A nine player Poole town 4th XI welcomed Ferndown wayfarers to whitecliff for the curtain raiser of what promised to be a season of breakthroughs for our junior cricketers.
Ferndown opted to bowl without tossing the coin. It was a well prepared track at whitecliff with its usual low bounce and a bitter wind to boot.
Mike Talbot and Aleks Mouer (10) opened the batting and soon found that it was a tricky pitch to bat on.
Mike Talbot rolled back the clock scoring a gutsy 42 before being caught trying to hurry along what had been a slow scoring 20 overs. Simon Farrar and Billy Michael (22) both came in and batted promisingly but still found the scoring slow going.
The middle and lower order didn’t trouble the scorer too much, in particular Captain Reed batting wildly to get out for a rather foolish four runs.
The innings finishing in 34.5 overs for 113 all out.
Ferndown came out feeling confident of knocking the runs off quickly but soon found it very difficult to score, particularly off of the bowling of Matty Williams (2 for 11) and Billy Michaels (1 for 13), backed up nicely by keeper Aleks Mouer. The youth certainly proved there worth and put the more experienced players to shame.
Ferndown wayfarers chipped away at the score but started to feel nervous and sent on their more experienced batsman to attempt to make the chase more manageable.
Lizzy Williams Bowled very well but was unlucky to bowl in a period when the batsman were well set and her figures did not do her justice.
The game was played in good spirit until the last 30 minutes when Pittaway was given out LBW to Matty Williams. The umpire raised his finger above his head only for the non striking batsman to throw his bat on the ground in the fashion of a disgruntled teenager! At which point the umpire bizarrely changed his mind to not out. Although this may not have changed the result it certainly changed the nature of the game. Matty Williams deserved three wickets from his fantastic bowling but was cruelly denied by some very amateur umpiring.
With two extra players plugging some holes in the field Poole town would have been very much in with a chance of taking victory.
There were some real positives to take from the game, particularly from the youth players and I am sure there will be some much more positive results to come if the youngsters maintain these excellent performances.