Williams leads Oxton to victory
By Oxton Admin
On a sunny day in Widnes the home side won the toss and elected to bat first.
The opening bowling attack of Stenhouse and Fennah kept it tight early on and with the score on 37 the latter made the breakthrough in his 8th over thanks to a sharp bit of keeping from Michael Johnson who removed the bails before the advancing Widnes opener could return to his crease.
Ali Crick replaced Stenhouse at the pavilion end with Fennah continuing at the other. After a short spell the Oxton skipper, Dane Williams decided to introduce leg-spin and Olly Thompson.
Widnes had now progressed to 62 off 20 overs but in Olly’s first over of the season he made the breakthrough as the Widnes batsman went aerial but only managed to find the captain at mid-off.
Oxton kept a squeeze on the Widnes total with Fennah and Thompson continuing with the ball.
Olly took his 2nd wicket at the start of the 27th over removing the Widnes number 3 batsman, who top scored with 30, caught and bowled.
At the other end Ali Crick replaced Richard and, in his second over back, bowled Hewitt for 2. The Widnes innings was now at 92-4 from 28 overs and soon after Crick struck again. The batsman was again bowled and when Olly Thompson bowled the new batsman in the 33rd over Widnes were struggling to set a competitive total at 104-6.
As Widnes looked to rebuild Oxton re-introduced Fennah and Stenhouse. In the 38th over Fennah took his second removing the dangerous Majeed as he looked to go over the top only to be caught to a smart catch by Luke Filer.
Stenhouse then had the Widnes number 8 LBW for 8 to pick up his first wicket of the match and the score was 131-8 with 9 overs to go.
Ali Crick returned once Richard had completed his 15 overs and straight away took another wicket – again bowled. Widnes were then 135-9 with 8 overs remaining.
Oxton missed out on a chance to finish the Widnes innings when a caught & bowled chance went down with the score on 140 but the home team’s last pair managed to put on 27 for the last wicket reaching 162 before Olly Thompson, who had returned at the far end, took his 4th wicket as the batsman went for an audacious reverse sweep.
After the tea interval Oxton made a solid start reaching 42-0 off 13 overs. Jack Smith had made the majority of the runs until Gibson advanced down the track to the Widnes spinner hitting him for 6 over long on. A long delay ensued as the search for the ball was unsuccessful. The search for a replacement ball was not much quicker and when play resumed Gibson was unlucky to be dismissed LBW next ball (indications would suggest there may have been bat involved).
This brought the Oxton skipper to the crease and while Dane played himself in Smith went on the attack hitting a couple more boundaries taking his score onto 34. Unfortunately a shot over the top down towards the Widnes scoreboard was not quite placed as intended and Widnes had their second wicket of the day (57-2) thanks to a fantastic catch taken in the deep at full stretch, on the run, by Johnathan Campbell.
Michael Johnson joined Williams in the middle and the pair batted sensibly taking the score to 107-2 off 38 overs. Johnson was out to a sharp caught & bowled effort and Olly Thompson went in at 5.
Olly scored 12 before he was caught as Dane continued to bat positively as he passed fifty.
Chris Stenhouse went in at 6 and scampered a few quick singles as the rate required briefly increased up to around 5.5 an over. After Chris was bowled Mahdi Quadri made his way to the middle with 14 required off 3 overs.
It was to be a crucial next over and despite a couple of dot balls early in the over Mahdi held his nerve and swept the Widnes spinner for four before a late cut brought more runs and Oxton only required 5 runs from the final two overs.
The skipper (70*) saw the visitors through to victory with two boundaries in 3 balls and Oxton have their first victory of the season having been thwarted by the weather in week 2.
Next week the 1st XI return to Townfield Lane for two matches. Firstly, they take on Chester Boughton Hall in the Joseph Holt Brewery T20 competition on Thursday at 6:15pm.
Saturday’s match will be against Bollington starting at 1pm.