Windsor Outclassed in top of the table clash
Windsor were greeted by glorious sunshine when they arrived at Home Park for their top of table clash with rivals Marlow, unfortunately they were also greeted by a wicket that had not been cut or rolled due to the new groundsman going AWOL.
Numerous phone calls later a reserve groundsman appeared and began to prepare the wicket, Marlow won the toss and elected to bat first as the start was delayed by 30 min to allow the groundsman to finish his work.
Nichols and Allen-Turner shared the new ball and kept things tight during the opening exchanges, Allen-Turner picked up the first wicket having Paskins Jr well caught behind by Care. 2 overs later he had the Marlow no 3 out caught at mid-on and Windsor had their noses slightly in front after the first hour.
Malik was then introduced into the attack and picked up the wicket of Robinson, well caught by Huggins at gully. Marlow then steadied and accumulated runs at a regular rate until Kellard flew through the air to take a screamer at mid-on that removed Marlow’s dangerous overseas player McInerney. This left the score at 85/4 off 30 overs and the game in the balance. Malik continued to look very dangerous but was unable to make the next vital breakthrough that would have exposed the Marlow lower order. All the bowlers that were tried from the castle end struggled to find their line and length and leaked runs at regular intervals as Paskins Sr (86*) and Pastorious (69) combined for a superb 150 run partnership that swung the game well and truly in Marlow’s favour. Marlow declared their innings closed at 243/5 after 50 overs.
With the wicket playing surprisingly well, Windsor fancied their chances of chasing down the score but knew they would have to get off to a good start. Sam Jordan had been called into the side following his hundred off 50 balls in the 2nd team the week earlier, and he walked out to open with Skipper Weston. Both batsmen found it tough going in the early overs as Marlow bowled impeccable line and length to a well set field and the score read 9/0 off 9 overs. Jordan was dismissed in the 10th over for 4 and he was quickly followed back to the clubhouse by Malik (9), Huggins (0) and Nichols (2). Windsor’s hopes of winning the game were all but gone after 15 overs with the score at 40/4.
Gould and Weston then set about ensuring that Marlow would not take the full 25 points and they made it through to drinks safely but did not add many runs in the process.
Weston was dismissed for 33 shortly after drinks after he played a lazy leg side flick that found the only fielder positioned on the leg side, it was then over to Gould and Allen-Turner to try to get Marlow at bay for the remaining 20 overs. The young Windsor pair batted extremely well together during their stand of 81 and almost pushed Windsor into ta position of safety until Gould was run out for 49 and the Allen-Turner caught at slip for 47. When keeper care was bowled in the 45th over Windsor still had 6 overs to bat and only 2 wickets in hand.
Thankfully for the home side, Banner, batting with a broken hand, and no 10 Mohindru showed a lot of heart and managed to see off the final 5 overs that included a number of sort pitched deliveries from the Marlow attack.
A losing draw was probably a fair result, Marlow dominated most of the game but their bowlers were not quite as sharp as their middle order batsmen and unable to bowl Windsor out. Marlow now lead the league by 9 points and Windsor will certainly need to play a lot better in the return clash if they harbour any hopes of defeating the team that is now the clear favourite to win the league.
Allen-Turner 10/2/34/2, Malik 16/4/60/2
Gould 49, Allen-Turner 47, Weston 33
Gould-Allen-Turner 6th Wicket Partnership 81