It was a tale of mixed fortunes for Ovington sides over the past week, with two senior Saturday sides up against it, while another recorded an important win. There was also some dramatic batting in the concluding game of the Foss Evening League.
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Winning the toss and bowling first as his preference, no matter the weather, Jimmy Taylor’s Ovington Thirds came up against a fine batting performance from Clifton Alliance opener Glyn Brookes-Humphreys. Dominating the scoring early on, he got 66 but was finally dismissed by Luke Smith with a fine catch on the boundary by Jeremy Fowke. At 98-2, on paper Clifton had a good base but they struggled to get really going and some good late-bowling by the aforementioned Smith (2-19) and some dirge by Joe Warn (1-4) meant Clifton could only reach from their 40 overs 145-6. U13 Ollie Brookes-Humphreys batted for probably 30 overs and made 22 not out. Tim Munday made his return for Ovington having played his last game for us in around 2003 and took two catches alongside being involved in a run-out.
In reply, skipper Taylor and Fowke got on with the task in hand and scored at high run-rate before Fowke was dismissed. Annie Brown took two wickets without the score changing and it left Ovington 36-2. Up stepped Joe Browning and alongside Taylor, they took the total to 110. Browning made 36, while Jimmy Taylor got Ovington over the line with a minimum of fuss, finishing with a boundary to get to 75 not out. It was an important victory as Clifton are one of the teams that are around the top-end of the Div 3 table.
The Seconds also faced Clifton Alliance, this time their 3rd team. Clifton were asked to bat first, and Andy Hockenhull (2-35) struck early, before John Myers (28) started to cut loose. Jack Walmsley (2-34) bowled excellently, and when the debutant Bysse Shelley (2-50) came on to claim two wickets, the visitors were wobbling at 67-5. However, a sixth-wicket partnership of 60 between L and J Clark, proved to be a match-winning partnership. Hockenhull and Walmsley returned to dismiss one Clark each, but Will Moll’s brisk 20 took Clifton to 157-7.
Ovington’s response was steady, with James Harrod (15) and Liam Herringshaw guiding the home side to 41-0, against some tidy bowling by Matthew Simms. When Harrod and then Andy Cole fell in the same Joseph Hodge (3-12) over, the pendulum had swung back towards Clifton, but Herringshaw (41) started to find the middle of the bat and the edge of the outfield, as he and Harry Buckley (23) took Ovington to 71-2. It all went rapidly downhill after that, as Moll (3-39) and Jake Atkinson (4-23) tore the heart out of the middle and lower order and Ovington slumped to 109 all out, with only Andy Hockenhull (16) offering any real resistance.
The First Team played one of the two front-runners in their division, Pocklington II’s and simply couldn’t score enough runs for Pock to chase. This was despite a fine knock from Pete Kelly (78) and support from James Eckersley (36) and Tim Burgess (30). 190-7 was all they could reach and without prolific bowler Neil Metcalfe in the side (Happy Anniversary, Neil!) – the Ovo attack lacked a key talisman. Kurt Baird stepped up to the plate admirably, keeping things tight at one end but they couldn’t make a key breakthrough as the Pock top-order got their with a minimum of fuss with ten overs left. Charlie Buckley got two wickets.
This bottom of table clash saw some fine boundary hitting by both sides. Ovington openers Stefan Littlewood and Sam Dixon combined to add 77 for the first wicket before Littlewood was bowled by Chris Walker on 55 (from 27 balls), which included 6x6s. The new batsman joined Dixon in the middle to help drive the visitors to 156 before being caught in the field off the bowling of Chris Woodfine on 67 from just 24 balls. Walker was the pick of the bowlers with 2-42. Ovington finished on 177 from their 18 overs.
Stillingfleet dominated Ovington’s opening bowlers, racing to 61 after just 5 overs with Phil Johnson and Phil Carsfield doing the damage. Carsfield (42) fell to the bowling of Luke Smith (2-43) after being caught by Dominic Carass on the boundary. Johnson continued to pile on the runs, and was instrumental is seeing the home side over the line with one over remaining, finishing unbeaten on 84 (8×6s, 3x4s).
This week sees an Ovington side involved in a cup-final. The Third Team play Clifton Alliance IV in the Prendergast Memorial Trophy Final, which is the T20 competition. The game is scheduled to start at 1pm at Selby Cricket Ground in the opener to a double-header with the Guy Mitchell Cup. The weather isn’t due to be very good but with some luck and covers, there might be an opportunity of play. Game starts at 1pm and they’ll be a bar/BBQ available throughout the afternoon.
The First Team travel to Drax II’s in the penultimate game of their campaign, the First Team season lasting a few weeks shorter than the rest of the club. The Second Team host Melbourne on the Little Knavesmire. The York Press claimed that Ovington had been dragged into a relegation battle with their defeat on Saturday but nothing had changed whatsoever from beforehand and Melbourne would be targeted as a winnable game, especially at this time of the season. A victory would be an important step for safety. The Third Team host Pocklington at Millthorpe and will be looking to keep the pressure on the sides towards the top of the Div 3 table.
All the best to all the Ovo sides this weekend.