Sunday, 1 July 2018

Horspath's downfall masterminded by Moriarty

Darryl Brown took 4-56 for Horspath
HORSPATH'S nemesis proved to be Aston Rowant's Dan Moriarty as they plunged to a 77-run home defeat in Home Counties Premier League Division 1.

Chasing the visitors' 244-9 dec after they had been put in to bat, Horspath slumped to 167 all out with left-arm spinner Moriarty masterminding victory for Rowant with 6-26.

Horspath's reply had begun well with Robbie Eason and debutant Tom Beresford putting on 52 for the first wicket, but Moriarty's introduction into the attack turned the game. He quickly made the breakthrough by bowling Beresford for 25, and in the next over James Fitzjohn saw his stumps knocked back by a delivery from Wes Morrick, which kept low, before he'd got off the mark, making it 53-2.

Eason was then adjudged lbw to Moriarty for 25, with the score on 71. Bowling from the scout hut end, the 18-year-old South African was causing Horspath all sorts of problems, and Darryl Brown survived a sharp chance to Morrick at slip just before tea, which arrived with Horspath 84-3.

However, it proved a short-lived reprieve for Horspath's overseas star as the South African fell lbw to Moriarty for a fluent 31 soon after the interval with just two more runs on the board. Shahbaz Ali, playing his first game since the last match of the 2016 season after taking a year out, was then bowled by Moriarty, leaving Horspath 91-5.

Stephen Green became the spinner's fifth victim when he chipped a catch to Tom Condon at mid-wicket with the score on 106. Seven runs later, skipper Will Eason was caught by Leo Bethell off Dom Whatman, who then bowled Will Robertson for nought, making it 114-8.

Jehan Mohammed and Jamil Faruq gave Horspath hope of salvaging a draw by putting on 53 for the ninth wicket, but when they both fell on the same score it was game over. Mohammed was caught behind by Josh Smith off Chris Watling for 25, and in the next over Faruq holed out to Gordon Harris at long off for 30 with Moriarty completing his six-wicket haul to secure victory and send Rowant 16 points clear at the top.

Earlier, Horspath had contained Rowant for much of their innings before the visitors' last pair of Will Pendered and Gordon Harris shared an unbroken stand of 40 to set up a declaration.

Andrew Tolson and Dan Matthews put on 31 for the first wicket, before the latter was caught out of his crease by a direct hit from the quick-thinking Brown and was run out. Tom Condon had helped move the score on to 77 when he was caught by Fitzjohn in the covers off Faruq for 20, and two runs later Will Eason trapped Tolson lbw for 43.

Skipper Josh Smith and Watling took Rowant to lunch at 127-3, but they had added only 14 more after the resumption when the former was bowled by Brown. The South African all-rounder struck again with the score on 178 when Watling was defeated by one which kept low, and five runs later Brown claimed his third victim when Morrick was caught by Fitzjohn for 17.

Moriarty was the next to fall under Brown's spell when he edged to Will Eason at slip without scoring, making it 189-7. Rowant had added just three more runs when Fitzjohn claimed his first league wicket by bowling Bethell. And the off-spinner struck again with Whatman being caught by Brown, making it 204-9, but Horspath were then frustrated by Rowant's last pair. Pendered led the way with an unbeaten 36, ably supported by Harris, to allow the visitors to declare in the 61st over. Brown (4-56) was the pick of the Horspath attack, while Fitzjohn took 2-23, Faruq 1-41 and Eason 1-45.

Despite the defeat, Horspath remain in seventh place with the season at the midway point.

Posted by: Russ