1st XI Reports
2021 1st XI Match Reports
Cockfosters 270-3 beat Bayford and Hertford 267-8 by 7 wickets
With Tempretures breaking 30 degrees and James Stead being back in the side, it was the perfect day for a game of first team cricket. Adam Parker was playing his last game for us before he moves back to Essex so we were hoping that there would be a performance which would be a worthy send off. A traditional football warm up took place, Will Herbert easily securing man of the match with an unreal goalkeeping performance which had been sorely missed early in the season. The score ended 1-0 to his team after Dan Stead slotted home with his weaker foot past Alex Carter, who should probably stick to Tennis. After the usual relay fielding drill happened while Sam went to do the toss which he unfortunately lost and meant we were in the field.
Will Herbert and Juckesy opened up the bowling on what looked like a flat deck. It took Will only 3 overs to go for more than he did against Reed, but he had picked up the wicket of opener Balmforth in the process with an outside edge to Kieran. Juckesy struck in his third over as well, dismissing the Bayford captain for 6 which had them stuck on 16-2. However, this is where former Hertford player Cavener (who some of the older heads remembered from our cup run 10 years ago) joined Billings and wickets were taken off the menu. The bowlers started to realise they would have to dig deep whilst both batsmen, playing with completely different styles, nulified our usually potent attack. Cavener was playing big shots and scoring at a quick rate whereas Billings played the role of the rock at the other end, not scoring particularly quickly but refusing to give his wicket away while Cavener pushed them towards a big score. The partnership went on for 28 overs, resulting in a massive 175 runs before Cavener was finally dismissed by Will, bowling him in the 34th over. From here, the batsmen coming in had a license to have a go to try getting them to a big total of 300+. Sam, leading by example, had a second spell of 5 overs during this last 16 where we expected Bayford to push on with the runs and his figures from those 5 overs were 3-5! Billings managed to get to his 100 off the last ball of the innings but, despite the fact they posted a big score, Bayford and Hertford would have probably been disappointed to have not broken the 300 milestone, particularly after Cavener’s fantastic 110 which he scored in quick time. The team didn’t field to the best of their abilities in the heat, which unfortunately was reflected in James and Tom’s bowling figures, but considering how good the conditions were for batting, the side were hopeful of chasing it down.
Sam and Dan opened up the batting and did what is becoming their usual at this point, they safely navigated the first 10 overs racking up 45 runs which had them behind the rate but also keeping the wickets column in good condition. Despite the fact that there was a fairly hefty break at the 5 over mark because the opposition had noticed the ball was not a superior ball and was just a county match ball. Dan was not amused by the debacle and decided to hit the superior ball out of the ground within a few overs of them picking it up. Dan, possibly batting slightly more aggressive due to a heated changing room exchange at the half way point, started to play his shots at the 10 over mark, particularly punishing full bowling down the ground. Sam was also pushing the runrate up as well after 10 overs with some good shots, punishing anything loose. their second 100 partnership of the season was brought up in the 18th and the target was starting to look far less daunting. Dan managed to bring up his first ever half century for the first team, while Sam was rather unfortuante that on 49 (for the second time this season) he was dismissed by an unbelievable caught and bowled by Cavener. Dan followed Sam shortly after with a tired shot down the ground caught by deep mid off. Matt had a disappointing innings by his very high standards and only managed to add 13 to the score, but even at 176-3 we knew Adam wouldn’t let us down on his last game. Adam Parker and Alex Carter (who had been promoted up the order partly due to Steady hurting his knee but also due to his innings at Reed) attacked the bowlers, particularly when Cavener had bowled out as he was the bowler they were struggling to get away the most. Alex hit one into the car park which might have been down Bevan Road without obstacles, while Parker also did some hitting of his own. Wickets just didn’t look likely and you could see that, despite Bayford’s early confidence after posting such a huge total, there was an inevitability of a Cockfosters win. Adam brought up his half century as a farewell present to the club, whilst Alex Carter hit the winning runs and also brought up his first team maiden half century.
