Danny Too Canny For Llany
A game and journey no-one wants to play but Llanidloes away on Saturday turned out to be very successful for the team and individuals.
The worst and furthest journey of the season was thankfully eased a bit as weather was sunny and hot - and we had the Fun Bus to go in rather than a convoy of cars.
With numerous changes to the side due to injuries and unavailability, there were still hopes for an away win. The day started off with the Fun Bus taking us over the welsh border and Owais in fine voice leading the singing and entertainment.
Eventually arriving in Llany, we saw a wicket that resembled any part of the square, like Rossco stated ‘you could have put the stumps anywhere in the square’.
Another toss lost and we were asked to bat first. With a new look opening partnership of 3s debutant Danny ‘Howay’ Candlish and prolific number 11 batsman Owais ‘Noise’ Abdul the game started. From the first over Danny took the game to the Llany bowling attack creaming the ball to all parts of the ground as well as neighbouring back gardens. Owais was too playing some good shots, picking the gaps for the ones and twos with the odd boundary thrown in. For the first time this season an opening partnership was forming and soon enough 50 was on the board, quickly followed by a half century for Danny. The next mile stone that was hit was the century stand, both batsmen going strong, Owais surviving two drop catches. With the score on 130/0 Danny pulled a Llany bowler for six over square leg to bring up his maiden century for Wellington and a knock that never offered one chance to the Llany players - and only took him 25 overs. Eventually though Danny fell for a magnificent 119 (11 x 4s and 6 x 6s) with the score on 165 and had a standing ovation from both teams. Jonny Green entered and continued where Danny had finished and soon found the boundary ropes, but Jonny (8), 3s debutant Simon Topper (16) all went whilst trying to push the score along with overs running out, both having played some nice shots. Owais brought up his own half-century which had been an excellent knock and fully deserved. With five overs remaining Steve Pitchford came in, meanwhile Owais (64) was out pushing score along. A quick fire 34 not out (3 x 4s and 3 x 6s) from Pitchy off only 10 balls took Wellington to an excellent total of 265/4 off their 45 overs.
Wellington then took to the field with an understrength bowling attack, only four recognised bowlers and Alex Taylor! (What a day it turned out for Alex). Rachael Howells and Owais Abdul then opened the bowling, Owais getting his money worth today. With the Llany batsmen not really pushing themselves except for the odd boundary. Owais struck an early blow having the opener caught at slip by Al Taylor low down. Rachael bowled exceptionally well again without any luck, regularly beating the bat, she finished her first spell and was replaced by another 3s debuatant young Sam Topper. A change also at the other end saw tiring Owais replaced by veteran bowler Dave Ross. Sam bowled a lovely line and length which troubled the Llany batsmen. Sam finished his six over spell with 0/24 and unlucky not to take his first third team wicket. Rossco bowled some good balls but the Llany batsman took a shine to the short boundary and peppered it, but chances were coming from Rossco and Llany could have been 3 or 4 down by now. Sam Topper was replaced by Alex Taylor, comedy genius, who had been telling me all Thursday night to watch him bowl in nets, so I did and he was given his opportunity and he took it. Al bowled an excellent line and found a springboard type bounce at the one end which troubled the batsmen. Rossco took a wicket before being replaced by Rachael for a 2nd spell. Al Taylor then started ripping through the Llany batting order finishing with figures of 9-2-23-5, yes it’s not an error he took 5 wickets, including a ‘KEG BALL’ caught and bowled. For those not aware a ‘Keg Ball’ is when a fielder 'calls it' and if a wicket is taken then the fielder buys the beers, to Rossco’s horror he shouted and Al caught it, brilliant! Rachael then finished with 12 overs costing just 22 runs and richly deserved her wicket, following superb piece of wicket keeping from ‘better brother’ Dan Pilkington, who again kept extremely well and has started the season in brilliant form with the gloves. Owais returned and took the final two wickets, last one with his final ball and penultimate over of the match leaving Llany all out for 177.
Superb performance by the guys - batting, bowling and fielding - but the day must go to Danny Candlish, Owais Abdul and Alex Taylor, well done chaps.
To round the day off Rossco bought his ‘Keg’ by purchasing box of Carlsberg for the journey home to go along with the 25 points. And on the way home had the Police not been around when sheep had run into the roads I am almost 100% certain Al Taylor would have got one and found new girlfriend.
Match report by Steve Pitchford