[Week 11] Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI – Pott Shrigley CC 2nd XI

Good day, both teams won, 1sts beat Old Glossop by 6 wickets and 2nds  beat Pott Shrigley by 7 wickets with Alex Wilde (51*) carrying the bat, and Tony Mooney with 80* his highest total since beating Wilmslow Wayfarers back in 1981 when he scored 84*.

(So not a career best like you thought).

Then some of us went for a club curry afterwards at shirt sponsors:

Candolim Curry Night – 6th June 2019

Sorry, too busy to write a proper one.

[Week 7] Compstall CC 2nd XI vs Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI

Compstall washout saves Stalybridge getting whitewashed.

The weather once again played a pivotal role in the cricket this past weekend, and for once it worked in our favour.

Before I begin, I want to wish our 2nd XI captain, Brian Stone a speedy recovery from his extensive surgery last week, get well soon Boss!

With Brian out of action, Steve Monks was at the helm again, and upon winning the toss it was deemed the best decision to put the home-side into bat, on a wet uncovered track following extensive rain fall, not an unreasonable idea.

I arrived about and hour before the game was due to be played, and within minutes it was teeming it down, and continued for the next 50 minutes,  though you wouldn’t believe it from this picture, taken just after starting.

Compstall CC 2nd XI vs Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI – 9th June 2019.

With a break in the inclement weather, the game managed to start on-time, with father and son partnership in Ravi and Josh Patel opening the batting, as has been the case for as many games I’ve seen played against Compstall.

Obviously, having a stable one and two at the crease week in, week out has a positive effect on the pair, as they were quickly running between the sticks on every possible opportunity, with a near perfect symmetry,  they reached their 100 partnership in a little over 90 minutes, with Ravi on 43 and Josh on 44, at which point the father decided it was time to crack on, and by the time they had reached 150, less than 30 minutes later, Ravi was now on 79 to Josh’s 57.

Young Jacob Dooley, was first to strike for the visitors, earning keeper Keith Bowers his first catch in the role to dismiss Josh on 75, and the home side a now respectable 172-1 with just 8 overs to go; his father was next to fall five overs later, after notching up another 50+ partnership with Josh’s replacement on an impressive 132 off a-run-a-ball 131, caught scrambling up the hill immediately in front of the score-box by Matthew Harrop off Ahmed Hayat‘s delivery, to see Compstall 226-2.

Matthew got Stalybridge’s final wicket of Compstall’s innings in the final over to see Vinny Clark bowled for 7 runs, leaving keeper Chris Sullivan at the other end not-out on 22 from just 11 balls and Compstall completing their innings 256-3 wickets.

In all that, there had been a 20 minute break in play, due to rain, and during the interval the rain began again in earnest, with everyone, glued to their mobile phones sharing various weather app reports of how long this spell was going to last etc.

Once play re-commenced it was in the 6th innings that Stalybridge received their only wicket loss with the score just 8 when Stuart Nock was cleanly bowled by Vinny Clark for just 6 runs.  Keith Bowers at the other end and Krunal Bhatt replacing Nock only had enough time to put another 23 runs on the board before the rains returned with a vengeance, this time not to be denied, bringing an expected two hours delay with it, the captains and the umpires agreed that further wait was pointless, and the game abandoned, giving Stalybridge an additional 7 points and denying Compstall 8 points that neither team really deserved.

Final result and scorecard: Rain Affected Draw.

Assuming the weather changes, which it isn’t looking likely with a current 60% chance of rain predicted, Stalybridge will be on the road for the 3rd week in succession for some reason, in midges Hell, more commonly known as Offerton.

p.s. Sorry for these getting later and later, it’s hard juggling the time to do with the league stats, and even harder when there’s little positively to give me incentive.

[Week 2] Buxworth CC – 2nd XI vs Stalybridge St Pauls CC – 2nd XI

Stalybridge bowling attack demolish youth heavy Buxworth.

