KPCC 4s had high hopes of winning the local derby with Datchworth 4s but will rue some poor shots during their innings.
With Datchworth having a very young side as well as being short of players, JC won the toss with the aim of bowling the oppo out and then chasing the runs down. With Datchworth putting their 3 more senior batsmen in the top 3, The Park knew that they had to get early wickets to then go all out to put the younger players under pressure especially with some good size boundaries and a slow outfield.
Things didn’t go to plan though despite Ethan (6-0-24-0) bowling well and Richard bowling particuarly tightly with Datchworth and especially Sharp batting sensibly and keeping the score ticking over to 38 until the 10 over when a mistimed shot resulted in Richard Wheeler getting the first of his 3 wickets with a simple catch going to Ian Murrill. With Boylan joining Sharp at the crease, the score continued to rise with Ryan Loonan having an uncomfortable couple of overs and unfortunately Sharp being dropped on approx 40 from Drew’s tidy spell.
With Charlie MS replacing Ryan, he looked the most threatening of KPCCs bowlers with a very good line and length and missing the outside edge on several occaisions. Charlie (5-0-17-1) did eventually strike removing Sharp with the last ball of his (fast-bowling directive enforced) five over spell with a superb catch by Imogen at gulley. Datchworth though had moved to 113-2.
Ian Murrill kept the run rate down in conjunction with the remaining overs from Drew (8-0-36-0) with just one looser over preventing a better set of figures. Ian (6-1-21-1) was rewarded by bowling the 2nd highest Datchworth scorer of Boylan by bowling him for 37. Imogen (6-0-37-1) from the other end bowled some superb deliveries beating the batsmen all ends up.
Richard returned to the attack and continued his excellent spell with what was the plan at the beginning of the day at long last worked with him picking up a couple of wicket maidens. Richard finished with an excellent 7-2-14-3. With Drew did a fine piece of fielding with a pickup and throw resulting in a direct hit for a great run out. However, by letting the top 3 batsmen score 117 of the final 181 Datchworth total, The Park knew that the plan had been right but we had failed to achieve the desired outcome with the younger players barely scoring any runs once they were in.
The less said about Knebworth’s reply perhaps the better. Millie was caught at 2nd slip from the last ball of the first over and then despite Phil scoring freely and getting to 23 from 25 balls including 4 fours and Lizzie also hitting some good shots, seven of the Park’s batsmen then gave the reduced number of fielders catching practice with some poor shots and a lack of patience. Phil (23) fell from a mistimed pull giving 2nd slip his 2nd catch of the afternoon with the score on 33. Lizzie (10) was caught by fielder at 45 degrees on the single with the score having only moved to 38. Ryan’s afternoon got worse by giving the same fielder another catch off the next delivery.
JC was batting sensibly and at this point was on 15 and with Richard W coming to the crease was hoping that the pair would, against bowling which realistically was nothing special, could get the Park towards a good run chase. However, Richard (4) was another to give an early catch with a drive to extra-cover. The Park were in trouble at 52-5. With the aim of rebuilding the innings, the partnership of Imogen and JC only lasted 5 overs before Jonathan (23) bottom edged into his stumps resulting in KPCC being 64-6.
Ethan then despite missing one attempted big shot tried another and gave Datchworth their 6th catch of the afternoon off his 3rd ball. Ian joined Imogen at the crease and the pair frustrated Datchworth by hanging around for 13 overs but both players struggled to score runs despite Imogen’s excellent technique and the score only moving on to 98 before Imogen was out to an excellent catch by the bowler. She perhaps was the only Park player who was caught without throwing their wicket away.
Charlie (3)was told to try to just enjoy the last few overs which he tried to do and Drew similarly but fell on the final ball of the 39th over leaving The Park a a few runs short of a batting point.
A very disappointing day for the 4s and the batting needs to become more solid with everyone contributing if we’re to chase or set decent scores.