Thurrock CC – Match Reports 22nd/23rd June
Thurrock CC 1st XI – 79/0
Rettendon CC 1st XI – 78 all out
DIVISION 1 leaders Rettendon visited Blackshots on Saturday with the hosts eager to recapture lost ground in the promotion race. Following the rain deluge the previous evening, skipper Nick Henry elected to bowl first on a rain affected pitch and veteran all-rounder Matthew Hills took full advantage to run through the top order with the visitors batsmen struggling to adapt to conditions. Fellow all-rounder Dan Laird was quick to join in the wicket taking action, striking with his very first delivery on his way to 4-8 wickets, with Matt Hills finishing with excellent figures of 6-38 to bowl the visitors out for 78 in 26 overs to leave the hosts supremely confident of picking up the win.
Following a quick change around, the visitors knew they had to strike early blows to stand a chance of applying any pressure, but following an early let-off for O’Neill, the hosts were able to cruise to their victory target with few alarms as the opening pair of O’Neill and Ayub reached the victory target in 15 overs, with O’Neill unbeaten on 42 and Ayub 25 not out to seal a convincing 10 wicket win which brings Thurrock right back into the promotion picture.
Little Waltham CC 2nd XI – 76 all out
Thurrock CC 2nd XI – 77/0
Thurrock travelled to Little Waltham as they continued there promotion charge with an emphatic 10 wicket win over hosts Little Waltham. Skipper Terry Hills won the toss and inserted the hosts with the intention of looking for early breakthroughs, and they were duly provided by wily swing bowler Paul Gelder as he exploited the new ball to devastating effect removing 3 of the top 5 in assistance with Dan George who kept things tight at one end to keep the pressure on the hosts. With Gelder in full control of the new ball the batting side were never able to break away as Gelder bowled through his allocation of 12 overs on his way to match winning figures of 5-34. With the home sid eon the ropes, the spin duo of Brooks and Simmons ran through the lower order to leave the hosts bowled out for a well below par 76. After the break the visitors opening pair knocked off the runs at breakneck speed, with Mason Wren scoring 59 off just 39 balls, well supported by fellow opener Dean Henry who finished 12 not out as the visitors knocked off the runs in just 9.1 overs to leave themselves in 2nd place in the Division 5 promotion race.
Thurrock CC 3rd XI – 102 all out
Great Baddow CC 3rd XI – 86 all out
Thurrock 3’s continued their climb up the Division 10 league table with a superb bowling performance at Blackshots as they triumphed by 16 runs in a low scoring encounter. After being inserted by the visitors, the Thurrock batsmen struggled to counter the threat posed by new ball bowler Paul Lovegrove as one batsman fell after another faced the long walk to the pavilion as Lovegrove finished with outstanding figures of 8-39 from 12 overs. Only Troy Slaney and Elliot McCartney put any kind of resistance with 18 each as the home side scrambled to 102 to leave themselves with a glimmer of hope going into the second half.
Knowing that early wickets were required to leave themselves any chance of coming out on top, opening bowlers Packer and Umfreville ran through the top 5 leave the home side dreaming as Umfreville finished up on 4-20 from 12 overs. Iftikhar Ali and Alex Mclellan came on first and second change and kept a tight rein on the scoring rate as the pressure began to mount on the visiting batsmen as one after another fell trying to increase the scoring rate, as Mclellan picked up to 2 quick wickets to leave the match on tightrope as the Great Baddow required 16 with 1 wicket left, Ali then struck to remove the dangerous Smith for 13 thanks to a fine low catch at gully from Mclellan to seal a fantastic win in an enthralling encounter as 3’s recovery continues.