PRESTON Capes contrived to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in this first match of the new season against Fenny Compton under blue skies and a deafening breeze.
The visitors were invited to bat on a difficult surface against the new ball paring of James Wilson and Matt Daynes, who took two wickets each.
Wilson, in particular, used the seam well and extracted good bounce and pace, never allowing the batsman to settle.
David Holmes chipped in with three-22 but Preston failed to capitalise on a midway point at which half of Fenny Compton’s side had been dismissed for 55.
It is often said catches win matches and the home side missed some crucial opportunities to press home the advantage.
But a target of 124 should have been well within their compass, especially at 71-two.
David Holmes with 43, battled well but had inadequate support from his team mates and the game was Fenny Compton’s by a margin of just 10 runs with Darren Franklin taking five-23.
Willoughby got their 2011 SNCL campaign under way in Division One with a disappointing reverse at home to Bodicote.
The visitors batted first and set a reasonable but reachable target, reaching 164 for seven. Tom Hill and Lee Johnson recording figures of three for 31 and two for 37 respectively for the hosts.
In reply, Willoughby’s batting just made it into three figures as they succumbed to 106 all out with no home batsman making any meaningful impression on the innings. Bodicote won by 58 runs.
There was just as much disappointment for Willoughby’s second string in Division Three as they were overwhelmed in Buckinghamshire.
Against a Willoughby A side containing six youth players, inexperience and basic errors showed at times as hosts Gawcott and Hillesden racked up a huge target of 277 to chase.
In reply, makeshift opener Ryan Perry made 22 but his knock proved to be the only contribution of mention in the visitors’ eventual total of only 78 all out, resulting in G and H winning by a massive 199 runs.
Flecknoe got off to a very promising start to the season in Division Five with a comprehensive victory away against a strong Silverstone side.
Silverstone won the toss and elected to bat first in sunny but extremely windy conditions.
Due to both an excellent all-round fielding display and tight bowling from all five bowlers (M. Adkins taking two-21), Flecknoe managed to contain the batting side to a modest 131 for six after the 40 overs.
Flecknoe then in reply proceeded to make short work of the total, thanks to fine batting displays from D. Johnson (54) and M.J. Binder (55 n.o.), bringing victory in just half of the alloted over.
Evenley (128 for three – 20 pts) beat Woodford Halse (127 all out – three pts) by seven wickets.
Evenley: Alex Romaine 41, Anthony Romaine 22 and Dave Holden 18 n.o.
Woodford Halse: Chris Prophet 21, Dan Lewis 20 n.o, Kevin Bunting 18, Bradley Ward 17, Richard Stevens 16, Barney Williams three-22, Ben Patterson three-31 and Ashley Peyton Bruhl three-41.
Byfield (185 for four – 20 pts) beat Hinton in the Hedges (184 for eight – six pts) by six wickets.
Byfield: Rob Oliver 62, Jon Carr 41 n.o, Billy Adkins 37, Jake Heath 24 n.o, Talib Ali two-38.
Hinton in the Hedges: Tim Merritt 37, Steve Connor 33, Paul Turvey 29, Steve Cone 25 n.o., Talib Ali 23, Jake Heath four-49.
Fenny Compton (124 all out – 20 pts) beat Preston Capes (113 all out – six pts) by 11 runs.
Fenny Compton: Andy Messer 35, Andy Day 22, Dave Holmes three-22 and Matt Daynes two-32.
Preston Capes: Dave Holmes 43, Mark Daynes 11, Darren Franklin five-23 and Derek Maries three-31.
Bodicote: 164 for seven – (20 pts) beat Willoughby (106 all out – four pts) by 58 runs.
Bodicote: Matt Miller 60, Tom Hill three-31 and Lee Johnson two-37.
Willoughby: Dave Cronin four-35.
Greens Norton (241 for three – 20 pts) beat Byfield ‘A’ (97 all out – one pt) by 144 runs.
Greens Norton: Mike Bristow 143 n.o., Steve Jones 33 and Matt Baker 32.
Byfield ‘A’: Adam Scott 38, Jason Andrews 34, Pete Allen five-14 and Andre Bodily five-19.
Bodicote ‘A’ (134 all out – 20 pts) beat Preston Capes ‘A’ (43 all out – five pts) by 91 runs.
Bodicote ‘A’: Shaun Harris 29, Richard Smith 25, Adam Harris 20 and Luke Gill four-32.
Preston Capes ‘A’: Hasan Iqbal five-17, Adam Harris three-18.
Gawcott and Hillesden (277 for one – 20 pts) beat Willoughby ‘A’ (78 all out – two pts) by 199 runs.
Gawcott and Hillesden: Nick Stanger 121 n.o., Pete Brooks 84 and Colin Piggott 48 n.o.
Willoughby ‘A’: Ryan Perry 22, Ashley Griffiths four-21 and Darren Stanger three-16.
Charlton (299 for seven – 20 pts) beat Gayton (17 all out – three pts) by 282 runs
Charlton: Ryan Knight 107, Graham Knight 71.
Gayton: Andy Shaw four-12.
Braunston Paddox (202 for seven – 20 pts) beat Dunchurch and Bilton ‘A’ (69 all out – four pts) by 133 runs.
Braunston Paddox: Darren Cox 76, Shaun Harnett 68, Jordan Shingler 24 n.o., Steve Edden three-38, Bob Parsons two-48.
Dunchurch and Bilton ‘A’: Gareth Ellis 27, Zane Doe four-18, Darren Cox two-five, Shaun Harnett two-15 and Adam O’Connor two-26.
Woodford Halse ‘A’ (164 all out – 20 pts) beat Grange Park ‘A’ (124 all out – eight pts) by 40 runs.
Woodford Halse ‘A’: Ben Ward 48 n.o., Kevin Price 28, Simon McKay four-45 and Ash Day three-38.
Grange Park ‘A’: Jim Reid three-27 and Terry Hulme three-36.
Flecknoe (132 for two – 20 pts) beat Silverstone ‘A’ (131 for six – five pts) by eight wickets.
Flecknoe: Matt Binder 55 n.o. and Dave Johnson 54 n.o.
Silverstone ‘A’: Dominic Barker 40 n.o. and Wesley Steenkamp 22.
Braunston Paddox ‘A’ (246 for five -20 pts) beat Preston Bissett ‘A’ (111 all out – five pts) by 135 runs.
Braunston Paddox ‘A’: Spriggs 78 and Chris Lodge 52.
Preston Bissett ‘A’: Tim Jones 27.