Minchinhampton 2nd XI were hosted by Hardwicke 2nd XI on a hot windy day in Gloucester. Minch won the toss and batted first on a hard track in perfect batting conditions. Openers John Creedon and Matt Hole came out and batted with confidence, finding the boundary with ease, racking up 40 in the first 4 overs. Hole was looking particularly destructive putting away anything loose. However a mistimed shot saw him depart for 24 and when Jack Richards took to the crease for his first knock of the season he started where Hole had left off taking on the Hardwicke bowling. Runs we’re flowing but Hardwicke managed to prise out Creedon for a 33 and Richards for a quick fire 29, both players getting out caught. This brought together Tom Richings and skipper Tom Shearman, both previously on a lean streak with the bat. Richings found the boundary easily as did Shearman with runs flowing at both ends. Some lusty blows found both players reaching their 50s with ease and Richings finally fell for 63, his maiden Minch 50. Shearman a fine captains knock, 53not out and a partnership of 120 for the 3rd wicket. Minch racked up 233 for 4 from their 40 overs. Hardwicke’s bowlers stuck to their guns throughout in hot conditions.
Hardwickes innings got off to a bad start with Matt Ritchings (1 for 9) finding the top of off stump with his 2nd ball on the innings, continuing his recent good form with the ball. Chris Beer who was brought back into the 2nds following a stint in the 1st team last week, leaked a few early boundaries but soon removed danger man Lynn bowled through his legs, Beer returning figures of 1 for 20. Minch changed bowlers regularly never letting up on Hardwicke. Nick Hitchcroft (2 for 10) and joint skipper Ben Pitman (1 for 7) bowling with skill and pace to keep Hardwicke under pressure. Then Jack Cartledge, last weeks Man of the match added 3 wickets for 7 runs and blew away the middle order, while John Wood with his dangerous leg spinners took 2 for 9 at the other end and picked off the remaining wickets. Hardwicke were bowled out for 62, but credit to Hardwicke who kept fighting to the end. Minch 2nds have now recorded back to back wins