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Lieutenant Colonel (Retd) Mike Thornley
Army Sport Control Board
Fox Lines, Queens Avenue
Aldershot, Hants GU11 2LB

Tel: 01252 787075
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Manager Men :  Wg Cdr J Riddell RAF  Mobile 07791 146121
Manager Ladies: Maj RM Brown R Signals 07411 086072
Coach :  Sqn Ldr S Moss   01296 656398

UKAFCA v Duke of Norfolk’s XI at Arundel Castle Cricket Ground Sunday 21 st May 2017

Match 2 for the UKAFCA Squad took place in the sumptuous surrounding of Arundel Castle Cricket Club on a beautiful sunny summer’s day. The UKAFCA squad were again missing some notable names with new Captain Fisher on deployment and other key batsmen Green, Hudson and Watson not available. However, there absence creates opportunities for others and of note this was the first time that 3 RN players had featured in a UKAFCA starting XI team over the past 3 seasons; batsmen Ben Kholer-Cadmore and Jordan Evans with the current RN vice captain and all-rounder Alvin Pollard earning their starting places after good performances on the recent tour of Malaysia and Singapore.

In the absence of Fisher, Jim Iago was appointed captain for this game. As is always the case at Arundel the format of the game was a time game with 7 hrs of cricket including 20 overs from 1730. Stand in skipper Iago lost the toss and the Duke of Norfolk’s XI invited the UKAFCA team to bat first. Both openers Diver and Kholer-Cadmore failed to trouble the scorers as the UKAFCA slumped to 2 – 2 in the second over. A magnificent partnership between Evans and Pollard took the attack to the Duke of Norfolk’s XI as UKAFCA raced to 95 before Pollard was the fourth wicket caught at point by Anderson off the bowling of Jakatar. Senior UKAFCA player Alex Senneck strode to the wicket to join Evans on what was now proving to be a typically flat and batsmen friendly Arundel wicket. Evans followed quickly to reduce the UKAFCA to 102 – 5 and with the RN to the rescue from 12 – 3 it was now the turn of the Army, specifically the Signals Core, to rebuild. An excellent century partnership between Senneck and wicket Keeper Cooper who both scored fine half centuries and with some cameos from the lower order the UKAFCA posted a total of 250 all out. This left the Duke of Norfolk’s XI 2 hours 5 minutes plus 20 overs, approx. 52 overs, to win the match.

The UKAFCA opened the bowling with Alex Senneck and Jo Peatman and set about bowling the opposition out to win the match. Despite working hard the UKAFCA bowlers struggled to make inroads to the Duke of Norolk’s XI batting; this was due to some quality top-order batting. At 174 – 2 the Duke of Norfolk’s XI were scoring at approx. 6 per over and looked like they were going to cruise to victory. However, spirited bowling from RN vice captain Pollard secured 2 wickets and Army bowler Robinson took one to reduce the Duke’s side to 175 – 5; suddenly the UKAFCA team were back in the game. Despite the bowlers sticking manfully to their task the UKAFCA team only managed to take 2 more wickets before the Duke of Norfolk’s XI achieved the 251 to win the match by 3 wickets with just under 5 overs.

Overall it was an excellent days cricket with over 500 runs, 17 wickets and some notable individual performances. This was all provided in the magnificent surroundings of Arundel Castle and a sizeable crowd were provided with an excellent feast of cricket.

UKAFCA versus the MCC at the Army Cricket Ground Aldershot – Monday 22 May 2017

A beautiful day at the Army Cricket Ground, Aldershot, saw the arrival of a strong, minor county laden, MCC side. It was a good toss for the MCC to win and they duly elected bat. Notwithstanding the impressive batting by the MCC side this was a disappointing performance in the field from the servicemen. After 33 overs the MCC were 273 for 2 and making the Aldershot wicket seem as flat and batsman friendly as the Arundel wicket the previous day. There were too many bad balls, all put away by the quality batters, and far to many extras with over 50 runs being conceded in this area. With the Bowlers bowling both sides of the wickets it proved extremely difficult for stand-in captain Storm Green to captain and set an effective field. Despite his figures, Norfolk’s captain and RAF slow left-arm bowler Watson, with 2 for 59, was the only bowler to cause the MCC batsmen concern. The Servicemen battled to the end but that did not prevent a quality MCC batting line up putting together a mammoth 428 – 6 off their 50 overs; this would be a record run chase for the Servicemen if they were to succeed.

The MCC opening bowlers bowled a steady line and length and facing the daunting prospect of chasing down 429 the UKAFCA were reduced to 78 – 5. A cavalier and attacking 41 from Kholer-Cadmore was the only real resistance from the UKAFCA with opening bowler Rooney taking the consecutive wickets of Cooper and Pollard reduce UKAFCA further to 79 – 7 from 17 tight and impressive overs from the opening bowlers. There were 5 wickets for Morrick and 2 for Rooney. The MCC spinners came in and, despite a spirited 52 in 22 balls from the RAFs Joe Peatman, they cleaned up the last few wickets to bowl them out for 186 and leave the UKAFCA side ruing a bad day at the office with a record defeat.

This was a disappointing all round display from the UKAFCA side. After a good competitive performance at Arundel, and with the return of senior players Green and Watson, the Team approached the game with a high degree of confidence that they would provide a stern test for a strong MCC side. Unfortunately, the bowling lacked control (bowling both sides of the wicket), there was a lack of intensity from the Team in the field and facing the intimidating target of 429 to win the batting understandably crumbled following an impressive opening bowling spell by the MCC bowlers.

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Page updated 12 Apr 2017