The result, while we probably could have done slightly better in the field in the first innings, was huge for the club. With mainly being known as a bowling side in recent years, it was great that we were able to win a game based on the strength of our batting line up. Sam did some research and it is the highest chase of any Cockfosters first XI in the Herts league which was a huge achievement. With the 50s and the skippers jug, there was plenty of free beer to go around with the players all in buoyant spirits after a great result. Despite such a good second innings, one of the most iconic moments was in the first innings, James and Adam were both positioned close together on the boundary, the ball was hit in the gap between them. The interesting part was, despite the fact we do the relay fielding drill before every game, in a match situation the ball bounced off both of them and went for 4 instead of how it usually goes in the warm up. Sam fortunately saw the funny side despite the fact he is not usually impressed off his own bowling. 30 great points, and hopefully we can continue our form away at Harpenden next weekend
Cockfosters vs Hemel Hempstead II was cancelled
With the first team in great form after stringing 3 wins together, the disappointing news that Hemel’s second team squad had to self isolate that came through on wednesday was major blow to promotion hopes. We wish the Hemel players are all safe and well as we had to settle for 10 points.
Cockfosters 191-10 beat Reed II 137-10 by 54 runs
No James Stead, no football warm up. A hammer blow to a side in good form as we travelled to Reed with our spirits already dented. We turned up to the away ground later than we usually would like so the warm up was a bit shorter than we usually would have. Reed had heard of some of our throwing and had set up a net for us to throw into which was nice of them (totally wasn’t to stop them losing balls over the boundary). Sam lost the toss and we had been put into bat.
Sam and Dan Stead were out to bat again with an average of 202 over the last two weeks for the first wicket. For a while, it felt like it could be another one of those days as well with early signs being that Reed were struggling to find an opening in either batsman’s defences. A close LBW appeal went against Dan to cause a few nerves but he survived and him and Sam continued to push on with scoring runs. Another 50 partnership was up on the board for the openers, before Sam unfortunately got carried away when he received a full toss and hit it straight at a fielder to go for 25. From here, we had what is becoming an unusual Cockfosters batting collapse as Tom Woodbridge, Matt Stead and Kieran Wetherill all came and went without causing the scorer too much work. Dan finally departed shortly after for 35, edging one behind with the first ball to have caused him trouble in a long while. Chris Stead and Alex Carter came together for what was the highest partnership of the innings, both enjoying their time at the middle and punishing the bowlers. As we started to threaten posting a big score, Chris edged one behind for the same fate as his son for 30. Alex welcomed Will Herbert back from uni by running him out without facing, then got bowled himself for 34 shortly after. Nathan and Harry White (also returning from his time away) showed some fight to try getting us to 200, but fell just short when they were both dismissed. Probably a good enough score with the overcast conditions and a pitch that had a bit of variable bounce in it, but still disappointing with it looking like 230+ was on the cards for a long time.
The second innings started with Anxiety levels going through the roof with Will Herbert, on his long awaited return, bowling a leg side wide to start off his spell. However, that was one of very few runs he went for throughout the day as he bowled wonderfully well from there. 2 wickets fell with the score on 14 with Will bowling the opener, then the new batsmen choosing to Challenge Carter’s fielding with a quick single to run out the over opener shortly after. Harry and Nathan picked up wickets as well in what is the first time our first team has fielded more seamers than spinners in what must be years. Cooper came in at 5 for Reed, playing his first game of the season and hitting the ball cleanly. The run rate was starting to climb with Sam rotating his options a little to try making a breakthrough. The ball following Tom Woodbridge as he took two catches as wickets fell at the other end, before the pressure catch also fell to him at long on as Sam dismissed Cooper for 35. After this wicket fell, it was just a case of keeping up the pressure as the run rate increased to over a run a ball. Tom Hutton dismissed the 10th wicket on the last ball of his 10th over which saved Sam from finding a 6th bowling option.
