Regardless of being a man short, a strong Ashwell side visiting the Green convincingly beat Reed in a 40 over-a-side Sunday friendly.

Marcus J.E. Baker inserted Ashwell and saw his opening bowlers Matt Giblin (8-1-35-0) and Neil Haslam (8-2-23-0) punished early on as they struggled to find their lengths. However, once the issue had been addressed the runs begun to dry up. Both showed a lot of fight bringing Reed back into the fight.

Wickets finally fell to first change bowlers Rob Lankester (1-41) and Baker (1-34). Under 14 Cormac Hosie once again impressed with his leg-spin taking two including opener Clark (85) but was also targeted, along with all the bowlers, by the big-hitting Ashwell batsmen. None the less it was an important learning experience for the young colt. Owen Hughes chipped-in with a wicket as Ashwell finished six down for 267.

Losing cheap, early wickets proved crucial as Reed struggled in their reply. Baker came to the crease to join Kieran McKinna, with his side 30 for 3. Ashwell sniffed blood and were in for the kill. Despite being targeted, the Under 14 McKinna showed grit resisting the intimidation of five men close round his bat. However, the inevitable did happen, but again for a young man playing one of his first “adult” matches it was a great learning experience about the tough, competitiveness of Sunday friendly cricket.

Baker, now uncharacteristically wound-up, decided to take the fight back to Ashwell, who found the Reed captain a less easy target. Accompanied by Rhodri Hughes, Baker put the ball to the boundary numerous times as they put on 102 for the fifth wicket. However, with the loss of Baker (71) and Hughes (25) in the same over Reed’s resistance faded. A final score of 172 was not enough but was, regardless, a good try.

Report submitted by MJEB.