Cricket is back! On Saturday 17th April, the 1st XI opened the club’s season hosting Potters Bar in a friendly. With COVID restrictions still in place until mid-May, there were sadly no spectators allowed for an exciting close fought 7 run defeat – Hassam Mushtaq stood out with 4 wickets. The following week saw Oxford Downs visit Church Meadow; the Meadowmen posted 221, with new player/coach Owen Alsop getting his first 50 for the club, but Thame couldn’t defend it as the guests ran away with victory. On the last weekend before the league season, the boys faced Aston Rowant in a T20, with a place in the final later that day on the line. 66 from Cal Russell helped Thame post 133, which Rowant chased down with 1 over to spare. Speaking ahead of the league season, skipper Mike Beard said “We’re excited to get going again and have another crack at the Home Counties Premier Division 1. We feel we are building an excellent squad and look forward to seeing what this group can achieve.”
The 2nd XI kicked off with a trip to Oxford Downs 2, and racked up an impressive 288 – Tim Baker and George Patey both scoring half centuries. 14 year old Zac Harris broke a 180-run opening partnership and Jack Aston bowled a double wicket maiden in his first over for 3 years, but this was in vain as Downs reached the high target. The 2s hosted a strong Horspath the following week who posted 254 – Jack Aston‘s 3 wickets and a Superman diving stop in the field from Chairman Matt Swain were the highlights for Thame. Aston and Robin Thompson 50s gave Thame hope in the chase, but ultimately fell 10 runs short.
The annual ‘Mashes’ match between the 3rd XI and 4th XI provided both teams with some pre-season action. The 4s posted 183-3 from their 40 overs, Taylor Vines top-scoring and retiring with 50. Shay Reading‘s 3 wickets put the 4th XI in control, however Toby Baker and Sean Bellenie pulled the game back for the 3s, both hitting 50 and retiring to set up a successful chase with just 3 balls left.
The Women’s XI started their competitive season with 2 Super 8 matches away to Beaconsfield – losing 1 and winning 1. 14 year old Zara Wyatt brilliantly picked up 4 wickets in her first 9 balls, and accompanied by 17 year old Isabella Kench (12), provided the strongest partnership in this 4 over pairs format of the game. A much higher chase in the 2nd match was Thame’s undoing.
Next Week’s Fixtures
1st XI v Banbury
East Oxford v 2nd XI
West Ilsley V 3rd XI
4th XI v Bledlow Ridge 2
Chesham v Women’s XI (Super 8s)
Saxons v Ascott-under-Wychwood