1st June vs Marsh Gibbon (A)- won by 6 wickets
On a gloriously sunny day, Westcott arrived at the Marsh Gibbon ground, which looked in excellent condition with a white wicket that looked destined for runs to be scored on it. The skipper managed to lose the toss for the first time this season, which meant that sun screen was applied in copious amounts, prior to the boys trudging onto to the field, in what looked like being a long afternoon in the sunshine.
However, what unravelled was not what was expected. The first Mash wicket fell early, with Alex taking a good catch to remove one of the openers off the bowling of Waqas. Joe Leonard then proceeded to hit hard, scoring a few quick boundaries off Waqas, who in fairness continued to pitch the ball up and allow it to swing, hoping to find the edge. Some interesting fielding tactics saw Lewis rolling next week’s wicket, keeper Tony kicking the ball further away off the square, overthrows from two yards from the stumps and the highlight being Nick stopping a well driven cover drive with his own middle stump (ooof – rub it Nick!)
Eventually Waqas had his man, who hit one straight to Alex at mid-wicket, who took his second catch of the afternoon. With Stuart Leonard snicking one into the diving keepers right glove (Tony not Strongy) when on four, Westcott had a couple of prize wickets in the bag and Marsh were struggling at about 50 for 4. Two quick LBW’s followed, one each for Waqas and Rehman, which left Marsh in further trouble. With wickets tumbling, the skipper decided it was time he got into the action (funny old thing that), grabbing his usual 3 wickets, but in fairness, the Marsh tail did wag a bit and a few double figure scores moved the total onto 105 when the last wicket fell in the 36th over, with Waqas returning excellent figures of 4-40 from his straight 12 over spell (bearing in mind the heat and him still being on Ramadan, therefore not able to take a drink – great effort Waqqer!).
After a cracking tea, the Westcott openers Stuart and Rehman entered the middle, looking to set about knocking off the total, but was there going to be a sting in the tail? Marsh opened up very aggressively, looking to be positive and this allowed Rehman the chance to club a few over the top of the tight and somewhat vocal infield. Stuart was given out LBW early doors, Alimar was caught behind by the very safe hands of Marsh keeper Stuart Leonard and Tony managed to get himself out caught, playing a shot to a high, loose, wide, full bunger that was most probably best left alone!! Stuart promptly stumped Rehman when on 46 and now it was Westcott’s turn to struggle at 65 – 4.
In came the skipper, who batted extremely sensibly along with Tanveer, intent on ensuring no more wickets were conceded during the next few overs. This allowed Westcott to stabilise and the score board to tick along, until Tanveer decided that enough was enough and smashed 16 runs in 5 balls to give Westcott the victory by six wickets in the 25th over.
Buzz turned up, fresh from umpiring at Chalgrove, just in time to miss the winning runs, but seemed content in joining everyone in downing a couple of refreshing Bulmers to stave off the heat from the day.
So, back to winning ways for the Westy boys, let’s continue this next week with the visit of Middleton Cheney and keep up the pressure near the top of the table.