In a gritty display of obdurate batting Knowle & Dorridge’s last pair, Will Mottram and Henry Brookes, battled through a remarkable 23 overs to deny KENILWORTH WARDENS Birmingham Premier League victory.
The pair came together after Brinder Phagura’s six-wicket haul had reduced their quest for 215 from a rain-reduced 48 overs to 62 for nine. They proceeded to defy everything the hosts six-man attack could throw at them, and when No.11 Mottram survived a close lbw call in the final over, the losing draw was duly secured.
The last man survived 66 balls for his unbeaten 10, while his partner’s more expansive approach brought nine boundaries in a 98-ball unbeaten 59. Wardens’ seamer Phagura, who is enjoying a superb first season at the club, finished with the fine return of 6-38, while Blake Maher took 2-28.
Helped by some excellent catching from keeper Nick Sale, Phagura and Maher’s new-ball burst reduced K&D to 38 for seven on a pitch which offered only small amounts of assistance by way of variable bounce. Only skipper Sam Reddish (22) and Jack Grundy (15) made it into double figures until the last pair began their vigil.
Earlier, Wardens recovery from 29 for 3 was orchestrated by Harry Johnson’s superb 77. The teenage batsmen, who has worked his way through the club’s ranks from the fourth team to the senior side, barely made a mistake against a three-strong K&D seam attack which asked some searching questions.
After Mottram removed the top three, Maher (18) dug in with Johnson before the hosts’ lower order prospered against the visitors’ slow bowlers. Dan Wood (26) and former K&D keeper Sale (25) contributed vital runs, while debutant teenage off-spinner Kieran Holland chipped in with a useful unbeaten 16.
Johnson’s fine knock spanned 100 balls, and included 11 boundaries, while Mottram finished with 3-17 and there were two wickets apiece for spinners Nathan Roberts and Beau Webster.