Barrow’s Bernie Helps Somerset To Beat Gloucestershire U17s

Barrow Gurney’s Bernie Forge helped Somerset Girls U17s beat Gloucestershire by 2 wickets on Wednesday at Apperley Cricket Club. Needing 128 to win, Bernie opened the batting and made 55 not out as Somerset got their target for the loss of 8 wickets in 41 overs. Having twice been stranded on 49 not out, this was her highest score for the Somerset age group teams.

Following in the footsteps of Ellie Holdaway who represented all the Somerset age group teams, and Bernie, both of whom now play regularly in the 2nd eleven, are a number of talented girl cricketers who represent Barrow at Under 13 and Under 11 level. Women’s cricket continues to thrive after the success of the England Women’s team and Barrow Gurney are keen to support and develop girl cricketers who benefit from being able to play cricket on equal terms to men and boy cricketers.


Fisher and Friends Reel In Bristol’s Score In Under 15 Clash

Monday night saw the visit of Bristol to play Barrow’s Under 15 team. Traditionally Bristol are a strong team, Barrow expected a hard game and so it proved. Clark set off in a hurry hitting the ball to all parts and riding his luck as Barrow spilled a few chances. He hit 4 6s and lost a couple of balls over the hedge at the village end, ably supported by Thompson in an opening partnership of 99. Clark made 55 with Thompson contributing 38. Isaacs then continued the accumulation of runs with 19 and eventually Bristol made 152 for 4 in their 20 overs. Only Frazier Thomas kept the runs down below 4 an over and took a couple of wickets too (2/15 off 4). Guy Fisher took a couple as well for 24 off his 3 overs, but this was just a warm up act for what was to follow!

152 was a good score on a greenish wicket, and surely Barrow would rue the 3 dropped catches which allowed Bristol’s key batsmen to reach such a total?

What happened next was a delight to those ardent Barrow supporters, including your correspondent, who have watched so many drubbings at the hands of the opposition over the years. Jackson Bryant and Guy Fisher opened up, Jackson took the unfamiliar role of holding up an end and pushing ones and twos, apart that is from one clean hit for 6 over the hedge at the village end (another lost ball!), meanwhile Guy showed a wide range of shots to all parts of the field, strong off his legs, through the covers and later on over mid-wicket to hit a team-mate’s car. When Jackson fell for 39 the pair had put on 121 for the first wicket after 15 overs, but victory was still not quite assured. With the score on 137, and having lost skipper Kieran Owen, Guy realised that he needed 14 more for a century and with only 17 needed for the win he played across the line but was bowled by Christie (3/25), he was cheered back to the pavilion celebrating an highest career score of 86 (with 2 6s and 9 4s). Ben Mead (5 not out) and Louis Bockock-Grace (10 not out) brought the side home to a truly memorable win with an over to spare.

This under 15 team have 3 games to play and still have a chance of overhauling high-flying Congresbury who they meet in the last game of the season.


Barrow Firsts Outpace The Pakistani Express

On a lovely day at Hobbs Lane the first XI welcomed Pakistani Express. Like the return fixture, the skipper (Sam Turner standing in for new Dad Phil Milton) lost the toss and was inserted into bat – albeit unlike last time, this made no difference as it felt like a day to bat first and put runs on the board. At 2-1 after six overs it didn’t look quite so clear. Will Kerswell was out shortly afterwards and Mick Hardy joined Nick Moore at 20-2. The main game changing moment happened in the next over, with Nick dropped twice on 11 – one a relatively straightforward caught behind by the keeper, and three balls later a tougher chance at first slip. Nick and Mick then built a superb partnership, starting cautiously but gaining momentum the longer it went on. At drinks Barrow were around 80-2. Nick moved serenely through the gears to bring up a determined fifty and finally went for 77 when run out unluckily trying to push the scoring rate.

Mick went next for a fluent 55, including two excellent straight sixes. Mick’s first scoring shot was the most gorgeous cover drive and he really did look back to his best. At 169-4 and with 9 overs to go it was really important to keep pushing towards 230, but with two new batsmen this target was never going to be easy. But James Mitchell played the role perfectly, scoring 44 at better than a run a ball, with the remaining batsman rotating the strike well, before James was out stumped in the final over.. 233-7 was probably around par (if not slightly above), but after a poor start and with runs on the board Barrow all happy with the score.

