GARGOYLES END SEASON WITH A SMILE
Sunday marked the end of the most successful season ever for Alstonefield St.Peter’s Cricket Club, with notable victories over all their opponents (apart from the Ladies XI) and a record number of playing members to boot. In their nineteenth and final match, the Gargoyles just failed to reach the Invitation XI’s 188 all out, but the celebratory atmosphere in the George reflected the club’s significant progress and many achievements in season 2010.
Choosing to bowl first in the autumnal damp, there was a real sense of family as Mikey Allen opened the attack to captain Brian Allen and had the bitter sweet pleasure of bowling Finn Allen in his second over. Simon Smith then gave his most authoritative batting display of the season, with a powerful series of straight drives, in his 24. The Invitation XI then began to prosper, as Clifton’s Walliscroft and Oakamoor’s Sherratt put on 73 runs at over nine an over, helped by the usual epidemic of dropped catches. The Gargoyles tightened up as Phil Bagshaw and Ian McKay bowled their combined twelve overs for only 36 runs and claimed six wickets between them, with Bagshaw’s superb catch off his own bowling to dismiss danger man Hill, being the pick of his four dismissals. Some lusty blows from Gill and Ashbourne’s Fryer at the end, gave a respectable, but achievable 188 all out at tea, a target of just under 5.5 an over.
The Gargoyles got off to a breezy start, with John Salt and Neil Shotton chancing their arm, before Salt skied one to a fielder who could catch. Dave Singleton without finding his usual fluency managed to limp 24 runs in singles, as he and Shotton added 57 for the third wicket. The small but brave crowd were treated to the spectacle of Shotton completing his maiden half century in an innings most Gargoyle like. Ugly but effective. Phil Bagshaw continued his rich vein of form, as he tried to keep up with the required run rate, making 38 off 21 balls and earning yet another Man of the Match award for a brilliant all round display. When he was stumped, charging the spinner, victory went with him and the Gargoyles finished 22 runs short at 166 for 5 wickets. Not quite the perfect end to a successful season, but plenty to be proud of.