Charlbury 112-9 (25 overs)
Alex Gray 34
Minster Lovell 116-4 (24.3 overs)
Minster Lovell won the toss and elected to field first. Needing to win the game to win the league Minster were eager for the game to go ahead, but rain was falling which meant a lot of hanging around. Finally the rain relented and at about 3:40pm the game commenced as a 25 over a side game. Graham and Tom opened the batting for Charlbury, but things did not go well. In the first over Tom cut one delivery, but hit it straight to a fielder and was caught. Alex now entered the fray. Graham was looking to bat in his usual way, attacking any loose delivery and found several in the second over. A couple of hard run twos and a boundary four set the Charlbury score on the way. With the outfield being wet the batsmen were going to have to run hard for all of their runs as the ball was liable to run slower over the outfield. After four overs Charlbury had reached 18-1 and were going to have to keep pushing hard if they were to set a defendable score. Alex got off the mark with a a boundary four, hit square of the wicket. In the next over Graham launched the bowler back over his head and into the river for six as Charlbury continued to push hard. After seven over a change in the bowling was made and this had an immediate impact on the Charlbury innings. The new bowler managed to find a way thru Graham’s defences second ball and he as bowled for a hard hit 29. Bimalka now joined Alex at the crease. Alex was batting really well as he stroked the ball around on both sides of the wicket while also looking to defend the many good deliveries that were bowled. After ten overs Charlbury had reached 54-2 and with the overs now starting to run out they would have to push on hard to set a defendable total. After twelve overs another change in the bowling was made as the first of Minster’s spinners entered the attack. Bimalka was batting well, just looking to rotate the strike and with Alex batting well this was working well. Bimalka hit a couple of boundaries as did Alex as Charlbury continued to push hard. Then disaster struck as Bimalka hit out at the spinner, but could only hit the ball high into the air and a fielder caught it. Stuart now arrived at the crease. Minster’s other spinner now entered the attack and in his first over grabbed the wicket of Stuart when he miss-hit one straight back to the bowler for a caught and bowled. 87-4 off 16 overs as Josh came to the crease. The spinners had now dropped into a good line and length and suddenly run scoring started to become much harder. A couple of overs ticked by with hardly any runs coming. The pressure eventually told when Alex danced down the wicket, missed the ball and was stumped. Charlie now joined his captain at the crease. Next over Josh tried to hit one spinner back over his head for six only to see a fielder run round the boundary and take the catch. Hasula now came to the crease. In the 21st over Charlie missed one and was bowled leaving Charlbury 98-7. Dean now came to the crease. In the next over Hasula tried to hit a six, but only found a fielder on the boundary and was caught meaning Jake came to the wicket. Dean batted well as he looked to push the ball around for ones and twos and with Jake running well the score started to go up a bit quicker. Jake then took a step down the wicket, missed the ball and was stumped meaning last man Rob had to go to the wicket. A few more runs were pushed in the last over as Charlbury finally ended their innings on 112-9.
After a short break the players went straight back out and so Jake and Stuart opened the bowling. They got Charlbury off to a great start with the ball with only five runs coming in the first couple of overs. Then Jake got the breakthrough when he clean bowled one batsman. A couple more overs were bowled with very few runs coming from them as Charlbury tightened the screw on the batsmen. With the required rate rising the batsmen had to go for it and with the outfield drying up and becoming quicker a couple of boundaries were found. after eight overs Minster had reached 36-1 and a double change in the bowling was made. Bimalka and Hasula now entered the attack. Both bowlers immediately dropped into a great line and length and began to make run scoring difficult apart from the odd single. Charlbury were fielding well, diving all over the place to try and stop any shot scoring runs. After 14 overs Minster had reached 49-1 and with the overs now starting to run out and not many runs coming something was going to have to give. Hasula was bowling a great spell, using his variations in pace and spin to beguile the opposing batsmen. Bimalka too was bowling a great spell, getting the ball to turn some balls, but not others. Then the breakthrough came when one batsman took a couple of steps down the wicket towards Hasula, missed the ball and quick as a flash Alex whipped off the bails to stump him. Next over one batsman played a delivery from Bimalka in the air and a diving Josh took a good catch leaving Minster Lovell 54-3 off 17 overs. With the required rate starting to rise the batsmen started to show some more urgency and began running harder. In his last over Bimalka wrapped one batsman on the pads and the batsman was given out LBW. Bimalka finished his great spell and next over Hasula did the same leaving Minster 79-4 off 22 overs. Charlie now entered the attack and with plenty of runs needed and a new bowler coming into the attack the batsmen had only one option, attack hard. The sun had by now come out and was drying things off well. The batsmen went hard after Charlie and found a few boundaries taking them right back into the game. Jake replaced Hasula in the attack, but the batsmen just went hard after him as well, running hard for every single and turning a couple of singles into twos. After 24 overs Minster had reached 109-4 and it was up to Stuart to bowl the last over. Some hard running over the first two deliveries left the scores tied and then third ball the game was won and Minster Lovell were division one champions.
I hope you have all enjoyed reading my match reports and will come back season to see how we get on – thanks for reading.
Charlbury 4 points