Tuesday 7th June vs Marshfield (soft ball)
Skipper Gail won the toss against Marshfield and opted to field first. With Thornbury feeling confident, Eva opened the bowling. However, soon after the first batter started hitting 6’s and 4’s, Thornbury began feeling nervous. It quickly became apparent that the Marshfield team were a force to be reckoned with, having players with both county and national credentials.
Looking to hold their own, fielding changes were made by Thornbury but the opposition still managed to find the gaps. After 8 overs Marshfield were on 108! The second pair came into play and with some encouraging bowling and strong fielding by Thornbury it looked as though they could salvage something. But with the final pair concluding their batting, Thornbury were left to chase 165.
In high spirits, Thornbury took to the crease with Corridor (Eva Bishop) and Edam (Helen Newman) up first - knocking some encouraging 4’s and running well between wickets. In true TCC-style, the ladies continued to fight hard and batted well, placing some lovely shots through the covers and looking to grab singles wherever they could.
The team did their best despite the amazing performance of the opposition and kept high spirits until the bitter end, showing as always, perseverance, strong teamwork and encouragement.
Thornbury ended on a net score of 95 compared to Marshfield's 161.
Whilst it’s the first softball defeat for the team for this season, the team walked away with their heads held high, smiles on their faces and with pragmatism that they were outplayed fair and square by an experienced and talented side. Marshfield were also very praiseworthy of the talent and spirit within the Thornbury side and we wish them well this season.
Sunday 12th June vs Golden Hill (hard ball)
After a warm-up and liberal application of the sun cream, we lost the toss and were put in to bat on what we later found was a very challenging wicket!
Captain and vice captain Nina and Eva opened the batting. Nina made a strong start with two boundaries in a total of 11, but was unfortunately bowled by a straight delivery that didn't bounce (a theme of the day). Eva also succumbed to a non-bouncing delivery, out lbw (lesson 1 in differences from soft ball). Next came Emma and Helen, with Emma shortly following Nina and Eva back. Rekha followed (another non-bouncer), as did Annie, although she came out fighting, with a couple of strong hits before receiving another of the non-bouncing deliveries. Helen, along with Louise, steadied Thornbury, with Helen facing 37 balls and Louise 16, in a strong partnership. Well played Helen and Louise! The wicket continued to be challenging with the lack of bounce not helping Gail, Anjali or Jo. Gaynor, however, provided late resistance, facing 18 balls and finishing not-out. We finished on 72, overall a good team effort.
After a quick break and tactics talk (just bowl straight and the lack of bounce will do the rest!) we took up our fielding positions. There was slight trepidation with Golden Hill having two of their most experienced players opening the batting. We needn't have worried though, Anjali bowled a tight first over, followed by Jo bowling a cracking delivery first ball and Gaynor taking a fantastic catch to dismiss one opener. Not to be left out, Anjali followed suit, bowling their other opener on her first ball of the next over. Golden Hill were 8-2!
Golden Hill steadied their batting, and we had to wait til the 10th over before Rekha, sporting a bruised shin (lesson 2 - hands are better than shins with hard balls) made a breakthrough, taking two quick wickets. Golden Hill were 43-4 at the halfway stage.
Unfortunately, despite some tight fielding (special mention goes to Helen's dive to stop a boundary - Simon will be pleased after Saturday's training!), Golden Hill started to pull away. Emma finally stopped the momentum in the 15th over, with Golden Hill needing just 3 runs to win. Annie had other ideas, taking two wickets in the next over to leave Golden Hill 72-7.
Despite coming up just short in the next over, it was a fantastic performance from the whole team on what proved to be a challenging wicket. We've all gained some valuable experience (mostly don't try to hit a big shot on a straight ball that doesn't bounce!) and most importantly we all had a great afternoon. Thanks to Golden Hill for hosting and being such a welcoming team, and a big thanks to Mike for umpiring and coaching. On to the next match!