This week second placed HACC embarked on their furthest away trip of the season, as they travelled to third placed Tillingham. The form guide pointed towards a HACC victory with four wins on the bounce and seven victories from their last eight games, whereas Tillingham had only recorded one win from their previous four matches. However, they are somewhat a bogey team for HACC winning all of the previous three meetings between the sides. Captain Stuart Whitaker called incorrectly at the toss and Tillingham elected to bat, a decision that Whitaker would have replicated, although it wasn’t necessarily a bad toss to lose given the considerable amount of cloud cover and high humidity.
Neil Hutchison and 2nd team debutant Lewis Byford took the new ball for HACC and immediately extracted some seam and bounce from the lively wicket. Tillingham opener P. Potten looked to get after the bowling, lining up some expansive drives, successfully hitting 2 to the fence before being bowled by Byford with a ball that slightly kept low. In contrast fellow opener A. Smith was resolute with his defence of anything straight and pretty much left anything wide. Unfortunately for Smith he didn’t receive a great deal of support from his team mates, as J. Snowden (6) was bowled by Hutchison, shortly followed by the D. Reynolds (0) who became Byford’s second victim of the day to leave Tillingham reeling at 29-3.
A slight recovery saw Tillingham reach 58-3 however, after beating the bat on a number of occasions Whitaker eventually found the edge of Smiths bat and was caught well by Bastin at 2nd slip. In the next over Tom Troubridge picked up his first wicket of the day, dismissing D. Smith caught by B. Byford for 10. Sensing a quick end to the innings Whitaker brought Hutchison back into the attack and he immediately dismissed J. Butterwick (4) courtesy of a fine catch by Chris Jones at backward point. Troubridge then ran through the lower order, recording fine figures of 5/15 in the process almost taking a hat-trick. The final wicket saw J. Taylor bowled by Troubridge to leave the hosts all out for a dismal total of 75, losing their final 7 wickets for just 17 runs.
In reply Jason Roy and Johnny Bairstow, sorry Chris Humphries and Nathaniel Bastin, continued their fruitful partnership, with the pair watchfully manoeuvring the ball around on the aforementioned tricky pitch against some decent Tillingham bowling. With the victory target in sight Bastin was calamitously run out, the second occurrence of such a dismissal this season, for 37. Humphries remained at the crease finishing on 34* and seeing HACC over the line in another comprehensive, maximum point, victory.
HACC Captain Stuart Whitaker
“We were very clinical today in all facets of the game, which is particularly pleasing given the turnover in team from last week. Obviously they were missing a few but you still have to perform at a high level to win like that. In retrospect bowling first probably suited us today as the pitch had something in it for the bowlers all day, and would have been hard for us to have posted a really big total, effectively batting them out of the game, which have been able to achieve in recent weeks”