Harry Swindells
Match Reports

Seconds lose despite Swindells half-century

Leicestershire v Yorkshire, Second XI Championship, Day 3


REPORT | By Pete Johnson

Upon arrival at Kibworth CC for the final day of the SEC encounter between Leicestershire and Yorkshire, I had a bit of an early morning shock when I entered the scorers’ enclave. My colleague and I, for the previous two evenings had left our printers, binoculars, extension leads, and numerous other items of scoring paraphernalia in the room overnight, being assured that they would be safe.

They were all in place this morning, no problem, but shock horror all of our sweets had disappeared overnight. Butter mintoes, wine gums, Werther’s, the lot! I hope the sweet-toothed bounder that was responsible is reading this with a guilty conscience! All was well with the world some 20 minutes later as our knight in shining armour, umpire Medland, arrived with an industrial sized bag of Werther’s for our exclusive consumption throughout the day.

Yorkshire went into day three with a lead of 396 with eight wickets in hand. They dominated the day’s play, batting on for a few overs and then setting County a target of 406 to win from a minimum of 91 overs. Leicestershire’s batsmen struggled in their reply and lost by 182 runs. The highlight of the County innings was an eye-catching 58 not out from Harry Swindells, while left arm spinner Karl Carver took 6-53 for the visitors.

June was certainly bursting out all over as a warm, sunny morning greeted the players as they took to the field. Jonny Tattersall 115* and Matthew Waite 15* resuming the Yorkshire innings on 284-2.

Ben Mike bowled the first over of the day from the Field End, but it was Jacob Bailey, operating from the Pavilion End, who claimed the first wicket in his first over of the morning. Waite (18) clipped one up to mid-on, and Dominic Manthorpe took the catch. In the next over Mike had Tattersall (117) caught behind by Swindells. Yorkshire then declared on 293-4 from 64.5.

With Mike and Bailey opening, I recalled that barrel-chested wing half of the 1960s, Mike Bailey, who played for Charlton Athletic and Wolverhampton Wanderers. He made just the two appearances for England. Leicestershire being set a target of 406 to win from a minimum of 91 overs at an asking rate of 4.46 per over - a somewhat challenging assignment.

Left-handed duo Ben Raine and Joe Barrett opened up for County. Raine was very quick out of the blocks taking boundaries off both opening bowlers, Matt Fisher and Josh Shaw. Barrett also scored three boundaries off Shaw. Waite replaced Shaw at the Pavilion End; Raine drove him for four, then from the next ball took two runs before profiting from a further two overthrows from the same delivery.

Raine (30) perished when he shouldered arms to a ball from seamer Waite and was adjudged lbw, ending a partnership of 45. Barrett meanwhile had dropped anchor, and played out three successive maidens from Fisher. I noticed that ‘doyen of the dot ball’ amongst 9, 10, Jacks, Manthorpe, sitting on the Pavilion balcony with a look of admiration, and complete approval on his face.

Aadil Ali had joined Barrett, and wasted no time in getting after the Yorkshire bowling. After 12.2 overs Shaw had to leave the field with a foot injury, and took no further part in the match. It did not, however, preclude him from coming to ask for a sweet on several occasions. He was getting close to eating more of them than me.

Aadil was playing powerful, pugnacious shots around the ground. One being an effortless maximum from a short delivery by left arm seamer James Wainman that he just helped on its way behind square.

Barrett (18) was then dismissed, and his body language said, to put it politely, that he was rather annoyed with himself. Carver had come on from the Pavilion End for a pre-lunch aperitif, and with his fourth delivery invited Barrett to go for a snifter, which he duly did, giving the spinner a relatively simple caught and bowled. Aadil 37* and Will Fazakerley 0* took County into lunch on 93-2 from 24 overs.

On returning to my ‘bolt hole’ after lunch I checked the news on my phone to see what was going on in the outside world. I learned that Roy Barraclough ex-Corrie, and of Cissie and Ada fame on the Les Dawson Show had died. (Ladies and gentlemen of a certain age will remember him well) John, the Yorkshire scorer (top bloke, even though he watches Leeds United every week), and I then proceeded to recall those Cissie and Ada sketches with the double entendres. E.g. ‘did you have the shish kebabs when you went to Greece?’ ‘Yes, every day.’ RIP Roy.

After lunch, Aadil took Carver for two more boundaries, but in the fifth over of the afternoon session the batsmen went lbw for 46, just when he appeared to have plenty in the tank, to seamer Waite. Rob Sayer joined Fazakerley, and had made 8 when he guided left arm spinner Carver to Wainman at square-leg. Sayer looked a little perplexed, another Victor Meldrew moment.

If I may digress (yet again), I will relate a rather amusing tale to you. Yorkshire had travelled to the game at Kibworth by coach, as after the game they were off down to Taunton to play Somerset in a SET semi-final. The Yorkshire coach driver was with them all week and was fully attired in Yorkshire kit. Mark, lovely chap.

Anyway he was of the rather fuller figure, like me, with a physique that suggested he may have visited countless ‘greasy spoons’, with a Full English at his mercy, during his duties as a coach driver. He would have looked completely at home on the oche at the Ally Pally. A number of spectators asked me over the three days, ‘Is that bloke on the Yorkshire coaching staff?' I told them he was the S&C coach, but then told them the truth a few moments later.

Where was I, oh yes, County now 125-4 off 33.5 overs. Fazakerley (23) went caught by Waite, running round from mid-off, off the bowling of Carver. Waite rose to the challenge. James Sykes (3) went caught at short-leg by Harry Brook again off Carver, County looking down the barrel on 153-6 from 47.1 overs.

‘Keeper Swindells then proceeded to play an absolute diamond of an innings. He took Carver for three boundaries out of the first five balls he received from him. Callum Parkinson had been playing a patient innings, adapting to the circumstances, making 7 from 65 deliveries. Parkinson’s innings came to an end when he was bowled by Carver.

Swindells then took on the two Yorkshire left arm spinners who were bowling in tandem, Carver, and James Logan. If Carver was at the bowler’s end it was champagne at the other end when Swindells was receiving.

Manthorpe (2 from 22 balls) went bowled by Carver, County 198-8 from 57.3. Bailey held up an end allowing the little magician Swindells to go to a 50 (10x4) from 41 balls. A great effort by the competent ‘keeper. 

Yorkshire skipper Tattersall removed Logan from the attack and introduced the pace of Wainman. From his first delivery Bailey (1) drove the ball straight into the hands of Fisher at mid-off. Charlie Shreck was unable to bat, leaving Swindells 58 not out from 49 balls. Yorkshire winning by 182 runs, Leicestershire 5 points, Yorkshire 23 points.

We will be back at Kibworth later in the season but for now sincere thanks to Steve Pollard for all his hard work on the ground both before, and during the game. Steve Elwood, Chairman for his organisation, and to Alison, Jadene, Nicola, and a lady who helped with the food on Thursday – I think it was Ann, apologies if I have got that name wrong.