Broadstairs welcomed Harvel this week and on a scorching hot day, the toss was vital.
Captain Matt Hardy won yet another toss and our bowlers could put their feet up for a few hours.
After the shockingly sad news this week about Dave Benfield, both sides observed a minute’s silence before the match commenced.
Jay and Nathan opened-up and faced some decent spells from the Harvel opening bowlers. It was Nathan who fell first for 8, trapped in front. Alex then joined Jay and the pair of them set about seeing off the new ball. Jay yet again looking class with his cover drives, cuts, pulls and leg flicks and with a lightning outfield he was looking set for a big one.
Alex was caught at point for 1 just after Jay had reached a brilliant half century and Andy Bailey was next in.
These two then set about building a partnership which just oozed class and it was Bailey who played shot of the day with a sublime on-drive.
The Harvel bowlers had no answer, a partnership of 50 was reached in just 47 deliveries and in the 27th over Jay reached a brilliant ton from just 87 deliveries in front of a crowd of spectators who had appreciated this superb knock.
The pair brought up the hundred partnership in the 29th over from just 73 deliveries and the visitors were looking down and out.
Bailey was next to fall for 36, another LBW and we were 179-3. The skipper then joined Jay and kept the rate going with boundaries and plenty of singles. A little partnership of 34 was ended when Jay found deep square leg but a standing ovation as he walked off for 138 from 106 deliveries, it was a joy to have witnessed.
George Kidd joined Hardy with the score on 213, and timed the ball from the off, helping the skipper push 1s and 2s, the fifty-partnership coming up in 45 deliveries in the 42nd over. George was then brilliantly stumped for 23 and Tom Marshall made his way out. Matt Hardy then reached his half century in front of his mum and dad visiting from Southampton and we brought up the 300 in the 47th over and the following over another 50-partnership from just 31 deliveries was achieved.
Getting to the final over, the skipper was on strike needing 14 runs for his century. He could only find a single before Tom punished a full toss for a maximum and then getting the skipper back on strike. He ended up 92* and with Tom (20) saw us reach 336 from our 50 overs.
And so to the bowling, we knew we had a huge score against a weakened opposition but they still had batsmen who have done well against us in the past. Brad and Flinty shared the new ball and it was Flint who struck first, after a big shout with his first ball, a similar delivery with his fourth for the umpires decision. Soon after he removed the left handed Mcsweeney, caught by Alex at short mid-wicket and when Ellison removed McCormick caught by Nathan and then the Harvel skipper played on the visitors were 12-4.
Chris Flint has probably been our unluckiest bowler this year, bowling superbly yet again he was getting his rewards today, another LBW removed Darby and when he bowled Kruger he was one wicket away from his 5fer. At 15-6 it was only a matter of time, Chris Kidd was itching to bowl and extend his lead as the league’s top wicket-taker and he got involved in his second over, Harry Carter taking the catch. Next ball he removed Turvey and was on a hat trick for the second time this season.
After a blast from Harry Carter who was moving the ball huge amounts off the seam, Tom Marshall was called upon and struck immediately, Nathan taking a good catch at deep mid-wicket.
Flinty was given one over to try and claim his fifth but it wasn’t to be, so Kiddy was brought back to end the innings with another LBW and Harvel had been skittled for 63 inside 24 overs.
Flint ended with 4-22 from his 8
Brad 2-7 from 6
Chris 3-10 from 3.2
Tom 1-3 from 2
A superb effort in searing heat albeit against an under-strength opponent, but you can only beat what’s in front of you. A superb century from Jay backed up by Bails and then a great knock from Hardy along with George and Tom set us up nicely. The bowlers lead by Flint finished the job and we look forward to hosting Ashford next week.
Come along and give us some support and enjoy a couple of drinks. There was plenty yesterday and lots of vocals from Mark Smith (thanks Smudger)