James Riley, as he usually does, started well, swinging the ball late and quickly and had the opener caught behind in the third over. James Mitchell (standing in behind the stumps) went on a lap of honour to celebrate the catch. At the other end, Ed Holdaway was making his Barrow return, and bowled a very disciplined line around off-stump. The decision to have a third man rather than fine leg turned out to be inspired when the dangerous looking skipper Ali top edged a cut shot and it went straight down Riley’s throat. When Riley got the big wicket of Shahid – bowled for 4 (32-3), Barrow were well on top. Ed chipped in with another and after 12 overs Pakistani Express were 43-4. A decent partnership followed and after the attacking early fields dispersed as Barrow were cautious given what happened the last time the teams met.

Next came a moment of controversy. Rob Figs bowled a second beamer and hurt the batsman – the umpires issued him with a second warning and there was some debate as to whether he was still allowed to bowl, eventually it was determined that he could.

Ed bowled 12 straight overs and he was rewarded with the fifth wicket in his eleventh over – a very good catch by James Mitchell – cue another lap of honour! The next few came and went cheaply (Mick Hardy (4-0-24-2) with both wickets – one being another caught behind from Mitchell capping an excellent day behind the stumps. However, one danger man remained – finally dismissed for 51 by Johnny Sykes (5-0-27-1), a diving catch at mid-wicket by Sam Turner. The game was up and it was all about whether Barrow could claim maximum bowling points. Riley (12-0-37-2) was unable to break through in his second spell, but Kieran Owen (6-0-19-1) managed to get his first BGCC 1st XI wicket (another caught third man!) – well deserved after bowling really well. The field in the final over was interesting to try and get the final wicket (two slips, leg slip, gully, short mid-wicket, two short covers, silly mid-off and silly mid-on) but the number ten didn’t bite and Pakistani Express finished nine down.

A really important win in a league which is becoming more and more bunched – anyone can beat anyone on their day (shown by Redcliffe bowling Hampset out for 47 yesterday).

“Very Talented Youth” help Barrow 2nds To Do The Double At Frampton Cotterell

Last season Barrow Gurney 2nds lost both their games against Frampton Cotterell, but this year have returned the favour this season with a good win on Saturday ensuring the completion of the double.

Frampton always play the game in the right spirit. Barrow received a club tweet from one of their players on Sunday commenting on the ‘very talented youth’. A sentiment evident from this year’s match reports,  although it is fair to say they are ably supported by some slightly less youthful!

Mark Gracey won his 4th consecutive toss and once again decided to make the most of the new ball and put Frampton Connterell in to bat. Barrow opened the bowling with Frank Forge and Matt Owen. Frank bowling with his usual good economy was unlucky not to pick up a wicket. Matt bowling with good pace picked up a couple of wickets (clean bowled) leaving the score 19/2 off 8. The first of his wickets broke the bail!!! No more wickets fell for a further 14 overs during which Paul Carter was busy keeping the scoreboard ticking over. Its not usual for Mike Lilley to go wicketless and this game was no exception with Liam Moore taking a fine high catch with Frampton then 74/3 off 21. At this point Barrow may have thought that on a slow pitch, they might be chasing 160 plus but Guy Fisher (1 wicket) and Mark Fisher (2 wickets) had other ideas picking up their 3 wickets for only 14 runs off a combined 10 overs, both supported by Liam who after a shaky opening began to find his rhythm after a few overs.

After 40 overs, Barrow were given a target of 138.

After tea Jackson Bryant and Mark Gracey opened the chase and after Jackson was caught behind Mark  started scoring on the leg side in particular putting on a 25 run partnership with Roger Finnemore before Mark fell caught behind for 21. Oscar Livesey came in and was bowled, as he put it, ‘pitched outside leg and bowled off stump’. Jordan Allen joined Roger put on a good partnership with Jordan being dismissed for 40 and Roger caught for 23. Guy was then caught for 1 and Frank and Liam saw Barrow home with 4 and 13 not out respectively.

The result sees Barrow only 8 points behind 2nd in the league.

Patchway Spoil Finnemore’s Barrow Debut

On what was a glorious day at Hobbs lane, Barrow Gurney 2nd XI were facing high flying, top of the table Patchway. Mark Gracey once again won the toss and once again chose to put the opposition into bat to make the most of the new ball.

