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Whaley Bridge v Chapel (home) 6th July

posted 9 Jul 2011, 03:35 by Mike Madden
A strong and powerful Chapel side arrived at a dreary New Horwich Park and gave the Whaley lads a further lesson in the art of positive batting.  The opeing pair scored 19 runs as Bruce (0-2) and Ed (0-11) bowled reasonably.  Unfortunately, the Whaley out cricket, so often a strength this season, rather let us down this time.  We were not quite so committed in our fielding and backing up.  Perhaps some of the players' minds were starting to stray to their holidays...  Chapel's second pair added 26 with Matt Bingle, recently our star bowler, coming back to earth with figures of 1 for 14.  Jacob's 2 overs cost 9 runs.  However, we wilted against the onslaught from Chapel's powerful third pairing.   Ole conceded 22 runs in his two overs, whilst Ethan had 0-7.  By this time Chapel were 280 and Whaley looking down the barrel at a very big score.  Thankfully, Chapel's final two pairings were less strong and good bowling from Will (3 overs, 1 for 4), Charlie (3 overs, 2 for 8) and Ben (0-5 off 2 overs) meant that Chapel finished on a still very respectable 288.
Last week's batting practice, however, seemed to pay off.  Everyone played straighter and with a little more aggression this would have been a very close finish.  Ed and Gareth took us to 209, which would have been 214 had Gareth not been unluckily run out.  Jacob and Matt then batted very well as the Chapel bowlers struggled in the increasingly wet conditions.  They added 15 runs, before Bruce and Ben added another 14.  Our last two pairs needed to score 50 to win.  After a short delay for rain (it was hurling down!) Ole and Ethan found scoring difficult but still kept it positive as 8 more were added.  This left Charlie and Will to try and score 43 from their 4 overs.  They set about it enthusiastically, but after one of "those" run-outs we ultimately fell short.  We were 264 when Charlie lashed the last ball straight back at the bowler who took a miraculous catch, especially as the ball by now was little more than a bar of soap.  Whaley finished on 259.
A lot of positives can come from this performance, especially in the batting.  Of our 4 dismissals, only one was bowled and all were unfortunate and understandable given the state of the game.  It isn't perfect, by a long way, but with more aggression the team can look confidently at next season.. For an all round display of high quality our man of the match was Will McIlveen.