May 20th 2017

1st XI slide to disappointing defeat

Ferndown Wayfarers 141-8 Sway 139-9

Hants County Div 2

SWAY slipped to a frustrating and disappointing defeat away to Ferndown Wayfarers, with dropped catches and a slow start to their chase costing them dear.

There were three showers before the start, and after winning the toss, visiting Sway skipper Alex Hall opted to bowl first. It proved to be a good decision, David Steadman tearing into the Ferndown batting line-up and claiming two early wickets, one aided by a terrific slip catch by Tim Noble.

Jon Waller (1-23) joined the party, leaving Ferndown tottering at 18-3, and the hosts went further into the mire at 24-4 when the excellent Ben Powis claimed an early wicket, Thorp clutching a chance offered by the obdurate left-handed batsman Raftery.

But, crucially, Ferndown batsman Matt Rose was dropped twice in the slips off Waller, first on zero and then on 6, before going on to make 46. While Rose somehow stayed in at one end, wickets were falling at the other as Powis claimed two more – one of his scalps helped by a tumbling Waller catch. Young prospect Josh Bailey bowled a very tidy spell without reward.

Rose finally went when he was deceived by a Jon Grasham slower ball – Aussie Brock Jeffries holding his nerve well to take a skier. Steadman returned to take his third wicket, but, frustratingly the home tailenders chipped away as Ferndown recovered to 142-8 on an awkward wicket and slow outfield.

In the chase Sway suffered an early blow when Hall was trapped lbw. After that Noble and Oscar Marshall played straight to stifle the accurate Ferndown attack and take Sway to 50-1 at drinks.

After the excellent consolidation, Sway needed to inject impetus, but could not quite go up the gears and Marshall and Noble both perished, as did Jeffries after a couple of early boundaries.

By now Sway needed seven an over off the last third of their innings and Thorp, Grasham and Neil Prince all were dismissed going for runs, but with Steadman at the crease Sway had hope.

With 15 required to win off the last over, Steadman ran two twos and hit a four, but then was caught on the boundary. Bailey scrambled a two and needed a boundary off the final ball but couldn’t quite connect. Sway will be kicking themselves for quite a while after this loss.