After the frustrating start to the season with total washout of pre-season friendlies and the 1st league fixture, Woking and Horsell suffered more frustration at the weekend, this time on the pitch, as their batting failed to function away at Chessington.
Losing the toss and inevitably being asked to bat on a predictably bowler friendly wicket they suffered the worst possible start, falling to 14 for 4 after 12 overs. The experienced Toby Green and newly promoted John Wolff started a recovery against a Chessington bowling attack which did exactly what was required, by putting the ball consistently in the right areas, and by drinks Woking had reached 45 for 4 off 25 overs. Runs were difficult to come by on an outfield which had seemingly not been cut for weeks!
What followed was inexplicable after a conversation about playing sensible cricket for the next 15 overs as Green hit the 1st ball after drinks into orbit and was well caught by overseas player Ben Holt. A procession of wickets saw Woking collapse to a dismal 53 all out.
Knowing that the target was so low, the Chessington openers were able to chance their arm and a flurry of boundaries through the slips saw the target halved. With skipper Damien Honey keen to look at his new bowling attack, the bowlers chopped and changed and a really spirited last half hour from the team in the field from the visitors saw the result take on a new complexion as 6 wickets fell. Newcomer Phil West picked up 3 wickets on debut and Qais Nawaz proved what a useful asset he can be with the ball with 2 wickets in a tidy late spell as Chessington creeped to the target with 6 wickets down.
Skipper Honey was left with mixed emotions after the game, "Whilst i was delighted with our fightback at the end, it just showed that a total of 120 on a pitch and outfield like that would have been a winning score. The conditions may have been difficult but i am very disappointed how my most experienced batsmen all 'got themselves out'. But it was good to get some positives come out of the game with newcomers, Phil, Sammy, Fazli and Wolffy all showing that they will be good assets to the team."
Next week Woking begin three tough home fixtures with a visit from last seasons top run getters Bank of England.

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