Mark Fisher and Matt Owen opened the bowling and Barrow seemed to peg the Patchway openers down before picking up the first wicket in the 7th over.

Patchway’s skipper then came in and built a 40 run partnership before Ellie Holdaway took a good instinct catch off Kieran Owen’s bowling. Barrow were still keeping the Patchway batman pegged back with only 70 being scored off the first 20 overs.

The wickets seemed in short supply as Patchway put together another good partnership that lasted another 15 overs and 80 runs before Barrow claimed 2 quick wickets within consecutive overs. The first bowled by Guy Fisher and the other a great catch by Mark Fisher running backwards off Ellie’s bowling. Guy then picked up Barrow’s final wicket caught behind by Bernie Forge. At this point, Barrow still thought the run chase wasn’t too hard before Nello came in and slogged 21 off just 8 balls leaving Barrow chasing 193 to win.

After tea, Bernie was dismissed cheaply to a leg-side strangle. Mark Gracey then tried to score a few quick runs and scored a six early on in his innings, before being bowled by a straight one. Roger Finnemore came in at number three and lived up to his skipper’s billing scoring a very accomplished 64. Unfortunately the wickets fell around Roger and when Ellie fell to a great catch with a fielder diving full stretch at cover to dismiss her, Barrow were in trouble. Roger supported Jackson Bryant (15) and Kieran (39) as Barrow got closer to the Patchway score, but they unfortnately fell 30 runs short.

Once again Barrow gave away far too many extras with 41 of the Patchway score coming off extras.

Barrow Beat Blagdon in Duel Of The Sun

Barrow’s Under 15s travelled to Blagdon and skipper Kieran Owen lost the toss, allowing Blagdon to choose to bat.

Blagdon struggled for runs throughout with Frazier Thomas (1 for 10) finding some steep bounce from the outset. Tovey (16) and, in particular, Ake (17 not out) batted well keeping the scoreboard moving with a large number of extras boosting the score to 85 for 6 off 20 overs. Barrow’s fielding was most impressive with a great low catch from Guy Fisher and a sharp catch from Max Heron standing out. Ben Mead was the most successful bowler with 2 for 7 off his 2 overs whilst FinnHicks, Mark Fisher and Kieran Owen all picked up one a piece.

LBG Batting 2


With a gettable total Barrow changed the usual batting order with Louis Bocock-Grace promoted to open. Alex Hales look out, as Louis got off the mark opening his shoulders to propel the ball, one bounce, into the Rectory gardens. Losing fellow opener Guy Fisher for 9, Louis consolidated with some dabs for singles before playing the shot of the day. A good length ball despatched over midwicket for six runs. Blagdon should be thankful that Barrow’s Frazier Thomas, who was waiting to bat, parried the ball before it smashed the new pavilion window onto the head of Max Heron who flicked the ball deftly into a slip-catching net nearby. But when Louis (26) perished, undone by one which beat the dashing blade, hit the pad and trickled onto the stumps, Barrow were well on their way to victory.

The major threat though was young Ake (4 for 12) bowling with spin, guile, flight and the blinding sun behind him. Barrow tried to foil the attack by the use of designer sunglasses but a minor middle order collapse left a few worried about the eventual result, before last week’s heroes Jackson Bryant and Bernie Forge brought the team home again. Jackson (15 not out) hitting a couple of powerful blows over midwicket, whilst Bernie (9 not out) off drove one for 3 almost leaving the fielder in the pond at the lower end of the ground before hitting the winning runs by despatching a no ball into the same pond in the next over.

Barrow won with over 6 overs to spare.


Thrilling Win For 2nds As Youngsters Lead Barrow Home

The 2nd XI match against St Mary Redcliffe swung more times than one of Jimmy Anderson’s bowling spells with the result looking like it was going one way and then the other.

Mark Gracey won the toss and decided once again to make the most of the new ball and put St Mary Redcliffe into bat. A decision which looked like it was a good decision with Frank Forge bowling the one of the openers off his pads with his third ball.

Swung in favour of Barrow

St Mary Redcliffe then accelerated the scoring and off about 10 overs were on around 70.

