NARESH Airody seized his chance after being promoted to Warwick’s First XI with an excellent display to help secure a 74-run win at Moseley Thirds in Warwickshire League Division Five.
Warwick felt they had a lot to prove after taking just 14 points from a possible 48 last year against the Birmingham side and they did just that with Airody’s 53 and 74 from James Sood being the mainstays in their total of 224 all out.
Then wickets from all five bowlers helped dismiss Moseley for 150 and keep Warwick top of the table.
Having won his second toss in two weeks, Warwick skipper Matthew Warren elected to have bat on what can only be described as batting on the M1.
Warwick’s duo of Adrian Passey and Graeme Burke couldn’t get Warwick off to their usual perfect start as Passey was dismissed, caught behind, early doors for 5. Burke (27) looked good but ended up chipping the ball to mid-wicket leaving Warwick on a shaky 37-2.
It was a quality partnership from Airody and Sood that settled the nerves of the Warwick team. Airody had been promoted from the 2nd XI and given his chance to impress the 1st XI skipper and he took that chance by the scruff of the neck and really showed off his skills, manoeuvring the ball around all parts of the ground and really building a innings until being dismissed with a LBW decision.
It was followed swiftly by a far-too-eager Warren running himself out on his first ball for a duck, leaving the score 122-4 and Warwick looking in a spot of bother again.
This brought Rajan Bhatti to the crease to try and rebuild a partnership with Sood, and Sood’s classy innings overtook his skipper in becoming the leading run scorer within the division.
He looked set to score his third Saturday First XI ton of the season until he was caught one-handed on the deep mid-on boundary by the Moseley fielder to end a 47-run partnership.
Late contributions from Joshua Osborne (13) and Abhishek Sharma (10) got Warwick to an under-par but very defendable 224 all out off 49.3 overs.
In reply, opening seamers Bhatti (2-26) and Osborne (2-41) got Warwick off to a great start, reducing Moseley to 31-3.
Then spin kings Anil Lohan (2-43) and Ashu Sharma (3-34) worked in tandem to increase the run rate required for Moseley to a state where there was too much pressure to score shots resulting in the fall of wickets.
Moseley stuttered to 122-9 but Rhys Davies (14no) and Vikash Patel (13) had a bash to take the score to 150 before Abhishek Sharma claimed the final wicket in the fourth ball of his first over.
Warwick had done remarkably well to reduce Moseley to this score on what was a very good batting track.
They currently sit top of the table, 35 points clear of Attock, and they host Kings Heath this Saturday in what will be the last game before the half way turn around in the season.
Warwick Seconds warmed up for a crunch clash with promotion rivals Nether Whitacre this weekend by sweeping aside Copsewood WIW 2nds by six wickets in Warwickshire League Division Nine East.
Stand-in skipper Jon Davis lost the toss and Copeswood skipper Barrington Kelly elected to bat.
Copeswood got off to a good start reaching 50 with the lost of only one wicket in first 10 overs. Kelly was starting to unleash into Warwick’s attack but was then run out after some good fielding by Rich Ingram in what proved to be a turning point.
The introduction of 16-year-old leg spinner Ed Hare (5-13) and the ageing-well Richard Rudnicki (3-22) then put Warwick in total control of the game by bowling Copeswood out for 91 in 21 overs.
In reply, Warwick got off to a steady start with openers Jonathan Davis (10) and Alex Wood (28) putting on 38 for the first wicket. Once Davis was out, Warwick then lost another three quick wickets before Pete Wood (38 not out) steered them home at 95-4.
Warwick have now moved to third in the table and they travel to second-place Nether Whitacre this Saturday.