After the rain had put paid to the Saturday games, the 3rd XI had better weather at Hobbs Lane on Sunday as they entertained the league leaders.
Losing the toss, Barrow were asked to field and despite good opening spells from Mark Fisher and Steve Owen the openers took the score to 50 with the only real chance being a hit wicket opportunity as one of them attempted to re-create the famous Ian Botham “leg over” incident but somehow failed to brush the bails. Finally though, Frank Forge deceived the advancing batsman for sister Bernie to complete the stumping. Frank then bowled the No 3 before limping off after 5 overs 2/4. Adam Brace bowled a good first spell but with no luck at all as opener Wadkar continued on his way to a very good century having been given only one life late on in his innings. Oscar Livesey chipped in with a wicket but did not really bowl his best, meanwhile young Leo Brace did really well to bowl 4 overs mostly at the century maker without giving much away until his final over, and it was he who took Wadkar’s wicket thanks to a catch by Oscar in the deep. Leo had previously clean bowled the no 5 batsman (to finish with figures of 2/25). In the last few overs the Bradley Stoke tail succumbed to 2 wickets in 2 balls both caught behind by Bernie off Mark Fisher before Adam finally got the wickets his accurate seam bowling deserved taking 3/37 including the final wicket with another stumping. 197 all out of which Wadkar made 112.
Barrow’s opening partnership of Mark and Bernie Forge made quite a brisk start, and when Bernie was unlucky to be bowled off her pads for 19 Barrow were 32-1 in the 7th over. Oscar then joined his captain to put on 66 for the second wicket, with Oscar hitting a full toss for 6. Meanwhile Mark despatched a couple of loose balls over short fine leg’s head. At drinks Barrow were 98-1 and up with the scoring rate and a win looked odds on. Then Wadkar re-entered the fray, generating quite a bit of pace off 3 strides darting the ball full at the batsman and getting it to skid and seam off the pitch. Oscar was his first victim, bowled, bringing Guy Fisher out to join Mark at the crease. They both found it hard to get Wadkar away (his 8 overs going for only 17) and he began to exert a stranglehold over the innings. Mark, having completed his first half century of the season, finally departed in the 31st over as Wadkar beat a weary defensive shot, Barrow 141-2 with 8 overs to go. Wadkar then ripped through the middle order including pouching a caught and bowled to dismiss Guy eventually taking 5/17. The lower order had too much to do from that point but Steve Owen was not going down without a fight and hit a mighty 6 or so it seemed but the long on fielder thrust up a hand to show willing and somehow it stuck! 173-8 final score.
This was a really enjoyable game played in a good spirit. Barrow competed all the way with the league leaders which is to the great credit of the whole team.