By John Wainwright - 18th September 2012 7:02am
High flying Wilmslow 2nds became resurgent Audlem's latest victims in the final game of the season at a sun-baked Gorse Croft.
Needing to win to stand any chance of promotion, third placed Wilmslow arrived full of determination to gain maximum points from the fixture but soon found themselves on the back foot after being asked to bat by Audlem's young skipper Danny Thorburn.
In only the second over, the belligerent skipper and opening bat Tim Condiff was back in the pavilion bowled by Roy Wild. With the loss of their captain so early the bowlers took a stranglehold over the proceeding, Roy finding the perfect line and length in his 9 overs to restrict the batsmen to only 10 runs for the loss of 3 wickets.
At the other end, Rob Morrison bowled with good control and decent pace to snare another couple of victims. The introduction of fresh bowlers into the attack brought no respite to the beleaguered Wilmslow batsmen.
Only M. Harding was able to put up any meaningful resistance with a commendable 50 runs to his name as Lyndon Woodcock (10 overs, 1 wicket for 33) Abbie Adams (5 overs for 15 runs) and Matt Day (3 overs, 2 wickets for 4) went about their work.
The reintroduction of Rob Morrison to the attack soon brought the Wilmslow innings to an early conclusion with his third wicket of the match having Harding caught by Paul Thorburn to finish with figures of 10.1 overs, 3 for 37.
Paul had a fine afternoon in the field taking another two catches, one of which was probably the catch of the season to dismiss opening bat Metzelaar and a crucial run out. Wilmslow had only managed to scrape 99 runs together and had 10 overs unused to give Audlem 52 overs to reach their target.
With less than two an over needed, Audlem's batsmen were surprised when the new ball was given to young leg spinner E. Hart to bowl the first over into a now strong breeze with a field set for a seamer.
Opening bat Wainwright took advantage of this strange tactic and plundered 12 off the first over to reduce the deficit. This brought an immediate change in approach from the Wilmslow skipper who reverted to his formidable seam attack of Carr and Pickup.
Once they had settled into a rhythm they started to ask a few questions of the Audlem batsmen as they struggled to maintain progress.
Two crucial partnerships eventually turned the tide for the home side, one between father and son Paul (12) and Danny Thorburn, the other between Dan and all-rounder Lyndon Woodcock (22 not out) to ease past the post on 101 for 6 wickets.
Dan played a fine innings to finish unbeaten for 20 runs and see his team home. A fine end to the season put Audlem comfortably into fifth place in a competitive division.
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