Henley CC 1st XI
Sat 25 May 2024  ·  Division 1
Henley Cricket Club
Henley CC 1st XI
Banbury CC - 1st XI
Henley 1st XI v Banbury

Henley 1st XI v Banbury

Ronnie Brock28 May - 21:31
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Home and Dry ( Gerry Rafferty, City to City, 1978, Atlantic Records)

In an absorbing contest, Henley prevailed against a Banbury side who will look back on a game
which was there for the winning, but was ultimately taken away from them, thanks in no small
measure to Declan Farland’s First XI career best figures of 10 overs, 2 maidens, 5 - 22.
As Jack Brooks, now retired from a distinguished First-Class career and player/coach at
Banbury, bowled the second delivery of the morning, a lone magpie hopped on to the field of
play. For whom would that be an omen of sorrow? The answer to that question would see-saw
throughout the day before eventually choosing the visitors.
Winning the toss, Henley opted to bat on another glorious Saturday morning. Openers Archie
Carter and Johnny Connell showed circumspection against Brooks and Banbury’s Aussie
skipper Kieran Coyne, 29 runs coming off the first 10 overs, wickets intact. Joe Thomas (spin)
and Ollie Wright (skiddy seam) replaced the opening bowlers and the runs began to flow,
though Connell could count himself fortunate when Ed Phillips fluffed a catch at mid-off. That
luck ran itself and himself out a few overs later, Connell continuing towards the Pavilion
without waiting for the Umpire’s decision. After drinks (93-1), both Carter and Michael Roberts
pushed on, Carter hitting Thomas into Remenham Lane, and Banbury were bowling for run-
outs. Which was what happened to remove Carter on 74 with the promise of much more. No
sooner was Ross Richardson at the crease than a third run-out was narrowly averted by
Banbury’s failure to take advantage of the batters’ muddle
By now, batting was becoming noticeably harder, the ball softer, not coming onto the bat as it
had been, and runs hard to come by. The changed conditions would underpin several dismissals
that followed, Roberts holing out to Thomas at mid-off and Richardson fluffing a sweep to
backward point (165 – 5). Henley’s middle and lower order collapsed in the face of spin from
David Eaton and the return of Coyne and Brooks, five wickets lost for just 28 runs, only Jon
Denning making any headway, out to the last ball of the innings.
Banbury’s disciplined and purposeful bowling had paid dividends and they now needed 194 for
victory. That they fell 51 runs short is a testament to an even more disciplined bowling
performance by Henley, both individually and in tandem, allied to the early dismissal of Lloyd
Sabin and Waqas Hussein, both nicking off to a fiery Tom Nugent, Hussein’s dismissal the
product of a spectacular catch low down to his left by Richardson. But Coyne and Joe White
grafted away, the score mounted, and Henley desperately needed a breakthrough. It came as
Coyne tried to hoike Farland over the mid-wicket boundary and came up short. Alistair Short
soon followed in exactly the same way and the pressure was relieved.
Banbury now struggled with the softer ball and though White held firm, Shazad Rana and
Phillips were picked off by Farland. Brooks, however, provided steady support for Wright and
once again the score ticked up and pressure mounted. Yet again, Farland was on hand to remove
Brooks. But White was still there, and Eaton and Wright provided support before falling to Jack
Biddulph, Connell snaffling Wright with a sharp low catch. Adam Searle capped a miserly
performance with half-centurion White’s wicket, a tired swing of the bat down to long-off and
that was that.
A hard-earned and deserved win, and special mention should go to Charlie Dunnett who
though wicketless, returned figures of 6 overs, 2 maidens, 7 runs. Pressure with a capital P.

Match details

Match date

Sat 25 May 2024




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