Rioteers CC v Wickham CC, 21st May 2017

A new fixture … Wickham, just down the road from last week’s Hambledon.

Off the main road then down a farm track with the grass growing down the middle we gathered buoyantly at having found the ground.

What an idyllic spot overlooking Rookesbury park.

Simon arrived with Hugo making our eleven whilst we awaited the final five members of the opposition.

The toss was won and the skipper thought that it probably wasn’t cordial asking the hosts to field with only six and so opted to field first.

The opposition six however looked like a very competent youthful side and they set about us from the off. I’m not sure how soon the first six came but we didn’t have to wait long. The left handed 17-year-old whom they called Braz! seemed in somewhat of a hurry.

He did offer up a chance on about 20 which, uncharacteristically (although becoming less so), was spilled by the captain, sorry Matt.

Anyway after 8 overs the opening pair had put on 91.

The bowling was shared around at the bottom end, whilst Hally steadied the run rate at the top.

The young “Braz” was eventually caught, quite incredibly, by his senior namesake, one handed at deep mid-off.

Eventually tea came with Wickham having reached around 265 for 5 ish.

Tea was delicious with homemade being the order of the day.

Our two stout openers of Brazier S and Vice Skipper Bickers set about the task showing the youngsters what a “forward defensive in the first over” was. They carried the tutorial on through the following twenty overs. After the eighth we were 11 without loss, a solid start, youngsters take note!

Well their bowling was as intense as their batting … and fielding! To be fair, they had a handful of pretty useful young cricketers. We did manage to survive and Brazier snr and the skipper saw the draw home with grandson Harry unable to get “his man” at the end. Well done Pa.

It was good to have Hugo back and he did heft one mighty blow off the rapid “Braz” over the extra-cover boundary for six .

Next stop an Alderney weekend in Braishfield.