3 wins in a row following the Lutonian loss was a good response from the team. With the return fixtures starting from next week, we will have a chance to put the demons of the opening day defeat to rest with a trip to Hemel Hempstead coming up
Cockfosters 104-0 beat Sandridge 103-10 by 10 wickets
Fresh off the back of a good win in the previous week, the side came into this game with a renewed sense of confidence. Football warm up match did take place, but was marred by the fact that the pitch was set up for an under 5s game and the posts were very crooked. Was a disappointing start to the day. A much better cricket warm up took place after and the side found out they were fielding first.
One of the opposition had turned up bright and early to get used to the ground and the surroundings, so he would have been very disappointed to have edged one early through to Steady off of Nathan’s bowling. However, wickets suddenly became hard to come by after the first one fell. Anjum, the other opener, kept chancing his arm with big shots and unfortunately the catching was not up to standard as chances went down from Alex, Sam and Matt. However, Dan Stead, inspired by Rollo’s diving stop on the boundary a few overs before, decided he didn’t like that Nathan had an uncontested catch of the season award. However, probably loses points that the reason his one handed, diving backwards skier catch looked so good was because he overrun the catch completely and had to improvise. Anjum was finally removed at the 4th time of asking. at 70-2, Sandridge were still in an okay situation, then 18 more runs got added before Alex got a chance to atone for his earlier drop off Tom Hutton to bring them back to 88-3. This brought in the man who all the play cricket badgers knew is the star Sandridge batsman, Peters. However, despite usually being the dangerman for his side, he came in and ran out his partner early on challenging James Stead’s arm. Karma struck quick as James bowled him an over later. James bowled superbly throughout his spell, with Sam Barker also offering the batsmen literally nothing. only 15 runs were added from the time the 3rd wicket fell, and the 10 wicket fell. James finishing with figures of 8.4-3-13-4 and Sam with incredible 6-4-4-3.
With a low score to chase, the side agreed that winning wouldn’t be enough, and we needed to put out a statement to the league that despite the slow start, we are still the same side as last year. Sam and Dan went out to bat, after their 98 partnership from the previous week, they were aiming to better that. With the two opening bowlings having very different experiences (Miller going for 8 an over and Murphy only going for 6 runs in his 4 overs), they both got taken off after their 4th overs to try something different as neither Sam or Dan looked troubled. Spin options were explored but, despite Peters occasionally beating the edge, a wicket still was nowhere to be found. At 90-0, the slips call out of “I don’t think I’ve ever had a game of getting 0 points” put some unnecessary pressure on the batsmen, however, fortunately Fereday was given a 1 (legitimate) ball spell which went for 9 runs to secure the win in the next over. A dominant performance with bat and ball. Great spirit in the field after 3 dropped catches going down to still rally together and prevent Sandridge from capitalising.
A job well done, and probably the first time many of the players from both sides had been involved in a 30-0 game in terms of points. James and Sam causing havoc with their bowling, then Sam taking up the bat accompanied by Dan doing a professional job in chasing it down unscathed. Momentum is starting to build with the team picking up 30 points twice in a row, and hoping to take that form into the game next weekend away at Reed.
Cockfosters 214-5 beat Wheathampstead 113-10 by 101 runs
After a disappointing start to the season with only 1 win from our first four fixtures that actually took place, Sam decided to have a few new faces in the side to freshen up the batting line up. Matt Stead was welcomed back with open arms as his struggles with injury was put to one side to slot into the top 4 in the order, with Dan Rollo coming back into the first team after a couple years away as well. James Stead was also back after not inviting anyone to his BBQ last week, and therefore a football warm up could take place. No match was played, but some good passing football was practiced for future games. The actual cricket warm up was also much improved on from last week’s attempt. With everything going well before the game, Sam went out to do the toss and unfortunately lost it and with the weather before the game being a bit wet, Wheathampstead elected to field first.
