Mon 15th August 2016

Massive fall short in season finale

On a warm summer’s evening Sway welcomed Bashley to Jubilee field in what would be the final game of a frustrating season for the Massive who had been denied on many an occasion by the weather and had nothing to show for some good performances throughout the year.

Bashley won the toss and elected to bat in a game that had become a 17 over affair due to concerns of fading light as the game went on. Sway bowled well early doors but was instantly put under pressure by opener Patrick Lewis who punished any wayward deliveries on what was a very unforgiving astro for the bowlers. Sway eventually saw the back of Lewis but only as a result of him retiring after bringing up a rapid half century.

Bashley never looked too troubled throughout the rest of the innings with Clark and Taylor keeping the rate up. However there were also some highlights for Sway in the innings with youngsters David Elford and Noah Lane-Glass impressing on debut with the ball showing the depth in Sway’s promising youth set up. Sway would eventually be rewarded with some wickets though as Bradley Varley was introduced into the attack. His first victim was Clark who received a peach to see him depart for a well-played 48. Varley would then pick up Hayward-Fox as he was well held by David Elford who was proving he was much more than a handy bowler! Varley’s final wicket would come on the last ball of the innings as he held on to Gaunt off his own bowling to leave himself with figures of 3 for 29. The end of the innings left the visitors with a commanding 169 off their 17.  Bashley batsman Taylor would have felt hard done by as he was left stranded on 49 not out as the innings came to a close.

Sway would need a miracle from their batting line up should they want to get up to the target but they knew nothing was off the cards, boasting a few good players of their own. The Massive opened up with the new opening partnership of Oscar Marshall and Nick Brien who had got their team off to a flyer in their previous fixture against Fawley. The pair started well again with both openers finding the rope early doors to ensure the Massive kept their chances alive. Brien then departed for 9 after he was caught at point having hit the previous ball to the fence.

This brought in Chris Straw who played in his usual fashion trying to flirt every ball down to third man ticking the score along in the process. Unfortunately Straw would eventually be out for 8 as he became the second victim of an outfield catch. This would bring Vito Falso aka ‘The Big Show” to the party.  From the way he started out you could tell he still had victory in sight as he and Marshall began to smack boundaries around the ground as the home team looked to stay in the contest. Falso clearly had his eye in as Sway neared their highest total of the season with his innings including three sixes and three fours. Both batsmen would eventually give way though after their heroics, Marshall for 43 to back up his 50* in the previous game reminding everyone what a class act he is and then Falso for 36 who produced another entertaining knock as he showed once again no ground was big enough once he gets going.

The task of getting Sway over the line up was left up to prolific Run Machine Tom ‘The rock’ Burton and ‘The Graduate’ Henry Marden who would need to produce some of his hockey slaps to get Sway over the line. After both batsmen made promising starts they perished to Bashley seamer Edmunds who turned out to be the visitors’ most successful bowler of the night. All rounders Dom Woodfine and Brad Varley were then tasked with producing a great escape for the Massive. Both played well and showed their class with the bat as well as the ball on the night with Varley finishing on 12 and Woodfine a nostalgic 16 not out.  Unfortunately the task in hand was all too much with Sway finishing on a valiant 147 off their 17.

So the end of our first season in the U19 T20 blast.  Unfortunately no wins to show for it but some high points along the way.  Everyone should be very proud of themselves as we were no pushover and hopefully now everyone knows the system a bit better we can be back next year with a vengeance and really try and make our mark on the completion!

I’d just like to say a few thank yous now as we’ve reached the end. Firstly to Bashley for playing us at such short notice! Secondly I’d like to say a huge thank you to Pete Bennet and his company Groveley Engineering for sponsoring us for the kit. Pete has been an integral part of the club  for a good while now and on this occasion his commitment and generosity has meant all the lads have had access to the new green Sway Massive kit which has really helped everyone feel and look the part throughout the season and helped us spread the name of the club by partaking in the event! So Pete thanks once again and keep up the good work - it really does make all the difference. Also I’d like to say thank you to Dennis and Nikki Batchelor who have stood and umpired for us on multiple occasions out of their free time and really taken a lot of weight off my shoulders! To Steve Drayton who has also kindly stood for us a few times and very generously lent us his sound system which has really helped create a warm and buzzing atmosphere during our home games.  To Dave Hurrell who has never let us down when we’ve asked him to score for us and to Andy Lee who has always been there to set up and prepare the pitch for home fixtures.  And finally to Dave Marshall who has very kindly done the music for us this year and was the one who initially spotted this event and put us forward for it in the first place.  I’m sorry if I’ve missed anyone out. If that is the case don’t worry I will come and say thank you in person.

So cheers everyone and hopefully we can go again next year even more prepared and ready to make it even better!

Nick Brien