Having enjoyed their teas in recent seasons, the 5s were keen to see Pembury get back up and running after a few concessions this season. We were therefore delighted to see them back on their feet and the latest visitors to Loring Hall on Saturday.
With some rain potentially around and seamers Fred and Abdur in the side we were keen to have a bowl and the coin landed the right way for captain Shanks for a change. The visitors padded up and away we go.
The breakthrough came as early as the 3rd over with Fred producing an enormous off cutter that bowled the visitors skipper, and the number 3 followed 2 balls later. Abdur kept things tight at the other end as the remaining opener dug in and we put pressure on the other batsmen. The number 4 buckled and tried to hit Fred back over the top, where Mike Dixon took a great catch back peddling under a high ball.
The spinners entered the attack and Mike immediately bowled the number 5, before Abdur and Mike combined for a run out with the returning Seb Naylor doing the rest. Having kept things tight Ben Bleksley soon broke the resistance of the remaining opener who was well caught by Sam Hart and picked up a further wicket.
The Pembury player who was late batted 9 and he batted well to get 24*, but Ian Clark picked up a wicket and Fred returned to mop up the tail and complete a well deserved 5 for, with incredible figures of 5-13 off 9.4 overs. 8 of these runs came from edges to third man. Our visitors were dismissed for 97 in the final over of their 40.
Whilst confident, we knew that as the wicket settles the result was far from a foregone conclusion at Loring Hall, and this feeling was heightened when we lost Seb Naylor caught and bowled in the first over. Stephen Course and Liam Cook rebuilt and ran the visitors ragged between the wickets but a possible rain delay also began to threaten. Liam began to try and move the scoreboard along and was unfortunately plum LBW for a well worked 37. Sam Hart joined Coursey and was not in the mood to hang around and between them they saw the 5s home- Coursey finishing on 37* and Sam 13*.
A well deserved 20 points for the 5s who remain 2nd and travel to top of the league Swanscombe and Greenhithe next week.