With runs being hard to come by for all Cockfosters sides this year, Sam and Dan Stead went out to bat hoping to improve the sides fortunes. Jarvis and Mason opened up and were very different bowlers, Jarvis being a left arm seamer who regularly bowled cutters, whereas Mason was sharp and wasn’t afraid to dig it in short. Sam was fortunate early on with edges evading the slip fielders, and when one finally went through to the keeper it was put down. Dan had a few swing and misses early on in his innings but both batsmen managed to find their feet eventually. From there, the run rate was a little slow but Wheathampstead didn’t create any chances as the openers just kept building a platform the team. After seeing off the opening bowlers, Sam managed to edge another one to the keeper, who didn’t have his best day and put him down again. As the partnership was closing in on 3 figures, Dan managed to ruin it by miscounting, mentioning to Sam they had got to 100 (was only 98) and both of them were dismissed in quick succession. Sam got bowled by a good ball and Dan hit a full toss straight at a fielder from Ledger’s first ball he bowled and 98-2 was where the side found themselves after 27 overs. After the recent struggles with the bat, they would take this. Adam Parker however was unable to cash in on an early life and was dismissed for 7, so it was up to Chris and Matt Stead to make it a real family event. Matt batted like he hadn’t been away, with some breathtaking cover drives as well as two sixes, one of which was very big towards BP. Chris also played some great shots with both of them punishing any balls that were remotely loose. Unfortunately their partnership (of 60) had to come to an end where (Chris) Steady nailed one to the boundary but was caught just on the line. Matt kept going with support from Nathan and Dan Rollo (who ended 9*) to get the side to 214-5. Whilst not a gigantic score, with the conditions and the fact the side had been struggling in recent weeks it was a real statement. Matt finished on 63* and made huge strides towards being man of the match. The openers’ contributions also shouldn’t be underestimated as the platform really helped the side post their first score over 200 this season.
In reply, the new ball was entrusted to Simon Hutchins and Nathan Edwards. Nathan, who bowled exceptionally in the previous week, got the side off to the right start by taking 2 early wickets to have Wheathampstead 30-2. The second wicket of Ledger particularly important as he batted well in the previous game last year. Sam came on for a few overs after Nathan and was proving difficult to play with the batsmen struggling to get any runs off him. after 5 overs for 13 runs he took himself off for James and Tom was brought on at the other end. These two bowled until the end of the innings. James in particular keeping a real stop on the run rate with Tom at the other end, although going for a few more looking absolutely deadly. In the first Innings Wheathampstead put down 5 or 6 chances so it was good to see Cockfosters not wasting any chances. Dan Stead took a very good catch at deep square leg, full length diving and Sam took a good catch low down in the ring as well as Steady getting a stumping off Tom. Despite a couple of the lower order batsmen having a hit, runs didn’t materialise for them and as the innings went later on, there was an inevitability of a Cockfosters win. James finishing the game off with 4 wickets as well as Tom also finishing with 4 wickets to secure a big win.
The Stead twins being back helped the side enormously in securing the 30 points, with Matt Stead surely securing man of the match just based on how well he batted, but James tried his best to take the award off him with a great bowling spell. We haven’t really done a D*** of the day this year, but Nathan failing to field the ball with his hands and taking it in a region you don’t want to be hit, as well as falling for the “We need to collect the wet sawdust from out there so get a bucket” trick meant he has to get a mention. Not a good day for him, but the First team were in great spirits as they celebrated a win by 101 runs. Next up is Sandridge again at home, with them getting some very good results in recent weeks.
Cockfosters 122-10 lost to Lutonian 178-10 by 56 runs
Coming off the back of our first 30 points of the season, the first team travelled to unbeaten league leaders Lutonian at the colosseum of lower wardown park. With James Stead unavailable, there would be no football warm up which ruined the team’s mood early on. A rather messy cricket based warm up took place instead, but the quality of the warm up did not dissuade Sam from choosing to bowl after winning the toss.