Swung in Favour of St Mary Redcliffe

Ed Jones then threw a ball in from the boundary and (keeper) Bernie Forge successfully completed the run out of the other St Mary Redcliffe opener for 7. Dan Jones bowled the quick scoring Yandell in his 40’s while Mike Lilley and Dan kept the scoring in check and picked up a wicket a piece.

Swung in favour of Barrow.

Ellie Holdaway then bowled with her usual good line and picked up 4 wickets of the St Mary Redcliffe tail ably supported by Kieran Owen who after a shaky start hit his rhythm and bowled with good pace and picked up the final wicket of the last ball of the innings – St Mary Redcliffe 156 all out and maximum bowling points.

After a good tea by the Sykes family Barrow started what might have thought would be a relatively comfortable run chase.

Pete Holdaway returning to the team after a while away was beaten by a straight ball before Mark Gracey and Jordan Allen put on a 30 run partnership before the skipper was caught behind off a thin edge. Jordan carried on the scoring and with Barrow 74/3 off about 15 overs it was looking like Barrow were going to chase down their target comfortably, however Barrow then lost the wickets of Jordan (37) and Jonny Sykes, Ed Jones and Ellie very cheaply. Ellie was caught by a very athletic slip catch with the fielder at full stretch to his high right.

Swung back in the favour of St Mary Redcliffe with Barrow 89/7. 

Then it was time for the Kieran and Bernie show, they both blocked the St Mary Redcliffe bowlers determined to bat the overs, but always punished the bad balls. Both Bernie and Kieran batted with great maturity and guided Barrow home with unbeaten scores of 30 and 28 respectively with 2 balls remaining.

The highlights of the match other then watching Bernie and Kieran guide Barrow home was Ellie’s bowling, finishing with figures of 4 wickets off 6 overs for 6 runs.

Wizards Beaten By Barrow Magic

The Weston Super Mare Wizards came to Hobbs Lane on Monday hoping to cast a spell over the Barrow Gurney Under 15 team as they have so often in the past.

Batting first Weston lost an early wicket to Frazier Thomas before J Press and Sapra steadied the ship taking the score to 43 in the tenth over. Jackson Bryant then had Sapra well caught by Ben Mead for 23, Kieran Owen followed by taking a catch to dismiss Press again off Bryant for 17 and when Tilsey fell also to Bryant, Weston were 50-4 in the 12th over and seemingly struggling. Bryant’s 4overs 3-18 were the best bowling figures but he was well supported by accurate bowling at the other end. Kieran Owen bowled 4 overs for only 7 runs, Mark Fisher bowled his four for 18 and Frazier Thomas ended with 1-23 off his full four.

Bailey and Chambers batted sensibly and ensured that Weston batted out their overs but without ever fully dominating the attack. Weston closed the innings on 100 for 5 with keeper Bernie Forge running out the non-striker off the final ball of the innings.

A good start was imperative against a traditionally strong team, and when Guy Fisher fell without scoring, there were brief moments of alarm. Bernie Forge (42 not out) set herself to bat through the innings, whilst Jackson Bryant tried to take the attack to the bowlers. Despite some extremely accurate bowling from Chambers (4 overs for 8 runs) and occasional sharp spin from Ahmed, the Barrow pair put on 75 for the second wicket. Jackson hit some powerful shots over the covers, used the pace of the bowlers to find the third man boundary and dealt severely with anything on his legs hitting 7 fours before being dismissed by D Press attempting to clear the field once more. After playing in the middle overs to try and give her partner the strike, Bernie then moved up a gear to almost clear the boundary at the Fox & Goose end and finally to hit the winning runs with 9 balls to spare, hitting 6 fours in all. Of Barrow’s 103 for 3 the only runs off the bat were from the 2nd wicket pair, the remainder being extras.

A good win for Barrow as they look forward to playing Blagdon next week.


1st XI Frustrated By Fixture Clash

After a bye week and a game abandoned due to rain the 1st XI were champing at the bit to play this week’s fixture against West United. Arriving early for the start it soon became apparent that there had been some mix up and that Saltford CC were due to play on the same pitch at the same time. The game was therefore abandoned leaving a frustrated Barrow Gurney team and a complicated situation as to whether the game should be replayed or the unfortunate away team being awarded some recompense in terms of points which, of course, will be a decision for the League in due course.