North Mid U11B vs Stoke Newington U11B
By Warren Chambers
U11Bs lose, but keep going until the last ball bowled
Stoke Newington won the toss and put North Mid into bat in a Pairs game. As the opening bowlers bowled well and accurately the North Mid boys found themselves working hard to defend their wickets, rather than attack. Our openers Uday and Sam did well to ensure no wickets fell in the first 4 overs, scoring 5 and 6 respectively. The runs then dried up as our batsmen struggled to score. When our batsmen did play an aggressive shot runs were restricted by the opposition's strong fielding & our boys not taking singles, or looking for the second or third run when they did. George, Owen and Luca continued to defend, all playing some nice shots in their innings, but the run rate stayed low. Seven wickets than fell in the second half of the innings as the boys attempted to push the total on, including three wickets in three balls in the end overs. North Mid finished their innings with 70 runs, of which 37 came from extras, showing how tough the boys found it to score runs. 7 wickets taken (at -5 a wicket) reduced the total for Stoke Newington to chase to 35. Looking forward, if the boys can take the shots and confidence they show in practices into a match situation, and make sure they take the runs when they are there, the bigger totals will come.
Onto the Stoke Newington innings.The boys took to the field determined to take wickets and restrict the opposition from scoring runs. The Stoke Newington openers came into bat and, despite straight bowling from our opening bowlers, they hit 28 runs off the first four overs, leaving them just 7 runs short. Rather than let their heads drop the boys recognised they needed wickets quickly to stay in the game. Elliott made the break through and the boys started to fight back. Luca and Owen bowled well, reducing the run rate in their overs and taking a wicket each. Noah and George then made a number of excellent stops in the field, lifting the mood some more, and the boys showed good spirit, encouraging each other with their bowling and fielding. Further wickets were taken by Danul, Alfie and Sam. Seb kept well, keeping the byes to 3, with a series of excellent takes, and encouraging the bowlers and fielders throughout. A run out (pleasing to our fielding coach!) meant our 7 wickets matched the number taken by Stoke Newington. Extras were kept at 32. However the total Stoke Newington were chasing wasn't high enough. After the 7 wickets were deducted Stoke Newington finished on 68, winning by 33 runs.
The difference between the teams can be put down to confidence at the crease and taking our practice batting drills into the middle in a competitive game situation. Considering that this is the second or third match against another club for many of the team, there were many positives. Bowling was much more accurate, fielding was focussed with good backing up (hardly any overthrows that I can recall), and the boys played well together as a team. Importantly they did not give up trying their best until the game had ended as they worked on clawing their way back into the game.
Well done to the boys for that and for focussing until the last ball had been bowled! Onto our next game!