From Glebe Street to Glee Street
Ramsbottom 1st Team v Crompton 1st team – (A) 10 July 2021
CCC 199 for 8 (50 overs) RCC 203 for 7 (38.4 overs)
Saturday saw us visit Glebe Street to play the unpredictable Crompton Side who stood a place behind us in the league, so this game assumed massive importance. After winning the toss Crompton elected to bat first on a wicket that looked dry and would obviously take more and more spin as the game progressed.
Early wickets were important and although we managed to get Rigby to a fine catch by Daryn with the score on 10 it took a change of bowling to remove the dangerous Louis, the wicket keeper batsman skying Josh Dentith to Jack Thomond at deepish mid-on. This brought the home captain Mohammed Jamal to the crease. Jamal is one of the best amateur batsmen in the league and looked in good touch from the word go and along with the opener Zulfiqar took the score past the 100 mark. During this stand and indeed throughout the whole Crompton innings the Rammy performance in the field seemed to be lacking in conviction. It took the introduction of Owen Collinge to get the breakthrough. Bowling at good pace he produced a bouncer which was too quick for Zulfiqar as he attempted a hook shot and could only sky the ball into the hands of our keeper. With Jamal continuing to bat serenely the score mounted and although a couple of other wickets fell it looked like we would be chasing a total in the region of 230-240 until he inexplicably pulled a short ball into the hands of Jack Thomond on the deep mid-wicket boundary. From then on we were able to contain the opposition scoring and a final total of 199 was challenging but not as bad as had been anticipated.
As previously stated, I thought our performance in the field was not up to standard but thought both Josh and Owen did well enough, the latter improving and getting more confident every week and surely an opening bowler for us for many years to come.
When it was our turn to bat we could not have had a worse start with Alex Olpin holing out to the first ball of the innings. When Jack Thomond (promoted to opener as Jonny Dack had been injured) was yorked with the score only 13 we looked in trouble. Our Pro Daryn then joined Grimmy at the wicket and the pair set about repairing the damage. Grimmy was playing really positively with some lovely drives and a big 6 off the opening bowler. Daryn also seemed to be nicely finding his feet when he was run out with the score on 50 not grounding his bat following smart work by Louis. When Brad Fielding was bowled with the score on 53 our chances looked remote. Grimmy was then joined by his ex-Accy teammate Clarkey. Despite the situation he continued to bat positively and with Jacob running hard to secure him the strike he deservedly reached his half century. Sadly, with the score on 94 he fell to the newly introduced spinner for an excellent 61 comprising 6 fours and 2 sixes off only 67 balls.
This brought young Harry Caton to the wicket to join Jacob. What followed was a wonderful exhibition of punishing the bad ball and positive running between the wickets. Jacobs was the most aggressive of the partnership, but Harry displayed great maturity in blocking the decent deliveries and punishing the bad ones. The heads of the home side dropped as the partnership took us to 174 before Clarkey was caught on the boundary for a brilliant 63 consisting of 5 fours and 2 sixes off 60 deliveries.
Any doubts we may have had about reaching the target was soon dispelled when Dan Pyke came in and smashed a couple of fours and a six, the only sad thing being the comical run out of Harry for 39 runs.
This was an excellent run chase and the fact that we achieved it off less than 40 overs showed how positive we were. On this showing with the bat and the middle order we should not be frighted of any team, we just need more consistency with the bowling and fielding.
The amateur man of the match was shared between Grimmy, Clarkey and Harry all putting in great performances with the bat.