With both Barrow teams losing last Saturday, the season, for both, remains in the balance. In a thrilling game at Hobbs Lane, Barrow Seconds scored a competitive 203-8 in their 40 overs with Frank Forge leading the way with 41 opening the innings. Mark Gracey added a useful 35 before Jonny Sykes hit 5 fours and 5 sixes in 6 overs making 60 to get Barrow to a par score on a slow pitch which had reasonable bounce.
In reply YMCA 4s started well putting on 73 for the first wicket, before Jonny made amends for an early slip up by taking the first of three good catches. Wickets then fell steadily with Jonny adding an excellent stumping as Oscar Livesey took 4/46. When Lush was caught for 22 by Frank Forge in the fading light it was 190-8, and five runs later Frank executed a brilliant piece of fielding on the boundary, which with Jonny’s help accounted for the 9th wicket. With all to play for, Barrow struggled due to having only 5 bowlers, and with Adam Brace limping badly to complete his overs, YMCA just sneaked home.
With main rivals Bristol Civil Service 2s also losing, the seconds are now 21 points ahead of YMCA going in to the last game of the season against relegation-bound Bradley Stoke 4s who are without a win this season.
For the Firsts a win was desperately needed, but as they travelled to Bohemians, they found themselves batting first on a difficult wicket and were bowled out for 116 with only Sameera (29), Bernie Forge (16), Phil Milton (13) and Ali Hood (12) making double figures as Kris Conabeer took 4/19. In reply Bohemians lost 5 wickets, with Steve Owen taking two and James Riley, Paul Gard, and season’s debutant Paul Glazzard taking one a-piece.
With one game to go, the Firsts have a mathematical chance of avoiding relegation but a visit to promotion winners Bristol Pakistanis does not offer an easy opportunity for the final league weekend.