Ricky fall at last hurdle against Ley Hill
Good pre-league workout
"I quite fancy a chase" said The Riddler, Phil Riddleston, at the coin toss and how prophetic his words proved to be about 5 hours later. However it didn't seem such a wise idea after 11 overs as Ley Hill were on 85/1 and looking like posting over 300. The contributing factors were a belting wicket, and fast outfield and batsmen who liked to climb into anything short and wide - a gift that Ricky felt compelled to serve up my regularity. Ley Hill is a postage stamp of a ground that attracts batsmen who like to score boundaries, and these chaps were gorging themselves. And all this after Ricky had them 4/1 in the first over.
It needed Captain fantastic himself to pull matters back and he did with 2 in 2 and rather surprisingly Ricky turned the game around by reducing LHCC to 123/6 by the 23rd over. Waqas, on debut, helped himself to 2 quick wickets and young Tahir also grabbed a first wicket for the 1st XI with a wide swinging delivery that was safely pouched by Tom Watson. Lee and Ottaway put on 28 for the 8th wicket before Watson returned with a much better second spell and it was Watson again who finished the innings on 191/10 in the 35th over.
Was it 100 short, or had Ricky let the opposition off the hook in the final 5 overs? Only time would tell. But overall this was a good performance in the field again from Ricky with a tight ship captained by The Riddler.
Maz and Taz established a wonderful platform with 74 for the first wicket, albeit at a steady pace. However with 21 overs and just 120 to get, Ricky were in the driving seat. Unfortunately the two half-centurions from previous games, Sohail (5) and Raz (1) couldn't continue the heroics, and when Maz went for 57 Ricky were struggling at 92/4 with overs running low. Waqas batted superbly for a quickfire 28 whilst Bobby hit 5 boundaries in his 24. This was now the Ricky of old, as Majid weighed in with 20, however, despite 16 off the 4th last over, Ricky needed 22 with 2 overs left. Tahir looked a class helping hit 14 off the penultimate over but then he and Tom got tied down in the last over and Ricky finished 6 runs short.
So a good chase it was indeed. and great practice for the trials to come. Roll on Saturday