While Pocklington CC second XI and third XI failed to start either of their games due to wet grounds, Pocklington CC first XI (sponsored by Sweet Move Estate Agents), made one of their longest journeys of the summer, to play Harrogate CC, returning with a winning draw and 27 out of a possible 30 points.
On Saturday, Pocklington travelled to a dry St George’s Road ground in Harrogate.
However, with dark clouds around, weather was always going to play a part in this opening round fixture.
After a rushed toss, Harrogate, not knowing the correct start time or new rules regarding rain, inserted Pocklington on a dry wicket with a tinge of green.
Regular opener Andy Inns took the field with debutant, Andrew Anderson.
While Anderson looked circumspect, Inns took to the bowling from ball one.
Anderson went early for eight, caught behind, bringing Neal Jackson to the wicket who smashed a quickfire 29 in a partnership of 47.
After Jackson went, going for another expansive drive, Charles Lambert arrived at the wicket on his fifth duck.
After enormous relief at getting off the mark, Inns and Lambert added a further 58 for the third wicket taking the score to 141 in the 29th over.
Inns, playing several reverse sweeps and switch hits, putting the Harrogate captain and fielders in disarray.
However, when Inns fell for a majestic 76 and Lambert a solid 27, Pocklington’s innings fell away, with some poor batting against some indifferent bowling.
Only the experience of Neil Readman, 15 not out, got Pocklington to a respectable 201-9 in their 45 overs and maximum batting points.
After a disappointing and inadequate tea, Pocklington took to the field, with the other debutant, Connaire Brattan taking the new ball with captain Alex Downey.
Unexpectedly, both bowled relatively well, with Brattan taking two early wickets to put Harrogate on the back foot.
Thereafter, the Taylor brothers, who had scored heavily the week before, repaired the innings, taking Harrogate towards the hundred mark without further loss.
Downey changed the bowling, first introducing Freddie Parry with his leg-spin, then Pete Powell with his medium pace.
Several missed chances followed, as well as the opposing umpire reluctant to give any decisions in Pocklington’s favour.
However, a long hop from Powell broke the partnership with Brattan clinging onto a catch on the deep midwicket boundary, starting a collapse.
Anderson was introduced, and runs became harder to come by.
The virtue of pitching the ball fuller led to Anderson taking four crucial wickets with several catches aiding his figures.
Pocklington failed to pick up the last wicket in the last six overs, but 27 points has left the first XI in a good league position.
Pocklington left Harrogate happier than when they arrived.
However, during the week, the batsman need to work hard at playing spin and rotating the strike, and the bowlers need to work very hard at bowling a more consistent length and line.
Many thanks to all our sponsors, especially Sweet Move and The Black Bull, who presented man of the match Andy Inns with his well-earned amber nectar.