As news of the 1st Ashes Test match filtered over the air waves and across the rain-starved ground, Kesgrave were running out winners over Southwold by 5 wickets on a balmy afternoon.
In his first match as captain, Jordan Barber had no hesitation in choosing to bat first on a wicket that looked like a belter. After losing Tim Porter early, Gareth Gorst-Allman was busy and proactive at the crease and started to accumulate runs nicely. He and Sam Booker put on a good partnership for the visitors and the tempers were beginning to fray as the sun beat down. However, following drinks Booker pushed at one from Mike Worne and was caught and bowled. From then on, Gorst-Allman was playing a lone hand as only Willgoss provided support as the opener clocked up his fifty. Into the slog the innings went and Southwold lost a deluge of wickets – first Willgoss, than Gorst-Allman for an excellent 95, before Le Versha was bowled attempting an ill-advised shot and Hebditch was run out off the next ball. 165/8 was Southwold’s total and they knew they’d have to play well to defend it.
In the end, they were probably 30 runs too short. Despite the occasional unpredictable bounce, Kesgrave knew how to play on their wicket and Southwold bowled a bit too waywardly at vital times. However, Steve Hines tried his best as ever to thwart them. In a faultless spell in energy sapping conditions he took 4/22, ripping the head off the Kesgrave batting line-up. Unfortunately for the visitors, just as his spell was ending did the two batsmen who put on the match winning partnership come together. Worne and Nathan Young batted aggressively and confidently, clinically dispatching anything off line and in the end the class shone through.
A long tough day for Southwold came to an end though they can be proud of their efforts against a handy cricket team. Next week they are away again to the high-flying Easton.