Saturday Review

First XI Dismantle Petersfield in One Way Canter

On a sweltering afternoon at Oakley Park, the First XI brushed aside Petersfield in a surprisingly one side affair. As Hampshire enjoyed a classically British one day sample of the heatwave that has engulfed Europe, batting was never going to be easy. However, In Dan Sumner and Elliot Hennessey, The Oaks have opening batsmen who can be stoic as well as aggressive and a 100 run partnership put The Oaks well in control.

Dan eventually went for 54 and Elliott, an exhausting 67 but cameos from Will Montgomery (25) Brad Compton-Bearne (39) James Bayliss (16) and Ian Bennett added to a score that was getting well aided by a remarkably chaotic 55 extras as Petersfield wilted in the heat.

The total of 294 meant victory was a formality, with the focus now being maximum points.

Petersfield, who had picked the wrong day to be depleted, didn’t have much resistance bar H Shore, who made an admirable 47. Thereafter it was all a bit desperate, with the duck count (5) rivalling the amount bobbing around in Oakley pond. It was a day they will want to forget about and crack on with the rest of the season.

Wickets went to Alex Brundle (3) Ronnie McCewan (3) Brad Compton-Bearne (2) and a wicket plus a run out for Dan Sumner. I have also heard reports of a spectacular catch from Will Montgomery. Apparently it made him smile, but that has not come from a reliable source and will need confirmation.

This was billed by me if no one else, as a bit of test for The Oaks. In all honesty it was a bit of a stroll around Oakley Park as the lads worked hard and got the result their efforts deserved. Tougher tests lie in wait, notably IBM Hursley next week, but this team is going to take some beating if it keeps firing on all cylinders.

They appear to becoming more ruthless as the season wears on.

Weather: Bastard Hot: 32 Centigrade
MOM: Elliot Hennessey: A rather sweaty 67 (you wouldn’t want to be washing his whites)

 

Second XI Undone by St Mary Bourne

The Two’s were not quite good enough to beat a decent St Mary’s side on a blistering and picturesque afternoon at the Recreation Ground. Batting first The Oaks found it really tough going and a batting line up that promised much, delivered little, as batsmen were in and out with all the authority of a fucked cuckoo clock.

St Mary Bourne bowled well too, showing that by hitting decent lines and restricting extras, they can put the pressure on batsmen and their strategy worked. In a total of just 166 the positives came from Alan (Alan) North, who got into the thirties, James Adams, an excellent unbeaten 44 and Ollie Rabley, who offered a timely reminder that he knows how to hold a bat straight.

James was the highlight as he has had to force his way in to the side after a long holiday. He looked the real deal as a middle order batsmen who can adopt the simple strategy of hitting the bad and blocking the good. I say simple, I have been trying it for years and I still bat like someone walking to the crease with ‘CRETIN’ stamped on his forehead.

Defending 166 on a track that had 220 written all over it, was always going to be hard. However, The Oaks showed spirit and bowled quite well all the way through. Tom Barnes and Will Cheyney offered up some decent stuff and picket up a wicket apiece. However, Dave Prodger was a class act for Bourne, waiting and dismissing for anything short and loose and the game was rapidly slipping away.

When Jack Brundle dropped a Prodger mistimed pull shot that was all Steve Savage’s fault, it was the end of our chances of victory, our promotion hopes, the existence of Oakley Two’s and quite possibly, our existence as a planet. However, it is important not to make Jack feel bad about it. Bowler, Jeff King, was of course, ecstatic.

Jeff got some reward with George Lethaby taking a hearty uppish drive in the chest and holding on to it, whilst Ollie Rabley picked up a couple of late consolation wickets. Bourne were worthy winners but The Oaks gave it their best on a day when things didn’t go their way and the heroics of last week could not be repeated.

Take it on the chin, lick the wounds, learn how to catch, move on.

Weather: Bastard Hot, 32c
MOM: James Adams: Excellent knock under pressure

 

Third XI Do a Devon Loch

At the time of writing, I am waiting for a report from Dan Beckell but if you want to know how it went, watch the following video.

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