19th May 2018 will probably be remembered for the Royal Wedding of Harry & Meghan, but in deepest rural Hampshire a great game of cricket was being played – Sun, Cricket and Warnford is the perfect match!
The history of the fixture showed Downside Wanderers and the Hampshire Hogs sharing 30 fixtures to date with 11 wins each and 8 draws – all to play for! Downside Wanderers played their part in a thrilling game that ended with the Hogs winning by 16 runs with 10 balls left of the days play.
Mark Low, Hogs Captain, lost the toss and was asked to bat first. T Durston and J Grant got us off to a reasonable start until the latter was adjudged LBW (the clear sound of leather on Willow before hitting the pads could not save him!). This brought Ed Talbot to the crease and his well judged 62 was the top score of the day. There were notable innings from debutant Will Oscroft (34), Aussie gap year cricket coach Tom Lynch (34) and his dad Alastair Lynch (30) who had just arrived from Brisbane! Hogs had a late order collapse to finish with a below par score of 217.
The Downside innings got off to shaky start losing a wicket in the first over but then a quick fire partnership of 82 put them on the front foot going into tea. Great credit to the Low girls who treated us royally to a fantastic tea which included red, white and blue cup cakes and napkins and a centrepiece Royal Wedding Cake!! It was of course appropriate to ask the opposition player called HARRY to cut the cake!
After tea the game became a right royal tussle as the game swung one way and then the other. Downside looked in control as we reached the last 20 although tight bowling kept the scoring rate down. Due to injuries Hogs were reduced to 9 men in the field for the last 20. Mark Low juggled his bowlers and there were notable performances from Charles Low (3 for 26), Will Oscroft (1 for 11 off 8 overs), Alastair Lynch (2 for 43), David Kelly (1 for 15) and John Dennis (2 for 22). Mark Low bowled tidily but with little luck. It was a notable team bowling and fielding effort from the Hogs to restrict Downside on a good wicket with a lightening outfield.
The champagne moment was a quite brilliant leg side stumping by Tom Lynch off Charles Low to dismiss the last recognised batsman and seal the win in the evening sun. A match made in heaven!
Weather – warm and sunny