Sorry for the delay in getting this written, I can honestly say I fully expect further weekly missives to be just as equally slow in their arrival, as I’ve just realised how much work Hazel Grove’s Ian Halford put in behind the scenes collating the results online each week, across not only the (then) six adult divisions, but the numerous junior leagues also, after taking on the role of looking after just the senior divisions and cup results, at 1:30 on Sunday morning, I was still trawling through match reports, which coupled with the problems with the PlayCricket scorer app login system during match day, highlighted to me the amount he did for the league.

With that out of the way, on with the game at hand; Stalybridge started the day top of the league with a massive one point lead over the rest of the division due to managing to scrape two wickets before being rained of last week, when everyone else had been called off beforehand.

Buxworth CC 2nd XI vs Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI – 4th May 2019

After losing the toss, and being put in the field, Ned Woodman was quick to put a dent in the Buxworth attack, taking three wickets with just 38 runs on the board, the last breaking a blossoming partnership between Ian Walker and youngster Ross McCormack, who impressed me with his deft flick of the bat to get a lot of power for seemingly little effort, and whilst newly joined Tilak Bhojani huffed and puffed at the other end, he was unable to make his bowling impact the opposition, which brought another new face to the Stalybridge bowling attack, Saad Jelani, who set his stall out immediately, dismissing Ross with his opening ball, and his replacement Sam Cooper 5 balls later to finish his first over in a Stalybridge shirt, with a 2 wicket maiden, not a bad start.

With five wickets down and only 44 on the score board, Ahmed Hyatt replaced Ned bowling from the base of the slope, and managed to take the next wicket with an acrobatic slip catch from captain Brian Stone to the amazement of all, not due to the nature of the catch, but how he managed not to break his hip in the process with his advancing years. 😉 With Saad taking his third and final wicket of the home side’s wicket-keeper Nick Adams LBW, which to my eye looked like he edged it (but who am I to complain?), Buxworth were well and truly on the ropes at 56-7; when Ned returned to earn his 5fer first almost taking the middle stump out of the ground to dismiss Dylan Moore, then secondly forcing longstanding SSPCC stalwart Stuart Barnes into a great instinctive catch at midwicket, to dismiss Buxworth captain Richard Millward, and it was only a few balls later that Tilak Bhojani got his just rewards for his earlier hard work, bowling Daniel Lacey to see the hosts finish their innings on just 80 runs, 23 of which were extras.

Stalybridge commenced their innings after tea with Alex Wilde and my son Jordan, who after a couple of decent boundaries, missed a straight defensive shot to be replaced by keeper Mike Hatton, who after smacking his first ball to the boundary, hit his second into the welcoming hands of Tom Moss at long on; denying Stalybridge the maximum possible 20 points (more on that in a moment).

It was the arrival of Stephen Monks (31*) at number 4 with Stalybridge 28-2, coupled with the steady hands of opener Alex Wilde (29*) who carried the bat at the other end, that saw the pair notch up a excellent 56 partnership to complete the rout in just 17.3 of the 62 overs available.

Well done lads, it meant we ended the day where we started, albeit joint leaders with Hadfield St. Andrew’s, who despite batting second, like Stalybridge and bowling out their opposition with the same two losses of wickets as Stalybridge earned an additional point for the maximum 20, for allowing their opposition to reach 100 before bowling them out, which in my eyes seemingly punishes a team for playing better… Not that I’m bitter.

Hey ho! Anyway, next week, see’s Brian’s squad play host to … Hadfield St. Andrews; weather permitting of course.

Final result and scorecard here: Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI win by 8 wickets.

New Season, same 💩 weather

The new season kicked off today in typical fashion, with, at the time of writing, seventeen of the twenty-two games across all divisions confirmed abandoned due to the rain, with the 1sts away at Buxworth called off early morning.

