The morning got off to a bad start as Umpire Charlie had gone to Heyford for the U11s latest match, with Coach Matt looking sheepish as he had forgotten to tell him that the match had been swapped to Bugbrooke’s ground the day before! Good job it was only a mile or two up the road…Each player was asked to consider a personal target for the game, whether that was bowling no wides, take a catch, score a particular number of runs or no mis-fields. We’d check back in at the end.
The Cooks were asked to bat first so that one of the opponents could leave early after his innings, which bucked the preferred trend of chasing. However, the team were confident of putting up a good score in the sweltering conditions.
Openers Aidan and Will started confidently and between them had scored 17 from the bat, which was probably our best start for some time, however Will fell to a good catch and missed a straight one so we were 28-2 [net 18] at the end of the first quarter.
Archie and Mikey continued to develop their partnership and both ended on a positive score with neither being dismissed. Mohit and Niamh similarly were positive and both hit boundaries, although Mo’s attacking saw him mistimed one straight up in the air and was caught. However, the significant number of extras bowled [48 by the end of the innings] was really hurting the inexperienced Bugbrooke side.
This left last pair of Liam and Anya with the job of putting an unassailable lead together and that’s what they did. Liam hitting a punishing 25 from 16 balls, with good running by both of them seeing the Cooks to a score of 110-3 [net 95].
After a well earned drink and a few minutes in the shade, the team were confident of winning the match if they fielded as well as they had in recent weeks. The early indications were this would be close, as the fielding was a little ragged and the opening Heyford pair had put on 28-1 [net 23] and they were ahead of where we were at that stage. The only wicket came from a sensible run out by the Liam & Aidan combination.
However, our fears were allayed as Will and Liam both took wickets in the next four overs and pretty much put the game to bed as a contest with only 2 runs scored off the bat in four overs with three wickets down.
There was far too many wides bowled  and the fielding started a little scrappily, but to restrict Heyford to 70-9 [net 25] saw us to a comprehensive 70 run victory. Mohit bowled very well again, taking 3 wickets for 4 runs, Liam finished with 3-2 from 3 overs and Will finished with 1-4. There were good catches with Anya at mid-on and with Mikey taking a solid caught behind [big well done to Mikey given how hot it was and having to wear gloves, helmet and pads for the entire innings]. Well done everybody!
Thanks as ever to Charlie for umpiring [and getting from Heyford to Bugbrooke in 3 mins 12 secs] and George “Tavare” Thompson for scoring. There is no U11 match now until July 2nd, at home to Saints.