By Zar Ahmed - 31st July 2015 6:07am
Bowden Vale 2nds vs Audlem 2nds
Audlem 2nds travelled to the beautiful Bowden Vale ground in leafy Cheshire on a pleasant mid-summer day on Saturday, July 25th. The home team won the toss and surprisingly inserted the visitors in to bat.
Audlem opened with Dan Thorburn and Zar Ahmed on a slow but even batting wicket and had a target of 175 in mind at the start. They got off to the worst possible start when Ahmed played an atrocious shot on just his second ball faced. He tried to drive at a wide delivery and succeeded only in guiding it limply in the air into the hands of a grateful fielder at deep gully. 4-1 ! Thankfully, John Wainwright played a far more sensible innings in the company of Dan and the duo took the score to 50. Wainwright was then dismissed for 18 — but not before he had played some glorious drives and led the recovery. Dan Thorburn was the next to go when the score was 61 — the skipper has been a picture of consistency this season and had made another invaluable contribution of 27 to the Audlem cause.
There now began a fightback from the home team. Rob Mottershead fell for 11 followed by Ali Snr for an excellent 24. However, when Sam Colclough was stumped for 4, Audlem were looking down the barrel with the score at 108-6 — way short of the target of 175 on a good batting wicket. The home team sensed blood and the volume levels and sledging levels increased noticeably. However, the main victim of the harmless sledging, Ali Jnr, answered in the best way possible by launching a magnificent recovery along with the club chairman, Paul Thorburn. The duo added an invaluable 51 before Ali Jnr was dismissed for a superb 42.
However, there was still work to be done and Thorburn had not yet finished. He was joined at the crease by Leo North and 36 crucial runs were added. Thorburn was then dismissed for 27 — he had played a major hand in the recovery and had reined in his aggressive instincts to play second fiddle to Ali Jnr before cutting loose when the latter was dismissed. Plenty of credit is also due to Leo who has not had many batting opportunities this season. He played sensibly and refused to panic and succumb to the easy option of slogging, considering there were only a few overs remaining. He played each ball on its merit and put away the odd bad ball contributing a vital 18 as Audlem easily exceeded their target and ended up 196-8. For Bowden, the young spinner , H Mills, bowled excellently and ended up with 6-61 off 14 overs.
This was always going to be a difficult chase for the home team — and was made even more difficult by the excellent new ball pair of Rob Mottsershead and Ali Jnr. Mottershead in particular was outstanding and bowled an excellent line generating good pace and bounce. The home team had no answer to the Audlem pacer and he ripped apart the openers leaving Bowden at 25-2 and way behind the target. Ali Jnr then chipped in with 2 wickets — including that of the Bowden skipper who then had to endure a walk back to the pavilion with some words of wisdom from the bowler ringing in his ears in response to the sledging he delivered towards Ali earlier in the day!
Bowden were sinking fast. However, the number 5 batsman, Bottomley refused to go without a fight and hit a defiant 21 before Mottershead removed him courtesy of a juggling catch from Sam Colclough and the home team were in disarray at 37-5. It was simply a matter of time from this point.
Woodcock then joined in the act and removed Davies for 11. Mottershead and the two Alis then mopped up the tail to bowl out the home team for 90 giving Audlem a crushing victory by 106 runs. Mottershead ended up with 5-30 off 13 overs — a magnificent spell of bowling. Ali Jnr contributed a creditable 3-51 and hence was the clear choice for man of the match for his all round display.
An excellent all round performance by Audlem with both bat and ball — clinical would be the best way to describe the Gorse Croft league leaders! Another 25 points in the bag! Roll on Hartford next Saturday!
Audlem 2nds 196-8
Bowden Vale 2nds 90
Audlem 2nds won 106 runs.
Monday 3rd Aug
Sunday 2nd Aug
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