Saturday 1st August 2020
Solihull Municipal 1st XI v Walmley 1st XI @ Solihull Municipal Sports Club
On the back of three victories, the team sheet showed two changes to last week. Opening batsmen Callum Herron and the unmistakable Recordo Gordon were brought into the team looking to maintain the unbeaten start to 2020.
The hosts won the toss and decided to bat on a wicket that had plenty of grass and promised to offer assistance to the seamers.
This proved to be the case as Gordon (3/19) took the first 3 wickets to reduce Solihull to 33/3, thanks in no small part to a fantastic catch from Jamie Hall (1/32) at short cover to get the ball rolling.
The 4th wicket proved the most difficult to obtain, as the hosts rebuilt with a half century partnership. This was finally broken by John Newis (3/18) who took two in two balls, to put the brakes on Solihull’s counter attack.
Wickets continued to fall at regular intervals and when young spinner Dinuk de Silva (2/24) took the wicket of their top scoring opener, as a result of a great take behind the stumps from Demari Prince, the writing was on the wall. Kiefer Woods (1/15) and Newis returned to mop up a stubborn tail to restrict the hosts to 155 all out (36 overs).
At half time this looked a very achievable target, but the pitch had been offering the bowlers assistance and someone would need to bat with considerable skill and concentration to maintain our 100% start to the season.
Callum Herron batted diligently at the top of the order, to see off a new ball that was doing plenty but wickets fell quickly. 10 overs in, and the scoreboard read 39/4 and the home side were sensing that a victory was theirs for the taking. Rather bizarrely every dismissal was bowled which showed just how tricky conditions were. When Sachin Dubb fell LBW the response looked in tatters at 51/5.
This brought skipper Newis (46*) to the crease. His first ball saw a caught and bowled chance that was spilt. This proved a very costly drop, as he went on to rebuild the innings with the very impressive youngster, Yusuf Khalil (19). When the 14 year old fell, Jordan Hoffman (28) continued the recovery with a more restrained innings than we usually see from the big hitting all-rounder.
Much like the Streetly game a fortnight earlier, each boundary was like a body blow to the home side and their earlier confidence was replaced with desperation as the opening bowlers were brought back for an early second spell. This did not have the desired effect, and the game was won with a wide to deprive Newis the chance to get his half century.
Walmley 156/7 (32.5 overs) – Walmley win by 3 wickets
As often seems to be the case, this young team never does things the easy way and every game this season has proved to be exciting, even nerve wracking at times. However the 100% record was maintained and on to a local derby next week as The Whammers take on Sutton Coldfield at Eldon Drive.