Mike Pollard (76) made sure the bowlers job was not impossible as IBM could only muster 166 all out (Harry Rendell 3-35) against the team currently bottom of the table. After tea, Suttoners looked as though they might upset the form-book, but they eventually succumbed to the wiles of Nick Wood (4-35) as they were bowled out for 139 (Craig Dennett 35, Extras 30).
Mike Pollard (41) and Hitesh Tailor (35) put on 51 for the second wicket before Mike Meech got 50, and IBM reached tea with 194 all out (R Harris 2-25). Whiteparish were cruising at 143-2, but Dan Rides (6-35) came good, and they crashed to 173-9 (R Hamblin 81, T Packer 40).
IBM won the toss, and with rain in the air and a grassy pitch, asked Sarisbury to bat first. The opening bowling pair of Ashley Cocking (9-0-30-1) and Kaush Kundu (9-4-29-1) bowled tightly, restricting the hosts to only 19 off the first 10 overs. The bowling continued to be tight with Jeff Yarney at one end (8-2-22-0) and Robbie Cocking at the other (5-1-16-0), and at drinks Sarisbury had limped along to 54 without loss. The first wicket was taken by William Robbins (5-0-18-1), clean bowling the opener, with the score on 78 in the 26th.
The Third XI faced Sarisbury VI on Saturday at Wide Lane. Both teams fielded what appeared to be roughly equal teams in terms of adults and colts and it looked like we were in for a good game of cricket. What followed proved exactly that....
A first visit for Winton, and they bowled well. IBM were reduced to 55-7 before Fawad Ahmed (30) showed the batsmen how, but they were still bowled out for 95 in the thirty-sixth over (Charlie May 4-35, Alistair Williams 3-16). Winton wasted no time chasing this meagre total, and it was all over soon after tea. 99-2 (Harry Seal 36 not out, John Duke 32).
Matt Bosanquet made his debut after a late drop-out, but didn't bat or bowl so we may never know if he can produce a decent googly, as IBM accrued 212-7 (Tony Rolfe 71 not out, T Crabb 4-28). Lymington got 162-9 (J Jowett 60, Dan Rides 2-34).
Nick Wood led the Thirds as the family Robbins assembled at Farlington on the occasion of Shirley's half-century of years, but the losing sequence continued. Prasad Panicker (49) top-scored as Kerala closed on 173-9 (Tom Stevens 2-19). IBM 95-9 (Mahadevan Ramanan 24, Joly Varghees 2-11).
After a frantic change of location we ended up playing Rowner II's in Stubbington. Skip lost the toss and was asked to bowl on a very green wicket. Our opening pair of Ashley Cocking (10-2-27-0) and William Robbins (10-0-42-0) bowled tightly restricting Rowner to only 29 off the opening 11 overs, however we couldn't break the opening partnership until the 19th over, with the score 70, when we took out both openers with 2 fantastic catches at point by Robbie Cocking (one of them airborne that Jonty Rhodes would have been proud of!).
Locks Heath won the toss and put IBM into bat first. We were off to a shaky start after the loss of our two opening batsmen for only 3 runs. Rob Lamprey (21) came to the crease with Robbie Cocking (15) to ease the IBM nerves. Ashley Cocking put on 26 runs and Ram with 29 runs further steadied the IBM batting nerves.
The opening day of the season saw IBM lose the toss and be inserted. New boy Rob Pfeiffer partnered Hitesh in a slow but sure start.
When Rob fell for 16 Hitesh was joined by the prolific Mike Pollard, after the fall of Hitesh for 23, RJ for 2 and skipper Dan Rides for 18, Polly built an innings that eventually produced 55 runs in 100 balls. Another debutant Shameel Naqvi scored an entertaining 23 before the two Matts, Thomas and Robbins, saw out the innings at 173-9.