Report by Daniel Mortlock:
Romsey won the last two-thirds of today's match by a comfortable margin; the problem was that Ashdon absolutely slaughtered us for the first third, and that was enough, by 6 runs, to carry the day.
Ashdon's opening pair of J. Millership (70) and J. Hill (62) put on a 145-run stand in under 27 overs that put their side in an almost impregnable position. They weren't separated until Andy Owen, coming on third change, got through Hill's defenses. This initial breach then became a torrent, as we - well Andy, really - took wickets at the rate of one every two overs for the rest of the innings. Even though we weren't able to slow the scoring rate significantly, neither did it accelerate as might have been expected, and in the meantime we managed some remarkable individual feats. Richard Rex took four catches to establish a new club record for an out-fielder (and equalling the best haul by a wicket-keeper as well); Ferdi Rex took two catches of his own, meaning a new (if informal) record for most catches by a single family; and Andy finished up with his best ever bowling figures (and the third best ever for Romsey) of 10 overs, 1 maiden, 7/46. This was all the more remarkable as, aside from a run out, these were the only wickets we took, so Andy also got himself a spot high up the rather-inelegantly titled Greatest relative contribution in wickets table.
Not that any of this should distract from the fact that we were, once again, left facing an extremely challenging target, this time of 227 to win. Rod Dennis and Cameron Petrie started well, getting us to 50/0 after 9 overs, but our scoring rate sunk after Cameron's dismissal (for 21), just 17 runs coming from the next 9 overs as Rod and Roy Page (14) struggled to score. By the time we'd reached 79/3 after 23 overs the game was all but up: we needed an impossible-sounding 148 runs off 17 overs (i.e., a required rate of 8.71). But then Ferdi Rex and Rod put together possibly our best partnership so far this year, smashing 85 runs from the next 11 overs. And when Rod was dismissed (for 49) Olly Rex took over, 13, 13, 5, 8 and 16 coming from the last 5 overs of our innings. Unfortunately we'd left ourselves just a little bit too much to do, and despite Ferdi's brilliant 79 and Olly's destructive 29 (a family century, to go with the half-dozen catches) we ended up 6 frustrating runs short of Ashdon's total.