Barrow Gurney’s up and down season, took a big step forward this week with success in the Bateman Cup Quarter Finals and both Saturday teams winning albeit after another nail-biting encounter at Hobbs Lane.
On Wednesday, Barrow faced Alveston in the Cup and, batting first, put on an impressive 200-3. Opener Mark Brown batted throughout the innings for 64 not out, whilst Phil Milton (22) and Guy Fisher (23) provided some entertaining strokeplay at the other end. The arrival of Jordan Allen increased the scoring rate dramatically as his 55 not out came off only 31 balls.
Alveston were up against it from the outset as Mark Fisher (4/20) wreaked havoc among the top order, ably supported by Matt Owen (2/27). Barrow’s captain, Frank Forge weighed in with 2/29 as the visitors fell 109 runs short. Barrow now face Saltford Fairway in the semi-final next week.
On Saturday there was a much more tense affair, as visitors Bath 4ths faced a disciplined bowling attack and managed only 160-8 in their 40 overs. Forge was again in the wickets with 4/20 whilst Connor Jones was also on form taking 3/39. At the halfway stage little did they think that it would fall to this same pair batting at numbers 10 and 11 to take Barrow to the narrowest of victories.
After losing both openers for one run, including a chaotic run out, Mark Brown once again steadied the side with 42 before being yorked, but not before he was also involved in another dramatic runout incident with Jordan Allen which pegged Barrow back. Ed Holdaway then played an unusually patient hand making 48 as Barrow headed uncertainly towards the final overs. With the team still 10 short, the final pair came together and some nervy shots and running eventually brought the totals level with one ball to go. Connor Jones then coolly late cut the final ball for a boundary to bring Barrow home.
Meanwhile at Somerdale, Barrow 2s dismissed Hanham 3s for 123, with debutant Will Comley taking 3/28 assisted by Dave Smith (2/36). Barrow took their time to chase down the total on a tricky pitch, but Ali Hood marked a welcome return to form with an unbeaten 58 to ease them to a 7 wicket win.