Bipin, one of two first team debutants, was opening up the bowling with Nathan Edwards. Both provided a good level of control and wicket taking threat first up with both opening batsmen looking uncomfortable. Bipin was first to strike trapping Ahmed lbw for 14. Nathan shortly after with a rare loose ball being fortunate enough that second debutant, Alex Carter, managed to juggle a catch and have it land on him to dismiss Iqbal for 11. Zahid Khan, who all our play cricket badgers recognised as the key man was joined by captain Awais and batted fluently. Both were stealing singles regularly with some excellent running between the wickets to put pressure on our fielders. After Alex took his second catch of the game with a good catch (which it looked like he had misjudged at first, running too far forward but adjusting well) off of Sam’s bowling, there were a flurry of wickets. Then Nathan Edwards, after having a couple of disagreements with Tommy about how deep he was meant to be at mid off, pulled off an absolute screamer of a catch and has almost definitely won catch of the season six games in. Zahid Khan, who was threatening to go big, hit one very high which had Nathan scrambling backwards with the ball always looked like it was beating him. At full stretch he stuck out his right hand whilst falling backwards and the ball stuck. He needed a quick moment to realise what had happened before “absolute scenes” ensued.
Unfortunately, with Lutonian around 100-6, the tail managed to frustratingly wag to add crucial runs for Lutonian. The side started to bowl a little more loose and the fielding levels started to drop as the lower order, particularly Asif who ended on 33 when Dinesh finally dismissed him, added runs to what was becoming a very defendable total. The innings was finally wrapped up in the 36th over with Lutonian posting 178 as their total. It wasn’t a bad effort in the field, but the side would be disappointed that they hadn’t managed to keep the score down like it seemed they would after dismissing the danger man. Tom finished with 4 wickets and Sam with 3, but the spinners were all quite expensive for the very high standards they set themselves.
In response, the Cockfosters batsmen knew they were in for a challenging chase. Whilst the pitch wasn’t the worst they had played on, the occasional ball was popping or staying low which added that threat in the batsmen’s mind. It wasn’t happening very often, but it was often enough that playing back foot was rolling a dice. Sam and Dan walked out to open the batting. The Lutonian bowlers started off very tidy with their bowling, but the outfield was so fast that you would get good value for shots. Sam put away some bad balls effectively whilst Dan guided a few through behind square to make sure the run rate was ticking over nicely. However, with 25 on the board, the wheels started to come off very sharply with wickets falling rapidly. Sam was bowled with Adam Parker trapped LBW a few balls later by the same bowler, Nazim. Kashif Khan finally had his reward at the other end for a sharp and accurate opening spell, dismissing Andy Stokes with one that kept low. Dan then got out in a traditional Stead way (caught behind) and with Chris Holmes guiding one straight to gully the top order had all failed to score runs again and the side were struggling at 54-5. Alex Carter stuck around for a while but had an incredible knack of finding fielders constantly with his shots. When he was bowled for 5, the side were in a real hole which made thoughts go from 30 points to whether we could get any batting points. Steady and Nathan added 22 for their partnership but Steady was unfortunate to be dismissed LBW for 11. Nathan and Dinesh managed to guide the side to their first (and only) batting point but Nelson did for Nathan as he was caught for 29 (the only batsman who could come out of the game with any credit) and the tail fell over after that.
A highly disappointing result. Based on the first half of the fielding performance 30 points almost felt deserved, but after switching off in the first innings and none of the batsmen really applying themselves in the second it meant the side had to settle for 11 points and Lutonian continued their unbeaten start. Next up for the first team is fellow strugglers Wheathampstead, with the loser almost definitely ending the day in the relegation zone.
Cockfosters 99-7 beat Southgate Adelaide 98-10 by 3 wickets
After two very disappointing results and two rained off games, the first team had the Piccadilly line derby to contest with Southgate Adelaide the next side visiting the Lane. The normal football warm up happened and with slightly unbalanced teams, Stoke City did well to keep the score to 4-2. After a few call ups to the first team, definitely entirely based on footballing ability, it was a relief there was an end to the 0-0 draws.