The 2nds game against Offerton got underway 30 minutes late, and managed 10 overs before the rain restarted, and the players were brought back off the field, another 30 minutes was endured in the changing rooms watching the drizzle come down, before it was decided we’d take an early tea, in the hope it would stop in the meantime.

Unfortunately, after tea, the outfield was still getting wetter by the constant light rain, and the Umpires and Captains came to the conclusion that enough was enough, and the match was abandoned, with Offerton finished 27 for 2 in 10 overs.

Those two wickets were enough for the home side to pick up 1 fielding point, and finish Match-day 1, top of Division 5.  😀

Next week’s abandoned match is scheduled for Buxworth away, today’s scorecard, for what it is, is available here.

Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI vs Birch Vale & Thornsett CC 2nd XI

Birch Vale regular frustrates Stalybridge once again.

For the last game of the 2018 Season, Stalybridge St. Paul’s 2nds were at home, hosting Birch Vale & Thornsett for the second time this season, and much like the game on the 9th of June, Stalybridge lose the toss, and are put into the field by the opposition.

Opener Anthony Hayward  was ticking along nicely before being caught by Steve Monks from Mark Connelly for 29 off 29 deliveries, his replacement Rob Barrett (1) lasted just 9 balls before looping Ned Woodman’s ball gently back into his welcoming hands.

And this is where it started going downhill for the home side.  Steve Burns in similar form to his previous visit to Gorse Hall Road acted as the anchor to the Birch Vale attack, and although he started slower than back in June, he was still able to notch up the 30 required (according to his missus, everyone else thought it was 11, but she was adamant) to pass the magnificent milestone of 1000 runs in a season in all formats of the game, fairly comfortably.  Congratulations Steve.

With his half-century out of the way, and suitably settled at the crease, he started punishing the weary Stalybridge bowlers, doubling Ahmed Hyatt’s figures up to that point in one over, with a single and three sixes, the next over was unfortunately equally as bad for Mark Connolly, with three fours, a six and a single to retain the strike.

The last ball of Birch Vale’s 45 overs was another six for Mr Burns, his 5th of the day, narrowly(ish) missing being caught on the boundary after looping his shot over bowler Jordan Elliott’s head, to finish personally on 125 not out, and Stalybridge set a target of 217 to win.

During the interval, Chairman Nigel Corless gave a speech that praised and thanked Joan Broadbent, who after over 10 years of service to the club, in preparing teas, as an integral member of the committee, and responsible for looking after one of the club’s major income streams, the function room in addition to her late husband Barry,  has decided to step down and enjoy her retirement.  Nigel then proceeded to present Joan with two engraved glass goblets in recognition of her service.  (p.s. best home teas of the season, thanks from me too Joan).

Joan Broadbent receives gift from Chairman Nigel Corless on behalf of the club in recognition of over ten years service to the club and retirement from duty.

After the break,  Stalybridge started the batting well, with the home side staying ahead of the curve for the first 15 overs or so, with Stuart Nock (24) and Alex Wilde (34) initially then with Stuart seemingly changing his batting stance having his bails removed by Josh Barrett, Khalid Akram (47) at the crease, but both started slowing down, with the change of bowling to George Johnson and Anthony Hayward.  With the required run rate now just above six and half an over, it was of no joy to finally see the albeit expected introduction of that man again… Steve Burns (3-32), who like on previous occasions then proceeded to frustrate the batsmen with his deliveries, and despite Tony Mooney (23*) carrying the middle order, there wasn’t enough strike left in the squad to win the day, though it didn’t help that Peter Coxon had to retire after suffering a recurrence of his calf injury whilst bowling in the opening innings.

Stalybridge still managed to finish their 45 overs on 175, a decent score on any other day, but like I said in my report following their first visit this season, “Stalybridge put in a good batting performance, unfortunately Birch Vale put in a great one.”

Hopefully everyone enjoyed the Presentations and Race Night held later in the function room, and special thanks to shirt sponsors Candolim for generously providing the food for the evening.

