Hopwood puts Bretforton in a spin
Cotswold Hills League, Premier Division
Wellesbourne won by one wicket
A PULSATING game of cricket saw Wellesbourne snatch a one-wicket success over Bretforton with five balls to spare on Saturday to move back up to second place in the league standings.
Bretforton were left to rue a dropped catch as young tail-ender Noah Rose was missed with only ten runs needed, and with fellow youngster Reece Myatt, Bourne’s last wicket pair saw them home to a victory.
Bourne won the toss and put the hosts into bat and openers Steve Edghill and Ashley Icke made a confident start as the Bourne bowlers could not hit the right areas and soon raced to 50 in only nine overs.
The visitors needed to stem the runs and the introduction of Darren Mole and Sean Hopwood did just that as they began to slow the scoring rate and also take wickets.
First to go on 69 was Icke, who was bowled by Mole for 33 and then three runs later Mole had Edghill (31) to a superb caught and bowled.
Hopwood then took over, taking the next five wickets in a superb spell of 10-4-5-17 as Bretforton slumped to 80-7 in the 23rd over.
His first wicket was trapping Paul Jones LBW, he then had Duncan Beale caught by Dave Barnett, clean bowled Luke Richardson, Steve Clarke then fell to a marvellous catch at short mid-off by John Edden and finally, another outstanding catch by Mole, removed Bruce Ford.
Bourne were now well on top and with Mole finishing his spell with the fine figures of 10-4-2-18, were sensing an early end to the innings, but Icke and Alex Evans had other ideas and they produced an excellent stand of 70 before Evans (30) was stumped by Barnett off Jamie Maynard (5-0-1-26).
Anthony Pratley then helped Icke, who made a fine 50 not out, see the hosts through to 168-8 off their 45 overs.
In reply, Bourne soon lost Myles Isted to a catch behind by Clarke off Edghill with the score on ten and on 35, Mole (10) was caught by Jones off Pratley.
Maynard was then joined by Edden and they began to build a good partnership with both looking solid until out of the blue Maynard was bowled by Dan Lamb for a fine 42.
Lamb then removed Hopwood and when Edden (19) was caught and bowled by Richardson, the visitors had slumped to 91-5 in the 28th over.
However, skipper Barnett, with the assistance of Travis Butcher, steadily took the score to 127 before another collapse ensued and Bretforton had swung the game in their favour.
Butcher was stumped by Clarke off Evans, Matthew Woods was caught by Icke off Edghill (2-25), then a calamitous misjudgement led to Barnett on 36 being run out before Tom Stephenson was bowled by Lamb (3-20) and with the score on 156-9 the cars were starting their engines.
It was then Bretforton missed the catch that cost them the game, as Rose with 16 not out and Myatt saw Bourne home with mixed emotions.
Wellesbourne entertain Long Itchington on Saturday (1.30pm start).
More cricket reports in this Thursday's Herald.