Week 4 Round Up
ACC First XI home to Gloucester CC
Apperley won the toss and chose to bat on a green but hard surface. Vice captain Matty Williams made his long awaited start to the season in the WEPL Gloucestershire League having missed the first three games due to the overlapping rugby season and a couple of stag parties!
He and Adi Mays started well, seeing off some good new ball bowling before beginning to push on. We reached 40 from 14 overs when Gloucester really began to turn the screw as our momentum was checked.
Five overs of little reward ensued and in the 20th over Williams felt the scoreboard pressure. Trying to push the boat out he was out caught for 26, looping the ball up in the air to cover. In at three Sol Dark was unable to replicate his recent form, out LBW for a duck.
One of two debutants, Adam Sercombe came in at four. He and Mayes wined, dined and sixty-nined for the biggest partnership of the innings (69 from 119 balls) before Mays was out caught behind for 47 in the 41st over with the score on 125-3.
With little time for incoming batters to get their eye in it was a case of hit out or get out. They did a mix of both as Apperley were bowled out for 209 with two balls remaining. Captain Dave Means came in at number five trying to accelerate the scoring rate but a few minutes later Sercombe was run out as they tried to take a second run.
Means thrashed 23 runs from 11 balls thanks to a glorious six followed up by two fours in the same over but was then caught out at the end of the over with one he didn’t fully get hold of.
There were to be three more boundaries in the innings after that point, all of them sixes, one from Curtis Oldroyd and the other two from successive balls in the final over by other debutant, Neil Osborn.
Despite the seeming appearance of a miracle worker there was to be no miracle for Apperley as they succumbed to a fourth defeat in four league games.
Gloucester went after the Apperley bowling right from the off. In contrast to Apperley’s innings they had scored 25 fours by the time they reached drinks at 25 overs (Apperley hit five in that time).
The first wicket was bowled by Means, caught Williams as Whiting fell for 18 from 17 with Gloucester 31-1 in the 5th over.
In the 13th over Osborn used his chest to great effect to parry a middled shot back at him and collect a caught and bowled. That wicket of Luke Carr (38 from 36) came at a point in the commentary box when we were blessed to have an Apperley legend join us. John Bubb’s Tuffers-esque stint starts in full here.
It was Lloyd Griffiths who took Apperley’s third wicket, bowling Ed Mobbs for 12. In his next over Griffiths then got the wicket of the dangerman and top scorer Scott Montgomerie for 64 from 65 balls.
The final two wickets were taken by Means as he brought himself back on from the Chapel End. The first was caught by Sam Fitzmaurice as David Hemmings went for 25 from 22 balls. The next ensured Apperley got another bowling point as the fired up Means took the third of his 3-46, Tom Collinson LBW for four. Gloucester then hit the remaining 17 runs to wrap up the victory.
ACC Second XI away at Gloucester CC Seconds
Apperley the toss and were asked to bowl on what look a good wicket to the eye. However, it soon became clear it was in fact a slow and very low batting surface. Old campaigners Hugh Leeke (1-17) and David Steinham (2-13) opened up the bowling with very tight spells, removing the top order with some very disciplined bowling. Gloucester had been reduced to 16-3.
Fresh from university Marcus Ridal (2-21) bowled well on his return, picking up a couple of important wickets. Ed Burrows once again looked threatening and deserved a couple of wickets despite a rare game where he finished wicketless.
It was the spinners Henry Wilkes (4-29) and Tom Hayward (1-13) who cleaned up the tail with Wilkes in particular impressing. At one point he was on a hat-trick, but despite eight fielders crowding around the bat the new man in managed to defend it solidly.
Having bowled Gloucester out for one run short of 125 Apperley earned themselves an extra bowling bonus point. With some very good catches being taken Captain Steinham noted that the overall ground fielding was excellent. Despite that the only negative from a top all round display was that on five or six occasions catches were put down. A couple of them very straight forward, but no names shall be mentioned!
In the chase openers Steinham and Hayward put on 48 to dent the enthusiasm of a young, keen and energetic bowling attack.
When both fell it was the experience of Pugsy and Andrew O’Connor that helped see us virtually up to the winning total before Pugsy fell, making the cardinal sin of going back to pull a short ball on a wicket that barley got up all day. It was left to Wilkes to slap the winnings runs with a quickfire 14*
Overall a top team performance which cements our place in the promotion places for the time being. Next week we’re home to Haresfield Gladiators.