Barrow 1st XI won their crucial game against Chew Magna 2nds on Saturday to keep their hopes of avoiding relegation alive. Meanwhile the 2nd XI lost their game away to Mells 1sts which means both teams need to win their final league games to have a chance of staying in their respective divisions.
At Hobbs Lane the Firsts pulled out one of their best bowling and fielding performances of the season. Batting first Chew Magna lost one opener well caught at slip by Paul Glazzard off Mark Fisher whilst paceman James Riley bowled the other. Chew Magna then found it hard work against the accurate off spin of Frank Forge and fast medium bowling of Kieran Owen. Frank dismissed the opposition captain Lee Bryant inducing him to play on, before coming up against his former form tutor Dave Blower. When Blower (top scorer with 25) struck a mightly blow over mid-wicket for six the friendly battle intensified and when another big hit was mistimed Frank took the return catch. Frank finished with 3/23 off his 9 overs. Meanwhile there was friendly rivalry at the other end as Kieran won the battle against old school friend Jackson Bryant but not before the younger Bryant played a majestic cover drive for four. Kieran’s 7 overs went for only 21 whilst skipper Paul Glazzard further turned the screw with 1/5 off 5. Jonny Sykes then struck with his first ball before Nick Heal took 2 in 2 to finish off the innings for only 108.
After tea Barrow suffered an early loss of Will Kerswell but after that Paul Glazzard (42*) and Guy Fisher (40*) chased down the total in 26 overs with few alarms.
At Mells, Barrow were also in the field and accurate bowling from Mike Lilley and Adam Brace (2/24) looked likely to restrain the home side to a manageable total. However Ford anchored the innings to make a half century to build a solid platform despite Oscar Livesey and Ellie Holdaway taking a couple of middle order wickets a piece. However in the last 10 overs Rich and Seegobin launched an assault on the Barrow bowling with only one extremely close run out appeal threatening to hold them in check. Seegobin’s 61 not out came in 34 balls whilst Rich’s 46 came in only 29. 242-9 looked to be a daunting total.
Barrow tried another new opening partner with Bernie Forge as Mike Lilley stepped up. They put on 41 before Bernie was dismissed for 29. Mike soon followed leaving Mark Gracey (41) and Oscar Livesey (37) to put on a significant partnership of 67 but at nowhere near the scoring rate needed. Only a jaunty innings from Scott Fisher (26 not out off 25 deliveries) really upped the rate but Barrow were always going to fall well short. Eventually they closed on 168-6.
In the final game of the league season Barrow Firsts need a maximum points win and other results to go their way, whilst for the seconds just a win over Coalpit Heath 3rds who are one place above them would suffice. Both teams would hope that they might get some good support and encouragement from all those not playing on Saturday.