Rain stops play, Duckworth-Lewis-Stern wanted.
With what was supposed to be the final game of the season (which is now next week, due to last Saturday’s COVID related rearranged fixture against Tintwistle), I was back in the ‘Tiki hut’ after a couple of weeks absence, as Stalybridge host Buggy.
As you’ve come to expect by now, Brian Stone won the toss, but at the time no rain was expected until late into the afternoon, so with a couple of new additions to the squad, he elected to put Buxworth into the field, and give some batting time to those who would perhaps not normally see it.
That said, the usual opening partnership of Alex Wilde and Stuart Nock took to the crease, and Buxworth’s young bowlers Nathan Hunter and Joseph Hawkes feeding them a steady supply of runs, and just as bowlers were coming to the end of their allowed first spell, Hunter bowled a slower delivery to Nock, (who was telegraphing his intentions well in advance) to dismiss him bowled for 41, and Stalybridge on 63.
Graham Cooper replaced Hawkes at the Pavilion End and took a couple of wickets, and dried up the steady stream of runs that had been available until then before Alex was caught for 26 at Square Leg by Nathanial Owen of the other Hunter on the field, Josh, leaving the hosts 79-4.
Cricketing debutant Ash Wardhaugh did admirably for his first time with the bat facing 22 deliveries before being given LBW on 8 during a 19 run partnership with Jordan Sherwin, who came in at number 6.
With Ash’s dismissal, Stalybridge lost two more in quick succession, with Keith Bowers pinging one in the air to be caught for a and James Patel (2) c&b (I believe it was c&b anyway, I was being asked a question by someone at the time) by Ethan Moore (4/36).
Sherwin’s partnership of 59 with Hur Bin Tariq coming in at nine, may have been short lived, but it wasn’t with some explosive shots from Hur, who for his 15 deliveries put 5 sixes and a four into the boundary, before being caught for Moore’s 4th wicket by Sam Cooper, taking Stalybridge to a much more credible 162-8, Jordan himself lasted just one more run before the reverse pairing of the previous wicket had him caught for 31, and the final Stalybridge wicket was Tony Mooney (12) bowled by the returning opener Nathan Hunter in the penultimate ball of the 39th over, leaving captain Brian Stone not out at the other end on 3 and the home side all out for 179.
Special thanks to Buxworth’s skipper and keeper Nick Adams who kindly came over to advise me of the catchers names for each fall of wicket, as a partially deaf scorer, it was very much appreciated! 👍
Ten overs after the interval the heavens opened, Buxworth’s openers Joseph Hawkes and Sam Cooper had put 31 runs on the board and the umpires make the decision to take everyone off the field, and the covers were quickly put in place.
The initial allowed stoppage of 30 minutes past, and with every additional 7 minutes off the field, the number of overs would be reduced by 2, with the rain down to a very light drizzle, the players were chomping at the bit to return to play, so with the remaining overs reduced by 6 to 24, the teams re-entered the field, however it was only to last another twenty minutes (and 20 runs for that matter), before after a slip from bowler Jordan Sherwin the umpires deemed additional play a safety hazard, and removed the bails for the final time, with the visitor’s openers having batted very well to finish on 51-0.
Though Buxworth should have been at least one wicket down, after son of 1s opener Richard Wilde, Alfie (who will not forget his first senior dropped catch in a hurry) had the ball passed through his fingers to hit him smack bang in the family jewels. Welcome to 2s cricket Alfie. 😂
Final result and Score card: Rain Affected Draw.
Had DLS been in play however, the result would have gone in Stalybridge’s favour with Buxworth 8 runs short of the par score of 59-0, but whilst I can see the 1st Division perhaps trialling it next season, I don’t expect to see it in the 2s divisions for the foreseeable future.
I am away again next week, when the 2s (weather permitting) play their last game of the 2021 campaign up at Tintwistle, so there won’t a report for it, but I wish the lads luck, and if I don’t see them before, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, and see y’all in 2022, where hopefully we’ve secured 3rd Division placement when the 2s division is re-split back in two.