Despite a brilliant maiden hundred from Will Langmead, Falkland were on the wrong end of the result in their first league match against Henley 2’s losing by 2 wickets.
New captain Jason Williams had the toss go against him in his first game in charge and was immediately asked to bat first by Henley on a glorious summer's day.
New opening partners Danny Williams and Will Langmead had little difficulty against the Henley opening batsman until disaster struck when Williams set off for a single and immediately collapsed to the ground in agony. A later result revealed a ruptured Achilles tendon and ruptured calf muscle.
With a substantial delay waiting on an ambulance only playing into the Henley hands, new overseas player Antum Naqvi did not last long and was out for 4. A time of reconciliation was needed by new pairing of Langmead and Bruce Martin and a mixture of patience and good shots and some big sixes took Falkland easily past the 100 mark. A rush of blood from Martin saw him dance down the track in an attempt to move the game along and he perished for a fine 36. With Langmead now in full flow, fours and sixes were in tandem with each other and he quickly raced passed him half century and not later with century that included several 6 sixes and fours. Bloodworth was next to go for 17 to leave Falkland at 183-3 in the 38th over and in a commanding position but the rest of the Falkland batsman failed to deliver anything to support Langmeads brilliant knock. Once he was out for 108 the rest of the batsman only offered 33 between them and once Jason Williams was final man out with 216 on the board, Falkland still had 4 overs left to bat and would rue the wasted deliveries not bowled at them.
Charlie Dale and Bruce Martin got into their stride quickly and was not long before Ashraf was Martin’s first victim of the day, LBW for 8 and when number 3 Legg was removed by Dale, Henley were teetering on 22-2. Next to go was opener Alderman, cleaned bowled by Jimmy Shaw for 24 leaving Henley 55-3 and Falkland looking to race though the middle order.
Unfortunately the next wicket was a long time in coming and effectively took the game away from Falkland as Ellison and Hopkins hit any loose deliveries to the boundary and were virtually gifted 1 bad ball an over to take the pressure off them.
The 4th wicket was taken on 117 but any chance of a collapse were again exasperated with Ellison and now Jones hitting anything loose. 2 quick wickets followed to the returning spin of Naqvi and at 162-6 Falkland sensed one last opportunity. Unfortunately Ellison saw things differently and once he departed for a fine 90 the game was all but over for Falkland. Henley eventually finished on 220-8 with Naqvi 3-41 and Martin 2-33 the only bowlers to really come out the game with any real credit.
A disappointing start for Williams and his men but after a winter reshuffle of player personnel will be pleased that they have showed at least enough to keep them out of a relegation battle. Next up for Falkland is Stoke Green who were also on the end of a wrong result so both teams will be looking to kick off their season with a victory.
Falkland 2’s started their season with a loss to Bagshot in their first venture into win / lose cricket..
Having won the toss Falkland inserted Bagshot on a wicket / outfield that both looked like scoring would be tough.
Bagshot though started well and raced to 70 for 0 in the main down to some early season rustiness from the Falkland opening bowlers as half of these were down to wide’s and bye’s…
The introduction of Wood (1 for 33 from 7) & then the partnership of Randall (1 for 29 from 10) and Beal (2 from 12 from 6) brought some control to the innings for Falkland and left Bagshot 118 for 4.. Grinstead was batting well though and top scored with 67 until he holed out to the bowling of debutant Clarke.
Afridi (2 for 35 from 9) returned and with great support from Naqvi (3 for 24 from 6) they ran through the Bagshot tail and then finished 185 ao.
In reply Falkland found the going tough as the greater accuracy of the Bagshot opening bowlers starved Falkland of runs but also reduced them to 28 for 4 – Pettet (3 for 21 from 9) the pick of the Bagshot attack.
Beal (15) and C Williams (25) dug in for Falkland but could not score at the required rate and when both fell in quick succession followed by Ahsan they were reeling at 81 for 7.
The game was not over though as Cooper (29) was joined by J Williams (17) and the pair put on 40 for the 8th wicket, Randall then joined Cooper and they put on another 24 to push Falkland closer to the 150 mark but both fell in quick succession leaving them all out for 147…
Falkland entertain Harefield 2’s this Saturday..
Updated 13:23 - 11 Nov 2018 by Falkland CC