Candolim Indian Restaurant: 71 Mottram Road, STALYBRIDGE. Cheshire. SK15 2QP

Also, thanks to Ajeet Kaintura for your time at the club this season while on work placement in the UK, hopefully you’ve had as much enjoyment as you’ve given to others during your stay, and have many fond memories of your time with us on your return to India after Christmas.

Final result and score-card of the 2018 campaign: Birch Vale and Thornsett CC 2nd XI win by 41 runs.

See you back in 2019 for more fun and frivolity, but before then league will be hosting their annual Presentation Evening, at the Alma Lodge in Stockport on Friday 9th November, at £30 a head where you can see newly promoted and Division 3 Champions, Stalybridge St. Paul’s 1st XI receive their awards, with a guest speaker and comedian Mike Farrell.

Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI vs Old Glossop CC 2nd XI (home) & Dinting CC 2nd XI (away)

Two games in two days, see defeat on both occasions for the 2nds, but a completely different set of results.

At the beginning of the season, when we played Old Glossop, my report stated I thought they’d be top of the league come the end, and with two games left after today, they’re currently 23 points ahead of 2nd place Hayfield, with a result still to be declared, so I wasn’t expecting a great deal out of yesterday’s result, especially given today’s match was against Dinting, who were a place above us in the table, and therefore seemingly a “six pointer”

Old Glossop completing their 45 overs, for the loss of just 3 wickets, put 188 on the target board, after Brian lost the toss and put the home side into the field, with opener Jamie Cannon putting on 43 before given out LBW for the first of Peter Coxon’s two wickets, but it was Andy Dwyer coming in at number 4 that did the damage for the visitors, who managed to finish on 83 not out.

After the interval, Stalybridge were unable to mount any meaningful attack, with only Steve Monks hitting 30, though Krunal Bhatt was looking good until being paired with habitual “run-out partner” Brian Stone, saw him, unsurprisingly run-out on 22.

With Brian Stone finally caught with just three balls left in the innings, the home side ended 60 runs short of victory.

Final result and scorecard: Old Glossop CC 2nd XI win by 59 runs.

Just a day later, and the 2’s were the visitors to Dinting for the second time in a month, though this time without the benefit of this scorer’s son, who hit 52 in that game, and is at the time of writing sunning himself on a beach in Spain, the git!

In a similar vein to yesterday, Brian won the toss, and put his team in the field, but in stark contrast, today’s bowling was absolutely excellent, once opener Brandon Stonehouse was dismissed, after putting 41 on the board in just 30 balls, the remaining wickets fell like flies, with nobody else topping fellow opener 1st Team player, Rudi Leibenberg’s 13.

Ned Woodman was denied his 5fer, firstly by dropping a diving catch off his own bowling, which would have been amazing, and secondly having a catch over-ruled by umpire J.J. Smith as a no-ball, but still finished his bowling session 4-12 off just 7 overs, but it was Ajeet Kaintura who took plaudits for the visiting bowling attack, with 6 wickets for just 14 runs conceded, the last of which completing Dinting’s innings of just 73 runs by snapping the bails in half, and sending them 20 feet behind the stumps.

Ajeet Kaintura with his snapped bail showing his 6-14 against Dinting CC 2nd XI -02/09/2018.

Victory was there for the taking, Stalybridge had 66 overs to get 74 runs.

Unfortunately, just as Stalybridge had exploited this seeming bowling track, so too were the home side able to capitalise on it.

Just before the end of the opening over, opener Stu Nock was dismissed for a duck, not the start the visitors wanted, but the first of five such scores, it would turn out.  Rudi Leibenberg was just placing them on the toes of the batsmen and umpire Smith was happy to slowly stick his finger in the air and declare it L.B.W.

