By John Wainwright - 25th May 2019 6:08am
Sunday, May 19th
Audlem welcomed old opponents, Malpas, to the Gorse Croft on Sunday for a 40 over friendly game. The Audlem captain again won the toss and elected to bat on a flat looking wicket.
Openers Zar Ahmed and Paddy Leese set up the innings with a 72 run first wicket partnership but as last week once the first wicket fell another two quickly followed. Number 5 batsman Nick Hancock and Zar then added 29 valuable runs for the fourth wicket before they both perished to sharp catches. With wickets in hand and plenty of overs left Audlem were looking at a total between 160 and 170 but some good line and length bowling and tidy fielding restricted the runs and under pressure the home team lost their last 4 wickets for 11 runs and finished on 143 all out in the 38th over.
Audlem were disappointed with their total after a fine start to the innings but with Ikram Azam added to the ranks from the league team with instructions from the Saturday skipper to get some overs under his belt the home team were always going to be in the game. The main problem was he was the only regular bowler in the eleven with two specialist wicket keepers having to turn their arms over and spinner Dave Slack back into the ranks after a two year break and lacking match practice. With Malpas scoring at 6 an over and looking in complete control a couple of quick wickets changed the complexion of the game as the visitors subsided from 40 for 1 to 63 for 7 in quick time with Ikram bowling a lovely controlled spell well supported at the other end by Usman Ghani.
Malpas number 7 batsman J. Hinchcliffe then found a solid partner in Michael Rae and started to creep closer to the total but with the score on 115 he decided to take on Ikram's bowling and was caught at deep mid off by the sub fielder on for the resting exhausted Zar Ahmed. It was a strange tactic as it was Ikram's last allotted over and ultimately cost the away team any chance of overhauling Audlem's total and they were all out shortly afterwards for 117.
The full scorecard can be viewed on Audlem's website audlem.play-cricket.com, click here.
The match was sponsored by 3Shires Property Management and Letting Agents of Audlem and you can view their website at www.3shires.net
Next Sunday Audlem are again at home, this time to Lichfield Nomads (2:00pm).
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