Eastry vs Northdown 15/06/13

Saturday saw Eastry travel away to Northdown, and upon arrival the team quickly saw that the famed Northdown winds were ever present even with a alter game in the season. After tightening up their caps to the highest setting Eastry took to the field, and were surprised to find a track with great pace and swing, making it look like a day for the bowlers. Deveson came downhill with the wind at his back and decided to unfurl the sails, bowling at a quicker pace than usual, with bouncers galore. The home batsmen however, expertly used the pace of the ball to thread it through the gaps behind square on the offside, tantalisingly close to the fielders. Waring bowling into the gale fared much better with his economy rate as he appeared to be throwing boomerangs at the batsmen, who were in all kinds of trouble against the swinging new ball, and finished with figures of 12 overs 24-1. After sharing 23 overs of bowling the two opening bowlers relented with a feeling that they should have been more penetrative, their glum mood only lightened by the sight of Sumner chasing his floppy hat around the boundary. Most concurred this was a poor choice in attire for such conditions. The change of bowling brought Graves down the hill, leaving G Friend to bowl uphill into the wind, and whilst the two bowlers struggled early on to contain the balls movement, they settled into their rhythm and managed to joust with the batsmen, who were looking to rapidly increase their run rate by playing flamboyant and adventurous shots. After putting the bowlers to the sword around the ground, Norhtdown’s Brear was cut short in his prime after bring cruelly run out by taking a single to the keeper for 59. Matt Sumner decided to rejoin the game after playing hide and seek with his unruly head wear for 30 overs and replaced Graves, bowling tempting spinning deliveries that invited the batsmen to play expansive strokes, taking a wicket in the process. Northdown declared soon after with a score of 200-7 off of 41 overs.
Eastry came out to bat after tea knowing that they needed to score at 5 an over for 39 overs in order to secure a victory. Phebey attempted to take on the run rate, scoring two handsome fours in succession, but was bowled soon after by a precise in swinger from P Crow for 8. As so often happens in cricket one wicket brings another, and Aaron friend was the next batsman to perish after ambitiously trying to sweep the bowler Scott, which ended with the ball clattering into the stumps sending Friend back to the changing room for a duck. Unfortunately for Northdown this brought Gareth Friend to the crease, who set the tone for his whole innings by sending his first ball sailing over the pavilion at mid wicket. Friend continued to strike huge blows, and bought up his 50 after 33 balls, and then notched up his hundred just as quickly, indeed it seemed that all Eastry had to do was find him a partner to hold up the non strikers end. Both new recruit Harley Lawrence and Matt Deveson stuck around but were dismissed cheaply, with Lawrence being run out by a greedy Friend trying to farm the strike. It then fell to Matt Sumner to help see the team home, but in doing so managed to steal the runs required by Friend to reach his maiden 150 as Eastry hit the winning runs with 10 overs to spare. It was an historic innings by Gareth Friend who ended the match on 149 not out, hitting 21 fours and 5 sixes in the process.

– Matt Deveson

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Eastry vs Sandwich TCC 02/06/13

Having lost the toss, Eastry were put into the field on what looked a docile track. However, Eastry were instantly rewarded by some hostile opening bowling courtesy of Matt Deveson. Eastry’s early inroads had put them firmly on top, but the combination of two Chapmans at the crease helped Sandwich stop the rot. Ben Chapman went on to carry his bat with a classy 71 not out. He was left standing alone though as he ran out of partners to stick with him. Harrison Smith gave a little impetus for the tail to wag, but Collins and Green helped limit the visitors to 138 all out. Eastry were commendable in the field with some sharp catching and precise bowling, providing a very gettable target.
In reply, Eastry succumbed almost instantly to overconfidence, losing numerous wickets within the first few overs. Matt Sear was the only one able to restrict the Sandwich onslaught with a new personal best of 8. Tight fielding and consistant bowling, aided by the occasional dubious decision ensured Eastry capitulated after reaching the 100 mark. This in itself was due largely to a last wicket effort from young Michael Eastman, becoming Eastry’s top scoring batsman on the day.

Harry Kenton – 04/06/2013

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Eastry vs Wickham & Stodmarsh 01/06/13

On Saturday Eastry were away at Goodnestone to take on Wickham and Stodmarsh CC. I arrived twenty minutes before the start time to find only one person at the ground, Captain Aaron(aero) Friend who, I am now led to believe, had been out to examine the middle and measure every possible distance from the middle to the leg side boundary. Eastry arrived thinking that a score of 56 off 40 overs might be competitive after our own Groundsman scouted the ground during a recent match.

