Glenpark XI win exciting league opener against Whitehaugh

Glenpark XI v Whitehaugh XI
CSL Western First Division Reserve League
Saturday 25th May

The 2013 CSL Western First Division Reserve League finally kicked off this weekend, and it couldn’t have had a better start than the one experienced at Glenpark on Saturday. The sky was blue, the sun was shining, the ground looked perfect and there was enthusiastic support – not least from the foghorns emanating from the President’s Box and the “lobsters” on the sun-trap benches along the back wall.

Whitehaugh invited the home team to bat first and struck early as Dave Sharma ill-judged a pull shot. Aidan Forrest joined Chris Hempsey in the middle to ensure the bowlers didn’t capitalise on this breakthrough with a partnership of 43. After Aidan fell, Peter Hempsey joined his son and confirmed family harmony with a superb century partnership. Chris completed an excellent 50, but was unluckily bowled off his pads just when the team was looking to accelerate. Even after two further quick wickets it still looked as if a score in excess of 250 was on the cards, but Whitehaugh did a good job of keeping hard-hitting Ben Peterson off strike. Apart from a nice cameo from Louis Ware, the rest of the lower order failed to contribute significantly, and the innings closed on 247 at the end of the 50 overs. Given the quick outfield and short boundary, this was no more than a competitive total.

In spite of two difficult catches going down off Ben, and Dave uncharacteristically suffering from bowling no-balls, by the first drinks break these openers had taken half of the visitors’ wickets and put Glenpark firmly in the driving seat. Then Whitehaugh’s skipper Campbell launched a counter attack and shared in two big partnerships to bring the match to even stakes. Kieran Wylie was unlucky to have him dropped twice in the deep, before he finally fell as a second crucial wicket to Sandeep Singh. It was cat-and-mouse from thereon in. The scales tipped in the batting’s team favour as two fielders had to leave for work duties, back to Glenpark when Louis showed his potential for the second time in the day with some economic bowling, then again to the visitors when he had to leave to catch a ferry (bringing in to question the decision to start at 1pm instead of noon). Neil Flack came on as substitute, but this still left nine players on the field with the resulting gaps. The batsmen made steady progress eating into the target and it was clear the match was going to the wire as the Forrest brothers Aidan and Niall looked to bowl out the innings. Thankfully Whitehaugh pressed the self-destruct button with three run outs, including the last wicket leaving them 6 runs short with three balls to go.

Along with the spectacle, mention should be given to the fine spirit of the game and particularly the fair play shown by Whitehaugh. In spite of failing to secure an LBW in the first innings, it did not deter the visiting umpires from giving decisions, and a batsman walking after a thin edge to the ‘keeper. Glenpark look forward enthusiastically to the return game against a like-minded team. Here’s hoping the sun shines again.

Glenpark XI (12 pts) 247 for 9 (50 overs) CJK Hempsey 84, P Hempsey 44; A Miller 3 for 39

Whitehaugh XI (5 pts) 241 (49.3 overs) D Campbell 73, I Malik 39*; DC Sharma 3 for 31

Glenpark XI won by 6 runs

Glenpark XI Man of the Match:  Easy decision this week, a welcome return to the 2nd XI for Chris Hempsey

Scooby Award: With only a few players remaining at the end of the match again not officially awarded, and again special mention to Ben Peterson for having luminous socks, compounded by his display of matching trainers!


'The Snake'