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Manor brush Streetly Aside

1st XI
Birmingham League Division Three
Aston Manor 263-9
Streetly 179 all out

Aston Manor reached the half way mark of the season very handily placed in third position in the League following another excellent all round team performance in defeating a strong Streetly team at Church Road.

After a late injury to Tom Caulfield, skipper Jason Furnell took the responsibility of opening the batting alongside Rahul Bakshi. It was a decision that paid dividends as the pair put Manor in a strong position with a positive opening partnership of 73. Furnell (24) batted with freedom in supporting Bakshi (42) who again showed his undoubted class. Manor were unable to build on this positive start though, mainly due to some fine bowling from Sam Bates (5-47), as the visitors clawed themselves back into the match reducing the hosts to 97-4. Manor regained the initiative with a tremendous 118 run partnership between Shaun Findlay (88) and George Findlay (71). Both players mixed dogged determination with exciting stroke play and thoroughly entertained a large sun bathed crowd. Manor lost another clutch of wickets as they tried to increase the tempo, and ultimately had to ensure that they were not bowled out thus giving the opposition any extra overs, finishing on a very credible score of 263-9 from their 55 overs.

Despite a fine innings from Neil Curtis (58), Manor’s seam bowlers were very accurate in their line and length and never let the visitors get ahead of the required run rate. Rahul Bakshi (3-41) and Imran Khan (2-32) then reduced Streetly from the comfort of 79-1 to 103-5 with a tremendous spell of swing bowling. They were supported by some high class fielding from their colleagues, including a stunning catch from Andrew Forman to dismiss South African danger man Dewald Joubert at a crucial stage of the innings. Sam Bates (48) gave Streetly a brief hope of recovery with some aggressive hitting, but Manor’s spinners Shaun Findlay (3-13) and James Harris (2-21) were equally impressive as the visitors were ultimately dismissed for 179 giving Manor an important and well deserved victory. Left arm spinner Harris would appear to be a very good acquisition to the Manor squad providing a different option to the Captain with his bowling, and also enhancing the wonderful existing team spirit already at the Club.