Sidbury stand-in captain Reed impresses despite defeat

Tipton player Steve Walker on his way to 96.

Tipton player Steve Walker on his way to 96. - Credit: Archant

Sidbury were edged out in their home meeting with Old Grammarians who won the game in the closing stages, writes Barney Stone.

As ever this season, Millfield appeared in pristine condition as it played host to the annual meeting between Sidbury and touring side Old Grammarians.

With club captain Simon Rowe out by injury, it was down to Reed and Paget to pick up the pieces and pull the team back together.

Having lost the toss, Sidbury were forced into bat knowing that nothing short of 200 would have been satisfactory given the wicket.

However, the quality of the oppositions bowling attack meant that Sidbury struggled to get off to a good start and losing a wicket in the very first over did not help the home cause! The early wicket did bring Ben Pollard to the crease and he went on to score a superbly-crafted half century.

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There were other knocks of note from the ‘chirpy’ Rich Green and Josh Reed as Sidbury battle don, losing their final wicket with the score on 169.

Opening bowlers Barney Stone and Chris Fitzhenry immediately sought to take the game to the opposition, with the latter picking up an important early wicket.

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However, the quality of the Old Grammarians batting line-up soon became evident, and it was only for some sublime fielding from skipper Reed that Sidbury picked up their second wicket; a tantalizing delivery from Fitzhenry saw the ball sliced into the air and a nonchalant Reed snatch the ball into his cleavage.

Filled with confidence, Reed brought about a change in the bowling attack. Excellent spells from both Paget and Reed saw the fall of two further wickets as a spirited Sidbury side forced the game towards a dramatic conclusion.

However, two crucial drops in the slips from Pollard and Stone meant that Sidbury failed to stifle the opposition’s middle-order; Old Grammarians eventually reached the target of 170 with four overs to go.

Sidbury are in more home action this Sunday (July 31) when they entertain Exeter-based Geriatrics (2pm).

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