Opening Day Win

Saturday 20th April 2019 Friendly Stoke D’Abernon 266 for 5 (40 overs) Staines & Laleham and Battersea Eagles 105 all out (26.3 overs) Stoke D’Abernon won by 161 runs A mixed Stoke XI opened the season with a comprehensive win against an opposition who themselves were a hybrid of Staines & Laleham league players and resources from Battersea Eagles, one of our wandering Sunday oppositions. A big thank you to the contacts at each club for working together to assemble an XI to take advantage of the glorious early season weather. Acting Stoke captain Duncan Elder chose to bat on winning the toss. Max Subba Row punched the first ball of the season back past the bowler for four; but having reached 17 with two other nice boundaries he was also became the first player to be dismissed when he hit to cover. The total was 46 in the 9th over, as Andy Berry cracked seven boundaries to keep the scoring rate healthy. He departed soon after for 33. 50 for 2. James Corbishley and Kane Fullalove added 66 more in just nine overs; the latter scoring 48 of them, clearing the line on the full on four occasions in his 29 ball knock that ended when he was castled, prompting an early drinks break. Roddy Kelso joined Corbishley and a further 96 runs were added at nearly seven per over. Kelso took full advantage of some moderate bowling as the opposition chose, (rightly), to give opportunities to those who travelled to play and make the game happen. He caught Corbishley up in seemingly no time, and both batsmen pushed singles off successive balls(*) to bring up their half-centuries. Kelso, (56 from 48 with 7 fours), departed with the total on 212; leaving Corbishley and Alex Clinton bat the remaining overs; a 54 run partnership that included some aggressive running ended on the last ball of the innings when Clinton, (16), was lost to a run out. Corbishley led the players off uneaten on 87 – a career best for Stoke – from 83 balls faced with six fours and one maximum. After a tea kindly made by Peter Phipps whilst Jo is overseas; Stoke made early inroads to put themselves in a position of dominance. The visitors were likely to be reliant on opener Yasir Ahmed for a big score to give the chase the start it needed, but he fell to the second of two loud shouts for leg-before from Adrian Mills for just 8. Mills doubled his count courtesy of a fine running catch by Elder at deep extra cover to remove Ahmed No.2; then Ahmed No.3 was yorked by Robbie Blackburn who grew into his spell and will be better for getting match overs in to his legs. A quick double by Elder, (3-1-9-2), made it 62 for 5; then the appointed visiting skipper Harris couldn’t keep out an in-ducker from Kelso. Having had a bit of a growth spurt over the winter, Clinton used his extra height to obtain more bounce as well as some turn. With good variations of pace he started with a double-wicket maiden and only a wild hack for four by No.5 batsman Sadiq Khan, (not the mayor), in his third over took his economy rate over 2s. Clinton, (4-2-6-3), would then take the penultimate wicket when Khan, (32), was bowled. As the game moved towards an inevitable conclusion, a few overs were shared by Raja Singh, Max Subba Row and Ralph Coleman. Soon after the hundred was posted the latter bowled Kumar with one that kept a bit low to close the match. So Stoke still remains the happiest of places, the mood picked up on by Nick Lo who was in London on a bit of business but came down to see us for an hour or so ahead of next week’s tour where he has sourced a game both days for us next weekend. An additional home fixture will be arranged for the non-tourists; an appropriate opposition will be found when availabilities come in and we know what the strength of that team will be. A reminder that we need members to come to The Rec on Monday from 11am to help work through Pagie’s list of pre-season tasks. Scorecard : (*) The only instance we can find of two Stokers bringing up half-centuries off successive balls came at Merstham in 2007 when Sid Lahiri and Tim Handel did just that on our way to a big win :