21 April 2014

20/20 Match – Common Room v Old Abingdonians

Today 11 members of the Old Abingdonian Club and 11 members of the Masters' Common Room took part in the annual Gerald Smithson Memorial 20/20 match on Upper Field. Thankfully this year the weather gods were kind and the rain held off until the last over of the game.

The two captains, David Allison (OA 1993) and Alex Cann (Theatre Manager) completed the toss and the OAs were put into bat by the MCR on the slightly green and damp wicket. The bowling efforts of Rob Southwell-Sander and Simon Steer put pressure on the opening pair ensuring that the OAs got off to a slow start. Frank Johnson (son of Adrian Johnson – OA 1978) came in at the fall of the first wicket and produced some lovely strokes before being retired at 50. This enabled the OAs to post a score of 116 for 6 off 20 overs with Andrew Hall (Common Room) the pick of the bowlers with figures of 3 for 20 off his 3 overs.

The MCR team then went into bat, opening with honorary MCR team members Rupert Kelley (current pupil) and Mr Peter Whinfrey (parent), sadly the latter was caught in the first over and Rupert quickly followed in the second. On followed the masterful batting of Andrew Broadbent (Common Room) who scored a quick fire 26 before succumbing to a dubious LBW decision. Rob Southwell-Sander then took the game to the OAs with some lusty leg side blows and his innings of 50 retired included a huge 6 which cleared Park Road and went half way into Lower Field! He was ably supported by Simon Steer (Common Room) who made a vital 19 and despite both departing 3 runs short of the victory target, the MCR team were able to scramble over the finish line to win by 3 wickets with 14 balls to spare, just as the heavens opened for a thunderstorm.

Thank you to both umpires, Rodney Pitt (OA 1961) and Neil Hunter (Common Room), for ensuring the match was a success.

40/40 Match – 1st XI v Recent Leavers

Meanwhile, on War Memorial Field, the School’s 1st XI hosted a team of recent leavers who had all previously played under the outgoing Mr Shirazi. After winning the toss and electing to bat first the OA XI got off to a flyer with Gregor Hearn (OA 2012) depositing the ball to all parts of the War Memorial Field. Having made 64 he then fell leaving Joshua Smith (OA 2010) and Matthew Pursell (OA 2009) to help the OA side must 186. Max Mannering was the pick of the 1st XI’s bowlers with four very economical wickets.

Both sides then made the journey across to Cobban House, past the site prepared for the new science centre, to have a superb tea. Many thanks must be given to Mrs Roach for feeding 44 hungry cricketers. It was fantastic to see both sides mixing during tea and recalling tales of cricket at Abingdon.

The second innings started positively with Alex Davies and Rory Garrett scoring quickly before a fine spell of bowling by Joshua Bull (OA 2011) set the 1st XI back. Callum Russell then got the innings back on track before a torrential thunderstorm sadly put pay to the second innings at 86-4.

All in all a fantastic day was had by players and spectators.

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