Stuart Crow and Ben Nightingale opened the bowling for Castlethorpe against Abington's openers, Riseley and Edlington. They put on an opening stand of 20, broken when Riseley was given out lbw for eleven off Ben in the eighth over. Edlington was caught by Jack off Stuart in the eleventh over for ten, with the score still on only 24, leaving Hill on zero waiting to be joined by Pettitt. Stuart in particular was excellent - his eight overs ended up going for only nine runs. Ben was replaced in the bowling attack by Tom Law in the twelfth over until a change at both ends in the sixteenth and seventeenth to Atif Mushtaq and Nev Maravala as Castlethorpe tried to bring things back under control, with Abington goiong from 26-2 to 58-2 by in four overs. It had some effect as Hill and Pettitt were slowed for seven overs before Hill was caught by Tom off Atif for 20 with the score on 77. Kumar joined Pettitt and they stayed together until Atif was replaced by Germane Ebanks in the 26th over, who claimed Pettitt's wicket straight away. New batman Pinnaka and Kumar built the score for eleven overs until Mick Lee, who had replaced Nev in the 35th over, claimed Pinnaka's wicket, stumped by Stuart Walding. Kasinath joined Kumar and blocked out the two remaining balls of the over. Ben returned to the attack in the 38th and took the wicket of Kumar with his first ball as he was caught behind by Basher for 33. Poulose joined Kasinath but their partnership lasted just four balls as they went for a run that was not there off the fifth delivery, resulting in Basher running out Kasinath. Bhatt made his way to the middle and survived the last ball of the over. Ben took the last wicket of the innings in the final over, when Mick caught Poulose out for 10 with the batsmen crossing, meaning that Fairbairn was at the crease for one ball which he did not face. Abington finished on 152-8.
After tea, Castlethorpe set about their run chase with captain Jack opening the batting with Basher. Together they put on 23 before Basher was run out in the tenth over by keeper Kasinath - a tit for tat with each keeper running out the other keeper. Tom joined Jack and in a partnership of 67 off 99 balls, they moved the score along to 90 in 26 overs at which point Tom was bowled by Pinnaka. Castlethorpe needed 63 to win with fourteen overs to go. Germane joined Jack and scored one run from the penultimate delivery of the over and faced a change of attack in the 27th which did for him as he was bowled out. Atif made his way to the middle and with Jack kept the score ticking over well, progressing to 118 in the 32nd over when Jack was bowled out. Ben was next in and continued with Atif to progress the score. Unfortunately in the 35th over, Atif struck the final delivery and Ben set off rapidly for the run, easily making his ground with Atif stranded mid wicket and being run out for 22. Eighteen runs required from five overs with four wickets remaining (as we only had ten players). Stuart Crow made his way to the crease and watched from the non-stiker's end for an over as eight runs were taken from it. Ten to win. Ben took a run off the first ball of the 37th over. Nine required. Stuart was bowled by an absolute jaffa (Ben's assessment from the non-striker's end), dismissing him for a duck and reducing Castlethorpe to 144-6. Hope remained but it was tinged with nervousness. Mick replaced Stuart but only one more run was scored from the over. Eight to win. The next over again only yielded one run. Seven to win. The 39th over was awful for Castlethorpe. Having scored a run off the first ball, we then lost two wickets on the third and fourth balls: first Ben was bowled out for 9 then his replacement Nev was caught out first ball he faced. Matt, our last man, hit the wide delivery he received and with Mick ran one. That plus another wide in the over moved the score on to 150-8 with one over remaining. Abington bowled tightly in the final over, presenting no scoring opportunities, and on the fifth delivery Matt was caught out for nought, leaving Mick not out on three.
The result was that Castlethorpe lost by two runs. Whilst the team was disappointed to have lost, it was a great achievement when you consider that the ten men of Castlethorpe took on the eleven men of Abington's first team and came within a hair's breadth of winning. It was a tremendous effort by everyone and bodes well for the season ahead.