Eastry batted first in a 40 over match and I quickly found myself being treated to a show of destructive boundary hitting from the non-strikers end as Aaron quickly found his feet on a difficult surface that was not quite coming on. After a non-spectacular opening stand of 46 I chipped one up to mid on. Robin Smitt looked in good knick but took on a surprisingly good arm and was run out. Soon afterwards Kevin was caught at gully off the bowling of one of Wickham & Stodmarsh’s academy players. As players fell at the other end, Aero really started finding his range, hitting boundary after boundary between square leg and mid on. The opposition placed a large number of fielders along the rope and even tried bowling leg stump lines, but time after time Aero dissected the fielders. He was given a reprieve in the 60s when a fairly simple chance was put down at mid-wicket but this was the captains day as he showed that preparation and early arrival is key. Dave Waring, Dicky Swain, Matt Sumner and James Wethered all came and went. James was adamant that his departure was for the greater good and so it proved as the captain found a superb ally in attack in Dan Dawkins who, sadly, went about showing us all how we should have batted on the track, with superb fours through the covers and aggressive strokeplay. His knock of 29* also saw the captain through to a magnificent 100 and gave Eastry some much needed momentum going in to the tea break. Aero ended 119* in one of the finest knocks I have seen playing for Eastry CC.

In reply Wickham and Stodmarsh batted sensibly, having to weather some quite superb deliveries from Dan Betts who bowled immaculate lines with good pace. A sharp catch from Aaron (having a handy game) got the breakthrough but at the other end Ollie Hayward was batting very well indeed latching on to anything loose or particularly full and sending it to the ropes. A superb pick up over long on was one of the shots of the day, bringing him 6 to the longest part off the boundary. If only Dave had the inspiration of his very own puppy watching he might have avoided maintaining the unlikely trend of having been hit for a 6 in every game this season. Despite these lusty blows Wickham were always behind the rate as Dan Betts and Dave settled in to a steady opening partnership with good line and length. N Lawn was picking balls off middle stump and despatching them to the boundary with shots you expect to see from Eoin Morgan or Joss Buttler. The game was certainly in the balance as long at Hayward was at the crease but it was the introduction of Andy Betts that swung the game in Eastry’s favor. Whilst not quite as quick as Dan these days, Andy bowled superbly just back of a length and his lack of width meant that Hayward found himself suddenly struggling to score to the back-drop of Lionel Ritchie and a series of romantic power ballads that echoed from the marquee in front of the main house. If Aero’s knock was as good as I have seen for Eastry, Bettsy’s spell was as good a bowling performance and his 8 overs for just 21 culminated in Hayward coming down the crease and missing one to be stumped; just the one wicket then but the crucial break through from our point of view. It is also worth mentioning that at the other end Matt produced some great leg- spinning deliveries from the pavillion end that helped build the pressure on the batsman. From there the game did look to be Eastry’s. Robin bowled with wide variety including some beauties amongst them to pick up two wickets and Dicky bowled very well too as the batsman tried in vain to accelerate towards the target of 212. Matt Deveson, fresh from his matinee performances, replaced Kevin and was lively in the field. After a fine cameo with the bat, Dan Dawkins turned a couple square and the Wickham & Stodmarsh innings ended with a ruthless catch from, who else, Aero at midwicket. Sadly C.Hayward could not bat after a hand injury sustained whilst fielding, probably a good thing from our point of view if he bats like his brother.

A good win for Eastry, keeps The Pigeons cooing, on this occasion by 64 runs in a glorious setting. Great to see James Kenton up at the ground as well and a thank you as always to our magnificent team of supporters and to Emma for producing another immaculate techni-colour score book.

-Will Montegomery

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Match Report – Home vs Elham 18/05/13

It was nice for the Eastry pigeons to finally play in non gale force winds for the first time this year, as they were again led by vice captain Matt Deveson. Elham won the toss and chose to bowl, which proved to be the right decision as Friend and Deveson were strangled for runs during the first 10 overs. However after the dismissals of Matt and Kevin Deveson, Dicky Swain was brought to the crease and proceeded to attack the bowling with force. He quickly overtook the cautious Friend to reach 50 with some lusty blows over cow corner combined with drives that lanced through the cover fielders. Friend eventually accelerated his innings, reaching 59 before being caught and bowled by Tutton. After cameos by the fielding virtuoso, Robin Smit (12), and then Weathered (9), Eastry finished on exactly 200 for the loss of only four wickets, with Dicky Swain still at the crease with an unbeaten 74.

