In rain threatening conditions 1st team skipper Dan Phillips lead his team west to the beautiful surrounds of Middleton Cricket Club to start their 2021 40 over ECB National Cup campaign. Its an important one for the club and it was clear that we meant business with the talent that traveled. The match started on time in bright conditions but that quickly faded to chilly temperatures and players and umpires continually looking towards the leaden skies. Many thanks to the ground staff at Middleton who did a brilliant job and also the bar staff who looked after us very well. Thats some social vide they have going on down there!
Having lost the toss we were put into the field. Nav,1 for 30 off 7 and our new signing Daniel Birrell bowled beautifully up top to strangle the early Middleton efforts. Their Heather (28) and Briance (21) did bat well but our bowler’s gave them hardly any room to go on the attack. Eventually they both made way for Mason R (who needs no introduction around here and it was great to see him) . Stuart Faith peeled back the years to take his wicket with a flying catch.
It was then the turn of our talented young spinners Adam O and Bertie Foreman to squeeze that middle order even further. Adam trapping the dangerous Harry Harvey for 37. Not to be out done brother Liam was quick on his feet to run out Murray Carter for 17. The hosts man of the match Monty Morgan gave them real hope as he carried his bat for 51 and two sixes. However a an excellent piece of death bowling from Faith 31 for 1 off 6 prevented any real danger. 168 for 6 off 33.
A very quick turnaround!!!
Not wanting to jinx anything but it appears that we have composed an excellent opening partnership with Jake and Nathan. We saw signs in pre-season and this weekend it has worked out very well indeed. On Saturday it was Nathan who went deep and at Middleton it was Jake with a brillant knock of 35 off 48 balls. An opening stand of 33 is very respectable at any level and hopefully things will continue to progress. Both are very accomplished batsman.
Then we have the raw and youthful talent of Bertie Foreman (17) to make a real name for himself here at the Nomads. He is currently at school so plays for them on a Saturday he will soon be available for us week in week out. With out doubt overflowing potential with both bat, ball and in the field. He calmly strode to the wicket in worsening conditions and confidently stroked the ball around always comfortably ahead of any duckworth-lewis calculations. He was partnered by a true Nomads pathway legend, Liam O’Brien who put all his gathering experience into a run a ball 28 not out.
Middleton were, in truth, put out of their misery when bad light stopped play with Nomads a comfortable 29 runs ahead of schedule.
My Man of the Match, Bertie told me after ‘we had a clear plan of how to tackle the run chase and executed it well. It was getting quite dark so I was pleased we got over the line. It was nice to get the support from the lads when I got to 50’ As to the future he revealed ‘obviously my school matches must come first but it will soon be half term and in mid June hopefully I will be with the Nomads every week, I cant wait!
Nav was a very happy fast bowler after the game ‘ it was nice to steam in at the start and we didn’t really give them anything. All the bowlers did well and worked positive partnerships. Its been a brilliant weekend !’
Bowman said ‘Its fantastic news that we can now ‘park’ the ECB vibe for a while and concentrate on the league. We wont be back in ECB action until 6th June. We have players that can successfully operate at the sharp end of each innings. Nathan and Jake with bat, Nav and Dan with ball all building early pressure and momentum. We then have a myriad of players all capable of squeezing and seeing out games under pressure. All glued together by a charismatic, well liked and talented young skipper in Dan Phillips. It seems that competition for 1st team places is about to get a whole lot stronger and there is a lot more to come from our top team’
One negative to the afternoon is a painful injury to our skipper this week end. I flippantly thought he took a ball to the leg on Saturday but in reality he sustained a ‘pull’ to the calf muscle. Dan if you are reading I am sure that you must be some discomfort this morning but please be reassured that the whole club will join me in wishing you a very speedy recovery as we want you back firing on all cylinders ASAP!