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3rd XI - Match centre

Wellington 3rd XI
Condover
Sat 12 Jul 13:30 - League

Condover And Out

Wellington 3rds crashed to their third successive league defeat when Condover visited Orleton Park on Saturday.

In recent weeks Steve Pitchford’s side have been dismissed for just 67 (at Shrewsbury) and 119 (against basement boys Corvedale). As such, it was far from ideal when the skipper lost the toss and saw his troops ordered in first against high-flying Condover.

The returning Patrick Howells opened up with Ben Gould, but his stay was unfortunately short-lived. Undone by the straight lines of Condover opener Matthew Farr, Pat trudged off without troubling the scorers. However, there was trouble brewing for his mother who copped a mouthful off her son for jinxing his innings by coming to watch - and she only avoided his flying bat by her fleet of foot.

Ben Gould (19) and Alex Taylor (14) moved the scoreboard on slowly, but their progress was hardly untroubled. Had Condover taken their catches, Wellington might have been three down with the score in single digits.

As it happened, Wellington’s batsmen remained in a generous mood. In a mad few minutes, the side conspired to collapse from 36-1 to 45-6, as they found Farr too hot to handle. He bowled impressively throughout the day on his way to 5-35. As for Wellington, this was a self-destruction of almost Brazilian proportions. At this point it looked like this might be an embarrassingly short game; some of the boys even began checking the cinema listings to see what was showing in the teatime slot.

Thankfully Wellington’s response to their precarious position demonstrated plenty of what the Spanish call cojones. Steve Pitchford (62) and Alex Harris (25) were the men charged with rebuilding the innings and put on 85 for the seventh wicket. Their rearguard efforts dragged their side to a score of 144 – still below par, but at least something at which to bowl.

However, Condover’s reply was largely uneventful as they made serene progress on their way to their victory target. There was very little for the Wellington bowlers to take from the day, the visitors losing just 3 wickets in their 34 over chase. Jonathan Black was the pick for the home side with 2-16 off his 5 overs.

Wellington’s only hope of salvaging anything other than a defeat out of this one was the weather, which circled in towards the end of the innings. However, umpire Stuart Green was in no mood to be handing out reprieves in such a one-sided encounter. The final stages were played out in persistent drizzle until, with the game sowed up, the heavens opened. Too late, sadly.

Pitchy’s Army continues to slide down the table at alarming pace. This should come as no surprise as the team has combined batting fragility was undisciplined bowling all too often this season. Next week they face Ellesmere, who overcame them by just 8 runs back in May, with all aspects of their game requiring urgent improvement.

Pictured: Dave Ross reacts badly to Wellington's collapse.

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