Match Reports 2021

Updated: Jan 6

Saturday 24th July Reports

1st XI Report The Romans went to Carmarthen in search of gold. Cowbridge Cricket Club’s 1st XI travelled down the Via Julia Marittima in search of a victory. This would have put them third in the South Wales Premier Cricket League Division Two and in the mix to challenge for the Championship. It was not to be, a heavy defeat by seven wickets being the margin of the home side’s victory.

It comes as a surprise of many that the first recorded cricket match in Wales took place near Carmarthen at Cwmgwili in 1783. The very name of the present club, Carmarthen Wanderers, signified their lack of a home ground and they played the South Wales Hunts at Cowbridge regularly in early September. The Wanderers eventually joined the South Wales Cricket Association just a short time before Cowbridge using the Carmarthen Athletic RFC ground before settling down at the Trinity fields.

It was there that Cowbridge batted first. It proved to be slow progress but nevertheless Ben Wright (56) and Tom Merilaht (29) put on a solid 60 only for a slump to 111-4 put the visitors under some pressure. Jack Cropper (29) and Keiron Alison (34 not out) gave the innings a degree of impetus and the score of 183-7 seemed competitive.

Alas it was nothing like it. The home batsmen got their innings off to a flyer and they cantered to victory in 34 overs. Quite what would have been the outcome had Rhys Davies, Brett Hounsell and Matt Smart been able to take their places in the starting line-up. The Cowbridge XI were disappointed by their performance at Carmarthen and will be looking to make amends at home to Newbridge next week. JRB

The New Mound Members might wonder at the extension of The Mound and what the plan is for it. The idea is to put a flight of steps on the ground-facing slope with disabled access from the rear. A plinth will cover the new top with seating placed on it. A safety fence will ensure users will not fall off the platform. The project will be complete by the end of the year, but it is highly likely that for the remainder of this season access to the existing seats will be from the car park. The benefits of doing this are to save a significant cost, which carting away the soil would have created. Furthermore, it can be used as a players’ sitting area or spectator facility and tidy the area, which has rather let down the adjacent surrounds. JRB Saturday 17th July Reports 1st XI Report By defeating Ynysygerwn by six wickets on Saturday, Cowbridge Cricket Club’s first XI moved up to fourth in Division Two of the Premier League and kept their, admittedly slim, chance of being crowned champions alive.

Bowling first without Rhys Davies and Tom Williams, the all-round skills of Brett Hounsell and Matt Smart had the opportunity to take centre stage with 4-17 and 2-11 respectively. The Ynysygerwn total of 120 was clearly disappointing for the visitors. Led by an innings of strokes of the highest quality by Aman Gandhi (55 not out), it was little more than a practice session.

Cowbridge’s 1st XI travel to the bottom placed Carmarthen. The next four matches are against clubs placed lower than them in the league. Lose one and the season is over in terms of Championships. Win these four and who knows what might happen. JRB 2nd XI Report On Saturday, the 2nd XI recorded an excellent win away at Neath. Overlooking Neath rugby field and with an outside birthday party going on, the atmosphere was excellent with music being played throughout.

Cowbridge ended up fielding first and there were 2 quick wickets; a slip catch by Andrew Walker and a well taken grasp by Martin Jennings at mid-wicket, both from the bowling of Joe Russell. In fact with great keeping by C. Jones and fielding throughout, Cowbridge took 7 catches and 1 stumping. Joe Phillips was the only player to bowl someone out.

The Cowbridge bowlers were Joe Russell and Riley Tona, who both took 3 wickets, and Joe Phillip, Ben Smart and Martin Jennings, who all took one wicket each. Neath were all out for 170 in what seemed a chaseable total.

In the first 2 balls of the Cowbridge innings, C.Jones dismissed their opener for 4 and let him know about short pitch deliveries. Unfortunately, a great delivery got his outside edge on the next ball.

Will Harris and Theo Walker started to build an innings but unfortunately got out when both were starting to look settled.

Joe Russell added 22 and a great innings from Umar Rafique of 43 helped build the total. It was then left for Martin Jennings to see the game through with some excellent play and some great singles run with Riley.

The home team racked up the extras and Cowbridge saw the game over the line. A great win and performance where fielding and bowling shone. The batting was then methodical and cleverly orchestrated to chase down with 2 wickets to spare. Andrew Walker Saturday 10th July Reports 1st XI Report In a tense finish, and thanks to two stand out performances, Cowbridge Cricket Club’s 1st XI achieved a narrow victory over the South Wales Premier League Division Two Championship leaders, Chepstow, at The Athletic Ground last Saturday. Leadership of the division passed to unbeaten Clydach and Cowbridge remain fifth.

