14th August 2021

Hard fought Sway win sets up season defining encounter

Alton II 203-9, Sway 239-8

Hants County One

Sway battled through a testing encounter away at a decent Alton side to set up what should be a barnstorming end of season encounter with Parley.

Going into this weekend's game Sway lie third, with Parley second, and the victor potentially going up to play Southern League cricket for the first time, although Fareham and Crofton – who are fourth – are also in the mix despite only playing five games so far!

The foundation of Sway’s 239-8 total at Alton was wicketkeeper/batsman Alex Hall, who hit a superb 69 in the heat, including 10 boundaries, before the innings was boosted by a terrific unbeaten 43 from Neil Prince.

Hall opened the batting with Tim Noble, who made an accomplished 35 before being adjudged lbw, and the pair put on 101 in just 18 overs as the visitors began brightly. However, the hosts did a good job of pulling things back after the duo were separated, with Dan Bailey (15) and Dave Steadman (22) making contributions to assist Prince, who hit a maximum and three fours in his crucial, well-constructed knock.

In reply Sway’s opening bowlers came under a barrage of pressure from Ryan Hale, who smacked 96 off 70 balls and frustrated the visitors as several half chances were not taken.

While Hale was at the crease Alton had more than a sniff but after Hugh Bernard (2-41) got him with a fantastic off cutter and Jon Grasham (1-21) bowled a brilliant spell, Sway took control, with Jon Waller (2-37) and the Bailey twins (Dan 2-48 and Josh 2-17) chipping in to set up the mouth-watering season finale.