Warton vs Ambleside
Hyningmen begin the 2018 campaign with positive start.
The first day of the cricket season is normally greeted with long sleeve jumpers and warm cups of tea but not this season as Warton entered the field in glorious sunshine.
Warton welcomed new boy Gareth Price to the Hyning as he made a positive debut in the field.
After captain Crowther won the toss Warton set about dismantling Amblesides top order with the dangerous Wileman opening the batting. The insecurities about how the wicket would play were unfounded and great credit must go to the groundstaff team who produced a superb wicket for the first game.
Ambleside made a steady if unspectacular start while opening bowlers Crowther and Beck eased into the new season. It was Steven Beck who took the first wicket of the season clean bowling Wileman with a yorker, this was quickly followed by Graeme Crowther who also scattered the stumps. Beck continued to prosper and used his slower ball to brilliant effect accounting for the next batsman and at this stage an early finish was on the cards.
To their credit Ambleside tried to dig in and rode their luck somewhat, however the introduction of Shaun Partridge changed all that as he mixed things up brilliantly to take 4-8 off 7 overs. Shaun will be delighted with his haul and deserved any luck that came his way. Tom Barnfield finished off the Ambleside tail with the final wicket caught by keeper Stuart Mayor. Graeme Crowther 1-18 off 8 overs and Steven Beck finished with 3-19 from 12 overs which was a great effort in the hot conditions.
Catches were taken by Barnfield, Finney and Weatherill with Stuart Mayor taking 2 catches as Ambleside were all out for 56.
The players left the field to enjoy a lovely tea prepared by Jayne who must be praised on her selection of cakes on offer and in particular the plain scones and malt loaf.
The Warton innings set off quickly as Callum Mulholland went after anything loose and Stuart Mayor displayed his new found maturity by picking out his scoring shots. Mulholland went for 18 and Mayor 14 but they had laid the platform effectively chasing a low target. Jeff Winder wasn't going to hang around as his 15 not out included the first six of the new season. Tom Barnfield batted sensibly to play for his averages and he knows the extra responsibility he has this season needs to be taken seriously and he displayed this in his 4 not out to guide the team home as Warton passed Amblesides total for the loss of only two wickets.
This was a great start for Warton, aside from the result there were many things to admire. The club has a new found energy after the winter restoration of the club house and with great support from our sponsors things are certainly looking up.
All players and club members stayed behind to celebrate in the sun with a few shandys on what was an excellent day.
Many thanks to our match ball sponsor MDJ Staircases.
By Gareth Finney