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Academy give Alton a lesson, other wins all round

Alton were hoping to put the poor performance of last week behind them as they travelled to Hampshire HQ. However their struggles with the limited overs format continued as they fell to a heavy 75 run defeat at the hands of a young Hampshire Academy side.

Hampshire Academy were strengthened by the inclusion of Joe Gatting in their ranks and on winning the toss had no hesitation on batting first on a hard flat surface. Alton were not so fortunate as their overseas import Dewayne Bowden was unwell and unable to take up his normal role with the new ball.

Hampshire started well with the returning Mortimer struggling to find his range, but their progress was halted when Heffernan swooped in to run out Duggan for 16.

This brought Gatting to the crease, but Alton began to stem the flow of runs with the Myers brothers keeping a check on the scoring rate. Phillips was introduced into the attack and the Brewers thought they had their man, a loose shot from Gatting was caught at backward point but the call of “No Ball” immediately dampened celebrations. A missed opportunity to dismiss the talented McManus added to the Brewers frustration as Hampshire move past 100.

Alton finally made the breakthrough they desperately needed when Ballinger out foxed McManus (41) who holed out to Hale at long on. Gatting remained patient and took any runs on offer as Alton chipped away at the other end. A wicket a piece for Jack Myers and Phillips both returning figures of 1 for 48 saw the Academy move to 187 for 4.

Gatting was finally dismissed for a patient 84 when he was smartly stumped off a wide by Janmohamed off the bowling of skipper Scott Myers (1 for 39). Ballinger returned to the attack and in the final over picked up 3 victims leaving him with figures of 4-47 and Hampshire ended on 229 for 8.

Alton’s run chase did not start as they would have hoped when Hale was dismissed by a good delivery from King (1-25) clean bowling the in-form opener. Alton looked to rebuild and with Barber bowling with good pace Alton were content to remain patient. Heffernan (22) and Phillips (18) saw off the opening bowlers and at 45 for 1 looked well placed.

Alton’s troubles then began, poor shot selection saw Heffernan pull Stones and pick out the only man on the boundary and Alton were reduced to 45 for two. This soon became 79 for 8 with Alton’s middle order blown away by Murray who took 4 for 18 in a 6 over spell that ultimately settled the game.

Facing humiliation Mortimer took the attack to the home side and a fine partnership of 69 with Jack Myers saw Alton move to 148 for 9. When Myers was dismissed for 15, Ballinger joined Mortimer who reached his half century off only 44 balls and the Brewers made it to 154 before Ballinger was caught and another poor performance from the Brewers was complete.

Alton will now look to finish strong in their final two games of the season. They face St Cross at home on Saturday with the slightly earlier start time of 12:30pm.

Penn finishes off bowlers good work

Alton 2nd XI won their third game in a row in convincing fashion, completing the double over Waterlooville by 9 wickets.

Jack Penn was the hero with the bat, smashing a brutal 72 as Alton raced home inside 19 overs chasing 101 to win.

Earlier in the day, Alton had won the toss and asked Waterlooville to bat on a damp surface, and were immediately rewarded as Toby Salmon (2-25) struck twice.

Alex Hughes removed the dangerous James Scutt (25), before Dan Scott (2-17) was rewarded for another accurate spell.

Alton introduced spin to good effect, and Robbie Pitts-Melan (1-17), Tom Paul (1-13) bowled good spells, before Lee Partner (3-11) mopped up the tail.

Penn then strode to the crease and made short work of the target, hitting fours and sixes seemingly at will, with only the loss of Howard Gadsby (9) interrupting the Brewers march to victory.

Family affair at Anstey Park

Alton 4th XI hosted Kingsley 2nd XI at the weekend and with it a few old faces (Sid Reeves, Pete Bowers and Dean Murphy all playing for the visitors). The game was a rescheduled affair with the original game rain affected back in May.

Alton won the toss and opened the batting with Jon Kiddle, another Alton old boy, returning for his one and only game of the season and vice skipper Dax Artley. The pair put on a few before Artley was cleaned up by the regulation line and length of Reeves. Two of Alton’s youngsters Freddie Egleston and Dan Trim (Trim Jnr) were also then “out thought” by the experienced Kingsley attack falling to Reeves and Bowers respectively, with Murphy, the most prolific wicket keeper in I’Anson 6 picking up a stumping to remove Trim Jnr.

Alton’s skipper, Martin Green, then came to the crease and continued his recent fine batting form scoring 42*, batting through to the interval that was slightly delayed whilst tea was made (just reminding everybody that cricket is social game!).

Kiddle was eventually out for a spirited 67, looking to attack the bowling of Pegden, and “Ironman” Tim Parker quickly gifted his old friend Murphy a second dismissal feathering one to the Alton old-boy – again off Pegden.

Parker’s removal though only saw Zim Rob Crook join his skipper at the crease and the explosive African accelerated the scoring rate significantly; with the help of some fine running between the wickets the Alton pair put on nearly 100 in an unbroken stand to ensure the hosts were able to set a huge target of 206 for Kingsley to secure an unlikely chase.

After the long awaited tea that had caused a delay to the declaration, Alton opened the bowling with the Tandy youngsters with immediate success. Matt was far too quick for Greg Hirst and Sophie way too accurate for Mick Jones – both clean bowled.  Trim Jnr then took two quick wickets, the second a great diving catch at slip by youngster Freddie Egleston.

Murphy continued to bat well (and ride his luck!); the game quickly hinged on just how long the Kingsley opener could hold out. He rode his luck with a couple of dropped chances but also continued to look to score where he could. It took an old boy to get rid of the Alton old boy with the canny bowling of Adrian Trim (Trim Snr) eventually clean bowling Murphy, and effectively ending the Kingsley resistance, for 36.

Tony Martin was removed by Crook in his one over, before the Tandy duo returned to take another wicket each in the latter overs.  After a day where everything had gone right for the Alton skipper his last decision, to bring on the left am swing bowling of wicket keeper Thomas Green, also proved productive with Green Jnr finishing off the Kingsley innings in 9 balls removing Cooper with another excellent slip catch (Matt Tandy) and then closing the day in style, clean bowling Sid Reeves first ball to carry over the hatrick chance to next week’s fixture at home to Thursely. Well played Alton 4s!!

Ladies finish with a flourish

Alton Ladies finished their season with their fourth consecutive win and their best batting performance of the season at Langley Manor

The Brewers made 192-2 with Julia Moulton making a fine 89* and Martha Folkes a rapid 31*.

Langley then threatened the target but never got close enough, closing on 162-4 thanks to some good fielding, leaving Alton third in the table.