Early season evening games are always a race against the light and Thursday’s U13s game at Pylewell was no exception. Both teams arrived promptly and after a short warm-up it was decided to begin as soon as possible. Pylewell won the toss and elected to bowl as neither side knew what a good score might look like from 96 balls with 8 Wickets. The sway team headed to the changing room to pad up with last year’s U11 batting line up providing the bulk of the top order. Oscar Hudson and Oli Sharp opened and B. Pyatt opened the bowling for Pylewell. The first over was characterised by fast accurate bowling and after 4 dots the boys stole a leg bye to get the score board ticking. Stealing runs and putting pressure on the field characterised the first 3 overs as both openers worked the gaps to bring up the first 11 runs. The start of the fourth over saw a change in pace as C. Sopher gave Oscar enough width to play a late cut for four from the first ball and a fine leg glance for another four from the second, discouraged Sopher then bowled a wide and the openers stole an extra run to put Oli on strike. Soft hands and quick running ticked the score board over until in the 5th Oli played a clean lofted drive out of the middle of the bat to bring up his first boundary and a cover drive through the gap for his second. More running and the odd boundary afforded by the first change bowlers looser balls saw Oli retire (30 from 26 balls, 3 fours) in the 8th over to be followed by Oscar in the 10th (30 from 33 balls, 4 fours).
Bat’s 3, Noah Glass and 4, Alex Condon kept the field under pressure with good running while Alex attacked the Spin of A. Osbourne-Young for a 14 from a single over. With the Sway boys attacking hard it was inevitable that wickets would come and Noah was beaten by a low bounce on the grass wicket from the bowling of A.Lloyd (6), Callan Wallis then took to the Middle and after a quick single played across the line to H. Anderson, caught a top edge and was caught by the Wiki. Alex fell to another that kept low heaving towards the onside for a very respectable 22 off just 10 balls (1 six and 4 fours). Connor Tracey worked the singles until bowled by Pyatt for 3 leaving Lucas Andres and Sebi Allies in the middle (both of who had walked out in the final over), Lucas faced two balls and managed to rotate strike to leave Sebi to face the last ball as his first ball on strike. Opening Bowler Pyatt had returned and delivered an uncharacteristic full toss which the unperturbed Sebi hooked around the corner for four to the cheers of the spectators. With 21 extra’s Sway had posted 118 for the loss of just 4 wickets.
In the interests of light tea was cut short and Sway took to the field in the increasingly bitterly cold wind. David Elford opened the bowling with his characteristic line and length to give Pylewell just 3 from the first over including 2 extras. Eyeing the large 1st innings total the Pylewell opening bat Sopher targeted Noah who gave enough width outside off for Sopher to strike 3 consecutive fours, Pylewell were underway with 17 runs from the first two overs and suddenly the Sway total didn’t look so large. Dave Elford returned to deliver a straight ball that bounced up off the knee role of A. Osbourne-Young’s (0) back leg before becoming lodged in his pads for a clear LBW. With the scent of wickets in the air the sway attack then set about attacking the stumps with number 2 L. Freeman (1) being bowled on his third ball by Noah, Right hand Danger Man Sopher (15) being caught out by a laser guided left arm over the wicket delivery from Alex which passed between bat and pad to hit the top of off stump. Then it was Oli’s turn to get into the action bowling B Pyatt (3). Alex retuned to get a catch off his own bowling spoiled only by a front foot no ball but, after reworking his run-up Bowled Warner for a Duck. Only the Pylewell number 5, A. Lloyd, was a match for the bowling and steadily accumulating until the final overs required a heroic push which saw Lloyd go aerial for the first time into the waiting hands of Oscar from the bowling of Callan. Number 7 Anderson went hard at it until chopping on a leg side ball from the bowling of Lucas. With the light drawing in Pyatt went large to try to close the gap between the scores and was caught at long on by Oli from the bowling of Callan to bring the innings to an end in the 15th over.