Kent Regional League Match - 46 overs per side
Gravesend (13 pts) 85 all out (37.4 overs)
New Ash Green (20 pts) 86-9 (39.5 overs)
New Ash Green won by 1 wicket
I was away in Devon, something I should try more often if it produces these sorts of results, and have not spoken to anyone about these matches, so this report is based purely on the scorecard and wild speculation. On what I would guess was a wet and under-prepared pitch given the weather and absence of Bushey during the week on tour, New Ash Green won the toss, probably by dint of having an umpire, and inserted Gravesend. The old crew of Micky Sumner and Dan Lewsey were reunited for the first time for a few weeks to great effect. Unusually it was Mick who was more expensive but got wickets and Dan who was economical and got only one. Two catches for Matt Bushe suggest Mick was getting the ball to go to gully, while four catches later on for Karl Bartlett behind the stumps also suggest the ball was moving about. David Baker was the surprise first change bowler following his tour exploits and took 1-11, while Andy Mayers had a superb short burst to take 3-5 in three overs. Joe Elisak was tight and Paul Sumner picked up the last wicket, with only two Gravesend batsmen reaching double figures.
86 to win in 54 overs called for some hard grafting, which has not been New Ash Green's strong point this season, but after Andy Mayers had made 4 and got out in the first two balls all the rest worked hard. David Baker and Lee Saunders both made 15, James Gegg in an innings of Bushe like determination batted for 67 balls for 4 and Mick Sumner top scored with 23. The pace of Simran Singh was proving the only real threat, but having taken 5-23 he ran out of overs and the rest were tidy but not dangerous. When Gegg was finally 8th out another 11 were still needed, but Dan Lewsey, his confidence boosted by making his first run of the year at Oldbury, came in at 10 and grafted with Joe Elisak until Elisak was out for 5 with three still needed. In what was probably an incredibly tense atmosphere Paul Sumner, a more than useful number 11, made a single off his only ball and Lewsey saw the team home to a dramatic win.
Kent Regional League Match - 40 overs per side
Sidcup (6 pts) 59 all out (23.5 overs)
New Ash Green (20 pts) 60-4 (29.2 overs)
New Ash Green won by 6 wickets
New Ash Green 2nd XI won for a fourth time in five on Saturday in Sidcup thanks to a superb spell by Ashley Woodward.
The paceman took 4 for 12 in 5.5 overs.
Last week the side lost heavily to Natwest 2nd XI, but bounced back immediately to take maximum points against Sidcup 4thXI as for a successive week they bowled their opponents out.
NAG won the toss and bowled. Ryan Harley immediately made the Sidcup openers uncomfortable with good line and length, while Ollie Cooper found movement.
The accompanying fielding was tight with James Turner producing several flying one-handed stops at square-leg.
Once Cooper settled into a rhythm on the poor pitch he bowled Bunny Saberwal before having Sidcup skipper Dan Carter caught behind by wicketkeeper Dave Harley.
Ryan Harley picked up the wickets of Martin Greenhead (bowled) and Daniel Seaman who propped the ball up to Michael Gallagher at point.
Then it became the Woodward show of swing, pace and bounce.
He proved too strong for Tom Mothersole (LBW), Aaron Lewns (caught behind) and Tom Hopkins (bowled). His most significant scalp was No. 3 Kevin Moulton, who stood the only Sidcup barrier before caught sharply by skipper Kieran Poole at slip for 26.
Martin Ives again proved his all-round ability with the wickets of Shakeel Chaudhry who made 5 caught by Cooper at point, and Nick Jerrom by Ryan Harley. Harley smothered Jerrom’s cover drive and, once the ball cascaded from his chest to a hand, secured it.
Tail-ender Hopkins was the last to go when his middle stump was removed in the 24th over, leaving his side 59 all out.
This left NAG with 56 overs to chase 60. Ives and Cooper went out to negotiate 16 overs before tea. Their partnership made 22 until Cooper was bowled by Hopkins.
In came Ryan Harley who struck 6 before driving straight to Seaman as the bowler followed through.
James Ives then joined his dad at the crease. “Ives done it,” the reporters would cry if they could steer the side to victory.
But he fell for 4 caught by Moulton off Sharda’s spin to make it 55-4, and his dad went shortly after when LBW to Jerrom. He had stepped high up the pitch to meet the ball, but was not quite the “couple of inches away from the bowler” suggested after.
Woodward and Howland then completed the chase.
A moment must be taken to consider - in light of the immense pressure placed on Team GB’s athletes in Stratford - the pressure placed on leg, middle and off stump by Dave Harley’s torso in one stumping attempt which culminated with no stump standing, a wonky cap and frightened wildlife.
This game appears not to have happened, unless it was over well before 6pm and no one has entered the details online, but not being there I don't know why. The weather was lovely by the time I did get there, but judging by the reports of rain storms drenching the marathon runners in the morning it may have been the weather that did for it. Or it might have been a lack of players for one side or the other.