17th August 2020
Friday night saw the Thunder welcome the Shaw Spartans to Rochdale Road as the GMCL15 competition reached the halfway stage. Having elected to bat first Shaw were restricted to 0-1 after the first over with their captain Whiston removed for a duck. Unfortunately for Thornham this brought former West Indian Test match player Lincoln Roberts to the crease who proceeded to smash the ball to all parts. Roberts finished up on 85 not out with extras helping the visitors to a healthy 160.
Thornham’s chase didn’t get off to the flyer the team had hoped for as Grey, so impressive in the last couple of games was caught in the ring. Howarth couldn’t get going as he did last week and when he was stumped off Boyle, the game looked over. Some late middle order batting made the chase respectable as the Thunder finished 33 runs short – no real shame in effectively being beaten by a paid man.
With the return of proper weekend cricket, Saturday saw the First team travel to the Heys to take on Prestwich 2nds. The home side won the toss and elected to bat on a wicket that was hard but green. This allowed the opening bowling partnership to get its rewards and when Pattison took 2 in two balls with nicks through to keeper Walsh the home side were reeling at 31-5. Pattison went on to get his maiden 5 for in the first team, a top-class effort from the opener aided by a superb catch from Smith even with Harrop desperately trying to claim the catch for himself. With good pressure from ‘backup bowlers’ Micklethwaite and Young, and despite some lower order farming by Montgomery and Holt Prestwich were bowled out for 80.
Thornham’s chase got off to a good start as Mansfield and Howarth carried on from last weekend’s victory over Clifton in reaching 34 for the first wicket before Mansfield and then Micklethwaite departed in the same over after corkers from Khaliq. Howarth looked in good form until a yorker from Holt removed him and with 20 still needed at this point, Thornham needed not to lose any more wickets just to settle the nerves. The target was reached in the 22nd over and this maintained the team’s 100 percent record, Thornham defying their ‘lowly’ tag in remaining top of the table. We reach the halfway point in the truncated season next weekend when we welcome Friarmere to Rochdale Road.
The Seconds remain winless as they were beaten at home by Springhead. Despite a battling 57 from Stephen Greenwood, showing the sort of form with the bat that persuaded ex 3rd XI skipper Jim Clarke to pursue Greenwood’s signature, the home side were dismissed for 137. This was buttressed by 34 from Obaid Iqbal, who nearly missed the game due to being on taxi duty for his sister. Unfortunately for Thornham, the visitors reached their target inside 26 overs with 78 coming from Robert Shaw, the opener carrying his bat through the innings.
The Thirds recorded their first victory of the season with a 7 wicket win at home to Royton. The away side batted first and scored 176, with wickets being shared amongst all the bowlers and keeper Holdaway claming 3 victims. A Mohammed Sarfraz half century and 30’s from Adnan and Saleem helped Thornham knocked the score off with 7 overs to go, captain Iqbal rightfully delighted with the high-scoring run chase.
The coming weekend sees the Thunder away at Heyside on the Friday night, the First XI at home vs Friarmere on the Saturday and on Sunday the 3s travel to Moorside.