Saturday 31st August 2019
AJ Fordham Surrey Championship
Stoke D’Abernon 261 for 9 (50 overs)
Dorking 104 all out (26 overs)
Stoke D’Abernon won by 157 runs
A big win at The Rec put Stoke’s 1st XI in pole position for a fourth successive promotion.
Stoke were asked to bat first but this was not the worst toss to lose as Max Subba Row, who hit the first ball of the match for four, and James Trower set a good platform by adding 67 off the first 10.5 overs. Subba Row reached 40 off 30 balls faced with eight fours before chipping to mid-on.
Trower departed soon after for 29 when he was leg-before to one that kept a little low; but Shawn Dyson and James Corbishley kept the run rate healthy and moved the total past the 100 mark. A slight wobble saw Dyson held at slip for 24, Alastair Curran depart leg-before next ball and Corbishley leg before sweeping to give the visitors a foothold in the game at 122 for 5; but Ian Hopton and Tom Frost put together a decisive partnership of 87 off 90 to regain control.
An under the weather Hopton played patiently whilst the more expansive Frost took full advantage of anything loose; hitting three sixes and three fours as Dorking struggled for a reliable 5th/6th bowler option; those ten overs costing 65. Both batsmen checked out in successive overs for 35 and 55, (from 46), respectively; leaving a highly competent tail the last seven overs to get as many more as possible. Roddy Kelso, (18), Robbie Blackburn, (17), and Jase Earl, (10 not out), all delivered, lifting the total to 261 for 8.
After tea the League’s leading run-scorer Erasmus eased the first ball of the reply through the covers for four; but he was to add just one more boundary to his count before he was well held by Kelso at mid-wicket for 11 off the bowling of Blackburn. Having scored more than a third of his team’s runs this season, the impact of this dismissal on both sides was clearly evident, but there was still work to do.
Blackburn doubled his count when Rogers served up an easy catch to Corbishley at cover; continuing a frenetic start to the innings that saw the board showing 30 for 2 after just 28 balls; that then became 59 for 3 off 69 as Subba Row showed good hands on the line to give Will Frost his first.
Dyson made it 64 for 4 soon after when dismissing Gale leg before; but he was withdrawn from the attack after just three overs as Stoke’s need to get to the 20-over mark to constitute a game gathered some urgency when things got very gloomy and a big black cloud started to make its way towards the ground.
Subba Row was quickly brought into the attack and in addition to rattling through some overs he also found two edges, one of them off the bat of debutant Rory Wade, son of Stoke’s own Steve.
Frost, (10-2-41-2), bowled his allocation right through and collected the seventh wicket to fall with the score on 91; 20 over mark achieved just in time as three balls later the players fled the field.
The delay in play was shorter than expected and with playing conditions meaning no overs were lost the game resumed as normal less than half an hour later, and it took a similar amount of time to end the match. Earl held a return catch to make it eight down; then Subba Row took the last two wickets to finish with career best figures of 5-2-10-4.
Stoke were worthy winners by 157 runs; nine of the ten batsmen who faced a ball made double figure scores, all five bowlers used took wickets and the bowling quintet didn’t include the team’s leading wicket taker who wasn’t asked to bowl. A real team effort.
So Stoke travel to Farnham next weekend on the verge of something very special. Farnham secured their own status in the division with a win over Sanderstead; but whilst they technically now have nothing to play for it must be remembered that their win over Stoke earlier in the season kick-started their upturn in results that saw them survive.