Swindells scores 72 on day one at Kibworth

SCORE | Day 1, Second XI Championship: Leicestershire Second XI 202 v Warwickshire Second XI 91 for 3


REPORT | By Pete Johnson

Leicestershire CCC took on Warwickshire CCC in the latest SEC fixture at Kibworth CC. This game being the fifth of nine in County’s 2018 SEC campaign.

Leicestershire CCC had a good morning going into lunch on 97-1, but had somewhat of a struggle in the afternoon, losing nine wickets for the addition of 105 runs, in the afternoon session. In reply Warwickshire were handily placed on 91-3 at stumps.

We arrived at Kibworth to be greeted by a cloudy sky, but normal service had been resumed when the players took to the field as the sun was shining in all its glory. A good number of spectators were present to witness the opening exchanges. Prior to the toss, I was generously given yet another bag of sweets, by the shorter of the two Umpires. Good old Ray!  

Ateeq Javid skippered County, his opposite number Andy Umeed called incorrectly, and Javid had no hesitation in electing to bat. The two Harrys, Dearden, and Swindells opened up for Leicestershire, Know what I mean ‘Arry?’ in the immortal words of Frank Bruno. They had to face an opening attack of Ryan Sidebottom, and ‘soon to be a Fox’ Chris Wright.

Wright, coming in from the Pavilion End, bowled a very impressive opening spell of 7-6-4-0. He has a rhythmical smooth run up, giving the impression he would not make a splash, or cause ripples if running across puddles. Dearden and Swindells posted a 50 partnership after 16.2 overs.

Dearden punished the bowling through the cover and mid-wicket area while Swindells was taking the majority of his runs behind square on the off-side. The vacant third man area gobbling up quite few runs. The young County openers saw off a five-over burst from England seamer Chris Woakes, Dearden taking Woakes for seven runs, and Swindells taking eight (2x4) runs from Woakes.

The pair had added 81 for the first wicket when Dearden (29, 78b), went caught behind by ‘keeper Calvin Dickinson off seamer Dan Douthwaite. An alliterative dismissal one might say. Aadil Ali joined Swindells, and the pair safely took County into Lunch on 97-1 from 34. Swindells 34* Aadil 12*. One of the best deliveries of the morning session came just after 12 noon, when Dips Patel, (The Smudgster’s trusted wingman), delivered me a magnificent cup of tea.

Also, during the morning’s play, I noticed that highly respected cricketing encyclopedia, Tim Murray, had been sitting in splendid isolation on the far side of the ground against the pavilion that serves the second pitch at Kibworth (Editor’s note: I once took a hat-trick on that ground, but I don’t like to mention it).

In the afternoon session Warwickshire took nine wickets for 105 runs in 42.4 overs. However, Harry Swindells stood firm for the majority of the innings. Aadil (14) went in the third over after lunch, the second victim to the Dickinson/Douthwaite combination. Javid (1) was pinned lbw by Wright. Sam Evans (11) was caught by Umeed, when he got under a short ball from Douthwaite, County on 125-4 from 42.5 overs.

Swindells found an ally in Hassan Azad, the pair adding 50 for the fifth wicket. During the partnership Swindells went to a very patient and responsible 50 (127b, 8x4). The pair brought up their 50 partnership from 115 balls when the score reached 176-4 from 62 overs.

However, the very next ball produced a wicket when Swindells (72) 171b went caught & bowled by spinner Josh Poysden. A dogged, gritty innings from Swindells, who proved extremely difficult to dislodge. I hope H Maguire Esq, and J Stones Esq can defend with such accomplishment against Croatia #itscominghome

Just prior to Swindells dismissal there were three very important off-field events. Harry Dearden produced a bit of kitchen magic to provide me with a cup of tea. At 3.37pm precisely Tim Murray left his isolated vantage point, and semi-circumnavigated the boundary, in an anti-clockwise direction, to join the assembled throng in front of the pavilion.

Finally, last but no means least, I was paid a visit by none other than Harry J, (extremely important cog in the D Nice dynasty). He did not have his All Stars with him today, just Parky. I am sure some people on here with remember the Liquidator, by Harry J, and The All Stars! If you can’t remember the tune it’s the one that Chelsea come out to. Any ‘Super Stattos’ on here will no doubt recall that WBA and Wolves ran out to the same tune in the 1980s.

Rob Sayer (6) went lbw to Poysden, the final ball of the same over as Swindells’ dismissal. Ben Mike (0) then feathered a ball from spinner Alec Thomson onto his thigh pad, Nick Hammond at short-leg taking the catch, his appeal supported by the keeper. Mike acquiesced the Umpire’s decision gracefully. 187-6 from 65.1 overs.

Without addition to the score, Azad (23, 77b) went caught behind by Dickinson off Poysden. Azad had built a solid foundation to his innings, but unfortunately was unable to build on it. Five runs later Mo Ahmed (2) went lbw to Thomson. Gavin Griffiths meanwhile had been demonstrating some sound defensive play, maneuvering his left leg down the wicket to pitch of the ball, and playing it back in text book fashion.

Griffiths (9, 37b) eventually went stumped by Dickinson off Poysden. James Dickinson 4* (16b). Leicestershire all out for 202 from 76.4 overs. As nine wickets were down when 32 overs of the innings remained, eight overs could be bowled or the 10th wicket fall before tea was taken, in line with the rules of the competition.

County negotiated 4.4 overs of the eight. Tea was then taken, and Warwickshire had a minimum of 27 overs left to bat in the day. Andy Umeed and Nick Hammond opened up for the Bears, against an opening attack of Griffiths and Hishaam Khan.

Hammond (6) was soon on his way, trapped in front by Griffiths. Hammond not in Top Gear today. Warwickshire 11-1 from three overs. Matt Lamb (13) went bowled by Griffiths, playing down the wrong line to a snorter from the paceman. Warwickshire 35-2 from 8.3 overs.

Chris Woakes joined Umeed, and the pair looked somewhat ominous. Midway through this session of play, a pleasant young chap representing Warwickshire CCC enquired as to whether I required liquid refreshment. I declined the invitation (Editor’s note: there’s a first time for everything), but I am sure I will be able to accommodate a welcoming hot beverage in the morning.

Woakes had made 23 from 40 balls when he edged Mike to keeper Swindells. The agile gloveman diving splendidly to his right to take the catch low down with both hands. Another ‘international scalp’ for Mike to go with that of Shiv Chanderpaul who he dismissed earlier this season. If you are on the lookout for a publicist Ben, I am available, at the right fee.

The Bears went into stumps on 91-3 from 27 overs. Umeed 29* (76b), Aaron Thomason 13* (24b), trailing by 111 runs. Griffiths returning figures of 6-2-13-2, Mike 6-0-37-1, Khan 6-0-27-0, Sayer 7-5-12-0, and Javid 2-2-0-0. Leicestershire CCC 3 points, Warwickshire CCC 4 points.

* The match continues at Kibworth today and tomorrow, 11am start, and the report of the final two days play will follow post match. We understand the reporter's reasoning for this... there’s a game of football this evening that the nation will be engrossed with!