TRCC vs. Welford Park - August 3rd 2013

TRCC lost the toss and fielded.
TRCC: 187-8. James Chapman 66, Steve Walkland 56, Ken Cochrane 31
Welford Park: U Deshpande 4-36, M Singh 2-44
Welford Park: 188-4. U Deshpande 59, M George 54*
TRCC: Spence Nichols 2-37

After a lot of emails and texts TRCC managed to scramble a full 11 for the long trip to Welford Park, with our would be umpires Roger Seymour and James Fort both stepping forward at the last minute. The weather was overcast with a distinct look of rain in the air and a chilling wind. TRCC were keen to bowl first but losing the toss that decision wasn't theirs to make and they batted first. A 'lost' Chris Lunnon meant Ken Cochrane had to open with Nic Downes. A slow pitch with some odd bounce and some accurate bowling from Cale and Parto in particular saw TRCC get off to a very slow start, Parto bowling 7 overs for 4 in his first spell. The first of two rain spells brought about a 15 minute break but at least the ball was coming through better when the match returned. However Cochrane fell for 31 not long after on an attempted pull on one that came through faster than expected, 45-1 in the 19th over. Lunnon fell not longer after lbw for 4. Downes was joined by new man James Chapman and he immediately looked comfortable hitting a nice 6 and several 4s quite quickly. Downes was caught for 17 so Steve Walkland went to join his friend at the crease. Finally TRCC started to get some runs with both Chapman and Walkland hitting boundaries. Chapman went to his maiden fifty for TRCC followed shortly afterwards by Walkland. The 104 run partnership ended when Walkland pulling a ball for 6 was caught for 56 by a leaping one handed catch inches from the boundary. 179-4 and 4 overs to go meant TRCC might actually post 200+, but amazingly only 8 runs were scored and 4 wickets fell with Chapman top scoring with 66. The total of 187 was good and considering the fact that TRCC almost cancelled the game as unable to raise a side it was at least 5 batting points! The strip was definitely playing better as the match went on but Welfords all round bowling attack had been pretty good and TRCC would need to bowl at least as well to defend this total.
Steve Beamish and Ian Evans opened the bowling for TRCC with Deshpande, fresh from his 4 wicket success, quickly into his stride attacking Evans in particular. Anything loose was being punished for boundaries and Welford were of to a fast start. Beamish picked up the first wicket when Brook fell for 6 attempting an ambitious pull only to top edge a catch, Welford 80-1 in the 10th over. James Chapman and Spence Nichols next to try their luck with the ball but again loose balls disappeared. Nichols picked up an lbw when Sharma fell for 25 but that brought George to the wicket who was aggressive from the start. Nichols picked up his 2nd wicket with a well bowled leg break enticing Deshpande down the wicket, miss the ball and Cochrane having a simple stumping, got for 59. Singh was bowled by Chapman shortly after but George was scoring fast and the target was not far off. Downes on for Nichols was despatched for a big 6. Then Cochrane swapped the pads with Lunnon to try his luck. An edge between slip and gully followed by an lbw / edge behind in his first over both went for boundaries. However Welford had the target in sight and were certainly getting there fast with both Downes and Cochrane suffering one further over each before it was all over.
7 points was clearly better than none at all as was a distinct possibility earlier in the week but still somewhat disappointing. Welfords bowling attack had been tighter than that of TRCC and whilst they certainly had the better conditions for the strip they probably also batted better for a well deserved win. The other results on the day still meant though that TRCC remained in 2nd place in the league despite having just 1 win in the last 5 matches, somewhat stark contrast to the 8 wins from 9 for the first half of the season. The gap between now Knowl Hill in 3rd place closed to 1.1 but at least its still totally within TRCCs hands as to whether they hold on to 2nd place or not!

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