9th May 2016

Sway 2nds thumped in Season Opener

Shrewton II v Sway II

Report by Nick Brien ( Maverick)

As the curtain raised once again Sway 2nds embarked on their journey to fulfil a solid finish and stamp some authority in their division having narrowly avoided relegation the previous year. It was going to be a tough start though as Dan Stevenson and his strong looking side began the long but scenic journey to face an impressive Shrewton team who had enjoyed much success the previous season.

It was indeed a positive start for the visitors with skipper Stevenson winning the toss for a change and electing to bat. It was essential that Sway’s opening pair of Stevenson and the dynamic Sam Nailor occupied the crease for a while, and that’s exactly what they did with some good running between the wickets and some flashes of brilliance which hopefully can be repeated as the season kicks on. However it was Nailor who was first to go after he was caught in front LBW by Jackson for a promising 19. Stevenson followed shortly after Ray bowled him through the gate for a well-constructed 22. Rick How was in at number 3 and looked good until he chipped the ball into the air for a breezy 13 after looking like he had steadied the ship. Wickets fell quickly from this point on the first being Adam Clark who will count himself unlucky after a controversial dismissal as he feathered (or didn’t!) one through to the keeper. Next to go was Wicket keeper Nick Brien who is yet to get going this year outside as he chopped on for 0. Then fell the Big Show Vito Falso who was bowled shortly after disposing a six into the river. There were then cameos from Dave Marshall (16), George Lewis (8 not out) and Sam Harvey (5) by which time youngster Ryan Drayton had produced the highlight of Sway innings with a free flowing 29 batting at 5.  Sway finished with a slightly disappointing 147 as the fine batting track screamed 200+.

When the teams eventually came back out Sway opened up with pace duo Nailor and Harvey both of whom had moments of excitement but never looked to trouble the opening pair of Barton and Barnett who both deposited the Sway bowlers to all parts before George Lewis made the break though despite leaking a few runs as Barnett was well caught by Sam Harvey for a rapid 73. Barton was also caught as Ryan Drayton held on to a good one. Lewis was also able to pick up one final wicket as Plant was held for 6 nicking behind to glove man Nick Brien. However the damage was too much for Sway as Shrewton’s number 4 and 5 guided them home with ease after just the 26th over.

So a disappointing start for the 2s who fell well short despite some heroic fielding from Hanster and a reasonable all-round performance with bat and ball. As the Sway lads, in the setting sun, set off for the trek home past Stonehenge, the mood was contemplative. In the context of the 5,000 years that has seen human endeavours in the area, the afternoon's efforts were but the blink of any eye. Nevertheless, whilst the opening fixture of the 2459bc bluestone shoving contest might be long forgotten, Sway's encounter at home to Hythe & Dibden II is already assuming some fleeting significance. After Hythe's most impressive win against Lyndhurst, it is not going to get any easier for Stevenson's boys who are likely to face a bowling attack significantly stronger than that of Shrewton, who are very much a batting side.