With the weather being a huge obstacle for the first few weeks for the groundsman, this time out there was a surprise shower which even the high tech weather app didn’t properly predict, add to that the roller breaking and it was a bit of a nightmare. How much of this information the Adelaide skipper was fed, we are not sure, but nevertheless he didn’t get a say in what he wanted to do as Sam won the toss and chose to bowl first.
Juckesy and Nathan Edwards were given the new ball, Alfie in particular bowling extremely well keeping it tight and not allowing the openers many scoring chances. His short ball in particular causing real problems for the batsmen. Torr was eventually dismissed with Dan Stead taking a simple catch at cover. With both the openers done, we finally got to see what would be the story of the day. Tom Hutton was almost unplayable, bowling fantastic line and length with the pitch assisting and providing a lot of turn. He took a wicket in his first over with James Stead keeping it tight at the other end as well. Spin was looking a really good option with Tom also dismissing the other opener, Ferguson, for 17. Sam brought himself on and despite Mahmood scoring 43 off 33 balls, the other batsmen had absolutely no answer to him with Sam ending with figures of 7-39, six of the wickets were bowled with immense control and turn at his disposal, and the other wicket being a good take from Dinesh at mid wicket. Adelaide ended on 98 all out, which seemed like it would be an easy run chase.
In reply, Sam and Dan opened up the batting and knew they had plenty of time on their side. Both batsmen playing out the openers with no interest in taking risks. 15-0 was the score when they decided to try something different from the far end and brought on a spinner. With his first ball pitching outside Sam’s leg stump and hitting top of off, Adelaide instantly knew what their game plan would be. Andy Stokes came in and stuck around for a bit but eventually fell victim to Akhtar at the other end also bowled. Dan dug in just trying to survive, knowing that runs would eventually happen with 50 overs to get 99 whilst Chris Holmes and Alfie both joined him in the left hander-heavy top order but both departed shortly after they arrived with neither of them reaching double figures. Adam Parker came in just after drinks with the score still only on 42 and the side were in a bit of trouble with wickets falling cheaply. Dan managed to bat out Mehmood’s spell ending with a remarkable set of figures of 2-12 including six maidens! After 31 overs, Dan finally had a loose swing and was dismissed for 22 off 99 balls which really kept the side in the game with other wickets falling cheaply around him. Adam and Steady added runs in an accelerated fashion but just before the finish line Adam was dismissed on 22 off 27 balls. A minor panic took place after with Nathan being bowled next ball but fortunately Steady and James managed to see the side home.
An unnecessarily complicated run chase, but after the last two results getting 30 points was the only thing that mattered. After the game there were great laughs and drinks, but there is only one winner in the piccadilly derby. Onwards to Lutonian.
Cockfosters 57-10 lost to West Herts II 60-5 by 5 wickets
With no cricket for the past 2 wickets and no chance to atone for the first result of the season, the side were relieved to arrive at West Herts’ lovely ground for a game of cricket. The pitch was looking a bit green after the weather we had had in the first month of the season, but this didn’t deter Sam as he won the toss and chose to bat first.
Steady and Sam opened up for the side and Steady looked good for the first few overs but unfortunately nicked off in the 4th over for 12. A few nervy overs followed with runs hard to come by which led to Holmesy being dismissed cheaply after. Sam followed within 2 overs, disappointed with his 6 off 27. Will Edwards didn’t trouble the scorers and the side were in a real bit of trouble at 22-4. Matt Stead, clearly affected by his back injury, made an uncomfortable looking 3 off 29 balls. James replaced his brother and joined him again after being bowled for 1. Andy Stokes who stuck around for 26 balls adding 8 runs was also dismissed with the side losing 3 wickets for 4 runs. 33-7 was a situation requiring more than a miracle to fix. Alfie batted well for 14 not out but the rest of the tail fell cheaply meaning Cockfosters had only posted 57. The second disappointing batting performance in a row, and despite the low score the pitch was perfectly fine for batting. Batsmen were just giving their wickets away cheaply with loose shots.
