Match Report Ramsbottom 1st XI v Nelson 1st XI  – 27th May 2023

NCC 273 for 8 (50 overs) RCC 277 for 3 (47.5 overs)

Scorecard here and livestream here

Ben and Harry Save our Blushes

Although we have lost all our league games this season this was a cup tie we went into as favourites, with Nelson our oppostion, currently bottom of the Lancashire League 2nd division.

Once again, due to cry offs, we were left with a very weak bowling attack. Sixteen year old Toby Anderson was a late call up to make his 1st team debut. Toby has played mainly 3rd team cricket thus far so this was going to be a challenge for him.

Nelson won the toss and had no hesitation in batting first on another Acre Bottom belter of a track. Their in form professional Usman Tariq must have thought it was his birthday as he faced some very poor fare from the Rammy attack and made hay while the sun shone, scoring 158 before being well caught in the deep by Tom Parton.

The proof of how poor the majority of our bowling was, was shown by the fact that our best return came from our sub pro Ben Compton who had admitted he is not even considered as a net bowler at Kent.

Credit however has to be given to young Toby who picked up two wickets in his 10 over stint and was unfazed when bowling at Tariq, even having him dropped off a simple chance when he was in the 130s.

At the interval Nelson had posted a target of 274, normally an excellent score but one we left was eminently chaseable with our sub pro being an established county opening bat.

Things looked fine as the Nelson opening attack seemed to offer little threat. We cruised to 32 before disaster struck. Our sub pro, who looked so confident, got a shocking half track delivery which he later admitted he could have put anywhere on the ground, only succeeded in smashing it into the grateful hands of Tariq.

This brought Ben Pearson to the crease to join Alex Olpin. The pair settled down and the score ticked along nicely to 94 before the introduction of Tariq led to the stumping of Alex for 35. When our skipper Tom Parton was bowled some 9 runs later we looked up against it with 171 still needed. Harry Caton then joined Ben at the wicket and the pair, both fit lads, quickly formed a rapport, running brilliantly between the wickets and depositing any bad deliveries, which like the Rammy attack there were many, to the boundary. They also used their brains to ensure they played Tariq’s 10 overs out without taking any chances against him.

Their partnership was a joy to watch and brought the crowd to life. It was fitting they remained together to get us over the line with Harry ending on 98 not out and Ben 91 not out, earning Ben his baggy green club cap.

Man of the Match – shared between Ben and Harry.