House and Bell secure draw for Finch
by Neil Doody
The league season was underway on Saturday with Finchampstead hosting local rivals Wokingham.
Both sides and many of the good attendance of spectators praised the outstanding condition of the ground thus enabling play after the weeks of heavy rain conditions.
Winning the toss Finches asked Wokingham to bat first. They soon lost opener Ruki Soza lbw to seamer Simon Hards. After spinner Chris Ellison replaced Sam Taylor after a good opening spell he soon secured two wickets. Skipper Dan Reddyhough was caught and then Stuart Parsons was bowled leaving Wokingham at 40 – 3. But then the experienced Simon Myles joined the well set Jack Turner and they embarked on a very useful partnership. The pair put on 78 for the fourth wicket when on 118 spinner Matt Harper trapped Turner lbw for a fine 60.
The runs continued with Craig Beales joining Myles despite steady bowling from the home attack. Myles was eventually caught of Harper then continuing strokes from Beales saw the score to 224 – 6 in the allotted 52 overs. Craig Beales was not out 55 for the third half century for Wokingham. There were two wickets apiece for Hards, Ellison and Harper.
Finches given 48 overs started poorly against the pace attack of Stevie Smidt and Will Ellison. Opener Gary Loveday soon played on to Smidt then at 32 two morw wickets fell. Matt Jones was caught off Simon Myles then Russell Lane was bowled Smidt. Finches were in disarray when at 51 two more wickets fell so five down. Chris Ellison was caught and bowled by Myles then Lance Stewart was bowled Smidt.
Wicket keeper Simon Bell then joined Andrew House to embark on a fine partnership to bring Finches gradually partly back in the game. The pair had put on 98 when at 149 Bell was bowled Smidt for 32 this the paceman’s fourth wicket. House continued his excellent innings until at 178 he was lbw for his well worked 79.
The innings closed on 187 – 7 with the match drawn. On the bowling front Smidt returned 4 – 50 in his 16 overs and Myles secured 3 – 32.
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