One man the difference as Brewers fall to home defeat
Brewers recent good form was ended on Saturday by an inspired performance from young St Cross all-rounder Harry Came. He was instrumental with both bat and ball as the visitors came out on top in another run fest at the JCG.
Things did not start well for the Brewers as in the warm up they lost in form opening bowler Ben Mortimer to a hamstring pull. Luckily the team sheet was not in so he was replaced by Michael Salmon. The visitors then won the toss and elected to bat on what looked like a fantastic surface.
The returning Dann Scott took on new ball responsibilities with Toby Salmon as the pair looked for the early breakthrough. Both started well but it was Salmon in particular who was causing the St Cross skipper plenty of issues. Myers chopped and changed his attack and it was Ballinger who made the breakthrough, Young edging to Myers at slip St Cross 25 for 1. Came joined skipper Foyle, Scott found the edge of Came early on but the Brewers failed to take their chance. Things continued to go against Alton as overseas Marais pulled his thigh in the field restricting his movement considerably.
Foyle survived Salmon’s fantastic opening spell but looking to attack Myers was soon the second man out Michael Salmon making no mistake under the high ball as Foyle was dismissed for 44 with the score on 69. Ballinger soon got his second Stokes sweeping in the air to deep square where Mark Heffernan took the catch St Cross 88 for 3.
Mead joined Came and from this point on the visitors took control. The pair built a match winning partnership of 187 as the Brewers were made to toil. The pair barely gave a chance as they both moved to mile stones Came completed a fantastic century and Mead past 50. When Mead holed out off Myers for 70 St Cross were in a commanding position at 272 for 4. Came moved past 150 before being finally dismissed by Ballinger for 151 off 162 balls. Alton took one more wicket as Hammond completed a great leg side stumping off Myers but St Cross continued to bat on as thy moved past 300, eventually declaring after 63.5 overs on 305 for 6.
With Marais unable to run skipper Myers decided to give him the opportunity to get the Brewers off to a flyer. Marais did not disappoint as he and Michael Heffernan took the attack to the St Cross attack. The pair put on 71 in quick time before Heffernan fell to Bransgrove for 24. Hammond continued in the same vein as he raced to 40. Marais passed 50 as the home side made it to tea on 126 for 1 off just 19 overs.
After tea the tide turned St Cross fought back, Hammond edged behind off Mitchell in the first over after tea. Then Harris became Cames first victim trapping him in front for 13 Alton 155 for 3. When Marais followed soon after also LBW off Came for a fine 73 Alton had slipped to 162 for 4.
The wickets continued to come for Came. Myers made 25 before miscuing to mid-wicket. Alton passed 200 but when Mark Heffernan and Hugo Hammond went in quick succession Came had 5 wickets to his name and Alton were 208 for 7. Some lusty blows from Michael Salmon who made a spirited 37 not out edged Alton nearer the winning draw total but with plenty of overs left Came was not finished he took 2 more wickets to end with figures of 7 for 52 before Ballinger was the last man out off Ayers as Alton slumped to 249 all out.
Alton will look to bounce back as they face Hampshire Academy twice in two days. They travel to the Ageas bowl on Saturday in the league before beginning the defence of their T20 title at home on Sunday – 3pm start.