Cotswold League XI

Claire on a Dry-ish day!

Entertaining half centuries from Sean Morris and Tom Gleghorn led the Imps to a first ever win over the Cotswold Hills League XI in a hugely enjoyable match.

After a good all-round bowling and fielding display dismissed the hosts for 226, Gleghorn and Morris confirmed the suspicion that this was 70 below par on a flat wicket and steeply sloping, beautiful but small ground at Exhall & Wixford CC.

Opener Morris struck 17 fours in his 83, and Gleghorn hit 13 boundaries in his 72, both of which came from 86 balls.

Sean, who played some typically cavalier strokes all round the wicket, added 63 for the first wicket with Gearie (19), while Gleggers and Sammo (35)also contributed 63 for the third wicket.

However, it was their run-a-ball second wicket partneship of 87 that laid the foundation for a six wicket win, achieved with eight overs unused.

After the CHL won the toss, Stratford seamer Tom Grundy confirmed the good impression he made on debut at Oundle, with three wickets in a fine opening spell.

Contrasting left arm spin then took centre stage through an entertaining hour, during which Imps debutant Kotak got the pin out to claim 2-37 from eight overs, while Wynnie battened down the hatches very effectively, to return 2-78 from 17.

Some good fielding, including a direct hit run out from Foweller, and two catches and a run out from Gearie, ensured the hosts never broke the shackles. Although eight of the top nine got into double figures, only Hurrell went to a half century, while the remainder fell to a combination of over-ambition and good Imps out-cricket.

As in previous years, the hosts relied on an almost exclusively seam attack, and as a consequence of this, and their deeply imbued win-lose limited overs approach, struggled to change the shape of the match once the die was cast.

The other recurrent feature of this day is the warmth and quality of the hospitality. John Mould, E&W CC and everyone connected with the CHL receive our warmest thanks and congratulations for every aspect of a superbly organised occasion.

The final note goes to Claire Easter, who thankfully doesn't accept travel expenses for her commute from Ho Chi Minh City! It was hard to work out whether Claire, or the rest of us, were more relieved when a brief pre-match shower didn't extend into the torrential all day downpour that seems to appear whenever she picks up the Imps scorebook!