1st snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in nail-biting clash
The 1s faced top of the table Slough, and bowling first put in a disciplined display, keeping Slough under pressure, but once again yielding little reward. The shackles were loosened by Conrad Louth who made a superb 106 not out, propelling his side to 271-4 declared off 62 overs.
Will Sutcliffe, promoted to the top of the order with wins a necessity for Thame in their bid to avoid relegation, got the chase off to a flier. He played some superb strokes in a fluent 38 before picking out mid on. Enter Thame overseas Gamindu Kanishka (pictured below), who took the fight to Slough on a wicket now showing prodigious turn and variable bounce. Supported by a battling 61 from skipper Mike Beard, Kanishka raced through to one of the finest hundreds you’re likely to see to put Thame within touching distance of a much needed win. When both fell at the end of a 150 run partnership, only 40 more were required but the wicket was never likely to be easy to start on. With four an over needed, wickets began to fall at regular intervals, resulting in 5 runs needed off the last over with 2 wickets in hand. Callum Russell was bowled third ball, and with 2 required from the final two balls, brother Andy was run out to seal defeat by just 1 run.
The 1s host Tring Park next week.
2s spin to a hard-fought victory
The 2nd XI welcomed Charlbury to Church Meadow with one of their youngest sides of the season. Bowling first, tight bowling from Thame’s opening pair of Liam Evans and James McStay put pressure on Charlbury’s batsmen. This laid the groundwork for spin twins Daniel Patey (4-63) and Alastair Thomas (5-47, pictured below) to rip through Charlbury’s batting, leaving them on 161 runs.
In response, Thame lost early wickets and fell to 44-3. Despite this initial collapse and continual rain breaks, classy innings from the young pair of Harry Thomas (50*) and Christian Warwick (61) regained momentum for Thame, helping the Meadowmen to reach to Charlbury’s total within 32 overs.
This fantastic win means that Thame are sitting comfortably in a promotion position, and face top of the table East Oxford next.
3s battle through rain to win 5th match in a row
The 3rds travelled to Oxford on Saturday, playing at a University ground that was still wet from the overnight rain. Thame won the toss and bowled with Will Bruce-Morgan (2-19) and Luke Hayes causing immediate problems with their bounce and swing respectively. Oxford were struggling to score at more than 2 an over after 15. However, with a few exceptions the fielding became uncharacteristically sloppy and Carey reached 55 thanks to several missed chances. Ian McStay (pictured below) was the pick of the bowlers (4-40), supported by Vim Desai (3-30) and John Phippen (1-21) but Oxford reached 152 all out, when Thame should have limited them to 120.
After a tea that was rated at barely 2/10, Thame set off quickly, with rain clouds threatening. Joe Phippen (25) and Andy Jinman (38) laid the foundations, with the first wicket falling at 60. Two breaks for rain then turned it into a run-chase and wickets began to fall. It was left to Paddy Harris (23) and a quick-fire 19 from Pete Higson to bring Thame home, by 3 wickets, albeit with a controversial twist at the end. The Oxford captain argued that play should stop at 7.30, rather than after the 10 overs that remained following the last cloudburst. Fortunately the league handbook cleared up the “confusion” and the 3rds won with 7 balls to spare.
The 3s host Kimble 2 next week.
4s beat the rain and the opposition to return to winning ways
In hurricane conditions at Lord Williams’, Thame 4s faced a mid-table clash with Bicester & North Oxford 3s, hoping to avenge their defeat in the reverse fixture earlier in the season. Winning the toss, Thame put Bicester in to bat, with Danny Thompson (1-25) and Ed Mather (2-20) combining well to dismiss Bicester’s dangerous opening batsmen; Thompson’s wicket coming from an excellent diving catch at square leg by junior, Jack Phillips on debut. Bicester rallied briefly before Neil Smith (3-6) and Mark Fellowes (3-15) worked well to dispatch the middle order, with Smith bowling superbly, including four maiden overs in a row. Bicester were eventually finished off for 91, by Dan Constant with a ball that appeared to turn a mile.
Thame opened the batting excellently with Tim Dabbs (40, pictured below) and Tim Airstone (9) toiling hard in the rain and wind to blunt Bicester’s opening bowlers. In between a few rain-affected stops in play, there was a temporary flurry of wickets as Bicester brought in a dangerous new bowler, but Neil Smith (20*) batted impressively to steady the ship, and carry Thame home.
Thame next play away to promotion-chasing Cropredy 3s.
Friendly defeat for Thame Women
This weekend Thame Ladies hosted a side from Mistley, Colchester. Thame fielded first and got off to a tremendous start taking 5 wickets off the first 6 overs for only 19 runs. Damage done by opening bowlers White (3-45) & Clarke (3-26) in addition to some outstanding fielding from Smith. Mistley however with the help of their captain Cornelius (106*) saw them to total of 203 runs off their allotted 30 overs.
In reply, facing some tough bowling, Thame’s wickets fell early. With the help of a rolling wicket format Thame steadied the ship and saw some crucial runs from White (39*), Morris (28) & John (29). Thame eventually falling short reaching 163.
Thame Ladies next league match is away at Henley on 19th August. There will be a cricket softball festival at the Thame cricket ground on 12th August for Girls & Women of all ages (no experience needed). It’s free to sign up and will be a great fun introduction to cricket. Have a look at the website to sign up!