It’s always such a pleasure when, as a captain, you get to witness the improvement that a player makes over the course of time. For Joe Graves, the fourth of September 2016 will always stick with him as the day the label of batting potential was replaced with the label of proven ability.
Having won the toss and electing to bat, Marcus J.E. Baker saw his side make a gentle start with Peter Baker and Jack Childs making a stable platform for the team. 46 was on the board when Childs was caught for 21.
Graves, in at 3, played a mature and measured innings as he played himself in before cashing in against the bad balls. He soon overtook Baker and rushed towards his maiden half-century and made a century partnership with the veteran. Baker himself closing in on a deserved fifty decided on the ultimate sacrifice when he retired on 46 allowing others to have their chance at the crease with overs running out. Young Ben Mansfield accepted this opportunity with an impressive 36 not out.
But it was Graves that took the applause as he continued to play in the same well-tempered manner that has seen him score throughout the season. Realising his potential he brought up three figures taking Reed to a final total of 249 for 4.
In the second innings tight bowling and good fielding restricted the oppositions scoring. The bowlers were rotated giving nearly everyone a turn with wickets going to Owen Hughes, Childs, Rob Lankester, Neil Haslam and M.J.E. Baker. Reed easily winning by 104 runs.
Report submitted by MJEB.