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20 May 2012 - Tonya Williams

Sevenoaks Vine finally got their league campaign under way with a home match against Holmesdale on Sunday.

Holmesdale won the toss and inserted the Vine. Holmesdale’s decision looked to be paying off when they snared opener Harry Robinson in the first over. Lawrence Thresher and Guy Bevan-Thomas set about repairing the damage and some sensible batting saw them progress to 41 before Thresher was caught at mid-off. Baker-Howard was unable to build on a good start to the season the previous week and Vine were 50 for 3 with Ben Fawcitt picking up 2 wickets. By now though Bevan-Thomas was getting into his stride and with support from Jamie Richardson the scoreboard started to rattle along. A flurry of classy looking shots saw Bevan-Thomas reach his 50 and compulsory retirement.

At this point the game took a dramatic twist as Holmesdale introduced Nathan Fawcitt. Fawcitt’s unerring accuracy was too much to handle for some rusty looking Vine batsmen and one sensational over saw 4 wickets fall for just one run. Vine seemed to have thrown away a strong position as they went from 110 for 5 to 111 for 9. However this did mean that Bevan-Thomas was able to return to the crease and with some mighty blows from Richardson the Vine reached 128 for 9 off their 22 0vers.

128 might normally be regarded as no more than a par score on the Vine but at this early stage of the season with the wickets still very green the Vine felt confident they could defend the total. Holmesdale got off to the worst possible start as Baker-Howard and Richardson bowled with real intent. Two wickets fell in the first over and before they knew it Holmesdale were 10 for 4 with 2 each for the Vine opening bowlers. Holmesdale were left with a mountain to climb and never really found the partnerships that would get them back in the game.

Vine bowled tidily and the fielding kept the pressure on. Wickets were grabbed by Vorster, Harry Robinson, Nick Bryant, Ben Thompson, George Thresher and Lawrence Thresher as Holmesdale slumped to 75 all out with only some stout resistance from Alex McCann who made 33.