Fifth wicket stand rustles up a win
Not for the first time this season late withdrawals meant much changed sides for both senior teams. Both Ben Bullas, an Under 15 player with just three games in the seconds, and David Chew made their first team debuts with the latter being signed on match day. Jordan Thackray was Lee Booth's opening partner in the Thurstonland attack and the former's opening spell showed what a capable player he is even though work commitments have restricted his appearances in 2011.
Jason and James Senior opened for the visitors. A quiet opening saw 16 on the board in the sixth over when Jordan struck. There was, perhaps, a slight element of good fortune in the dismissal as Jordan's delivery appeared to have been played successfully by James Senior as he pushed forward defensively only to see the ball roll back and touch the wicket with just enough force to dislodge a bail. Matthew Dolley helped to raise the score to 35 when Lee (2/40) had him lbw for nine and followed by having Robert Bartram caught first ball at slip by Jack Oldham who made a sharp low chance look easier than it probably was.
Any thoughts of a sudden collapse by the visitors were quickly dispelled as Chris Kilner struck five boundaries whilst Jason Senior continued to accumulate runs steadily and greeted David Rishton by dispatching his first ball for a straight six. It was the latter, however, who broke a stand which looked to be taking the game away from the home team when he took a caught and bowled chance after deceiving Senior with a slower ball. He had made 33 and when Kris Thackray bowled Kilner for 34 in the next over fortunes had changed dramatically at 86/5.In fairly quick order James Bower (6) was bowled by David and James Haigh was adjudged lbw to Kris (2/37) for nought.
Nathan Appleyard had taken over behind the stumps for the first time since breaking his finger at the end of May when Russell Mottram had to continue as an outfielder following trouble with a contact lens. A looping slow delivery from David Rishton (3/19) lured Martin Kilner (6) down the wicket and Nathan made the stumping. Steve  Kilner and Glen Senior provided late resistance in raising the score from 107/8 to 123 before the former was caught at deep mid on in the first over of Jason Thackray's second spell. The latter ended with 2/20 from 10 overs in a good display of accurate bowling. Richard Parkes hit one or two lusty blows as Jordan shared the last four overs with George Pinder. The total was 141/9 as the latter bowled the final delivery to Senior who drove it to extra cover. A mix up followed as David Chew, who had fielded well throughout, made a quick return to George who removed the bails at the bowler's end with Parkes a yard short of safety.
Martin Kilner began with a maiden to Chris Flanagan whilst Glen Senior's opening delivery was a wide. His second saw Nathan Appleyard lbw and when Jack Oldham was well caught by Matthew Dolley off M Kilner's bowling for six, the innings had got off to a hesitant start at 16/2. Lee Booth then joined Chris and the two of them played patiently in adding thirty runs. Chris hit a couple of trademark boundaries through the covers whilst Lee hit a well timed shot for four just to the on side of straight. There were few alarms although the batsmen were having to work for their runs. Lee then pushed a little too early in an attempt at a cover drive and Chris Kilner took the catch to dismiss him for 13.
Kris Thackray's recent struggle for runs continued as he was lbw for two which brought Russell Mottram to the crease to join Chris with the score 53/4 in the eighteenth over. The latter looked in good form as he played with great patience whilst wasting no opportunity to drive and pull boundaries. Russell initially took on a supporting role before two boundaries provided a welcome acceleration as Chris reached an excellent half century. A huge six over mid wicket was a feature as he neared the landmark. The pair had added 61 when the latter was lbw to Steve Kilner for 64 which meant that the Thurstonland total stood at 114/5 with 28 needed. Jordan Thackray, batting higher than accustomed in the first team, helped Russell, who was now batting confidently, take the score to 137 before he was bowled by a ball from the returning Glen Senior (3/34) which cut back sharply. George Pinder played out the remaining three balls and a maiden over then followed.
A further eight runs were required. Glen Senior then had George caught behind off the first ball of the next over (137/7) which brought fourteen year old Ben Bullas to the crease. He let the first delivery go and then edged a four to bring the scores level as the field surrounded him. He defended the remaining balls resolutely which left Russell to hit the winning runs with a four lofted high over mid off. His undefeated 39 had been a fine effort and he well deserved the applause he received as he left the field. He felt particularly pleased as he felt that he had accomplished his task with only one good eye after difficulties with a contact lens. Perhaps a pirate's eye patch might be the answer for others struggling for runs.
Team: Chris Flanagan Nathan Appleyard (w/k - overs 17 to 45) Jack Oldham Lee Booth Kris Thackray Russell Mottram (w/k up to over 16) Jordan Thackray George Pinder Ben Bullas David Rishton David Chew.