Stalybridge hadn’t even reached the start of their regulation 45 overs, and were nine wickets down for TWENTY EIGHT runs, just ¾ of an hour into their innings, staring at the biggest defeat for the 2’s I can remember (which to be fair doesn’t mean much given my memory), but Mark Connolly coming in to partner captain Brian Stone gave the away side a glimmer of hope, by doing what the rest couldn’t and that was to avoid the LBW trap, and slowly started to put runs on the board, with the tension rising, it looked like Stalybridge were going to be able to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat, managing to stay at the crease for as long as the rest had taken to get out, exactly 45 minutes, but with the final ball of his 12 overs, and 10 runs short of the target, Leibenberg took the off-stump out of the ground with a bullet of a delivery, to dash the visitor’s excitement, and secure victory for Dinting, a good effort though Mark, unlucky lad.

Final result and scorecard: Dinting CC 2nd XI win by 9 runs.

In better news, the firsts won both of their games this weekend, today’s against Charlesworth and Chisworth on the final ball of the innings, and guarantee promotion to Division 2 next season, but are still short of the points score guaranteed to secure championship status.  Well done to Jamie Brownhill’s lads.

The final two games for the 2nds see a visit to the best teas in the league at Compstall next Saturday, and then a home match against Birch Vale for the final game of the 2018 campaign on the 15th.

Hayfield CC 2nd XI vs Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI

Stalybridge compete hard in Hayfield, but take too long to mount a meaningful attack.

I missed my first game this season, two weeks ago, away at Dinting, due to being on holiday, and it was just my luck, that I’d miss our first win in eight games, and more-so the game where my son gets his 2nd half-century of the season, no commitment from some people !!  Though at least one person was pleased for my return, captain Brian Stone was thankful for a “proper” scorer, given the debacle of trying to get a decent scorecard for that match.  It’s nice to feel wanted :), anyways well done lads for that result.

Today however, we were facing a team pushing for the title, sitting in second position behind the team I predicted back in May to be top of the table at the end of the season, Old Glossop, so didn’t expect much out of the day, and was worried it was going to be a long day when Brian lost the toss and Stalybridge were put in the field.

Hayfield CC 2nd XI vs Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI – 18th August 2018

The first ball of the match set the early tempo, with Hayfield’s Andy Oldfield hitting the boundary wall with a deft flick to the right, and it wasn’t long before I heard one of the other Hayfield players predicting a score of 400, and in all honesty, I was a little concerned he would be right, on his 28th delivery he hit another four to put him on 45, and the folks around me were predicting a 30 ball 50, but next came a coaxing ball wider than the rest of the over from Peter Coxon and drew a much needed mistake, at least from Stalybridge’s point of view, from Oldfield who extended his reach and put the ball high into the air, and into the welcoming hands of Tony Mooney at deep square leg, giving Stalybridge their first wicket, with Hayfield on 56.

With his departure the run rate plummeted, but it was still another 31 runs before Coxon took his second wicket of youngster, but normally first-teamer Jacob Miller, while the home side’s second opener Joel Coverley plodded on slowly at the other end before being out on 34.

In a rare turn of events, catches were being taken by the Stalybridge side, who are sure to admit themselves have been sorely lacking in the field this season,  and with the exception of Harry Howarth, superbly bowled by Ahmet Hyatt, and Christian South, bowled by Krunal Bhatt, the other eight wickets by the visitors were caught in the field, giving four wickets for Krunal Bhatt, two for Pete Coxon and four for Ahmed Hyatt, though he definitely should have gotten his five-fer in his last over, but was ironically denied by two dropped catches.

With the exception of one over where Krunal was soundly thumped for 26, which saw Christian South hit his 50, despite getting a wicket in one of the deliveries, the bowling was vastly improved over previous matches, and Hayfield were all out for 187 with four overs remaining.

A very doable score it was decided, but perhaps 30 or 40 more than should have been in my opinion, given the start we had.

