Having posted 259-7, Flitwick’s spin duo South African David Powles and Sri Lankan Rumesh Buddhika contained Reed’s batsmen so that they could only total 205-4 in an innings curtailed to 50 overs owing to rain breaks.
Initially, Reed’s seamers restricted their opponents to 57-3, including the prize wicket of Bedfordshire batsman, George Thurstance, bowled by Jack Tidey for 19. However, Harry Thurstance (71) and Buddhika (129 not out) shared a partnership of 157 until Tom Greaves trapped the former with the last ball of his 20 over spell. Tidey (2-32) and Zac McGuigan (2-62) chipped in with late wickets before the rain halted the innings two balls short.
Ed Wharton set the host’s innings off to a speedy start with a run a ball 55, but even he found the spinners hard to get away. Eventually both he and Greaves (15) holed out to Prowles, who also had the dogged McGuigan caught in the deep for a battling 37, finishing with the excellent figures of 19-4-49-3. Indeed the most exciting feature of this spell was umpire Brian ‘Shep’ Shepard crashing into the stumps, leaving him sprawling on the ground in his haste to fill in his overs chart! Although they were too far behind the run rate, Matt Sampson (40 not out) and Sean Tidey (28 not out), the latter with some audacious hitting, gave the crowd some late entertainment. Nevertheless, a game which eventually petered out due to the rain, ended with Flitwick gaining a “winning draw”.
Hoddesdon’s 1-wicket victory over Letchworth has left Reed 38 points behind them, although only 2 points separate them from next week’s opponents, Shenley Village. These last four matches of the campaign will be 50/50 matches with a return to the pink ball and coloured clothing.
Match Report submitted by Peter Wholley.