Wear A Helmet, Kids
By David Ross
The 5th XI turned out on a glorious Sunday afternoon at a buzzing Orleton Park for their encounter with Lilleshall 3s.
The team were ordered into their whites early doors for a well marshalled team photo. Captain Steve Gough spent the next 30 minutes until the toss gauging opinion and discussing at depth what he should do if he won the toss before promptly losing the toss and being inserted.
Wellington set off very brightly with some crisp shots from Chris Newbold taking them comfortably to 40 without loss in the 7th over.
I don't remember much after that.
Match report by Mike Debenham, recovering well in hospital
It was a lovely sunny Sunday in Wellington as Lilleshall 3rd X1 came to town.
Captain Steve Gough lost the toss and Wellington were put in to bat by the Lilleshall skipper.
Newly promoted (from the 4th X1) Mike Debenham (34) opened the batting along with Chris Newbold (18). Both started the game in fine form and runs soon started to mount on the scoreboard right from the off. Wellington were going along beautifully until a terrible incident happened. Mike Debenham faced a short delivery and tried to pull it to the boundary, only for the ball to take a big top edge of his bat and crash in to his forehead. Luckily both player and ball lived to tell the tale. Mike went off injured on around 18 not out and was replaced by Simon Topper (52). Shortly after the re-start Newbold was caught and Wellington had 2 new batsmen at the crease together.
The middle order came and went and chipped in with some runs which helped Wellington set a good overall total. James Brothwood (12), Matt Earley (11), Matt Pitchford (3) Shehan Gunawardena (4), Steve Gough (6).
Mike Debenham still a little hazed returned and added to his total before being dismissed on 34.
Uimar Nawaz (15*) was in at number 8. It was him who was alongside Simon Topper when Simon deservedly reached his half century after a great innings for the home side. Topper was caught not long after with only a few overs remaining trying to force the game and add further runs to the board.
Uimar hit out in the last over after a big swinging maiden in his first over faced to finish on 15 not out. Andy Howells (2*) also chipped in as Wellington set a very reasonable target of 197/8 for the visitors to chase down.
Wellington came out to bowl after tea and the opening bowling was typically tight from Kumar Singh. Uimar Nawaz opened the bowling with Kumar and Wellington got off to a good tight start.
It was however apparent from as early as the 3rd over that Lilleshall had a game plan to block out and not chase down the total Wellington had worked so hard to set.
It was a frustrating day for the home side who overall bowled really well. A conservative display from the Lilleshall batsmen prevented any real chances all afternoon.
Kumar Singh took a great wicket catching a bullet straight drive off his own bowling. It seemed for sometime that Kumar had not even seen the ball as his hands remained close to his sides until the very last moment before his hand closed around the ball to take the wicket. It was a comedy moment but also a very important moment as Wellington looked to win the game.
Matt Earley came on to bowl and also bowled tight and well with no real reward.
With the score low and Wellington in total control Captain Gough made some bowling changes and introduced some slower bowling to try and force the Lilleshall attack in the hope of creating some much needed and deserved chances to win the game.
A run out & wickets from Earley & Singh and a fine bowling spell from Shehan Gunawardena without the reward he deserved helped Wellington to secure 3 wickets.
Shehan (now a lot warmer than he was that week away at Hales) had redeemed himself. There were quotes of "He's had a Shehan" heard around the club. This was due to Shehan's lack of contribution only weeks before. When players had a bad game it was known as "having a Shehan" and the trend was catching on fast. However, I think it's fair to say he has reversed this and the saying has now been forgotten with him now seemingly back to the fine cricketer we all know he is.
There was a brief spell of attacking cricket from Lilleshall to note throughout the game as their number 4 batman finally found the middle of his bat after jibbing about 6/7 to the Wellington slip cordon. He finished on 50 with some nice shots before being caught by Captain Gough with the last ball of the day.
Lilleshall finished on 152/3 at the close of play which resulted in a winning draw for the home side.
Wellington face a home tie against division leaders Harpers on Sunday and will hope to take something from the game and continue in the same positive manor that they have started the season with.
Match report by Matt Earley