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Week 1 match reports

Two from Two for Chargers! Rush makes debut – Coles maiden 50 leads the way – Durman and Coon continue form with the ball - Pascoe and Hadrell lead with the bat for 2nd XI - West and Yeo take 2 wickets each....and much more....

After a turbulent pre-season which saw three of last season’s 2nd place finishing first team squad depart for pastures new, a youthful and much changed Ashburton 1st XI travelled to Cornwood 2nds for their first match of the season, writes Dan Coles.

After skipper Ashley Berry had presented a cap to regular 2nd XI wicket keeper Tom Rush who was making his first XI debut, he won the toss and had little hesitation in asking Corns to bat on a strip that was green and slightly damp.

The Corns started positively with Nathaniel Bell particularly keen to go aerial and they raced to 50 inside ten overs. Charger Kevin Nicholls then pulled a quad muscle chasing a ball to the boundary and would play no further part in the game meaning Ashes had to field with ten players for the rest of the innings.

Will Coon was introduced first change and picked up the first three wickets to fall leaving Corns 110 for 4 and then when Lloyd White also claimed three wickets including the caught and bowled scalp of Bell for 77 leaving the hosts 149 for 7.

Matt Churchill (0 for 34 off 9 overs) and George Marshall (1 for 17 off 6 overs) both bowled with excellent control and little luck as a partnership of 38 frustrated Ashes but the re-introduction of opener Dom Durman saw him clean up the tail for the addition of only 3 more runs to leave Cornwood 190 all out. Durman taking the second caught and bowled wicket of the day, a stunning one handed effort to remove Sam Griffiths for 19.

This looked a tough chase at tea and when the re-jigged opening partnership of White and Marshall were both back in the pavilion without troubling the scorers with only 13 on the board, it looked even tougher.

Skipper Berry and Dan Coles steadied the ship with a partnership of 61 that was assisted by a generous helping of extras from the Corns bowlers. Berry then fell top edging an attempted pull for a well-made 30.

Matt Churchill came and went for 0 after unluckily gloving behind but Will Coon (20) joined Coles to add a further 56 runs in good time and then Dom Durman (14) and Coles put on a further 55 to take Ashes to the brink of victory. The winning line was passed with 13 balls to spare and Coles finishing on 64no.

After the game Berry commented “After Kev pulled up within the first few overs and with them getting off to a flyer you start thinking it’s going to be one of those days, but we kept the faith, played to our strengths and stuck to our plans and deservedly came out on top. We’ve re-jigged the side and brought in a lot of youth. I could not have been prouder of their attitudes and the way they performed, in particular Tom Rush, Tom Higgs and Matt Churchill. After a difficult couple of weeks this win felt great and when I heard the two’s had also won I was over the moon.”

Cornwood 2nds – 190 all out – N Bell 77, S Griffiths 19, B Collins, 18, D Durman 3-21, L White 3-41, W Coon 3-48

Ashburton – 191 for 6 – D Coles 64no, Extras 63, A Berry, 30, W Coon 20, B Griffiths 2-40

2nd XI:

Ashburton twos entertained Plymouth thirds and after losing the toss and being inserted the early part of the innings was anchored around a patient knock of 32 off of 71 balls from Marcus West. Jake Pascoe contributed 24 but when these two fell Ashes were struggling at 67 for 5.

The rest of the innings was dominated by a fine knock of 56 off of 48 balls from Duncan Haddrell that led Ashes to a final total of 161 all out. Teddy Haffenden finished with 5-45 for the visitors.

In reply Plymouth never got going and with wickets for 6 different bowlers they were held to 117 for 9 off of their 40 overs with only Phil Taylor (49no) batting at number 8 making a noteworthy score. Pick of the bowlers were Marcus West (2-4), Chris Yeo (2-8) and Jake Bartram (2-29).

Skipper Chris Yeo reflected: “This was a great game played in brilliant fashion. Plymouth bowled superbly so to put up 161 was a great effort by the guys. Our bowlers stuck to their plans really well and it was great to see a mixture of youth and experience all contributing with bat and ball.”

Ashburton 161 (D Haddrell 56, M West 32; T Haffenden 5-45), Plymouth 117-9 (P Taylor 49no; M West 2-4, C Yeo 2-8). Ashburton (18pts) bt Plymouth (7) by 44 runs.

Tom Rush receives his 1st XI cap from skipper Ash Berry

Dan Coles 64*

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