22nd August 2020

HCB 2020 Mini League

Super 3rds produce shock result

Fawley II 189-8, Sway III 192-6. Sway won by 4 wickets

Sway's predominately young 3rd XI produced a taste of what they should be able to produce next season with a super all-round performance to defeat Fawley 2nd XI on their own ground.

Sway skipper Dave Marshall lost the toss and was predictably asked to bowl first on a  batting track to lovely you you would take it home to meet your mother! Fawley opened with Steve Rice and Andy McElhenney, brother of Sway nemesis Ian. A quick burst of pace from Tom Burton proved ineffective, so the skipper turned to U16 star Arthur Lomax to partner the experienced guile of Arni Badami who was receiving a considerable boost from his new Inspector Gagdet bowling boots - dial turned up Spinal Tap style to 11.

Neither Lomax or Badami had any luck, but they did keep the Fawley bats relatively in check, albeit with the score at 66-0 after 15 overs, the home side would have been targeting 250+.

The game changed with the introduction at his spiritual home of U14 spinner Noah Glass who struck twice in his first over removing McElhenney, caught Lomax for 25 and Mike Shepherd for a duck, caught behind by Pete Bennet. This brought Fawley newbie Nisarg Vyasto the crease who began to unleash a series of lusty if not particularly correct blows that threatened to take the game away from Sway. Glass, however, eliminated the threat, clean bowling him for 24. This checked Fawley's innings somewhat and things got better for Sway when Glass (8-1-26-4) picked up his 4th wicket - Kieran Coxall flicking a ball to square leg that was very well caught one handed by a seemingly surprised Steve Drayton. When Drayton removed the number 6 Gray cheaply, a strong start for Fawley was reduced to a less than impressive 129-5 off 29.

Opener Rice was still there, but was finding the top gears hard to find and was partnered by big hitting Brad Cooper. The skipper brought himself back at one end mixing it up, and at the other end introduced his secret weapon, Cameron Jones whose nippy and skiddy bowling proved very hard to get away. This prevented any acceleration by Fawley, in fact their run rate went the other way. Rice was bowled by Marshall for 81 and Jones removed Cooper as Fawley finished up on a decidedly sub-par 189-8 given the surface.

Sway opened their reply with U13 Olly Marshall and veteran Pete Bennet, but suffered an early setback then the latter was caught at gully in the 4th over. Fawley were piling on the pressure against Marshall, pace off with uber-experienced Wayne Smith bowling 5 consecutive maidens of nagging line and length. Marshall was steadfast in defence and with Tom Burton at number 3, hanging in there was all he had to do. Burton was soon into his stride, smashing 11 boundaries, keeping Sway on the required rate before being bowled by Brad Cooper for 59 off 37 balls. Connor Treacey at four looked in good nick but was caught off Cooper for 6 and Cameron Jones became Cooper's 3rd victim when her was caught for 4 leaving Sway at 85-4 off at the half way point and the game finely balanced.

Now establishing himself in the 3rds Malo Holden took the game to Fawley and after his first ever 6 a few weeks back, hit an even bigger one as his 22 runs off 18 balls proved invaluable in keeping the run rate manageable. This brought the skipper to the crease to partner Marshall junior and the "beauty and the beast" combination worked a treat despite considerable pressure of all sorts, the pair putting on 66 for the 6 wicket before Olly Marshall's obdurate innings of 28 runs off 66 balls finally came to an end. By now however Sway were in the box seat and the match was finished in style with 17 balls to spare with a huge six from the skipper to bring up his 54 off 29 balls.

A great all round performance and shows what you can do if you perform well in a 3 areas of the game.

Noah Glass - game changing spell