Rain Rain, go away……
Windsor 2nds 162 all out (George 54) (Hameed 4 for 36)
Aldershot 1st XI 163 for 1 off 34.5 overs (Cosstick 102*)
Windsor 2nd’s fell short of expectations on Sat at Home Park. Hill, wanting to win his first league toss, and put Aldershot into bat, didn’t and Aldershot stuck Windsor in on a wet but flat pitch. Rain overnight and during the morning affected the afternoon preperations. When the game finally got started it was reduced to 48 and 44 overs respectivly. Hill saw this as a game where the batsman had to dig in and play some boring and ugly cricket, and the bowlers would have to hit thier line and length early doors, neither of which happened….
Windsor got off to a poor start losing Noble, who had opened with the returning Huggins, in the first over. Gill bolwed incredibly tight lines getting lift and movement off the soft deck. His first 7 overs from the castle end were maidens and had taken 2 wickets! Some dodgy running between the wickets saw off Huggins and overseas Weston soon followed. George, in fine form in recent weeks started taking the attack to the Aldershot bowlers. Howard, also looked in fine fettle after his ton last week. Things were looking brighter in the sky and for windsor until Howard was caught. Opener Patel, who had arrived at the ground late, went in at 6 and looked to support George who raced to 54. Windsor in theory bat to 8 but Smith and Condon failed to turn it on for Windsor this week. Windsor at one stage didnt look like they would get to 150! Hill played a very boring innings and bloked most of his deliveries to try and soak up some of the overs so as not to give too much advantage to Aldershot. After Hill was bowled Kellard and Holmes stood fast and used up the final over allocated to Windsor before Kellard fell. Even though the wicket was soft and wet, all credit goes to Aldershot who bowled very well and made the best use of the facilities. Windsor, however did not.
Hill opened form the castle end with young Holmes bravely running into the strong wind. Neither bowler found good line and length giving Aldershot some early ‘freebies’. George made a fantastic debut with the gloves as a replacement for the injured Smith. K Condon soon reaplced Holmes at the river end and found some good line and pace despite the wind. Hill made the batsman work hard and found the same bounce Aldershot had when he could get the length right. Hill made the only breakthrough, trapping Taylor LBW, from a ball that kept low. In came overseas player Cosstick to take the attack to Windsor. Hill replaced himself with young leg spinner Kellard, who imediatly got the batsmen thinking and slowed the run rate immediatly. When the ball was pitched up the batsman couldn’t get him off the square. Condon, battling into the wind pulled a few deliveries short which were punished. Hill turned to Howard to look for the second break through that never came. Aldershot didnt ease off and dispatched all the bad balls from both ends to the boundary. Windsor never gave up and were superb in the field, but Aldershot never gave any chances. Aldershot coasted home to get to 163 for the loss of only 1 wicket.
Windsor did not fire on all cylinders on sat. Both teams had to play on the same wicket and so blame cannot be soley passed on to the pitch and weather conditions. Windsor need to shore up and play basic solid cricket to get wins this season. Aldershot bowled well, and batted even better…. basic batting and bowling wins games. Windor only gained 6 points on Sat, 1 point less than if it was rained off! Windsor is a batting heavy club and choices for the must win game at Slough 3’s this week mean a change to the balance of the batting vs. bowling attack may be needed……