After tea, the start of Stalybridge’s innings didn’t go quite to plan, with the early dismissal of opener Stu Nock for 13, and it took fellow opener Alex Wilde almost until the 15th over before he progressed past two runs, while Maurice Barber opposite also took a while before adding to his total, which however, ended up a presentable 40 from 50 deliveries.

Stalybridge lost a couple more key wickets with the score in the 90’s, but then didn’t lose another, their 6th, until Keith Bowers was caught on 14, with 140 on the board, but with 9 overs remaining, with Stalybridge requiring another 48 runs for victory, the remaining players just could eke out the required run-rate to catch up, with only Tony Mooney at the other end finishing on 42 not out, before running out Ahmed Hyatt for his …

… for being ‘out’ without facing a ball.

It was, at least for me personally, the slow start, that contributed a big factor to the final result, but also losing three consecutive wickets for 9 runs, in the middle order, definitely didn’t help either, though it was great to see the big improvement in the field, both with the catching, and fielding in general, and the improvement in bowling, with Ahmed having (I think) his best figures since joining the club, with 4 for 27, though I have to also make special mention of Krunal’s diving (albeit failed) attempt to stop a ball going to the boundary, about 6 feet short and 2 seconds too early, sorry Krunal, but it was funny!

It was also great to hear the 1sts extend their lead at the top of Division 3, with victory over Chaple-en-le-Frith, well done lads, keep it up!

Next week sees the 2nds at home to mid-table Hazel Grove while the 1sts travel up the road to Hollingworth, presuming they make it past Mottram Road, which has been royally shit this week!

Final result and match scorecard: Hayfield CC 2nd XI win by 19 runs.

Birch Vale & Thornsett CC 2nd XI vs Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI

Anthony Haywood cent
ury and 5fer for Steve Burns seal victory for Birch Vale.

For the second week in a row, Stalybridge have won the toss, this time at the hands of Brian Stone, and put the opposition into bat, given our current form, and our propensity for our heads to drop when the opponents put a big score on the board, I’m much more inclined to think we’d be better suited to opening the batting, and seeing what we can put on, without worrying what they’ve set us.

However we started the bowling well, with 6 of the first 15 or so overs a maiden, with Ned Woodman having his first spell of 8 overs conceding just 15 runs, however, it was soon that balls were being delivered short and down the legs side, and the Birch Vale batsmen lapped them up, and were rapidly ramping up the over rate, peppering the boundary, firstly with Steve Burns (41), then more-so Anthony Hayward, normally a number six batter, but today slotted in at number 4, he knocked up his half-century in short-order, while his partners succumbed to 3 wickets for Mark Connolly and 2 for Maurice Barber, and he continued to coast comfortably to apparently his debut century, before being caught on 117 off “one of my worst balls of the day” from bowler Ned Woodman by Ajeet Kaintura, by which point Birch Vale were now 268-6; the innings was interrupted midway through, when a thunderstorm brought a downpour for half an hour, during which time the call was made to take an early tea and play resumed around 45 minutes after initially coming off.

Birch Vale vs Stalybridge St. Paul’s, before the heavens opened.

Haywood’s however was the last wicket to be taken by Stalybridge, with my fellow scorer Jamie’s dad David Platt finishing off the overs 32 not out, and Birch Vale on 288-6.

Having taken lunch tea early, it was a quick turn around to have Stalybridge into the crease, just 4 balls had been played when the umpire called for the ball to be changed, whether it wasn’t a new ball or it was damaged, I have no idea, but seemed strange.

Whereas Birch Vale were content to send the ball down the hill to the boundary, it seemed Stalybridge wanted to send everything in the opposite direction, into the banking and up the hill, it was one of these up hill slogs that saw the first wicket of Stu Nock (who I still owe a beer to, sorry bud), caught for 18, and Stalybridge on 25, with Maurice Barber, caught also just 2 runs later, it seemed like it was going to be a painfully short afternoon, but no sooner as Maurice was out, it seemed like the impetus opener Alex Wilde needed,  and he started to add runs to his tally along side Khalid Akram, by the time he was bowled, Stalybridge were now on a more respectable 75, and Khalid then started a partnership with Steve Monks, but unfortunately was given run-out in what can only be described as a “umpiring error”, for fear of censure, members of both sides insist he was safely home, but the umpire deemed him two foot outside safety and Stalybridge were now 95-4.

