Wardens hang on for a losing draw at high-flying Knowle & Dorridge
Kenilworth Wardens visited Knowle & Dorridge last Saturday and held the Birmingham Premier Division One top-three challengers to a losing draw with one wicket remaining.
The hosts were inserted on a batsman-friendly surface and Tommy Rex removed the off stump of the prolific Alex Philips for three with the score on 23.
Ethan Brookes joined former Warden Scott Stenning for a second-wicket partnership of 67 before Sykes dismisses him for 36.
Skipper Sam Reddish (38) and Martin Donald (41 not out) then aided Stenning to a magnificent 152 from 163 balls.
Mark Pidgeon (2-75) held the innings in check but a total of 296 for five was always going to be a big ask for the visitors.
The bizarre rain rules meant Wardens lost 11 overs from their reply but the already daunting target remained unchanged.
Nick Seager fell to the hostile Brookes for ten and when Ben Rex departed for 25 Wardens were struggling to keep up with run rate.
Harry Johnson played on for six and Nathan Edwards was joined by Sykes for some of the most entertaining cricket of the day.
Edwards made an excellent 93 from 75 balls including 18 fours and one six and Sykes blasted 37 from 22 balls as the pair added fifty in 24 balls.
Wardens then concentrated on securing the draw which they achieved, closing out their 44 overs on 202 for nine.
A home Warwickshire League Division Two fixture against Knowle and Dorridge provided a tough afternoon for Kenilworth Wardens 2nds.
Knowle and Dorridge won the toss and decided to bat first in a match which, following an early disruption due to rain, was reduced to 44 overs per side.
The away side started the strongest of the two, with youngster Hamza Shaikh and Joe Barnett putting on an opening partnership of 65.
Anil Lohan found the breakthrough, removing Barnett for 23.
Shortly after, Joe Jordan knocked out the off stump of Shaikh, who departed for a well-played 37.
Christopher Barber was the next to fall following a delivery which jagged in off the seam from Matt Davies, leaving the visitors three down at drinks.
Following the break, Knowle and Dorridge began to take control of the game.
Destructive innings from Gareth Davies (88) and Adam Williams (48 from 24 balls) led the away side to a total of 303 for five.
Joe Jordan was the pick of the attack with figures of one for 34 from nine overs, in an otherwise poor bowling display from Wardens.
In reply to Knowle and Dorridge’s big total, Jonathan Phillips (51) and James May (54) batted superbly with an opening stand of 113 to put pressure on the visitors’ bowling attack.
Wardens then subsided from 132 for one to 161 for seven with Gareth Davies (4-33) who claimed both the openers, and Christopher Barber (3-34) doing the damage.
The end result was a comfortable win for the away side, as despite Matt Davies’ late 35, the hosts were restricted to 219 for nine off their 44 overs.