In contrast to last week’s sunshine, this 16-over clash got under way under gloomy cloud with the threat of rain. A full-strength Blades side were put in to bat and a steady start from Toon and Farmer saw the score rise to 37-0 after 6 overs. Both openers soon retired, Farmer after hitting a huge six to reach his unbeaten 28, and the middle order carried on the runfest. Whitear M retired on 26, also including a six as the change bowlers were tonked round the park. The Blades hit eight fours on what most had observed was not a batting pitch, and by the end of the innings The Blades had amassed an impressive 108 for 3.
The sun and a strong wind came out for the Shirley innings. It only took till the second over for their first wicket as the Newport Express clattered the stumps. That was followed by a second in his third over and Shirley were on a respectable 34-2 from 6. But that wasn’t to last as The Blades’ bowlers began the destruction. Meering’s first over saw a stumping and a catch behind, while Whitear M and Hurst both set themselves up for hat trick balls with two in two, but unluckily neither treble was to be. Shirley were disheartened, cold and collapsing by now, and wickets were going down as fast as the sun and the temperature. Whitear M bowled two more in the 15th over to bag himself a 2-wicked maiden and figures of 4 for 1 as Shirley limped to 70 all out giving The Blades their first win of the season.
RESULT: The Blades WIN by 38 runs
Champagne moment contenders:
Martyn’s 4 for 1
Richardson’s smart stumping from Meering’s bowling