It was a day when the tension mounted as the match progressed reaching a climax that matched Sir Henry Newbolt’s poem ‘Vita Lampada’. It may not have had the ‘bumping pitch‘, Hugh Williams’ pitches are never ‘bumping’, and by the time the last Cowbridge batsmen were at the wicket, the ground was bathed in the golden glow of a midsummer early evening, rather than a ‘ blinding light’. It had not always been like that as the match began under gloomy skies and a heavy atmosphere.

Surprisingly, Chepstow decided to bat first but as the clouds did not unfurl until towards the end of the Chepstow innings, it turned out to be a poor call. By the time the sun had put its hat on, the damage had been done by Rhys Davies.

Conditions were ideal for Davies’ brand of swing bowling but having the ability to exploit them is quite another. Rhys has skills aplenty and having returned to cricket after a career as a professional golfer, his bowling, which took him to the verge of first-class cricket, is rediscovering its old skills match by match. In the last three fixtures, Rhys has conceded just 46 runs off 30 overs. This time it was 3-12 off his ten overs, but his work was not done. Chepstow were restricted to 156 all out but Cowbridge then proceeded to make a total mess of their innings. Only Ben Wright was able to come to terms with the Chepstow spinners as the home team slumped to 103-8.

It would require one of the tailenders to keep Ben company and in Rhys Davies the team had its man. Rhys kept his end up for 53 balls adding 13 himself as he and Ben took the score from 103 to 142 when a calamity of a mid-wicket misunderstanding saw Rhys run out. With Cowbridge needing 15 for victory, Sam Russell arrived as the last batsman. The tension mounted as Sam took a single off the last ball of the forty eighth over, not ideal as it was Ben Wright at the other end. Nevertheless, in the forty eighth not only did he keep the visitors attack at bay but picked up two more runs backwards off square leg.

Twelve to win, twelve balls to be bowled and Ben Wright, the league’s leading run scorer, on strike facing the seventh choice Chepstow bowler. It really was no contest. A dot ball was followed by a piercing of a gap at midwicket for four runs. Another four followed next ball as Ben helped a delivery which was drifting down the leg side to the fine leg boundary. Then came the victory with Ben again threading the ball between two Chepstow fielders who were patrolling the leg side boundary. JRB 2nd XI Report Cowbridge 2nd XI lost a nervy game by just 7 runs away to league highflyers Chepstow on Saturday.

Having chosen to field, an excellent all-round bowling performance restricted the home side to 148 all out. Skipper Joe Russell returned superb figures of 4-46, ably supported by Umar Rafique with 3-16, Rhydian Harris with 2-25 and a stunning run out from livewire keeper Carwyn Jones. Young bowlers Joe Phillips and Will Harris bowled miserly spells without the reward they deserved. The ground fielding was of the highest calibre with Matt Wood pouching a terrific catch whilst Owain Scholey, Theo Walker and Ben Smart were active in keeping the run rate down.

Chasing 149 to win, the top order struggled against accurate seam bowling on an awkward sloping track. Reduced to 5-2, the team just could not string a meaningful partnership together against a particularly good bowling side, despite the heroics of Matt Smart who made a gutsy 71. In the end, a young Cowbridge side containing 5 teenagers slipped to 141 all out.

Despite the loss the game was played in excellent spirits and with plenty of good cricket. The 2nd XI continues to develop and become more competitive, and results will surely follow with displays such as this. Ian Harris Saturday 3rd July Reports 1st XI Report On the third man boundary at the Penarth Athletic Ground sits a striking art deco house of the type often featured in the Poirot series on television. On Saturday, it was not on the links but on the cricket ground that the murder took place as Cowbridge’s 1st XI were slain by the locals.

Having won the toss and decided to field first, rightly so given there was rain about, Cowbridge’s bowling attack was rendered toothless by the placid pitch. Cowbridge’s problem is that currently their bowling unit is leaking too many runs. Of the bowlers used on Saturday, Rhys Davies was once again a model of consistency conceding just 20 runs from his ten overs, while Tom Williams’s economy rate was 3.75. The spinners, Cameron Jeffers and Aman Gandhi, were at 4.2 and 4.5, respectivel