Wasted overs cost Brewers

By Surrey and Hants News in Cricket

Alton travelled to the Ageas Bowl to face a Hampshire Academy side strengthened by the return of Scottish seamer Chris Sole.

Lee returned to make his second first team appearance, with Alton missing leg spinner Jack Myers.

Alton lost the toss and were asked to bat first on a pitch that looked like it may offer the bowlers some assistance early on.

Alton continued their struggles with the bat as Janmohamed was removed early, edging behind off the bowling of Jack Campbell.

Hammond got himself in and made it to 31 before he also edged behind, and Alton were left on 46-2.

In-form Myers joined Harris, but when Myers (11) cut to backward point in the air, Alton were in further trouble at 70-3.

Michael Heffernan’s woes continued as he edged to second slip off the bowling of Jack Campbell for four.

Brother Mark tried to steady the ship but when he also edged Campbell (3-41) to slip Alton were struggling at 113-5.

Despite wickets falling, Alton were still scoring at a reasonable rate - due mainly to Harris, who had reached his half century.

Harris was joined by Postles, and the pair made it through to lunch without further loss, leaving Alton 133-5 at the break.

After lunch, Harris continued to be positive, taking the attack to the opposition as he passed 100 for the first time for the club.

Postles then fell softly for a vital 32, holing out to deep backward square leg off the bowling of Felix Organ. The pair had added 91 in a pivotal partnership.

Harris then looked to increase the run rate, hitting 18 fours and two sixes in his 135-ball stay at the crease, a fantastic innings that ended in somewhat controversial fashion.

Looking to hit another six, he was caught on the boundary by a fielder about to fall over the rope. The Academy player threw the ball up into the air, ran back inside the field and caught it again. Debate ensued, but Harris was given out for a fine 126 and Alton were 222-7.

Jamison added further impetus, but when he edged behind trying to pull Sole, for 26, Alton were 250-8.

With overs left to bat, Alton’s lower order tried to use the time available, but when Ballinger was run out for nine Alton were 261-9.

Partner then chipped to cover, leaving Mortimer 10 not out and Alton all out for 262 off 57.5 overs.

On what was still a good surface, with not much movement off the pitch, Alton knew they would need to come out firing to contain the home side.

In the short session before tea, Mortimer picked up keeper Miles Kantolinna for 14, safely caught at third slip by Mark Heffernan.

Jamison was looking dangerous, but without luck. Opener Duggan was bowled by him, but a no ball was called, leaving Alton frustrated as tea was called with the home side one down.

The final session was pivotal. Jamison continued his good spell, clean bowling skipper Organ for seven to make the score 61-2.

Tom Scriven joined Duggan and the pair looked to steady the ship, with Duggan the aggressor before he was trapped leg before wicket by Ballinger for 59 off 61 balls. The Academy were now 99-3.

Scriven and Middleton moved the score past 150 before three quick wickets saw the Academy slip to 175-6.

The game was still in the balance at this point, with plenty of overs left in the day.

Tom South and Patrick Holly then put on what would be a match-winning partnership. Alton did all they could to break it, with both players playing and missing, but nothing went to hand.

South was nearly bowled by the returning Mortimer, but only one bail moved and somehow it remained balanced on top of off stump.

Immediately afterwards South was run out by Lee Partner, but the damage had been done. with the score now 256-7.

Alton never gave up, and Ballinger’s final wicket in a spell of 3-49 in 17 overs, trapping Holly leg before wicket for 43, left the hosts on 258-8.

The Brewers pushed hard for a miracle finish, but Zac Organ struck the final blow, clearing the infield for four to leave Alton rueing what might have been had they batted for their maximum 64 overs, as the Academy reached 265-8 to win with just two overs remaining in the day.

An early collapse put paid to Alton 2nd XI’s chance of chasing down a big total posted by visiting Purbrook 1st XI.

Sampson and Ball bowled tightly but without a wicket, and Purbrook shifted gear to reach 198-2.

A late flurry saw Daniel Scott pick up 3-47 and Ian Carpenter 4-63, but Purbrook made 273-8.

Alton were 11-4 before Hubbard, returning after two years away, hit 50 as Alton made 130.

Alton’s 3rd XI earned their first win of the season when they beat Sparsholt’s 2nd XI by four runs.

The hosts made 184, skipper Mason hitting 59, then Steve Scott’s 4-29 helped clinch the victory.

Alton’s 4th XI at Shalford featured three parent and child combinations, and included three under-14 girls.

Asked to bat, Alton got off to a flyer, with Ali Wright (59) punishing wayward bowling before being adjudged out leg before wicket.

Gemma Porter anchored the innings with 75, while skipper Martin Green and Amelia Marshall kept the rate brisk to ensure Alton posted over 200 before declaring at 40 overs.

Jon Porter and Adrian Trim then bowled well as an opening unit to keep the pressure on Shalford’s batsmen. The key moment was the dismissal of Torrey, with Trim inducing a slight edge taken brilliantly by wicket keeper Abigail Green for one of her four catches.

Kieran Southgate, Jude Wright and the aforementioned girls kept the rate down, and Shalford were dismissed for 64. Trim took 2-16, Porter senior 4-9 and Porter junior 2-13.