189/all out - 169/8
Full Time
Match Drawn

Match Report

After an interval of 11 years, the Stragglers returned to the picturesque ground at Stowting, with a team notable for an average age in excess of 45, and most having clearly enjoyed more than one good lunch. Quick singles were not going to be a feature. The Wood brothers, Jack and James, batted at the top of the order, accompanying Simon Allport (38) in turn. Sadly both Woods were felled looking to go a long way over the top. Giles Brealy (35), still impersonating a startled rhino when picking up an occasional single, added some patient class, and the scoreboard kept ticking along. Giles fell to a smart stumping, and, just when the wheels seemed to have come off entirely, a degree of respectability was restored by Eliot Forster (16) and Will Renwick (17*). However, for the second week in succession, the target set, at 189 all out, just seemed a bit light.

With a slip cordon challenging an obscure ECB ruling on maximum weight allowable, the Stragglers managed to bowl a remarkably mean line and length. Eliot began with four maidens, and although not making a breakthrough, set the tone; it was not going to be easy to get runs. The initial breakthrough was a run-out, always possible when runs are getting tight. The Chairman and Simon came on to bowl long spells, conceding little, frustrating any ambition to hit out. The score had crept to 113 for 1 off thirty; seventy runs were needed from the final 10, and the rate kept climbing. Finally Simon unleashed Graham Tyndall, who had opened earlier with aggression but without success. Now Stowting had no option but to attack, and they could not deal with the pace and accuracy of Graham, who blew away the young middle order (4 for 43). An unlikely victory was suddenly on the cards. In the end Stowting recognised that they had left it late, and blocked out for the draw at 169 for 8.


Stowting Hill, Stowting, Ashford TN25 6BE, UK