Windsor lose despite Noble efforts
Egham 2’s 150 all out (46 Overs, Kellard 5-54)
Windsor 2’s 138 all out (RE Noble 55)
On a gloriously sunny day, which belied usual mid-April weather, a young and inexperienced Windsor 2’s travelled to Egham for their first official outing of the season. After the formalities were out the way, which included both captains agreeing to a novel ‘last man stand’ idea to counteract the fact that both sides only had 10 men, it was Egham who had won the toss and decided to bat first.
Windsor’s new ball pairing consisted of Ollie Birch and young left-armer Sam Condon, but despite bowling with plenty of pace, some aggressive early stroke play saw the scoreboard race onto 23-0 after just 3 overs. However, it was Birch, clearly still suffering from the effects of an ‘illness’ picked up the night before, who managed to strike back for Windsor before opting out of the attack after a four over burst. After an impressive 6 over spell from Sam Condon, in which the left arm seamer was unlucky not to pick up a wicket, it was the introduction of leg spinner Chris Kellard that swung the game back in Windsor’s favour. Two wickets in his opening over reduced Egham to 45-3 after 14 overs. Windsor began to tighten their grip on the game as Richard Endacott rolled back the years with a fine display of honest line & length bowling, constantly stifling any attacking intent from the Egham batsmen as they stuttered to 75-4 after 25 overs. After a very tidy spell from new all-rounder James Sayer, skipper Rob Noble decided to take the pace off the ball as the Egham batsman looked to attack. This saw new boy Jess introduced and in tandem with the tireless Kellard, they continued to pick up wickets at regular intervals as their opponents looked to up the scoring rate. After (Jess) had bowled an economical spell which yielded 3 wickets, it was left to Kellard to mop up the tail and end his 17 over spell with a much deserved five wicket haul, the last of which allowing Rob Noble to snare his third stumping of the innings and leave Egham with a total of 150 all out from 46 overs.
Windsor’s reply promised fireworks as brothers Rob and Richie Noble opened the run chase for the visitors. However, both batsman were circumspect in the opening overs and were happy to take their time and play themselves in during the opening overs. With the scoreboard showing just 14 without loss from the opening 8 overs, it was Richie Noble who finally cut lose, picking up 15 from the 9th over including three consecutive boundaries. Once the new ball had been seen off Windsor began to up the rate against Egham’s second-string attack and runs began to flow more quickly. Some aggressive batting from Richie Noble, who was particularly clinical when the Egham bowlers strayed down leg side, and a much more watchful knock from his partner took Windsor to a well-placed 73-0 at drinks. However, a lose drive from Richie Noble shortly after passing 50 led to a spectacular and all too familiar collapse from Windsor’s middle order as, not helped by a couple of dubious umpiring decisions, they were reduced to 88-6. It was left to big-hitting all rounder Ollie Birch to manipulate the strike with tail and with some good support from Richard Endacott and Chris Kellard, Windsor found themselves 125-9 with Birch left as ‘last man standing’. This gave him the licence to play his shots but, after a couple of lusty blows, he was caught on the deep mid-on boundary for an entertaining 39, meaning Windsor were finally all out for 138, just 13 runs short of victory