Windsor trip-up in heat of run chase.
Basingstoke 2nd XI 243 all out, 48.1 overs (Rouse 83, Sankachan 45)
Windsor 1st XI 213 for 8, 51 overs (Bird 59, Nicholls 40)
With all eyes elsewhere on the 2pm kick-off for England, Windsor travelled to Basingstoke for their TVL Division 2A fixture with an aim to capitalise on the distraction. Losing the toss, Windsor were (unsurprisingly) asked to bowl first and set about the task with the opposition by the TV.
Despite some close shaves in the first 12 overs, Windsor failed to make a breakthrough with the new ball, with opening bowlers Nicholls and Cornish beating the bat regularly. The only cheer came from the local neighbourhood when England scored. However, the introduction of Alex Hill changed the course of proceedings and wickets either side of drinks, saw the home side 68 for 2 after 17 overs. Nicholls then upped his pace and via fine slip catch by Watkins and a caught behind from Baumgartner, Basingstoke were suddenly four down. Hill then got the fifth as the young number six flashed outside off to give Baumgartner his second catch. That only brought young Rouse to the crease and with Sankachan, they set about rebuilding the innings. With the introduction of spinners Watkins and Mohindru, the Basingstoke pair looked to get after anything loose and peppered the leg-side boundaries. Only a fine catch by Millman broke the partnership, by which time Basingstoke had reached 180 for 6 and had overs left to build a big total. Rouse completed a deserved fifty, but the wheels seemed to come off as they looked to push past 250. With one final calamitous run out in the 49th over, the Basingstoke innings closed at 243 of 49.1 overs.
In hot conditions, Windsor set about the run chase with vigour, as openers Bird and Davis looked to go after anything loose. The wicket, now resembling the nearby M3, was playing well and not even the constant changing Basingstoke attack could abate the flow of runs. Bird passed fifty for the third time in five innings with a huge six over long on and through the side window of a local Ford Focus. The shattered glass though was only a cruel indication of the carnage that followed. After reaching the 100 partnership, Bird miss-timed his advance down the wicket and was duly stumped for 59. Davis soon followed after miscuing an audacious drive and Windsor we suddenly 104 for 2, but many overs left looked set for the chase. Unfortunately, the calamitous run-out of Millman saw the beginning of a full-scale collapse, with Windsor suddenly tumbling to 146 for 6. Nicholls set about rebuilding the innings with Towse and the pair put on fifty, but as the run-rate climbed the task got more the difficult. Towse was then unluckily adjudge LBW, bring Hill to the crease to try to bludgeon the runs. Despite valiant efforts by both men and some aggressive fields buy the home skipper, Windsor just couldn’t quite manage the feat and Nicholls was stranded on 40 not out as the inning closed at 213 for 8 off 51 overs, 31 runs short of the target.
A general feeling of disappoint followed the game, as once again Windsor did not find the killer punch to pull off the victory. Whilst the initial platform was set, no one went on to make that much needed big score to help with the run chase, but in turn some of the modes of dismissal we also not great. This coming weekend, Windsor have the task of facing Chiswick and Latymer, fresh on the back of racking up 400 the previous week. This could prove to be a spectacle of a game.