Horwood bounce back with victory over reigning champions

Dale Armitage
Dale Armitage

Great Horwood returned to winning ways this week when they defeated defending champions Cowley Internationals by three wickets at Nash Road.

After Horwood won the toss and elected to bowl first, Cowley’s batsmen were in aggressive mood from the outset as they raced to 60 from the opening 10 overs.

Horwood, though, were able to pick up regular wickets along the way as Josh Nix (2-38) and Dale Armitage (2-37) were both causing problems, leaving the game in the balance at the halfway stage as Cowley reached 104-4.

Adam Armitage then bowled a very controlled spell as he took 2-23 from 10 overs to put Horwood in the ascendency, and when Matt Thatcher was introduced he made light work of dismissing the lower order, taking 4-9 from his five over spell as Cowley lost their final six wickets for just 29 runs and they were dismissed for a below par 133 in 35 overs.

In reply, Horwood lost both openers cheaply and looked in trouble at 26-3, however a fourth wicket partnership of 57 between Sam Willet and Andy Thatcher put the home side back in control until Willett was caught for 28.

Horwood then lost three further wickets cheaply but Thatcher remained defiant and played a controlled innings to ensure his side reached the target for the loss of seven wickets as he finished on 42 not out.

The result sees Horwood move up to third position in Division One of the Oxfordshire Cricket Association.

Horwood are without a league fixture this weekend as they turn their attention back to the Airey Cup with E&W Hendred the visitors to Nash Road for a first round clash.

Elsewhere, in Division Six of the OCA, Great Horwood IIs continued their recent good run of form with a 29-run victory away at Faringdon IIs.

Batting first. Horwood made 164-8 thanks to skipper Gary Lee, who top scored with 49, and fellow opener Neil Taylor (28). There was also a quickfire 40 from youngster Greg Saunders.

In reply, Saunders also added two wickets but it was Haydon Morrison who did most of the damage as his 4-35 saw the home side close on 135-9.

Horwood IIs are fifth in the table.