A tale of two match winning centuries!
Dave Hodgson 107 vs Muff Field Kevin Mcdermott 122 vs East Bierley
It was a case of feast or famine at the weekend for Baildon CC's senior sides. Our 1st and 3rd XIs piled on the runs whereas as our 2nd and 4th XIs didn’t make it over a hundred.
On a lovely warm day at Jenny Lane (the first this season!) Kevin Mcdermott once again put on a show for those in attendance. He hit 122 in 112 balls with 14 x 4s and 5 x 6s and helped the 1st XI reach 297 in their 50 overs. Second top scorer with 38 was Mounam Ejaz, closely followed by Dwayne Heke with a rapid 33. At 97 for 6 in reply, East Bierley were looking finished until some stiff tail end resistance from Harvey Lockwood (50) and Alex Midgeley (56) took them much closer than the watching spectators would have liked. They were eventually dismissed for 266 in the last over with Abdullah Khan (3 for 63) and Umar Zahoor (3 for 82) being the stand-outs of the Baildon attack.
The 2nd XI made the long journey to Methley for a low scoring thriller. After winning the toss, Darren Wilson’s men struggled to put a target on the board, being bowled out for 88 in the 31st over. Only Sam Holmes was able to make any impact on the scorebook with 24. If our batters were having a bad day, the same could not be said for our bowlers, Haris Hussain (6 for 26) and Sam Kelly (2 for 28) having Methley in all sorts of trouble until they crawled over the line with 1 wicket remaining. 6 wickets was a just reward for Haris and a sign that he is getting back to his best after a recent side strain issue. With Danny Hunt starting to regain his pre injury form and Stefan proving as hard to score off as ever, the second team pace attack is the envy of most teams in the division. We just need the batters to click into form and much better results will await what is a very talented side. Reports after the match suggest it was a tough game for the umpires with a number of disputed decisions looking to have settled the result. Having to rely on club umpires in second team cricket is always going to be brought into focus in low scoring games where a single decision can prove vital. However, without these brave volunteers putting themselves forward (and under scrutiny) matches would take place with players having to umpire and I’m sure no-one wants that!
Tom Dixon produced another ‘Tom Dixon’ innings for the 3rd XI away at Mayfield. On what had seemed a fairly tricky wicket, we had grafted our way to 80 for 4 at the halfway mark, with Tawseef Ahmed (37) and James Butterfield (30), the main contributors. It was at that point that Tom went on the attack and plundered 72 (9 x 4s and 3 x 6s) in double quick time to totally change the game. His actions then inspired the next batters with first Paul Hannam (48) and then Will Baker (34*) maintaining the momentum. Paul was cruising to an effortless 50 before he selflessly swung across the line to lose his middle stump. Carrying on from where he left off against Roundhay last week, Will Baker continued to prove that he can score all round the wicket culminating in a switch hit for 4 off one of the league’s most respected opening bowlers. We closed on 270-7 in an innings of 2 very different halves. Then our bowlers got to work and thanks to a strong opening burst from Will (2 for 20) and Harry Brook-Dobson (4 for 38), Mayfield were never in the hunt. Harry got to 4 wickets very quickly but just couldn’t take the next wicket to complete his five-for. He was joined by Sam Miller (4 for 27) in the 4 wickets club as our bowlers dismissed the opposition for 92.
Back at Belmont for the 1st time this year, Andy Norton’s 4th XI came out second best against Mayfield 2s. Only Ash Free (15) and Lela Modhwadia (23*) made it into double figures as they were dismissed for 72 inside 30 overs. Mehboob Hussain (48*) then led the way as Mayfield knocked off the runs for the loss of 4 wickets. Owen Pickles (2 for 26) was the pick of the bowling attack.
On Sunday, our 3rd XI travelled to Muff Field for the opening round of the Pool Paper Mills Cup. Captain Dave Hodgson had no hesitation in choosing to bat first upon winning the toss – mostly due to the late arrival of two players (one of whom, let’s call him ‘Maxi’ to protect his identity) had left his house keys in Morecambe after a two day bender. Helped by what must be the best batting wicket in the league (Belmont is a close second!) our openers, Dave Hodgson (107) and Simon Bullock (62) started our innings off with a bang and put on 185 for the first wicket. Dave was the main aggressor, in the 68 balls he faced, he struck 17 x 4s and 4 x 6s to every corner of the ground. When he gets going there really is no stopping him – until a wily old campaigner came on and outfoxed both Dave and Simon with donkey drops! After the openers departed, James Butterfield carried on their good work with 61 off 35 balls (9 x 4s and 3 x 6s). We kept our foot down for the whole innings in the knowledge that Muff Field had already topped 300 on their ground this season. With a few extras added to the pot (leg-side wides were in play) we reached 331 in 40 overs, setting Muff Field a challenging run rate of 8 an over. This did eventually prove too much for the opposition but for large parts of the innings, they put our attack under a lot of pressure. A burst of 2 wickets in 2 balls for Owen Pickles along with some outstanding fielding from Mini and Josh Capper started to turn the game in our direction before an athletic boundary catch (!?!?!?) by James Butterfield calmed the nerves. After a frustrating rain delay, we returned to the pitch to finish off the innings and made sure that captain Dave could top off his Sunday by getting to a gig by the Charlatans just in time! Pick of the Baildon attack, in fact of both bowling attacks, was Harry Brook-Dobson, who on a day when every other bowler disappeared to all parts, returned the figures of 8 overs, 3 maidens, 3 for 15.