In-form Olton end Rugby 1sts’ unbeaten run
Olton v Rugby
Rugby’s unbeaten run came to an abrupt ending on Saturday, as they clashed with the Premier Division’s other form side and came off second best at Olton.
It is always a fine batting surface at Olton and, on a hot day, it was an important toss to win, which meant the hosts had no hesitation in choosing to make first use of the facilities when Rugby’s captain Owen Edwards guessed incorrectly.
Edwards and Lee Golding shared the new ball for Rugby and built early pressure, removing both openers, but a missed chance to remove number three Marc Webb soon became costly.
While Webb anchored the innings, Asif Ali took the attack to the visiting attack and raced to 41, before being dismissed by Matt Ewer.
The game was well balanced at 87-3, but a sensational innings from Dan Ceillam took the game away from Rugby in the second half of the innings.
He showed his attacking intention from the outset, striking the ball cleanly to all areas of the ground, as Rugby began to wilt in the heat.
He and Webb added 145 runs, before the impressive Golding (12-3-57-2) finally had Webb (54) caught in the deep.
Tom Wilkins picked up another quick wicket, but the runs kept coming and Ceillam raced past his century in emphatic style.
He finished the innings unbeaten on 137 off 98 balls and had been chanceless until the final over as he propelled Olton to 299-5.
Rugby’s reply started disastrously, as South African quick Aristides Karvelas burst through Asaad Qureshi’s defence and bowled him just two balls into the innings.
Rishi Tank (21) and Mike Powell (18) began to lay the foundations for Rugby’s reply, but 31-1 suddenly became 58-5 as Rugby imploded through a combination of good bowling and poor shot selection.
Henry Wilkins (64) staged a brief fight back for Rugby with an entertaining knock that included a sublime upper cut for six, and he was well supported by Henry Parker (33).
However, once their partnership was broken, Rugby’s lower order did not offer much resistance and the Town were bowled out for 170 in the 44th over.
It was disappointing day for Rugby who had outside hopes of mounting a late title challenge if they’d maintained their winning run, but the side will still have hopes of a top three finish with six matches to play.
Rugby 2nds v
Rowland United 1sts
Rugby 2nd XI hosted local rivals Rowland United on Saturday looking to build on impressive performances in the previous two weeks.
Rugby skipper Rob Stipanovic won the toss and elected to bowl on a damp wicket that was likely to dry out in the heat, facing what looked like a depleted Rowlands line-up.
Rugby started brightly as Hugh Cochrane (1-33) removed Jack Randle early on.
Matt Johnson took another early wicket and looked to be returning to something like his best as he took 2-30 off his 12 overs.
Andrew Skerratt proved the mainstay of the Rowlands innings with 41 but he was dismissed lbw by the miserly Nauresh Kaushal who took a typically tidy 3-20 in his allocated overs.
Some lower order hitting by Riv Monsell (37) and Alex Winton (29no) boosted the Rowlands total to 167-8 with youngster Kurran Barhey picking up two late wickets to claim 2-29.
Rugby’s reply was never in doubt as Raj Chohan and youth star Jeevan Barhey made light work of the run chase.
Chohan continued his recent fine form compiling 99 not out and Barhey showed his talent with an unbeaten 66 as Rugby knocked the runs off with 10 wickets and 17 overs to spare.
WARCL Division 10 East
Rugby 3rds vs Peugeot 2nds
Rugby’s third team dominated a high-scoring winning draw on Saturday, after Vishaal Rathod and Adam Milsom both struck centuries.
Rathod (117) and Milsom (113 not out) helped their side to a daunting total of 281/5, as Rugby 3rds had two centurions in a the same innings for the second time this summer.
Peugeot’s reply was never likely to challenge Rugby’s total, but they batted well throughout their innings with contributions from Abdul Basir (61 not out), Kenny May (48) and Alex Johnson (46).
Debutant David Marshal (3/23) was the pick of Rugby’s bowlers, supported well by Rubans (2/30) and Tom Mitchell (1/21), as Peugeot closed on 226/7.