Mossley’s Nail-biting start to the season!
Mossley 1st XI began the season with a trip to Saughall, the longest trip they will face this year. It was a beautiful sunny day and Saughall won the toss and elected to bat first. The two openers made a steady start before Butler made the breakthrough thanks to an excellent catch by Moss. Mossley continued to pile on the pressure, quality veteran bowling from Brown and some excellent diving stops from Pearson at short mid-on kept the score down.
Despite the pressure no further wickets fell until the pacey Turner was re-introduced to the attack. Turner dismissed the remaining opener with a good length ball which seamed in leaving the batsmen helpless and sending the batsmen’s stumps flying. The very next ball Turner provided an action replay of the previous one, again bowling the batsmen middle stump with a full pitched ball. Afterwards Saughall meandered their way to 154-4 off their allotted overs with Butler, Speak and Moss keeping the scoring to a minimum.
The Mossley batting line up was one of the strongest seen for a long time. With 10 out of the 11 batsmen having opened for the first team previously. However with the long length outfield chasing the 154 set by Saughall would prove to be no easy task. This became apparent as the ever consistent Pearson from last year failed to trouble the scorers and Moss also falling cheaply to a dubious lbw decision, leaving Mossley 5-2.
A resurgence from Mossley came from Burkard and Cresswell as the two put on a 10 over partnership to steady the ship. Eventually Burkard fell for 17 with a drive straight to the cover fielder. Speak took up the place at the crease left by Burkard and together he and Cresswell began an attack on the Saughall Total. 3 Big sixes from Cresswell and gap finding by Speak moved Mossley into the 90s before Cresswell was caught and bowled on 44. Speak (32), Wright (10 n.o.) and Chudleigh (19) moved the game to within a winning position for Mossley.
With Mossley requiring 20 off the last 4 overs. Unfortunately wickets continued to fall and despite the efforts of McKinley, Brown, Turner and Butler. Mossley fell agonising 5 runs short of the required total. Despite the loss, there were positives to take away as the game showed that Mossley would be competitive this year in the higher league having got promoted last year.