Winning the toss Finches skipper Dan Lincoln elected to bat first. With two opening bats unavailable he decided to open himself the batting with Greg Smith. He was bowled by David Wright in the fourth over then in the 19th and with 46 on the board Greg Smith played on to Don Whitely.
After Mac Keast was LBW also to Whiteley some steady batting from Billy Rogers and Toby Albert saw progress. But at 85 and the 37th over Rogers was run out for 35. The fifth went down immediately with Josh Lincoln caught behind. Toby continued a good workmanlike innings after being joined by Jason Soames but Jason fell LBW to spinner Joe Thomas at 119. The spinner then took control with colleague Richard West. Richard West took the next wicket of Toby Albert LBW for his 47 so real trouble at 131 – 7.
Brave strokes from Zak Jones were to little avail. For although the 150 came up the last three wickets all fell for just one run leaving Finches all out for 156. The spinners took six of the wickets in the modest looking score for Finches.
Given 58 overs Banbury faced Finches opening attack of Zak Jones and for his first senior place Connor Corlett. Jones achieved early success trapping skipper Lloyd Sabin in the 11th over. With 26 on the board Connor secured his maiden senior wicket having Ollie Clark caught this in the 14th over.
With Sahid Yousaf joining opener Joe White the scoring proceeded well but at 83 and 29 overs bowled Sahid Yousaf pulled a ball from Zak Jones to backward square with James Woodford catching the ball. Although the hosts saw the hundred up at 119 they had lost two more wickets. Connor Corlett removed Richard West then the steady innings of 49 by Joe White was ended caught at short leg off the second ball from spinner Mike O’Donohue. Immediately Connor Corlett bowled Gerry Tait so at 121 – 6 the match became very tight.
Chris Hill and Don Whiteley saw the score to 140 with 17 needed and four wickets in hand. Then Josh Lincoln had Whiteley caught behind. Thirteen more runs scored then at 153 down went the eighth wicket when Josh had Ollie Wright caught. Banbury levelled the scores then Sha Rana was run out attempting a run so nine down. A crisp four from Chris Hill and Banbury were home at 160 – 9 and a close match indeed.
Connor Corlett bowled very well taking 3 – 28 in 14 overs. There were two apiece for Zak Jones and Josh Lincoln in a closely fought match. The 11 points and 16 last week keeps Finches in sixth place in the table.
All four TVCL sides saw action.
In division 2B the Seconds lost to Aldershot Firsts. Batting first Aldershot after a 130 run opening stand faded to 262 all out. Spinner Parth Patel took a career best 8 – 105. Finches never looked like pressing for the total. They were dismissed for 170 with Kwame Appiah 38 and Simon Bell 33.
The Thirds hosted Farnham Royal Firsts in division 3A. Farnham Royal posted 218 – 8 in their innings. Finches fell 22 runs short at 196 to lose the match. Paddy Fall 43 and Sam Taylor 39 were leading batters.
In division 6B the Fourths visited Bradfield Firsts. Finches totalled 192 – 9 with Jamie Brown 52 and Kartik Kanthi 40. Bradfield eased home at 197 – 4 to win. Emily Cunningham again bowled well to take 3 – 77.
The Fifths in division 8A visited nearby Eversley Thirds for a tough looking match. Finches were 192 – 8 at closure with Matt Rowley 71 and skipper Dave Marles 35. Eversley easily were winners at 196 – 2.
NEIL DOODY 1 JULY 2019