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Early success for Audlem Cricket XI

6th May 2024 @ 6:06am – by Simon Swift
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Audlem vs Porthill Park

Audlem's cricket season finally got underway at as they took on Porthill Park at Scot Hay. After a significant amount of rain, the players were faced with what looked like a very tricky pitch to bat on and slow outfield. Audlem lost the toss and were quickly inserted into bat by the Porthill Skipper Lockett.

Audlem's opening pair of captain Chris Shenton and debutant Jack Allman strode to the crease. The pair started cautiously as they assessed the difficult playing conditions adding 28 for the first wicket before Shenton was bowled by a short pitched delivery that rolled along the ground. Fellow debutant Blatherwick joined Allman at the crease and the pair moved the score along to 32 before Blatherwick became Plummer's second victim. His dismissal brought Measures to the crease. This partnership proved to be the match winning one. Tom's disciplined approach blunted and frustrated the Porthill bowlers, who must have thought an early finish was on the cards given the conditions.

Allman's innings was nothing short of outstanding. He found the gaps, manipulating the field as well as latching onto anything too full hitting 5 maximums. He finally departed for 71 off 90 balls. At times he looked like he was playing on a different surface to the other 21 players on the field. He had taken the game away from Porthill, knowing any total above 100 would be incredibly tough to chase on the day. With 117 on the board at the fall of the 3rd wicket with 6 and a half overs left this gave license to the incoming batters and Tom to accelerate. Both AJ and Rahul hit maximums. These selfless quick fire innings allowed Audlem to close on 169-9 at the half way stage.

After the resumption following tea, Porthill started well, surviving the opening new ball attack of AJ and Rahul for 9 overs before AJ grabbed his first. Wickets fell at regular intervals as Porthill tried to keep up with the required run rate which proved too difficult given the conditions. The wickets were shared out between all of the bowlers. Parkinson even managed an incredible 3 wickets for 0 runs in 5 balls to finish of the game. Porthill were bowled out in the 32nd over for 91. A terrific start to the season for Audlem as they were victorious by 78 runs. Allman the star of the show. Special mentions to Tom Measures who allowed the middle order the freedom of wickets in hand towards the end. His patient 37 was crucial.

Audlem host fellow promoted Cheadle next weekend. The Staffordshire outfit enjoyed their first taste of division 5 life with an impressive 200 run victory. The match promises to be a cracker between two teams who will have aspirations of being at the business end at the conclusion of the season.

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