Match Report Ramsbottom 1st XI v Darwen 1st XI  –  22 May 2021 

RCC 97 all out (42.3 overs) & DCC 99 for 5 (24.1 overs)

Scorecard here

A quote variously credited to Don Bradman, Ian Chapple and Shane Warne “if you win the toss bat, if you are in doubt, think about it , and then bat. If you have very big doubts, consult a colleague, and then bat.” After winning the toss against Darwen Daryn choose to follow this principle. Having been subject to some of the worst May weather in a lifetime we had been forced to play the game on the previously used 2nd team wicket as water had got under the covers and made the prepared match track unplayable. Those of us who have been around for a long time thought that this was a gamble as we have seen many games where, after bad weather, our wickets ease up as the day goes on providing it remains dry.

Thus when we started the game it was apparent it was going to be a tough test for our batsmen against Darwen’s experienced bowling attack. After the early wickets of Simon Hanson and Kieren Grimshaw to two excellent deliveries Brad Fielding joined Harry Caton at the wicket. Both youngsters had to face bounce and considerable movement but dug in to take the score to 53 before the wily veteran David Bowden brought about the dismissal of Brad with a ball that stopped on him. Our pro Daryn then came to the wicket and despite not finding it easy looked to be mastering the conditions.

He lost Harry Caton with the score on 73. Harry had made 33 and shown a lot of maturity for a young lad. Jacob Clarke joined Daryn and we hoped the pair could take us to a challenging total. However with the score on 83 Daryn was given out caught behind to a ball that everyone on the ground bar the umpire could see struck him on the arm way above his glove (he even had the mark to prove it). After this the tail folded miserably and the score of 97 was about 50 runs short of where we needed to be.

Early wickets were needed and there was still a bit of life left in the track which enabled Clarkey to get the opener with a lifting delivery. Daryn’s gamble of opening the attack with Josh Dentith did not work and he was forced to bring himself on for the 6th over. Both he and Clarkey bowled well, the latter putting up his best spell this season, but as the wicket started to ease Darwen were able to coast to victory with over half the allotted overs still left. The fact that we managed to get half the opposition out shows that a score of 140-150 would have set a tough target.

The amateur Man of Match was shared between Harry Caton and Jacob Clarke.