Junior B.B. 111 all out
Armadillos 112-4 won by 4 wickets
What a difference a year makes. In 2017, this game was abandoned due to torrential rain, and the Chief’s match at the Nevill was almost waterlogged the following day. This year we played at Sheffield Park in glorious sunshine at their lovely ground.
This was the first match that the Junior Armadillos had ever played, and it was a terrific game played in a wonderful spirit. Many of the boys knew each other from various connections including school, and the variety of academic establishments represented include Eastbourne, Ardingly, Hurst, Eton, St Edward’s, Tonbridge, Cranbrook, Rugby, St Lawrence Ramsgate and Kings Canterbury - what a great spread.
The Armadillos won the toss and asked us to bat first, which was a pleasant surprise. The opening pair of James P and Alex R were going nicely with a partnership of 21 before James was caught behind off Ollie Nolan for 14. He has had a good season for the B.B. so far and still has 2 more years.
The original plan was to open with Rupert, but the logistical difficulties of finding the ground meant he was a little late, so he came in at number three. Unfortunately did this didn’t last very long as he was bowled by a good ball from the other Armadillo opener.
Alex (7) continued to defend well on a tricky pitch, showing plenty of application and put on 20 with Tom N (20). There followed a middle order collapse as Alex, Tom (bowled by a snorter that nipped back a long way through the gate), Felix and Rory were all out in a short space of time for just 4 runs. 46-6.
Rufus P consolidated well with Hugo, despatching the bad ball brutally as they put on 27 in seven overs. Unfortunately after he was bowled, we were running short of support for the Captain, who was stranded on 39 not out. We closed on 111 all out with 6 overs left to bat.
After a memorable tea, which was as comprehensive as one could wish for, we opened the bowling with Rufus and Rory. They both very economical but without initial success. Oli made an immediate impact with his third ball to remove Ellis (bowled) with the score on 23. This brought Alex Crickmore to the crease, who had not played for a while. Unfortunately we were not able to capitalise on his rusty batting, and he somehow got through a difficult patch against Oli, Harry, Tom and Isaac eventually getting to 50* at the very end.
Our fielding was mixed, with some catches going down, yet a very smart pair taken by Rory in the deep and Tom at mid wicket. Isaac picked up the important wicket of Will Hanley LBW, but unfortunately despite swapping the bowling regularly, the captain did not have enough runs to play with. I think another 30 or 40 could have made this a really interesting game.
The Armadillos won with 10 overs to spare by 6 wickets - they played the better cricket and were stronger than us on the day. However it was a great day for them on their inaugural match, and I sincerely hope this will become a regular fixture in our calendar. We have already pencilled in July 31, 2019 for the next instalment at Sheffield Park. Please do put that in your diaries.
Batting mentions to Hugo, Tom, Rufus and James, who all made double figures.
Bowling mentions to everyone who bowled - we just didn’t have a big enough total to defend.
Thanks as always to everyone who came to support and we move onto our final game against the adults at the Nevill.