On another pleasant mid-April day the Newport Gentlemen made their first visit to Broadhalfpenny Down, and won the first toss of 2021. They elected to bat and made slow but steady progress against a decent Brigands attack. Opening up with Neil Wood and Ed Hands, skipper David Henderson had a varied bowling battery to rotate. Ed Walker, Dave Turner, Dougie Henderson, Gerry Northwood and David Henderson himself all turned their arms over, and there was always Jake Peach available in the locker too.
Neil trapped J Khan LBW for a duck in his third over, before Imaq and Zia put on 43 for the second wicket, when Zia was bowled by Dougie Henderson. Three wickets then fell quickly to Ed Walker’s pace and Dave Turner’s spin, leaving Newport at 66 for 5, Brigands relaxed their grip a bit then, and the score moved along to 125 when Jamal was run out as Newport’s top scorer (39) was going for a single to Gerry Northwood!
Newport Gentlemen finally reached 147, Ed Walker the pick of the bowlers with 4, the last one to a good slip catch by Ed Hands. Dave Turner took two on his debut, and David Henderson one. This was a solid start in the field for the Brigands first outing with, the skipper said, only a couple of blemishes.
Brigands then went in to chase, starting with a quick 74 run stand between Paul Whittle and Jake Peach (retired on 51), which inspired a mini-collapse as first Paul, then Graham Inglis (a first-baller) fell. This slight wobble worsened with Adam Jay out for 1, taking Brigands to 86. But the ship was steadied, and eventually the match won with 13 overs to spare, thanks to an excellent 44* by Dougie Henderson accompanied first by Dave Turner who batted carefully for half an hour, and then Ed Walker (7*).
Graham Inglis was the first recipient of the weekly award of The Matt Cartoon, following a democratic debate.