Barrow Gurney were successful in winning both friendly games this weekend.
On Saturday against St Mary Redcliffe, captain Ed Holdaway won the toss and sensing that the wicket may have a little moisture and then dry out later under the bright, if not hot, sunshine put the opposition in.
Matt Owen (1/35) bowled with good pace and accuracy as did Connor Jones (2/21) as Redcliffe made a slow start. Barrow’s change bowlers were equally effective as Paul Gard (1/14) benefitted from a sharp catch from Matt Owen, and Oscar Livesey (2/18 off 8 overs) proved irresistible, but it was Oscar’s run out which will live long in the memory as, with the batsmen running a second, a throw to the bowlers end resulted in Oscar gathering the ball and throwing down the stumps at the other end to run out the unwary striker. With the captain himself then taking 2/2 off 3 overs, it was time for Ben Skuse to take his first wicket since 2007 and Redcliffe were dismissed for a disappointing 147.
In reply Pete Holdaway and Ben Skuse were undone by a couple of LBWs, Ben when well forward, and Pete, after showing the crowd a couple of those cut shots of yesteryear, almost walked as he was caught on the back foot. 15-2. The partnership that followed between Barrow’s premier women cricketers took the game away from Redcliffe as Ellie Holdaway (62 not out off 59 balls with 9 4s) dominated the strike and the bowling in an impressive innings, ably supported by Bernie Forge (44 not out off 40 balls with 7 4s). Between them they gave barely a chance whilst punishing the loose ball to put on 133 for the third wicket to win the game with 15 overs to spare.
On Sunday Barrow were at Flax Bourton where Flax won the toss and decided to bat. Leo Brace started the bowling and soon took the vital wicket of Sam Flowers by running to take a caught and bowled, eventually going onto the well-deserved figures of 6 overs 3 – 20. Flax then accumulated well and an 81 run partnership for the fourth wicket saw them to 135 -3. They then lost 4 wickets for 2 runs thanks to 3 – 8 from James Riley and some off-spin from Barrow’s regular wicketkeeper, Bernie Forge who had figures of 2 – 6 from 4 overs. Flax eventually finished 160 all out in the 39th over. All 9 bowlers contributed to a good all- round performance with new keeper Mark Gracey taking a catch and a stumping.
Mark Gracey and Guy Fisher opened up and forged a solid start with a partnership of 41 for the first wicket before Gracey fell for 9. Then having lost Guy for a well-made 40, Bernie Forge took control , and despite running out the captain also for 9, built further partnerships with the middle order, most notably a 64 run partnership with James Riley (16) to see Barrow home with a comfortable 5 wicket win with over 3 overs to spare. She scored the winning run to end up 52 not out.