A New Beginning
Opening Game of the season.
And so the season and indeed this blog begins!
First XI vs Addingham CC
This is the first time Ilkley have found themselves playing in the 3rd tier of the Aire Wharfe Senior Cricket League and skipper Chris Quaife is hoping for an immediate return to Division B. However, despite relegation last year the club has a positive atmosphere about it and with the clubhouse undergoing a small refurb, along with some decent recruitment in the winter months everyone in the Ilkley camp was in buoyant mood.
It was local village Addingham that were to be ICC's opening fixture for the 2006 Season at home at the picturesque Denton Road ground.
Chris Quaife (Capt)
Jo Varley (Wk)
New signings Nick Cockcroft, Andy Wheeler and Paul Dover all started the game and 15 year old Richard Rhodes was also handed his 1st XI debut after the late withdrawal of Craig Rackham.
Young Australian Simon Schwerdt also starts his first game for the ICC. Simon is a from Kensington, Adelaide and is no stranger to English soil having played last year for Thirsk and knocking up a healthy average of 40 in the process.
Onto the game then. Eventually the Addingham team turned up, it seems they thought it was a 1.30pm start as opposed to 1pm. After waiting patiently Captain Quaife inevitably lost the toss!
Addingham decided to have bowl. It was a decision they would rue...
17 year old Alex Bailey and Aussie Simon opened the batting and played some delightful shots sharing an opening stand of 130, before Simon fell immediatley after notching his first 50 for the club. Cockcroft stepped out and joined Alex at the crease. The patient and deliberate Cocky was an excellent foil to the attacking flair displayed by Bails - indeed the on-drives Alex executed were simply sublime. After getting into the nervous 90's it seemed the ICC faithful were to be treated to Alex's first Senior century. Alas, it was not to be and when Bails shouldered arms to one that nipped back the umps raised his finger with the unlucky Alex on 95.
No complaints from the young opener and surely in this sort of form it won't be long before Alex notches up his first ton.
In walked number 4 Michael Sant and with license from the skip to play his natural game he soon overtook the hardworking Cocky. Santy bludgeoned and smashed and bullied the hapless Dingham bowlers to all parts of the ground, including a huge six that went straight into Rugby ground! The unfortunate Richard Hey couldn't have had a worse return to his old club - his figures read 19-0-108-1.
Sant went for one shot to many and was bowled but not before he finished on 43.
In walked Paul Dover to join fellow new boy Cocky and with only a few overs left treat the spectators to some lusty blows quickly finishing on 18, again a big six was involved... no mean feat at the large Denton Road ground. And so after 50 overs Ilkley went into tea with 250-3 on the board.
Ilkley began their response in confident mood and Richard Harrison and Paul Dover opened the bowling. Both tried hard but Addinghams old guard had obviously decided 1 point would be good enough for them as just one 4 was hit in the first 12 overs!
Up stepped Captain Quaife to have a go and he bowled very well, indeed the Skip could count himself unlucky as on one occaision he bowled the opener all ends up, somehow missed the stumps only to see the ball ricochet straight into Santy's helmet directly behind the wickets - 5 in the extra's column!
Paul had tried his heart out at the other end without much luck so Cocky was thrown the ball and given a go. It paid dividends immediatly as he was soon causing all sorts of problems and soon got his reward on getting Captain Simpson caught behind by the excellent Jo Varley.
Cocky was in the groove now and not before long he had 4 deserved wickets and Addingham were going nowhere fast. Captain Quaife rotated the other end and gave Wheeler and Bailey chances before Richard Harrison came back on to claim his first wicket of the 2006 season.
Special mention also to Richard Rhodes who came on for the last over of the game and bowled a very tidy looking maiden - the youngster certainly didn't look out of place.
Ilkley CC 250 - 3 (Bails 93, Simon 50, Santy 43, Cocky 31*)
Addingham 140 - 4 (Cocky 4-60, Harrison 1-26)
So 5 points out of a possible 6 and the ICC juggernaught is off and running. Next stop Woodhouse.