Just two changes for the seconds as they made the trip to Burton Latimer to play their resurgent third string, which included octogenarian Malcolm Craddock. Skipper Mark again won the toss and chose to bowl on a well prepared track that might favour the batsmen. The Burton openers patiently built a half century stand until first change Adam Longley claimed both openers, momentum stayed with the hosts as the score after 20 overs reached 103 for 2.
A springboard to a decent total had been achieved by Burton though Ryan Knight introduced into the attack as the fifth bowler, had other ideas. Once Ryan had overcome obvious rustiness, he grabbed two valuable middle order wickets that put a brake on the run scoring. The run rate then slowed noticeably and a couple more wickets meant the later batsmen needed to chance their arm and Burtons number 8 did just that. The last over took a dramatic twist with Tony Bird taking an all-bowled hat trick with number 8 being the first batsmen to exit. This ensured that Burton failed to reach two hundred, a feat which looked within their grasp at the half way point of their innings.
After some teatime treats the Cooks openers went on the offensive and soon emulated Burton in compiling their own 50 stand. A loose shot from Trotty started the rot with a further five wickets falling, leaving the score at a vulnerable 93 for 6, the pendulum had swung back to Burton, but the Cooks showed the resolve built throughout the season.
Alfie Wreford joined Ryan and the pair batted sensibly until Ryan perished, stumped off the left armer bringing Captain Bird to the crease. Alfie added another 19 with the skipper until he was bowled for a valuable 10. Fifty four was still needed when James Bushell strode to the wicket. The pair at first started cautiously especially against the returning young opening bowler, but once this threat had been nulified things looked more rosy. The Cooks ninth pair wicket sensed victory with a series of boundaries from the increasingly dispirited bowlers. Nine from Mark and four from James sealed this once unlikely victory. A major batting plus point was James’s mature innings of 20* given the circumstances, and his previous best being just 2.
The Cooks were forced to battle hard for their win, but winning has become an habit for the seconds, and this entertaining game showed again the excellent team spirit that runs through the team. #letsgocogenhoe
– Hatrick for Tony Bird with 3-38
– 42* for Mark Bird
– 41 for Russ Coleman
– 20 for James Bushell, league/career best
– 10 for Alfie Wreford, league/career best