early wickets when Bastable was caught at short cover by Jase Earl, then no.3 Horwood was leg-before. First change Ralph Coleman also had a leg-before appeal against Hafeez, (25), answered in the affirmative by the visiting umpire who kindly did both ends. Adrian Mills was rewarded for his consistency when Senanayake was well caught by Andy Page standing up. 64 for 4.

This visitors needed a partnership and got one. Lavender and Sayed added 77. The Stoke bowlers did well on a good pitch, but the breakthrough proved elusive; and it took sixth bowler Deepak Malhotra to separate the pair; Lavender, (39), caught by Page after the ball hit just about everything on the way through.

The returning Mills collected two wickets in his comeback spell; Henry was well caught on the line by Elder as he tried one big hit too many; then top scorer Sayed served up a return catch two short of a half-century. These wickets for Mills, (14-3-48-3), took him past Will Breach into 16th on the list of all-time leading wicket-takers for the Club.

Malhotra took a second wicket when Cowlard hit to Giacomo Gray in the covers; but 188 for 8 was as good as it got for Stoke as an unbroken ninth wicket stand of 51, 41 of them made by McManus who finished on 43 not out, lifted the total to 239 for 9 at which point the visiting captain waved his players in to leave Stoke a minimum of 50 overs to chase the runs.

Sadly Stoke’s batting effort didn’t match the quality of Jo’s tea. The chase began badly when Malcolm Dickson failed to clear mid-off; but Peter Phipps and Malhotra got the board moving before Phipps, (18 with some nice shots), hit the ball to mid-on and ran only to be beaten by a direct hit from McManus. This started and avalanche of wickets that saw Stoke crash to 42 for 6 in the space of eight overs with no batsman making double figures.

Page eventually got to 12 before cutting to point; but next man Rod Thomson fell to a leg-before decision leaving Elder, Coleman and Mills the Mission Improbable of batting out 26.3 overs. They gave it a good go; Elder hit the ball nicely before falling to a smart catch at the wicket for 21 to end a ninth wicket stand of 34; but four runs later it was all over and 127 runs was the final margin of defeat.

The result sees Stoke drop to 4th in the table. With returning players and a possible feed from the 1st XI squad, next week Stoke travel to Bushy Park looking to avenge an early season defeat to Hampton Wick Royal.

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