Skipper Hodge looks to the positives

PUBLISHED: 18:10 29 April 2008 | UPDATED: 22:16 26 October 2009

St Albans 2nd XI 165 Potters Bar 2nd XI 140 POTTERS Bar s 2nd XI lost their opening game of the season to St Albans at a sun-soaked Clarence Park, but it was good experience for the young side. The main aim of the day was to make sure all the players go

St Albans 2nd XI 165 Potters Bar 2nd XI 140

POTTERS Bar's 2nd XI lost their opening game of the season to St Albans at a sun-soaked Clarence Park, but it was good experience for the young side.

The main aim of the day was to make sure all the players got in some practice before the Saracens Herts League season starts this weekend.

Captain Greg Hodge chose to dwell on the positives from the game.

He said: "Only four or five of our regular league side were on display today, so I wouldn't read too much into the result.

"Looking ahead to the new season, I think we can build on last year's fantastic display and continue to develop first team cricketers.

"We have a tough start, but if we can get through that with a couple of wins, there is no reason why we can't better last year's sixth place finish."

Bar skipper Hodge lost the toss and was asked to bowl first on a green looking wicket on Saturday.

Hodge took the new ball alongside 15-year-old Alex Whitehouse.

Both bowled very well in the early stages, with Whitehouse seeing two catches go down off his bowling in his first two overs.

The Potters Bar youngster swung the ball and bowled an excellent line and length.

It was Bar's skipper that made the first breakthrough, removing a St Albans opener's leg stump.

Hodge took a second wicket with the last ball of his fifth over to leave St Albans 45- 2.

Veteran Chris Boyce and another Under-16, Isaac Moore, then entered the attack.

Boyce bowled a beautiful nine-over spell, picking up five wickets in the process.

At 100-7, Bar could have really turned the screw on the opposition but maintained the spirit of the game by using a total of seven bowlers.

Dan Brown and Luke Owers picked up a wicket apiece before Dan's younger brother, Steve, was unlucky not to end St Albans' innings on 140 with a close run-out call.

In the end, Dan wrapped things up with the final wicket in the 38th over with St Albans reaching 165.

Bar's run chase was always going to be reliant on a handful of more experienced batters, with only Dave Pett, Charlie Hodge and Luke Owers present from the side's regular top eight.

When Owers fell for a duck in the 12th over, Bar were struggling at 50-3.

Dave Pett played nicely for a well made 40. However, wickets continued to fall at the other end.

Pett was unlucky to be bowled by a low ball, but he will be happy that he put away a couple of his trademark boundaries.

In the end Bar were bowled out for 140, with Dan Brown making 15 not out. Charlie Hodge (18) was the only other batsman to make double figures.


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