1st XI vs Fair Oak 2nd XI
Another glorious summer day meant another trip away from home for the team. This week saw us travel to Fair Oak in what was going to be a tough battle for the visiting Odiham.
Breakfast was had in the village shop to fuel the players before the skipper lead them on their way....via the scenic route through the Meon Valley!!!
The infamous Odiham ‘picnic club’ was in toe with chairwoman Sarah Walker impressed with the continuing new members joining week on week. The feta wraps and Italian meats were on offer and this dragged along new attendees in Murray Turner and his family, with Jo Gray also deciding to make the trip after seeing the culinary delights on offer!
Team news this week saw Rob Walsh-Smith make his debut appearance for 2018. The skipper was drafted back in, although failed the fitness test last minute which saw Aidy Green make the trip down the m3.
After a resounding victory last week the mood in the camp was good. Dan Walker was handed the reigns in Thomas’ absence and duly elected to lose the toss in normal fashion and we were made to field.
Scott McGaughrin and Peter Hodgson took the new cherry and bowled with fire and determination in a beautiful opening spell!
Scott was the man to get the ball rolling for the O’s as he found the edge of the Fair Oak opener, with a blinding slip catch from Liam Schooling. Scott finished a tight spell with 1-16 whilst Pete bagged 0/18 and made life hard for the hosts in the opening stages.
The stand-in skipper was the next man to take the ball alongside Ross McGaughrin.
Ross turned the ball sideways in an impressive spell, making life hard for both batsmen and keeper with a few chances going begging.
A long outfield meant that the home batsmen weren’t getting value for their shots which proved valuable in the middle stages. Dan was unsuccessful in his first spell, but Ross returned with 2-34 from his 9.
James Taylor was our second choice spinner and made early inroads for the O’s, picking up a valuable stint of 2-30. The hosts trickled to 82-4 in the 30th over but made amends in the final stages, running between the wickets well.
Skipper Walker returned the attack and pinched 3 late wickets, with thanks to some fine catching from Pete Hodgson and Rob,to see Fair Oak post what was a competitive total of 173-8.
After the interval, the O’s set about the target with a view of just taking their time and building a solid foundation early doors.
Fair Oak came out fighting with a strong opening attack which saw Jontie and Liam Schooling struggle to work the ball away, the latter getting frustrated and seeing him chip one to mid off for 2. Jontie played a controlled roll but again was bogged down by the Oaks spinner, eventually walking passed one to be dismissed for a gritty 14.
Kyran Munt entered at number three and was gifted a few lose balls to get him finely bedded in at the crease. The hosts dropped Munt four times in a flukey knock of 69, which saw Odiham edge past the 100 mark. Rob Walsh-Smith was unfortunately bowled for 9 in one that shot along the ground, and JT was soon following in suit for 6.
The score was creeping up but Fair Oak made Odiham work hard for it as Aidy Green played a solid and somewhat vital knock of 37 to see Odiham home with an over to spare with quick fire stints from Dan and Scott McGaughrin!
The relief was felt on the sidelines as we had finally notched up our first away victory of the season with a valuable 21 points.
This sees us sit comfortably behind the front runners in the league.
Fines were dealt with back at Odiham headquarters with the total rocketing to £226 in only three games! DOD was awarded to one of the picnic clubs founding members Kimberley Ellen for her unfortunate lack of sun cream!
Next weekend sees us take on Portsmouth at the King Street Oval with Phil Thomas declaring himself fit and the likelihood of Thomas Wiltshire making the cut for the game.
A big thank you to those who travelled and lent the valuable support again this week.