With the bowling attack we have, the side was confident in taking a few victims down with us at the very least. Arun Joseph had a very good 3 over spell, taking his first wicket for the club. Sam replaced him and took the wicket of the usually explosive Gorasia who had opted for a more careful approach, scoring 12 off 32 balls as well as other wickets falling cheaply with Sam and Tommy sharing 2 each with some great bowling between them, but ultimately not enough runs on the board to have a proper chance on what was still a good looking deck. Dyson and Moss steadied the ship and led West Herts to a 5 wicket victory.
Some good effort was put into defending a low total causing West Herts a real scare at one point, but ultimately the batsmen had let the bowlers down massively. Onwards to next week where the side would hope to put the bad start to the season behind them against the “local rivals” of the division, Southgate Adelaide.
Cockfosters vs Harpenden III was cancelled
The first team were again denied a chance of getting their season up and running with the ground being deemed unplayable. The outfield being really soggy as well as standing water on the square just made cricket unrealistic so the game was called off. The side will have to wait until next week where they travel to West Herts to hopefully earn a first win of the season.
Cockfosters vs Bayford and Hertford was cancelled
After being the only game played on the first weekend, it was the first team’s turn to receive the dreaded text on saturday morning “game’s off boys”. After a highly frustrating result on the first weekend, the side were left unable to bounce back on the second.
Cockfosters 122-10 lost to Hemel Hempstead IIs 198-9 by 76 runs
With the other two teams having their games rained off, it was only the first team that managed to start their season on the first day of the season. After some hard work with the bow dry, forks and moving the covers, the Hemel side received the go ahead to make their way to Chalk Lane for a delayed start.
Football warm up went ahead as normal, and despite Will Herbert missing it was a standard cagey affair with a 0-0 scoreline. There were claims for a Chris Holmes penalty, but from the stands it was a clear dive.
Sam kicked off the season well by winning the toss and electing to field first in what was to be a reduced overs 37 over game. Harry White, returning from what was meant to be an extended cricketing hiatus after not missing any cricket, managed to get Wilson out LBW for the second year running, with this one being slightly less controversial than last time, and struck again shortly after. From there, Cockfosters luck seemed to dry up rather rapidly. Despite Morgan being dropped first ball by Tom, we failed to create any wicket taking opportunities whilst Morgan and Ed Langley continued on their partnership, with the latter scoring very freely and putting pressure on the bowling attack.
Sam tried to rotate the bowlers to create an opening and finally he broke the partnership that had accumulated a huge 120 runs with a good catch by Will Edwards after he had put him down the ball before. Langley managed to reach his century and hit a few more runs before finally being dismissed for 114 caught on the boundary by James Stead off Simon’s bowling. From there wickets fell fairly freely so the side, despite looking in danger of being on the receiving end of a huge target at times, managed to restrict Hemel Hempstead to 198 from their 37 overs. Simon did well to keep runs down and took 2 wickets as a reward, but Sam as he often does took the most wickets taking 4 off his 8 overs.
The Cockfosters response never really got going unfortunately and after losing Chris Stead early on followed by Sam Barker (with a dismissal showing some clear early season rust) shortly after it was a real uphill task. Holmesy and Spiderman Adam Parker joined each other for a real battling partnership of 53 however both were dismissed one after another on 27 and 26 respectively. None of the middle order were really able to contribute other than Kieran Wetherill who probably had his best first team batting performance so far, managing to drag the team towards batting points. CoC provided useful support before being bowled for 13 by Ed Langley, Completing the century/5 for double for him. Kieran and Simon managed to get the side over over the 110 mark to get to the 10 point mark for the day, but with Kieran getting bowled for 17 with the score on 122, that was all we achieved on the day.
A highly disappointing start to the season after high expectations following on from last season’s performance, but hopefully a useful wake up call for the side as we travel to Bayford and Hertford next week.