Saturday XI vs Nationwide House
Nationwide 220-7 44 overs
Bears 151-9 32 overs
Bears lost by 33 runs (D/L)
The Bears suffered another disappointing defeat on Saturday, losing out to Swindon-based Nationwide House in a rain-affected game.
With stretched playing resources, the skipper had again found himself scrabbling around for a team, but thanks to Dave Morris, Nik Purnell (aka The Badger) and Saturday debutants Anu Swara and Olly Cox, 11 players assembled at Nationwide’s idiosyncratic Piper’s Way ground.
Batting first, the home side reached 220-7 from 44 overs, an over being lost to a brief rain break. Nationwide’s total was built around a brace of half centuries: the patience of Luke Bradley-Leach’s 63 complemented by the more aggressive approach adopted by Jonathon Clarke on his way to 74.
The seven wickets claimed by the Bears translated into three bowling bonus points, with Sam Vesey throwing off the keeping gloves to record figures of 3-43 in a seven over burst; the other wickets being shared between Brendon Bester (1-46), Chris Bence (1-27) and the ever-reliable Shreyas Malhotra, who took 2-37 from his nine overs.
After leaving the pitch in brilliant sunshine, it was with some surprise that the grazing Bears witnessed the opening of the heavens over tea; half an hour of torrential rain putting the game in serious doubt.
However, sun eventually replaced rain and after a further delay as the the outfield jungle dried out, the batting Bears took to the field with a revised target of 185 from just 32 overs.
Unfortunately, Brendon departed early on in proceedings, but with Mark Gunning and Chris Bence bringing up their half century partnership in 10 overs, the Bears were left requiring a gettable 126 from 18 overs. However, with the loss of first Gunners, trapped LBW for 25, and then Bencey for 36, this all-important momentum was lost.
And despite double figure contributions from father and son Morris, Shreyas and Anu, with overs running out and wickets being lost at regular intervals, the 185 target ultimately proved too much, though a potentially invaluable fourth batting point was secured thanks to Olly, Dave and Badger as the visitors reached 151-9. Steve Lewis was the pick of the House bowlers, picking up 4-40.
Our thanks as always to our sponsors, Chef de Party, The Devonshire Arms, RH Hayes Roofing and Josh Sutton Plumbing.