Keith Bowers has recently been picking up some decent batting performances, but he’ll not thank me for mentioning when he asked what the * next to his name in the WhatsApp chat was, it was because of his

Sorry Keith. 🙂

With Monksie falling fowl, sorry foul to the catcher on the hill, Neil Spedding, just five runs short of his half-century, the last of Stalybridge’s recognised batsman were all out,  and they were still 121 runs behind Birch Vale’s total, that however didn’t stop opening bowler Ned Woodman from making a decent batting cameo before being caught on 39, not long after initially being given out “caught behind”, despite the ball hitting him near his elbow before bouncing off to the keeper; thankfully despite a little petulant outburst of chucking his bat away, the Birch Vale players came to his defence and the umpire overturned his decision.

With just one wicket remaining Brian Stone was the last man left standing when Ahmed Hayat was cleaned bowled on the last ball off the innings, giving Steve Burns his 2nd of that over, and his 5th overall in the game.

A decent knock from a number of Stalybridge’s team, but not enough to overturn the big target set by Birch Vale, but plenty to proud of, even if it’s not the catching in the field (which was woeful again).

No pessimistic drivel from me after next week’s match you’ll be happy to read, when the 2nds are back on the road, this time up in Dinting, as I’ll hopefully be enjoying myself in sunny Alicante, you just can’t get the committed staff these days, and the following week, is a free week for the seconds, with High Lane not fielding a 2nd XI this season.

Final result and scorecard: Birch Vale and Thornsett CC 2nd XI win by 100 runs.

Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI vs Compstall CC 2nd XI

2nds XI in a poor run of form, and continue to struggle to find a win.

For the second time this season, I neglected to post a report last week, and for that I apologise, after the defeat away to Old Glossop, I was in a foul mood, and just couldn’t bring myself to write one, I know there aren’t many who read my missives, but some of you do.

With that in mind, another week has passed, and another defeat, although I made an error in my last report against Hazel Grove, saying it was our 7th consecutive defeat, however it was only the 5th, the ACTUAL 7th came today, this time to current league tail-enders Compstall, you just can’t get the staff these days.

With Brian Stone away, the heavy mantle of captaincy fell on Steve Monk’s shoulders again, and despite winning the toss, the decision was made to put Compstall into bat, having won at their place six weeks ago, we knew well enough the dangers of the father and son team of Ravi and Josh Patel, but whereas we were able to get Josh out fairly cheaply on 8 last time, the same could not be said today, Ravi managed to stay at the crease for 2 hours straight before being bowled by Maurice Barber just 6 runs past his century, but Josh batted even more impressively by carrying the bat for the away side, seeing out all 45 overs and finished on 53*.

The only other to get runs for Compstall was Robert Bradley with 20, caught by Monksie off a Ned Woodman delivery, Compstall finished their overs with a big target for Stalybridge to chase of 198, with a loss of just 3 wickets.

After the interval, opener Stu Nock, was deemed LBW in the 3rd ball of the innings, and Khalid Akram bowled on 3 with just 18 runs on the scoreboard, Stalybridge were instantly put on the back foot, Stuart Barnes in at number four was our seemingly best hope to get back in the drivers seat, but despite his managing to hit 25 in just 18 deliveries, getting caught for John Abbot’s 3rd wicket meant almost certain defeat, my son Jordan who got the winning runs and 50 at the away fixture, hit a couple of decent balls straight to fielders, but his 5th saw it straight into the hands of Heath Stewart, off newly at the bowling attack Josh Patel.

