A cloudy Saturday at Marlins resulted in Long Marston 1st XI suffering their second heavy defeat in as many weeks at the hands of early pace setters Twyford at home. With key players coming back and a stronger team out than the week before, Australian captain Peter Toovey once again lost at the toss and Twyford decided to bat on what looked a damp wicket and could provide some early help for the bowlers.
A solid start from in form opener Matthew Wareham and Peter Toovey was broken whenWareham (9) edged behind to first slip. Two balls later and Long Marston were in real trouble when James Beesley (0) lost his off stump and Rory Miscampbell (1) was to be dismissed in similar fashion seven balls later. Long Marston losing three wickets in the space of ten balls.
A brief stage of rebuilding was ended when Peter Toovey (23) mistimed a square cut and offered up a simple catch to Mid-On. Matthew Storey (0) was to follow for a second ball duck moments later. For Long Marston this then sparked another mini collapse as Chris Slade (1) and Richard Adams (0) both lost their wickets cheaply in quick succession. First team debutant Chris West (14) was making his first appearance since joining from Reading stayed with Mike Lyons (21) as Long Marston tried to rebuild their innings, however once their partnership was broken the last two wickets fell quickly again with Waleed Ali and Simon McLeman both being removed without scoring.
Twyford bowler Kumbar Hussain finished with outstanding figures of 6-39 after showing his skills by moving the ball both in and away off the seam. Long Marston eventually posting a well below par score of 83. Despite a strong start to the Twyford innings, with Peter Toovey picking up a wicket with the second ball of the innings by removing the stump and sending it flying 10 yards back, and again in similar fashion a few overs later.
Twyford attacked the Long Marston bowling attack and made short work of the small target with a couple of dropped catches proving very costly with such a low score. With Zaheer Hussain and Tariq Hussain both ending up 37*, it took just over 15 overs for Long Marston to be put out of their misery and Twyford to win by 8 wickets. After suffering their fourth defeat from six matchâ€™s things are becoming tough especially after another disappointing performance both in the field and with the bat.
Having now only scored over One Hundred & Twenty twice in the first six games the batting needs to improve rapidly with the next three fixtures all against teams in the thick of promotion. Long Marston need to get a Â victory at home to struggling Sandford St Martin next week to propel themselves back up the table, and if we do not find some form in the next few weeks we are looking at a long hard fight against relegation for the remaining weeks of the season.
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