Broadstairs travelled to Ashford this week on a very hot, muggy day. The Seasiders were hoping skipper Alex Hogben would win the toss and bat but Ashford won and asked us to field.
Ellison and Flint shared the new ball and created pressure early on, both beating the bat on numerous occasions. Eventually Ellison found the edge in his third over, Matt Hardy taking the catch at gully to remove Taylor. The Ashford overseas was next to go, unable to resist taking Ellison on and Carter taking the catch. 21-2 soon became 22-4 when Ellison then took 2 in an over, Reeves LBW and Pichowski caught at point by Fox.
However the dangerous Liam Tegg was still at the crease; Flint almost got his man but the opportunity wasn’t taken at mid-on. Perkins was also looking settled at the other end and Broadstairs had to be patient and stick to their plans. Flint finished his superb spell 7-3-23-0 and was replaced by the Kent League's highest wicket taker, Chris Kidd.
Tegg eventually gave his wicket up, taking Ellison on and ending up finding Carter on the long off boundary and at 45-5 Broadstairs were keen to wrap up the innings quickly. Perkins had other ideas and batted sensibly, waiting for the bad balls to put away but he needed someone to stay with him. Brad finished his spell 10-1-25-5 and was replaced by Noah McLennan.
Kidd took the 6th wicket LBW and Fox took his second catch of the match to give McLennan his first wicket reducing Ashford were 69-7 at the halfway stage. Perkins was still at the crease and had pushed into the 40's when Noah bowled Foad to give him his second wicket and Chris Kidd with the help of Matt Hardy finished the innings off, two genuine edges from the left armer and Hardy took both catches at slip. Perkins was left stranded on 49* and we had bowled Ashford out in the 32nd over for 91.
The Broadstairs record chasing is not good in recent times, could we chase down 92? Hogben and Fox once again opened but 3 deliveries in Hogben hit straight to point and we had lost out first wicket without a run on the board.
Enter Andy Bailey, who tucked into the opening bowler, hitting two lofted cover drives to the boundary and then a straight six into the neighbouring field. Fox (4) then attempted to take on the leg spin of Buckham but could only mistime his drive and the catch was taken. The score had moved onto 60-2 when Jayojit Basu (9) also succumbed to Buckham, gloving to the keeper. Soon after, Bailey (45) was bowled by the other leg spinner and George Kidd (0) was adjudged LBW and we had slipped to 61-5.
Nerves were setting in, surely we couldn’t throw this one away. Buckham claimed his fourth wicket when Noah was caught for 10, but Hardy had settled in and with Flint (2*) joining him the two set about picking off singles and waiting for the bad balls. Hardy (22*) then struck 2 boundaries to see us over the line.
Some poor shot selection from both sides but a good win when the pressure was on leads us into a huge game with OD CUACO next week at Park Avenue.