Stalybridge are now 4 down with 46 runs, Steve Monks comes in to replace Jordan, and sees his partner, opener Maurice, out a few balls later, Monks tries his damnedest to keep us in the match, running quick singles and doubles with Keith Bowers (20), Ajeet Kaintura (8) and Ned Woodman (2), and manages an admirable 56 before being bowled, his effort meant Stalybridge were now a more reasonable 153, though with just one wicket remaining, it was a very tall order for Ahmed Hayat and Mark Connolly to see the home side to victory, which they were unfortunately unable to do, with Ahmed getting caught off the other Patel, Ravi, to see Stalybridge all out for 159, 39 runs short of Compstall’s total, both teams have now just one win all season, against each other.

Stalybridge 2nds match next Saturday is away at Birch Vale & Thornsett, currently sitting third in the table, and the constant search for a second win and the effort to lift the players and this scorer mood out of the doldrums will continue there.

The firsts won away again, this time at Pott Shrigley, so that is good news at least.

Final result and scorecard: Compstall CC 2nd XI win by 39 runs.

[Week 7] Stalybridge St. Paul’s CC 2nd XI vs Dinting CC 2nd XI

Stalybridge fail to capitalise on strong middle-order recovery after poor start, to fall at final hurdle and lose by 5 runs.

With Brian skiving off to watch Lionel Ritchie, the task of captaining the 2nds was handed to Steve Monks, who performed admirably in the face of adversity, having also been lumbered with the keeper’s gloves, with usual keeper Mike Whitworth being taken hostage by the 1sts, and upon losing the toss, Dinting put the home side in the field.

Dinting openers, Captain, Matt Coleman and Ryan Townsend plodded along nicely, and managed and 83 partnership deep into the innings, before Coleman was given LBW just short of his half-century, on 43 off Ahmed Hyatt, his replacement, Jarrod Massey managed to push the score to 140 to be Stalybridge’s 5th wicket, before being bowled by Mahurice Barber to finish on 34, but not before Steve Monks had to be replaced as keeper with a suspected broken finger, which gave him a little more freedom to handle the captaincy, and Dinting were able to add just 23 more runs before seeing out their 45 overs with 8 wickets dismissed, though it has to be said, Stalybridge need to work on their catching, as I counted at least 6 again.

An over into the Stalybridge innings, the heavens opened and with just two runs on the board, centurion from the last match Stu Nock was given LBW for a duck (sorry Stu, I originally had you down as 1 run, but it was a leg-bye) as the last ball of the spell, and everyone was brought off the field for a little under 40 minutes reducing the overs by 2, while the rain proceeded to soak the outfield, where in the first innings balls were skidding to 4’s with ease, similar balls from the Stalybridge batsmen were coming to a halt 5-10 feet from the boundary, and were soon 4 wickets down with only 38 runs to their name, but Khalid Akram who came in at number 3, managed to steady the ship for a long time, and put on a good partnership with a broken fingered Steve Monks, before being caught by Jarrad Massey after punting a ball over the bowler, Ryan Townsend’s head, to finish on 41, and Stalybridge on a more respectable 104-5.

With Steve Monk’s dismissal a little while after at 116-7 at the hands of Jarrad Massey’s 5th wicket of the day, Stalybridge had about 15 overs left to get 48 runs,  and despite Maurice Barber getting 21, and Pete Coxon 19*, Stalybridge fell just short, by losing the 3 final wickets, at the hands of club stalwart Adam Harwick’s nephew, Daniel, 5 runs short of Dinting’s total with 4 overs to spare, to suffer a heartbreaking when victory seemed likely.

More annoyingly for me personally, the scoreboard I built again suffered from dodgy outputs, mid-game, meaning I had turn it off and revert back to to the manual board, I think due to it taking a massive bang at the beginning of the day, presumably loosening some wiring inside.

Anyways.. Final result and scorecard: Dinting CC 2nd XI win by 5 runs.