It was a successful day for Ovington as the Bucket Collection at the Racecourse exceeded expectations, alongside a crucial win for the First Team against local rivals Bishopthorpe. However, the wheels literally came off for one member of the Second Team in their game against Acomb.
As previously mentioned, the First Team were involved in a must-win game at Bishopthorpe. 37 points behind them in the First Division, a defeat would pretty much end hopes of a League title, whilst a win would keep themselves in the hunt. Bishopthorpe won the toss and elected to field.
The hosts will be disappointed not to have taken more early wickets as they gave away three golden opportunities to dismiss Ovington’s top-order batting cheaply. Tom Cookson scored 44 from 38 balls, assisted by Neil Metcalfe’s 31 from 36 balls, putting Ovington on 77-2. The scoring slowed as Tom Armes (23) and Craig Nicoll (48) put on 54 for the third wicket. Middle-order salvos towards the end of the Ovo innings by Ben Morrison (26), Stefan Littlewood (20) and Charlie Buckley (11 not out) saw Ovington reach the formidable looking target of 226-8 from their 40 overs. The best of the Bishopthorpe bowling came from young spinner J.Crowe (2-41), whose first five overs were particularly impressive and S.Reeves (2-36). Ex-Ovington player Ian Holmes, demoted from his often used role as an opening bowler, took 2-59 from his nine overs in an occasionally nervy spell of bowling.
In response to the Ovington total, Bishopthorpe lost wickets early with a good catch from Tim Burgess early on and were three wickets down with only 31 on the board. Scott Reeves came in at four and stuck about, keeping the scoreboard ticking over and was only dismissed by an excellent stumping by Tim Burgess for a individual score of 64. Bishopthorpe were supported in the middle-order from Ian Holmes (31), Seager (30) and M.Ford (31) , the trio keeping the game alive. Ovington would have only felt comfortable at 205-9 when Ford was dismissed. The last wicket fell from a fantastic one-handed catch from Tom Cookson in the final over, with Bishopthorpe 13 runs short. Ovington’s wickets were spread across the bowlers. Dom Kitching’s 4-54 will take the plaudits but Neil Metcalfe’s 1-23 from ten overs was crucial, along with two wickets apiece for Craig Nicoll (2-61) and Barry Steel (2-27).
This win means that Ovington are still 16 points behind Bishopthorpe in the league standings, so Ovington will need to win all of their games and hope for some luck. Fellow title rivals Burn also lost, so the Vale League title race is still all to play for with Ovington having five league games remaining. Burn v Bishopthorpe on the 6th August will be a huge game for all concerned.
The Second Team faced a depleted Acomb side at Millthorpe School, but for Foss Evening League captain Jed Fowke, it was an afternoon to forget. Fowke, drafted into the Second Team, had mechanical difficulties with his car tires and after sending frantic messages via WhatsApp, instead of playing Cricket, spent the afternoon in a branch of Kwik-Fit. His absence didn’t matter in the end as Ovington were 8 wicket winners in a one-sided affair. They now leapfrog Acomb into third place in Division Two and have an outside chance of promotion.
News regarding the final sum collected at yesterday’s Bucket Collection will be posted in due course later in the week.