A rather chaotic squad was announced (for the first time in 2 seasons) to play Oxford Downs. The usually reliable James Harcourt was absent, after he informed the captain that he was going on a ‘date’ instead.
A huge effort from the Rydon and Robertson clan ensured we had a competitive X1 to take on OD. After losing the toss the young Buccs were invited to bowl first. The City boys did not disappoint, with Rydon and Noble bowling a very testing opening spell restricting Oxford to very limited scoring chances, usually behind square. This was followed by Wigley and Alexander Rydon who continued to turn the screw, Wigley’s 7 overs going for 15 runs and Noble’s 12 overs going for 24. Robertson Hamish and young Sam Collins also bowled very well, with Sam (guesting from Downs) removing the Sunday skipper. The never say die attitude of the Buccs had a knock on effect of meaning the home side batted on; perhaps a little too long, for 201 for 8 off 55 overs.
A confident reply looked like we would knock off the runs. Two new Buccs in Wigley and Luxford taking us to 45 before tea without trouble. The introduction of the slow bowlers on the warn pitch was a key intervention: Watts and Collins, in particular, slowed us. A loss of 4 quick wickets turned the game on its head. Will Noble and Alexander Rydon then counter-attacked, with Alex particularly fluent with 32 and Noble 42 in taking us towards 150. Sadly it was not to be, once both perished – Noble throwing away his wicket while in pole position. The innings ended at 161 all out.