Willow Herbs v Woodham Mortimer Cricket Club FIRST XI on Sat 17 May 2014 at 1.30pm
Woodham Mortimer Cricket Club Won by 54 runs

Match report The 1's were on a second successive road trip, with the grand surroundings of the Blackmore Sports & Social Club, home of Willow Herbs the venue. However, unlike the previous week at High Easter, this time the weather did not intervene as a first win of the season was chalked up.

Skipper Hayman lost the toss, but the wish to bat first was granted by the home captain Douglas. A tight opening spell that struck three early blows - Ball (1), Brady (8) and Brown (4)suggested that perhaps the home skipper had judged his decision correctly, Woodies 32-3 from 14.

The visitors needn't have feared, as Andy Smith began the fightback with an excellent counter attack. He joined the already well set Rod Brazier, still buoyed by the success of his alter-ego at last weeks Eurovision, to take the game to the home side. The partnership reached 40 until Smith managed to find the only fielder square of the wicket, falling for 27. Debutant Nick Goode joined Brazier and the innings rebuilding steadily continued, taking the score into three figures. The partnership was closing in on 50, but fell five short, as Goode (17) became the second of opener Miller's victims.

The two partnerships had given the innings a firm base and allowed Neil Friend and skipper Hayman to attack as the score rattled from 130 to 150 between overs 34 and 38. Rod reached a deserved half-century, eventually dismissed for 55. An excellent anchoring innings. The visitors total closed on 184 all out, 3 balls short of the 45.

In reply, the hosts were in trouble early on with the loss of Patterson, bowled by Hayman without score. Progress continued to be steady, and gradually Shearcroft and Harris started to accelerate the score. A change of bowling worked perfectly, as George Verlander enticed a nick behind by Harris. New batsman Barker however was in no mood to hang around, and his first 9 scoring shots were all fours, including 20 from one over.

Thankfully, the tide was stemmed and a combination of Craig Marshall and Tom Payne extracted both home batsmen. Shearcroft caught mistiming a pull, whilst a quite brilliant one handed catch from Craig yards from the boundary to dismiss Barker ultimately changed the game.

From this point on, Woodies increased their grip on the game and did not let go. Verlander returned to strike again, whilst at the other, it was the Craig Marshall show, as he claimed the other five wickets to fall, including within the haul, an excellent reflex catch by Andrew Brown at short cover.

The home side were eventually dismissed for 130, a win for the visiting Woodies by 54 runs.

An excellent win and many battling qualities showed to wrestle the game back at various points during the game. The two mid innings partnerships recovered the innings and set the tone to post a challenging score. And when the home side were performing well in reply, the response was again excellent, reducing the 'Herbs from a strong position of 84-2 to 130 all out.

A week off next week, given Hatfield Peverel's withdrawal from the league, but we go again on 31 May, with another road trip, this time to Thurrock.

Off and running.....

Woodham Mortimer Cricket Club FIRST XI Batting
Player Name RunsMB4s6sSRCtStRo
9w 8b  
for 10 wickets

(44.3 overs)
Ian Ball ct Douglas b Miller 1
Rod Brazier ct Miller b Shearcroft 55 7 1
Josh Brady ct Shearcroft b Barker 7
Andrew Brown ct Douglas b J. Walsh 4 1 1
Andy Smith ct Harris b A. Walsh 27 4 3
Nick Goode b Miller 17 1
Neil Cook ct L. Shearcroft b Shearcroft 16 3
Connor Hayman st Shearcroft b J. Walsh 26 4
George Verlander st Shearcroft b York 8 1
Craig Marshall b J. Walsh 3 2
Tom Payne Not Out  4

Willow Herbs Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
J. Walsh8.312939.673.41
A. Walsh4.0028128.007.00

Willow Herbs Batting
Player name RMB4s6sSR
6w 2lb 
for 10 wickets
130 (37.2 overs)
S. Patterson b Hayman 0
L. Shearcroft ct Marshall b Payne 26
L. Harris ct Smith b Verlander 16
R. Barker ct Marshall b Payne 37
C. Yorke ct Smith b Verlander 4
C. Miller ct Verlander b Marshall 17
A. Shearcroft ct Brown b Marshall 1
Phillips lbw b Marshall 14
Douglas ct Smith b Marshall 0
A. Walsh ct Brazier b Marshall 0
J. Walsh Not Out  3

Woodham Mortimer Cricket Club FIRST XI Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Connor Hayman9.0323123.002.56
Tom Payne12.0526213.002.17
George Verlander10.0153226.505.30
Craig Marshall6.222655.204.11