This past weekend saw Wilmslow Cricket Club's 1st & 2nd XI take on their counterparts at Ashley Cricket Club in a "home & away" affair, with the Squirrels unable to find a way to defeat their counterparts.
The Squirrels 1st XI travelled to Ashley's ground looking to get back to winning ways. Captain Lloyd Sykes got the day off to a good start, winning the toss and electing to bowl first.
Within minutes, the Squirrels struck home with Ollie Warner picking up the first wicket of the afternoon, off his first ball none the less, dismissing the very dangerous Ashley batsman Philip Critchley. Tight opening spells from Ollie and Jake saw the Squirrels keeping it tight against the hosts, with Tom Rowe picking up Wilmslow's second wicket dismissing the other opening bat.
However, the early success from Wilmslow were soon a distant memory as Ashley's Sabtain Baig & Nihad Vaid dug in deep & set course for a a big partnership, taking advantage of the short straight boundary.
Another blow to Wilmslow's attack came when Jegadeeshwaran Narayanan had to be replaced by Jayam Patel, 3 wickets for 42 runs. Jake Woodhouse continued to bowl extremely well and restricted Ashleys runs, with the home side ending on 197 / 8 after 40 overs.
Following a short interval, the Squirrels 1st XI began their counter attack with a score of 198 set by Ashley to win. However, unlike the opening of the 1st innings, the Squirrels found it difficult to make headway in the opening overs, and after a few quick wickets the Squirrels were on the back foot - and were only able to score 100 before all being dismissed, with Narayanan being the Squirrels top run scorer on the day with 22 runs.
Whilst the 1st XI battled it out against Ashley's 1st XI, the Squirrels 2nd XI host their Ashley counterparts at Rectory Field. Captain Tim Conniff lost the toss and the visitors put the Squirrels in to bat first.
Despite the ground being difficult to pay on due to the recent bad weather, the opening partnership of Simon Oakley & Jamie Cairns got Wilmslow's local team to 30 runs without the loss of a wicket. Oakley continued well into the innings, getting 26 runs on the board for the Squirrels.
Former Alderley Edge player Chris Woollen, on his debut match for Wilmslow, had a fantastic opening spell gaining 16 runs for the Squirrels before being caught by Ashley's Matthew Wardle. The Squirrels were all out for 113 after 40 overs.
Ashley started strongly and made light work, getting to 35 without loss of a wick, but then faulted. Wickets were then felling at regular intervals but the last stand took them from 5 wickets down to within 15 runs of victory. A great close game, played in great spirit on both sides, saw Ashley win by 2 wickets.
Wilmslow's Sunday XI were due to play their first game of the season, against Urmston Cricket Club, but the game was cancelled due to bad weather. The Squirrels now turn their attention to this coming Weekend as our 1st XI host Cheadle Hulme CC & our 2nd XI travel to Timperley CC. Both games start at 12:30, so why not come on down and support your local cricket team!
Match report by Simon Bailey.