Cleeve Firsts beat Frenchay Seconds by 33 runs to reach the Third Round of the Bristol & District Tony Hitch Cup recently.

On a hot Wednesday evening, buoyant by a big home crowd, Cleeve captain Sam Williams elected to bat first. Williams strode to the crease to open the batting with the destructive Mitch Want, looking for a big start.

Want’s nine runs from four balls ended when he was caught off Freddie Bower at 11-1, which brought Alfie Parsons to the crease at number three who immediately dominated the strike and immediately found the middle of his bat. 

Together with Williams, the pair added 88 runs before Williams was caught in the deep for 30 to provide Harangaddeep Singh with his only wicket. 

Shortly afterwards, Parsons passed his half century, before being run out for 53, comprising seven fours, as Connor Hance quickly found the boundary. Tom Birt added five before caught out off the bowling of Bower, as Andy Barnsley (2) was run out leaving Cleeve at 134-4. 

Hance’s 19 ball 28 runs ended caught as Bower notched up his third scalp as Max Viney (2) was run out and Alex Soch was stumped for five off the last ball to secure Bower’s fourfer, leaving Josh Carpenter (five not out) and Cleeve posting 157-8 off their allotted 20 overs.

Cleeve wanted for a strong start but the first over did not go as planned as Ben Pine despatched 21 runs off the first over, leaving Williams to think hard about his attack and fielding positions in a bid to grasp back some control which was secured with Andy Barnsley’s first over at the other end conceding just two runs.

The next over from Hance’s went for just three more as the run rate was squeezed back down. Barnsley struck in the fourth over castling Ben Pine for 29 at 34-1 as control was regained and the required run rate nudged up. 

Williams was despatched off Hance (4-1-22), snatched by bucket hands Josh Carpenter for 17 at 58-2. The left-arm seam from Jack Spiers bowled Sam Pine for a duck. Carpenter (1-1 -5) then bowled Singh for eight, as Barnsley returned for his second spell (5-2-20) to secure his second victim removing Akshat Krishna for 37 with Carpenter again pouching in the deep at 114-5 in the 18th. Viney’s fine four-over spell claimed William Ferguson’s (13 runs) wicket (4-1-19) as Carpenter grabbed his third catch, this time at deep mid-on.

Frenchay ended on 124 -6, 33 runs shy of Cleeve’s score, leaving Cleeve to go into the hat for the next round.

Today sees the return of league action as Cleeve host Hampset, hoping for another victory.