Athey's fifer fails to ignite Avoncroft - The Bromsgrove Standard

Athey's fifer fails to ignite Avoncroft

Bromsgrove Editorial 29th May, 2015 Updated: 17th Oct, 2016   0

A FIVE-wicket haul from Paul Athey was in vain as Avoncroft suffered a disappointing defeat to a depleted Himbleton side at the Alf Tolley Memorial Ground.

The visitors were weakened by the absent of six first team players, but their team spirit and determined proved just enough to edge themselves to a three-wicket win.

Being asked to bowl after losing the toss, Himbleton started aggressively as the accuracy of George Clifton and Rogers’s ability made runs hard to come by for the top order of a young Avoncroft side.

Rogers soon took the first wicket of the day after having Joe Ingle brilliantly caught behind by Luke Brace before Clifton’s extra pace was too much for Sam Hughes as he was clean bowled to put Himbleton in control as they restricted their hosts to 33-2.

The introduction of Ronnie Guy was the defining moment as he managed to bowl a searching length which ultimately proved too consistent for the Avoncroft middle order.

Firstly, he removed the danger man David James before a smart caught and bowled made Will Sach’s visit short lived.

Rose replaced Rogers and took little time in making his mark on the game. He removed the heavy hitting Bird with Luke Brace again making a difficult chance look easy, before an identical event occurred next ball to dismiss Craig Hughes.

With Avoncroft struggling on 73-6, David Charlton took the positive approach and went at the Himbleton attack and scored an aggressive 32.

He looked like he could take the game away from the Meadow Boys, but Dickinson brought back Clifton to bowl in tandem with Paul Guy and they clinically removed the last three wickets to leave themselves a gettable target of 120 for victory.

Himbleton’s reply got off to a steady start as both Brace and Michael Keel looked comfortable against the pace and accuracy of Avoncroft stalwart opening bowler Athey.

But when one wicket fell, two more followed, with Athey claiming all three to leave Himbleton on 23-3. This failed to derail the visitors, though, as Dickinson dug in and almost single handily took the game away from Avoncroft.

After fluent innings, he fell two short of a half century, while Roger was bowled by David Charlton. Athey came back into the attack and collected two more wickets, with George Clifton and Tim Pretty becoming his latest victims, to notch up his fifer.

The pressure was now on Chris Lannie and Matthew James to see off Athey and drag their side home, but they remained composed and sealed the win.

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