BELOW-PAR Rugby were seen off comfortably by Moseley Ashfield in Saturday’s Warwickshire County Premier Division clash, going down by nine wickets.
The Webb Ellis Road hosts managed to complete their first fixture in three weeks at the weekend, but were unable to ever truly show the form required to beat the league high-fliers.
A decision by Moseley Ashfield to field first looked an ingenious one considering Rugby’s struggles at the crease, as Matthew Ewer’s men slipped to an early batting collapse.
Of Rugby’s top order, only opener Hugh Cochrane (25, lbw) was able to put together any real momentum early on, as the lack of a reliable batting partner became evident.
Cochrane eventually struck up some form with the unbeaten Michael Hughes (40, no) before departing at 51-6, leaving his teammate to struggle on until the bitter end as Rugby were seen off for 85 runs in 37 overs.
Not willing to waste any more time than necessary, Moseley’s Warwick Paull (51) and skipper Hayden Evans (22, no) smashed their way to an opening stand of 83 – after the former was caught and bowled by Daanyal Sadiq (1-16).
Number three Kasir Shah (2, no) then helped to see out a result which hands Rugby their third loss this term – a record they look to put right at Streetly on Saturday.
WITH Willoughby’s first XI denied Northamptonshire League Division Six action at Stony Stratford, it was the turn of the club’s second string to impress against Wellingborough Old Grammarians Thirds in a fixture that was eventually abandoned.
Hosts Willoughby were emphatic at the crease, smashing 157 runs and conceding just four wickets during their 34 overs, with rainfall the only factor to stop the hosts from recording a third win in Division 12.
After being sent into bat first, the hosts opened with an impressive partnership of 69 between Ian Andrews (16) and Matt Cartridge (38), while fellow top-order duo Martin Nichols (34) and Michael Deery (37) chipped in with a stand of 64 before the third wicket.
With a revised target of 122 from 26 overs for the visitors to aim for, Willoughby looked to have taken control of the game with the two early dismissals of Wellingborough’s skipper Stuart Jeffery (1) and Rudath Kapugeekiyana (2) at 7-2, just before the match came to a close.
Taking nine points for their efforts, league leaders Willoughby Seconds host Bugbrooke Thirds next, while the first team visit Sun Hardingstone.