Chalke Valley v Mere Cricket Club Mere CC on Sun 01 Sep 2013 at 2.00
Mere Cricket Club Lost by 2 wickets

Match report Batty-Smith magic moment not enough at Chalke Valley

Our first trip to Chalke Valley and the stories we had heard about a good playing arena that was the envy of many villages around were not untrue. The CVCC ground is a beauty on any bright summer day. With a backdrop of rolling hills to one side of the ground, a moment of envy was seen on all the Mere CC team faces.

The day before CVCC had been crowned Dorset Division 6 champions in their first attempt at league cricket and, by the look of some of their players arriving, had been celebrating long and hard into the early hours. A 2pm start wasn’t going to happen but a 35 over game got underway at around 2.30pm – the hosts utilising a 12 man rotation policy effectively to ensure that players out celebrating the night before did not risk being caught short in the middle.

It must be mentioned that Mere were without certain senior members, who had more pressing engagements on the local festival scene but we had a good mixture of youth and experience, fit and unfit, etc.

To the cricket – Captain Weir won another toss and decided that this year’s highest run scorers should open together as this was the final match they would play together this season. So the Captain himself and Skipworth walked out to open. Both found the track to their liking and Mere were soon rattling along at around 6 an over until Skipworth was bowled for a run-a-ball 27. Enter Cassidy Jnr who showed plenty of potential with some well executed shots before being adjudged LBW for 16. Mike Ryan came in and kept the board moving before Duncan was out for 52 (another 50 in a wonderful season where nearly every batting record for the club has been broken by his bat). Ryan was joined by young Will Batty-Smith but didn’t last much longer departing for 24 and leaving his junior partner to accelerate the scoring. WBS played well and, with some better running between the wickets, would have scored a very well deserved half century but ended on 43 not out. Ably supported towards the end by Ings, Yeo Jnr and Cassidy Snr. Mere posted a total of 193 for 6 which always felt 30 runs short of a challenging score for the hosts in their own back yard.

Tea –was taken and was very nice, especially the super chocolaty chocolate cake which just left people licking their fingers for the next hour.

Back to the cricket - out strode the new champion’s openers and they set off even quicker that Weir and Skipworth. 6 overs in, with the score running at around 10 an over and the local support for their captain (Browwwww-nnnnner) getting more vocal by the minute, Weir decided to call his communications expert Harvey into action to try to find a way of terminating the incessant feed of Browwwww-nnnnner from the local area. Sure enough, Jason had the skills for the job and silence reigned as the opposition captain returned to the pavilion (to one last booming Browwwww-nnnnner) - Weir taking a comfortable catch at mid-wicket. The new batsmen, Willoughby, came and continued the run barrage by scoring at a run-a-ball. Then a moment of individual genius – Whitmore bowls, Willoughby stands tall and smashes the ball towards the sightscreen. From a distance, enter Will Batty-Smith to take the best catch you will see for many a season - having covered a massive distance and, diving, taken the ball inches from the turf. The catch seemed to give Mere some new hope and when Skipworth got rid of the other opener, Fortescue, for a very good 69 the game was on. Skipworth and Ryan then strangled the CVCC innings and wickets started to fall regularly – both bowlers ending up with 3 wickets apiece. Enter Harry Hitchings who has had a fine season for CVCC (I am told) who proceeded to make light work of both his alcohol intake from the previous night and the 50 or so runs needed to win the game. His partner, Verdin, played well also. CVCC eventually won by 2 wickets with 8 balls remaining.

Full credit to the entire team for ‘sticking at it’ and especially, to the youngsters in the side who gain more experience from playing in matches like this one but in the end the difference between regular, competitive league cricket and Mere’s social, friendly style was evident (but I still stand by our total being 30 or so runs short of making CVCC have to work really hard).

I’m signing-off for 2013 but have loved every minute of my first campaign in 10 years. Roll on 2014.

Mere Cricket Club Mere CC Batting
Player Name RunsMB4s6sSRCtStRo
3nb 12w 6b 4lb 
for 6 wickets

(35.0 overs)
Duncan Weir st W Fortescue b P Hill 52 84 68 7 76.47 1
Ben Skipworth b H Hitchings 27 37 27 4 100 1
George Cassidy lbw b H Hitchings 16 25 27 2 59.26
Mike Ryan ct b W Fortescue 24 43 38 1 63.16
William Batty Smith Not Out  43 42 37 5 116.22 1
Glen Ings ct b C Crosse 5 11 11 1 45.45
Rebecca Yeo ct b W Fortescue 1 4 5 20.0
Mark Cassidy Not Out  0 4
Jason Harvey   3
Kevin Whitmore  
Lewis Wood  

Chalke Valley Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
G Willoughby6.012900.004.83
C Crosse6.0043143.007.17
H Hitchings7.0025212.503.57
J Holland6.003500.005.83
P Hill2.0010110.005.00
S Verdin4.002200.005.50
N Holland1.001300.0013.00
W Fortescue3.01623.002.00

Chalke Valley Batting
Player name RMB4s6sSR
13w 2b 2lb 
for 8 wickets
196 (33.4 overs)
D Brown ct D Weir b J Harvey 27 22 19 5 142.11
W Fortescue ct J Harvey b B Skipworth 69 74 70 10 1 98.57
G Willoughby ct W Batty-Smith b K Whitmore 25 37 26 3 1 96.15
Z Chappell b B Skipworth 5 18 8 62.50
J Holland ct J Harvey b M Ryan 2 10 8 25.00
C Crosse ct B Skipworth b M Ryan 1 11 16 6.25
S Verdin Not Out  25 40 29 2 1 86.21
P Hill b B Skipworth 0 8 9 0
H Hitchings ct J Harvey b M Ryan 24 18 15 3 1 160.0
A Mercer Not Out  1 6 2 50.0
N Holland  

Mere Cricket Club Mere CC Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Rebecca Yeo4.403800.008.14
Lewis Wood2.002000.0010.00
Jason Harvey2.0012112.006.00
Kevin Whitmore7.0037137.005.29
Glen Ings3.002200.007.33
Ben Skipworth7.012137.003.00
Mike Ryan7.032939.674.14
Duncan Weir1.001300.0013.00