Pring's unbeaten 95 sees Topsham 2nds to victory on opening day of season
PUBLISHED: 08:58 07 May 2018 | UPDATED: 08:58 07 May 2018
On a glorious day at Uplyme, Topsham recorded one more victory than in the whole of last season, writes, Mike Tracey.
Batting first on an understandably under-prepared wicket, all the batting big guns failed miserably, with the sparkling exception of Aiden Pring.
Pring batted cautiously and sensibly for almost the whole innings, finding sensible support lower down the order, particularly from Paul Robins (16) and young Abhijit Bhaskaran, who scored a mature 10.
Nobody else reached double figures, and the team score seemed unlikely to reach three figures until an amazing late onslaught, culminating in a final over which conceded 24 runs and left Aiden frustratingly not out for 95, having carried his bat – truly, a brilliant knock.
It had all looked very different early on, when young Gabriel Maltby conceded one run off five overs, whilst at the other end the rather more mature Simon Rattenbury was taking four cheap wickets. Young Sam Simms took 2-17 in six good overs, and all the Uplyme youngsters did well until that amazing final onslaught.
The quality of Pring’s performance was underlined when Uplyme went in and, pretty quickly, out again.
Nobody could emulate Pring, but they all did a pretty good job of emulating the rest of the Topsham batting. Jerry Simms and Dave Norman showed their experience with 19 and 13 respectively, but nobody else reached double figures, and the innings quickly folded for a meagre 61.
Simms was unlucky to be out to a ball that shot along the ground and had him toes before wicket, and some of the youngsters, notably Jacob Maltby, gritted it out well without being able to add many to the score.
The honours, though, went to the Topsham bowlers. Former skipper Brian Jeary set the tone with an opening spell of 3-13, and then it was over to the teenagers. Maddy Ross led the way with 3-7 in 4.2 overs of leg spin, but there were good performances from Louie Ferraro (2-20), Abhijit Bhaskaran (1-6) and Alan Peter (1-12). All in all, a very satisfying start to the season for Topsham St James 2nd XI.