The first games for the 2015 W-HCC U9s were played on a dry but cloudy morning at Lisvane CC.
Almost all of our squad were playing their first competitive games, which was just brilliant. Our first game was against St Fagans B, who looked like a useful outfit. We won the toss and Ojas decided to bowl first. Ashlin and Rhys M got things under way, and immediately our inexperience was on show, with lots of enthusiastic throwing at unguarded stumps leading to overthrows. Alyssa and Alfie bowled the next two overs and the scoring rate slowed to leave St Fagans at 218 at half way. Yash, Corey and Rhys G all did well on debut, but again our fielding was not the greatest so the score was getting away a little. Skipper Ojas took a wicket in the final over but the many examples of poor backing up, overthrows and fumbles meant that St Fagans head reached a slightly above per 240. Yash and Ashlin opened the batting for Whitchurch and were very watchful, building a platform for the two Rhys’s to hit out a bit, Rhys G scoring 10 and Rhys M 6 with some excellent running between the wickets too. At half way we were one ahead of the St Fagans score at the same stage. Alyssa and Corey had to face some accurate bowling, leaving Ojas and Alfie with a lot to do as the final pair. We lost a wicket in the seventh over and despite some good running between the wickets, we fell short on a total of 228. Interestingly we gave away about 12 runs whilst fielding and that turned out to be the difference between the scores.
Next up was The Vale, Ojas called the toss correctly and decided to bat first. Ashlin and Yash again opened and wickets started to fall straight away, with more to follow, including four in a row, during the second pairing of Rhys G and Oliver. At half way we had a disappointing 185. Two more wickets went in the third pairing of Rhys M with Harry, who batted very well in his very first game. Some brave batting from Ojas and Alfie at the end brought the score to 198, with those 9 lost wickets costing us 45 lost runs! We have never had to defend a negative score before, but Ashlin and Rhys M got us off to a good start with a wicket apiece, then Oliver and Alfie battled well in overs 3 and 4 but the score was starting to mount: 216 at half way. There were wickets for Yash and Harry and a tight over from Rhys G that improved our position a bit, but even a mighty effort from Ojas taking two wickets left The Vale on 215, a loss by 17 runs: given the wickets we lost cost us 45 runs, then hopefully we can all see what needs to be worked on in training over the next few weeks!!
Our final game was always going to be a tough one against a traditionally strong Lisvane side. We batted first with Rhys M and Yash at first pair, followed by Ashlin and Corey but the Lisvane bowling was good and their fielding very strong, so we only had 210 at half way. A couple of wickets were lost during Alyssa and Oliver’s innings, and then Rhys G and Ojas did what they could at final pair, but a couple more wickets almost balanced out the gains made by some good running, and we finished on 204, again a bit too low a score to defend easily. The Lisvane opening pair wanted to run everything and were out twice in the opening over from Ojas, but Rhys M, Corey and Yash could not keep the same pressure on and some wides and no balls meant that the Lisvane total started to build, reaching 225 at half way. Alyssa, Ollie, Ashlin and Rhys G were our second half bowling order, and apart from a flurry at the end, there were few runs off of the bat and again too many extras, meaning Lisvane finished on 245. I have looked back to this fixture last year and then we got 209 and Lisvane 260, so overall this was a pleasing performance against good quality opposition. I knew we were desperately short of game time as a group, and this showed with some bad fielding decisions in the first game and then poor batting in the second, however, we improved in both areas for the final game and were never totally outclassed, so well done everyone!
We have one more week of games before the half term break (I might have told a few people the wrong info on that, sorry) so we must regroup and work hard again next week at training.