Charlbury 252-7 (45 overs)
Ben Forrester 46
Bimalka Liyanarachchi 58
Stuart Atkins 40 not out
Barry Nutt 30 not out
Long Marston 2nd 128 (35.5 overs)
Bimalka Liyanarachchi 4-19
Jake Godfrey 3-30
Long Marston won the toss and elected to bowl first. Tom and Rob opened the batting and got Charlbury off to a reasonable start. A no-ball was bowled in the first over meaning there was a free hit. Tom took a stride forward and smashed the ball back passed the bowler for four. Both batsmen then pushed the ball around for twos and threes on the huge outfield. Then disaster struck as Rob was wrapped on the pads and given out adjudged LBW. Ajit now came to the crease. Bot h Long Marston bowlers had now settled into a great line and length and both batsmen were struggling to get the ball away for any runs. In the eighth over Ajit edged one and was caught at first slip to leave Charlbury 26-2. Ben now strode to the crease. Tom was batting very cautiously, pushing the odd single around, but mainly playing defensively against some good bowling. Ben started more aggressively, getting off the mark with a hard run three before in the next over hitting back to back fours. After eleven overs a change in the bowling was made and Long Marston brought on a new bowler. The new bowler quickly dropped into a good length and line. Ben pulled a delivery into the leg-side and the ball quickly flew to the boundary for four. Then disaster struck as Tom missed on and was bowled leaving Charlbury 46-3 off of 18 overs. Graham now entered the fray. Ben was looking good as he stroked the ball around on both sides of the wicket, always on the lookout for a run, but playing defensively when needed. Some rain began to fall and the players had to leave the ground, on the resumption the game had been reduced to 48 overs a side. Ben then crashed two more boundaries thru the off side as Charlbury started to try and accelerate the innings. Graham lofted the ball back over the bowler’s head and to the boundary for four, then next ball flicked one leg side for another boundary. Next ball Graham tried to repeat the act, but got a leading edge and the ball flew high into the air and the bowler took the catch. The captain, Bimalka, now came to the wicket. Ben cracked another couple of lovely shots and on each occasion the ball flew to the boundary for four. A change in the bowling was now made as the opening bowler had finished his allotted overs and a new bowler entered the attack. Ben drove the new bowler to the boundary for four, but then late on in the over he missed one and was bowled for a good 46. Charlie now strode to the crease. A couple of overs later a new bowler entered the attack replacing the first change bowler. The new bowler was a spinner and in his first over Bimalka hit him to the boundary for four. After 27 overs Charlbury had reached 127-5 and now needed to push on hard if they were to set a defendable total. Both players ran hard for every run and Charlie hit a couple of fours to keep the score moving along at a good rate. Bimalka was looking good, playing defensively at first just to get himself in before looking to attack. Then disaster struck as Charlie was wrapped ion the pads and given out adjudged LBW. Before new batsman Stuart could face a ball down came the rain and the players left the field once again. On the resumption the game had been reduced to 47 overs a side. Now with the overs running out fast Charlbury had to try and put their foot down. A change of bowling was made as one of the opening bowlers returned to the attack. Both batsmen took a couple of overs to get going. Then Bimalka pulled one to the leg-side and the ball flew all the way over the boundary for six. Stuart was looking comfortable at the wicket, pushing a few ones and twos around and trying to give Bimalka the strike. Then Bimalka hit out, running hard for twos and threes whilst also hitting a couple of fours off of one over to take Charlbury to 174-6 off of 37 overs. Next over Bimalka pushed a two and went to a well deserved fifty. A change in the bowling was then made as the opening bowler left the attack and the Long Marston captain brought himself on. Then disaster struck as Bimalka miss-hit one straight at a fielder and he was caught meaning Barry now came to the crease. Both players ran hard and both found a boundary four before yet more rain came with Charlbury 212-7 off of 42 overs. An early tea was had and on the resumption the game was reduced to 45 overs a side. The last three overs were carnage with both batsmen running hard for everything, Stuart hit a couple of fours and the score raced along. Then came the last over. A couple of singles were pushed leaving Barry on strike. Barry leant into one shot and the ball flew out of the ground and into a neighbouring field for a massive six. A boundary four soon followed before last ball of the innings another massive six was hit meaning Charlbury had hit 40 runs in the last three overs taking them to 252-7.
Matt and Stuart opened the bowling for Charlbury and got them off to a reasonable start. Matt was quickly into a great line and length and caused a few problems for the batsmen. Stuart did not quite find as good a line, but when he did he managed to rush the batsmen and get them playing and missing. The fielders backed the bowlers up from the off, diving around to stop the ball and chasing everything to the boundary. Then Charlbury got a bonus when the non-striker called for a run and the striker hesitated. Rob quickly fielded the ball and threw it in to Matt who executed the run out. Charlbury were bowling well and making sure that the batsmen had to work hard for every one of their runs. After ten overs Long Marston had reached 46-1. A double change in the bowling was then made as Bimalka came on for Stuart and then an over later Jake replaced Matt. Both bowlers immediately dropped into great lines and lengths and made run scoring very difficult. In Bimalka’s second over Charlbury got a big wicket when the Long Marston captain lofted the ball into the deep, but could not clear Charlie who took a great catch. Then Charlbury had a big three over spell. First the other opening batsman tried to hit out at Bimalka, but just hit the ball high into the air and Stuart stood at long-on took a good catch. Next over Jake came to the party and clean bowled one batsman and then in the next over Bimalka bowled a batsman leaving Long Marston 74-5 off of 20 overs. Charlbury were in the driving seat and kept the pressure on, keeping close fielders in. The batsmen now contented themselves with pushing the ball around for the odd run or boundary while trying to make sure no more wickets were lost. Then Bimalka finally broke thru one batsman’s defences and bowled him. After 28 overs Long Marston were 100-6 and Bimalka had just finished his great nine over spell. Jake now bowled his last over and it was a great one. First he bowled a slower one, deceived the batsman and bowled him and then two balls later he clean bowled the new batsman, Charlbury were nearly there. Stuart now entered the fray in place of Bimalka and Charlie came on for Jake. Both bowlers kept up the pressure on the batsmen. In his second over back Stuart was too quick for one batsman and bowled him. The last couple of batsmen put on a few runs, but when the last man missed one from Charlie he was bowled and Charlbury had won by 124 runs.
A great win by the lads built on innings from Ben, Bimalka, Stuart and Barry and then some great bowling from Bimalka and Jake sealed the victory – well played lads.
Charlbury 25 points