After tea Eastry then took to the field to defend what they thought was a par score for the wicket, knowing that the match could swing either way. Elham started strongly with Risby sending the ball racing to the boundary on several occasions with crushing cover drives, taking the attack to the Eastry opening bowlers. However, Risby then chipped one up, which appeared to be safe, until the form of David Waring glided underneath the dropping ball, and plucked a sensational acrobatic catch with one hand. The taking of the wicket was little relief to Eastry as the new batsmen continued to score runs, until the bowling tandem of Andy Betts and Pete Eastman; combined with excellent fielding, managed to bring the run rate down. The drying up of the runs brought wickets, as Elham lost 4 wickets without score, as they tried to keep up with the required run rate. With 7 wickets down and requiring 70 to win off of the final 10 overs, the youthful lower order set about bunkering down to try and force the draw. The match was finely poised with only 8 overs and 3 wickets remaining, however the astute captain Deveson turned to his second spinner Matt Sumner, who proceeded to claim the final 3 Elham wickets in just two overs. The win leaves the Saturday XI undefeated after three games hopefully the good run of form continues over the next few games.

View the scorecard: http://eastry.play-cricket.com/scoreboard/scorecard.asp?id=11772036

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Match Report – Eastry vs Deal Vics 05/05/13

After putting Deal Vics into bat, Eastry claimed early scalps through Hill and Deveson. However, Toon and Francis set about rebuilding the Deal innings. What followed was akin to a period of Cold War detente, with neither side able to act decisively to change the nature of the game. Toon and Francis were able to build towards a partnership of 157 before Kenton broke the deadlock. However Francis, 66, before his demise, was able to provide stimulus into the innings, launching a plethora of sixes, and aided by some Joey Woods fielding. Deal Vics however, were not able to capitalise on their wickets in hand, and were unable to accelerate too much before the break. The returning Deveson helped restrict the visitors to a final total of 172-4.

In reply, Eastry started strongly with Friend and Spong building a solid opening partnership of 79, before Spong’s wicket was capitulated through bad calling. Friend accelerated his innings, whilst wickets fell around him. Once Deveson joined friend at the crease, Eastry were able to steadily progress towards the target without much drama. Friend reached 100 shortly before Eastry reached the winning score.

Scorecard can be viewed : http://eastry.play-cricket.com/scoreboard/scorecard.asp?id=11758588

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Match report – Home vs Northdown 04/05/2013

This Saturday Eastry played Northdown  CC on a sunny yet incredibly blustery day. Northdown won the toss and elected to bowl in the swirling winds, and with a brief pre-game rain shower the ball offered to seam early on in the innings. After two early wickets of Deveson (3) and Sumner (17) Eastry were in a vulnerable position at 65-2, however Aaron Friend and Robin Smit set about rebuilding the innings. This was stalled however when Friend was caught (surprise) for 56 and two quick wickets of Dartnell (8) and Weathered (0) left the Pigeons stranded on 118-5 with only 45 minutes left to bat. Feeling that a score of 175 should be a defendable total, Smit and Deveson upped the run rate and formed a fast scoring partnership of 83, with Smit playing a beautiful innings combining back foot finesse with powerful blows into the trees, eventually being bowled by Scott for 83. Eastry eventually declared before tea at 212-8.

After an enormous tea, capped off by an amazing Eton Mess (thank you Holly!), a much heavier Eastry team took to the field to bowl in the late afternoon sunshine. Northdown’s Humphries came out of the blocks quickly, and after only 6 overs had raced to 34, dismantling the Eastry opening bowlers, as the track seemed to offer very little movement for the ball. Humphries fine stroke play came to an end as he played one shot too many, and fired a straight drive back at bowler Andy Betts who took a fantastic reflex catch low to his right, leaving Northdown 44-1. Northdown then began to slowly lose wickets after some accurate bowling from Betts had David Brear caught for no run, and then opening batsman Francis Hatt was run out by Deveson for a steady 22 as the required run rate climbed higher and higher with the team languishing on 97-3 as the 20 over mark crept nearer. With two new batsmen, however, Northdown found a new spurt of run scoring, with Green (48) manipulating the erratic bowling of Deveson and Crow (21) hit some punishing sixes off of David Waring, leaving Eastry to watch as an impressive partnership threatened to take the game away from them rapidly. But “cometh the hour cometh the man” as skipper Lord Graham Phebey tossed the cherry to Robin Smit (after much persuading by his esteemed vice-captain) who then proceeded to rattle the top of Crow’s off stump with his very first ball, and then removed the bails of Green a few overs later. With the majority of their middle order back in the dressing room Northdown looked to batten down the hatches and hold out for the draw with 14 overs left to bat. Deveson looked threatening to the tail, taking three wickets, but with only four overs left and two resolute batsmen at either end offering no chances to the fielding side the game ended as a draw with Northdown finishing on 163-8.

View the scorecard at: http://eastry.play-cricket.com/scoreboard/scorecard.asp?id=11772014

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