Willow Herbs v Woodham Mortimer Cricket Club FIRST XI on Sat 08 Aug 2015 at 1.00pm
Woodham Mortimer Cricket Club Won by 61 runs

Match report The 1’s made it 8 wins on the spin with an excellent away performance at promotion rivals Willow Herbs, triumphing by 61 runs.

Asked to bat first, the visitors opening over had a touch of Australia about it, as it produced 10 runs, but a wicket, as birthday boy Andy Smith tried to despatch another ball to the boundary but only succeeded in nicking to slip, departing for 8.

Runs and wickets continued to flow at equal measure, as the game moved forward at a rapid pace, WMCC 41-3 inside 7 overs, Manoj Tripathi (1) and Rod Brazier (30 from 20 balls) joining Smith in the pavilion.

Opening bowler J. Walsh helped to apply the break as he bowled 6 successive maidens, though thankfully no wickets fell in this period, as some stability returned. In his final over, Walsh secured the wicket of Ian Ball (2), caught behind. 56-4 from 20 overs, with Walsh returning impressive figures of 10-7-8-2.

The partnership of Neil Smith and Roger Marshall was a turning point, as the visitors clawed their way back into game, steadily upping the run rate which had briefly fallen to below 3. In just 8 overs, the pair had propelled the score into 3 figures. Their partnership had reached 60 when Rog was well caught low down by Phillips, departing for 16. 116-5 from 31 overs. Nelly reached his second successive 50, hitting 10 fours along the way, until change bowler A. Walsh found the edge of the Pheasants no 5 bat, caught behind for 61. 134-6 from 34 overs.

Skipper Wright joined Chris Roper at the crease and they sought to further increase the pressure on the hosts by scoring quickly. Within 3 overs, the pair moved the score to the 150 mark, with Roper scoring the first and only six of the match. Another attempted maximum brought his demise, caught on the boundary by Barker. Nevertheless, the pair had added 39 in just 5.4 overs as the innings gathered pace.

Unfortunately for the home side, the batsman just kept coming, as Connor Hayman, already boasting over 200 runs in the season strode to the crease at no 9. In typical fashion, the first ball was despatched for 4, but a couple of balls later Austin produced an excellent catch to ensure his stay at the crease was kept to a minimum. 178-8, 4.3 overs to go.

However, with George Verlander at 10, 200 was well within reach and despite nursing a ‘calf strain’, he and the skipper set out to do just that. And how. In 5 overs, they added 34, Wright falling on the penultimate ball of the innings for 36. Tom Payne showed how the Aussies how to leave a ball as he let the final delivery of the innings go through to the keeper – the visitors an impressive 212-9 from their 45.

The reply from the home side started quickly, Austin finding the boundary with some regularity. Opening partner Phillips was not as fluent, and he was the first man to fall, Hayman finding the edge of his bat – well caught behind by keeper Smith. Home skipper Barker joined Austin at the crease and started well, timing the ball to the fence as the home side eased toward 50. Thankfully, Wright had his revenge for his slower ball dismissal by Barker earlier in the game by removing the home skipper in the same fashion, a slower delivery that was lofted to Hayman at extra cover who made no mistake. A big wicket. There was almost cause for further celebration as another slower ball from Tom Payne induced a false shot from Austin, but fortunately for the Herbs opener, he hit it into the line of the sun, too much for Roger who could not see the ball and therefore survived.

Austin however was having to play a lone hand, as the hosts, without the prolific Harris, struggled to find suitable partners. Nevertheless, the Herbs opener was making a decent fist of getting the score himself, moving to an excellent 50. At the other end, the Payne/Marshall combo did have success, with Boyd replicating the earlier shot of Austin, but not having the same ‘sun’ success. Marshall soon had a wicket of his own, trapping Potten in front, lbw for 4.

By this stage, the run-rate had started to climb a little further, not helped by the dismissal of the other Austin in the batting line up, run-out via a direct hit by dead-eye Brazier at cover. Then finally, the moment that wrestled the remaining threat from the hosts the removal of opener Austin, bowled by a Marshall yorker for a defiant 78.

The visitors could breathe a little easier and Marshall, together with George Verlander took control for the remainder of the innings. Aided by a couple of smart catches by ‘keeper Smith, the pair took the final few wickets as the game moved to a close. The hosts managed to pass the 150 mark, when the skipper, one of three ‘fly’ fielders to Walsh, successfully juggled a catch to seal victory – a deserved third wicket for GV, the 1’s victors by 61 runs – and effectively ending the Herbs promotion challenge.

A good win against one of our closest rivals, gaining revenge following a comprehensive defeat earlier in the season. The win takes us a step closer to promotion, but with third placed Chadwell Heath also winning yesterday, the rival challenge is still there. All we have to do is keep winning, and we will again need to be at our best as we entertain Springfield next week at Pheasant Park.

Woodham Mortimer Cricket Club FIRST XI Batting
Player Name RunsMB4s6sSRCtStRo
4nb 9w 7b 7lb 
for 9 wickets

(45.0 overs)
Rod Brazier ct b Barker 30 27 20 6 150.0 1
Andy Smith ct Barker b Burkitt 8 3 5 2 160.0 3
Manoj Tripathi ct A Austin b J Walsh 1 18 12 8.33
Ian Ball ct Cornwall b J Walsh 2 49 48 4.17
Neil Smith ct Cornwall b A Walsh 61 98 79 10 77.22
Roger Marshall ct Phillips b Boyd 16 49 34 2 47.06 1
Chris Roper ct Barker b Yorke 11 36 24 1 45.83
Kev Wright b Barker 36 50 30 3 120.0 1
Connor Hayman ct A Austin b Barker 4 3 3 1 133.33 1
George Verlander Not Out  16 16 14 2 114.29
Tom Payne Not Out  0 1 1 0

Willow Herbs Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
J Walsh10.07824.000.80
R. Barker10.0152317.335.20
A. Walsh8.0028128.003.50
C. Yorke7.0038138.005.43

Willow Herbs Batting
Player name RMB4s6sSR
2nb 5w 3lb 
for 10 wickets
151 (36.3 overs)
A. Austin b Marshall 78
A. Phillips ct A Smith b Hayman 9
R. Barker ct Hayman b Wright 15
S. Boyd ct Marshall b Payne 11
A. Potten lbw b Marshall 4
H. Austin run out (Brazier) 5
C. Yorke b Verlander 0
A. Walsh ct Wright b Verlander 19
J. Cornwall ct A Smith b Verlander 0
J. Walsh ct A Smith b Marshall 0
J. Burkitt Not Out  0

Woodham Mortimer Cricket Club FIRST XI Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Connor Hayman7.0233133.004.71
Kev Wright8.0132132.004.00
Tom Payne7.0226126.003.71
Roger Marshall9.0035311.673.89
George Verlander5.302337.674.18