Firsts Extend Winning Streak Against League Leaders

Barrow Gurney’s First XI’s winning run continued with an emphatic 53 run victory at Div 4 leaders Bristol 3rd XI.

Put into bat and with the constant threat of rain, Barrow set about scoring quickly form the start. Opener Jonny Sykes hit his first ball for 6 and added another before falling for 17. With Frank Forge unluckily run out backing up by a straight drive which flicked the bowler’s finger, and then a couple of quickfire wickets from James Warren, it looked as though the positive approach might have backfired with the score 65-4.

Ben Hodges on his way to 68

Ben Hodges then joined Phil Milton at the crease and put together a key partnership of 108, with both taking advantage of the short square boundaries whilst running well and never allowing the Bristol spinners to settle. Milton, having had one life being dropped at midwicket was first to reach his half century, closely followed by Hodges. Hodges was bowled for 68, but Milton saw the score pass 200 before holing out for 72 (5 6s, 5 4s). The tail kept the score moving to post a target of 266.

Ed Holdaway then opened the bowling for Barrow with 4 straight maidens, which immediately put the pressure on the Bristol batting lineup. Jonny Sykes removed the opener, Adam Lee but Charlie Smith was determined to build a platform for the innings. A couple of excellent catches by Guy Fisher produced wickets for Connor Jones and Kieran Owen, whilst he also took one himself with his accurate leg spin. Then Fisher was called into action to prevent a quick single and ran out Smith for 53 with a direct hit.

Ed Holdaway’s 3 for 28 finished off the Bristol resistance

From that point Barrow looked to be in charge of the game with the run rate climbing steadily. Owen added to his tally to take 3/38 whilst Holdaway came back for a second spell to take 3/28 aided by a brilliant leg side one handed catch from Hodges. Bristol ended up 53 short. Barrow made up ground on third place Long Ashton but will need another win and help from Long Ashton’s opponents in the last game of the season to take that spot.

At Hobbs Lane visitors Bradly Stoke made 227-6 off their 40 overs. This was only obtained after some heavy scoring in the last few overs after Steve Owen (3/21) in particular had bowled accurately to make life difficult for the batsmen. In reply Ellie Holdaway made 60 while Mark Gracey added a run a ball 56, but with rain looming and Barrow well behind the rate the result was a foregone conclusion before the heavens opened ending the game 2 overs early. Bradley Stoke winning by 24 runs.

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