Focus turns to League Cricket after Double T20 Cup Exit

This article rounds up the recent Wexford Cricket action…

WWCC 2 V Malahide 5 – Divison 14

Sunday 17/7

Having been used for the recent international series between Ireland and New Zealand, there were hopes that Wexford would get a taste of the international arena and get their game on the pitch.

For context, the main ground in Malahide had played host to a fantastic game of cricket two days prior, with 719 runs being scored in the ODI. There was a strong Wexford contingent at the game and having seen the massive runs total the batsmen and bowlers present were chomping at the bit to get out and try their hand on an international wicket.

However, the Division 14 game was played on the artificial wicket away from the international ground, much to the disappointment of the Wexford team. 

Nonetheless, the runs still flowed in North Dublin, all in all, 510 runs were scored in 75 overs. A similar run rate to the ODI that was played on Friday. 

Wexford opened the batting with Anjith Varghese and Aaron Murphy. Both were dismissed early which brought Brendan Orsmond to the crease. Orsmond took the attack to the Malahide bowlers. He is the inform batsman in the southeast. He scored a season-high, 84 runs before Marco Chixaro removed him. He has powered his way over 250 runs for the year and is fast approaching the 300 mark. He is only the third Wexford batter, across all teams, to reach 250 runs for the year. 

Useful contributions came from the middle and lower order for the Wanderers, the two Steves (Vuyk and Hadley) posted 20 and 25 runs respectively. While Tony Murray added another 30 runs to the score, the second highest score in the innings. Akhil and Dhavan both scored 17 runs each at the end of the innings, as well as runs for long-time Wexford batter Peter Hudson. These contributions saw Wexford post a huge total of 267. They were bowled out with three overs to spare. Who knows what might have been posted if they batted out their overs. 300 was certainly not out of the question. 

Sean O’Neill and Eddie Bones bowled well for Malahide and took seven wickets between them. 

Malahide went into bat knowing they needed to get off to a great start. However, thanks to the bowling of Murray and young Matty Vuyk their skipper Graeme Tarbox and Mandip Kumar were both sent back to the pavilion for ducks. Much like every collapse, a runout wasn’t far away. The Maladide number four was run out by a combination of Orsmond and keeper Ultan Quirke and their number five was bowled by Murray, both for single figures. 

Malahide were losing wickets, and they were losing wickets fast. The saving grace for the home side was their opener, Eddie Bones, who scored a phenomenal 159 runs. This contributed to over half of the Malahide total. 

With Bones at the crease, it wasn’t going to be easy for Wexford. But if wickets were falling at the other end there was not much Bones could do about it. Fortunately for him, he got support from the lower middle order. With only three other scores reaching double figures, Malahide were fighting a losing battle from early on. The Wexford attack was in full flow, and even as the required runs dropped and dropped they were still confident. The Wanderers bowled Malahide out with two overs to spare. 

It was a 24-run victory for the seconds and improves their league position. Steven Vuyk bowled well taking an innings high 3 wickets, he always was the most economical of the Wexford bowlers. While Orsmond capped off his day with two wickets, one of which was Bones. They were also his first wickets of the year. 

WWCC1 V Pembroke – T20 Cup 

Thursday 21/7 

Even though it was a dead rubber context between Pembroke’s third team and the Wanderers’ first team it did not disappoint. 

It was a fantastic chance for the wanderers to bring through some talent who would be on the fringes of the first team. This is the stance that skipper Nithin took for the game. He had initially included second-team star Matty Vuyk in his XI, but young Matty was training with a Leinster Development Squad and thus had to pull out. 

Pembroke batted first and put on a competitive 144/4. This was mainly due to the fantastic knock of 87 by their opener Achmat Carr. Carr was fantastic throughout the innings and caused a lot of difficulties for the Wexford attack. Carr was eventually run out thanks to a tremendous throw by Karthick who got the ball into wicketkeeper Sean Dunk. Dunk whipped off the bails before Carr could ground his bat.

Max Byers supported Carr well with a well-earned 31 runs. Byers was removed at the end of the innings by second-team skipper Attila, who was playing up in the first XI. The other Pembroke batters only contributed thirteen runs, as Wexford made sure to keep Pembroke under 150.

Chasing 144 was going to be difficult, given the fact that the first XI has had serious batting issues at different points during the season. They got off to a good start thanks to regular opener Sean Graham (16) and second-team captain Attila (10).

Brendan Orsmond came in at 3 and took off. He smacked the ball all over Pembroke’s ground. Orsmond was one player who had been mentioned previously who could make an impact for the First XI, and he did not disappoint. He was eventually removed for 55 runs, adding another half-century to his resume for the year.

Reni, who was making his first team debut supported Orsmond with great intent. He contributed an excellent 38 runs before he was bowled by Marcus Cope. Sean Dunk came in at 5 and helped Orsmond to finish up the innings. Dunk finished with a quickfire fourteen runs.

Wexford chased down the 144 total with close to four overs to spare. 

WWCC 2 V Malahide 5 – T20 Cup 

Malahide made the trip down the M11 to play the final T20 of the year. Unfortunately, neither team could qualify for the second stage of the competition so essentially it was a dead rubber contest. 

Nonetheless, there was a match to be played and Malahide opened the batting in the park. Steven Vuyk took the opening wicket of the afternoon as he removed the Malahide opener for single-figure runs. Four of the Malahide top five fell for single-figure scores. Wickets fell to Sean Dunk, Sean Faulkner and the skipper Attila. This was a familiar tale for Malahide as they suffered similar losses in the 40 Over competition the weekend prior. 

Much like the game the previous weekend, their top score came via the opening batter. Fortunately for Wexford, it was Bones (who scored 150), but it was their skipper Adhiraj Sharma. Sharma scored a brilliant 43 from 43 balls. He was eventually removed by Steve Hadley. Sunny Sehrawat supported Sharma well and finished not out on 38 runs. Their score gave Malahide the competitive total of 141/7 in their 20 overs.

The Wanderers came out to bat knowing that they had the firepower to achieve this 142 total required to win. Opener Sean Dunk had an impressive average when batting in the second XI. Unfortunately, he could not find this form and was removed for just one run. But his opening partner was in flying form.

Ultan Quirke was tasked with opening the batting for the first time and took to it like a duck to water. He posted a game-high 48. It is also Quirke’s top score for WWCC for the year. He was unlucky not to reach his maiden half-century. He was supported well by his skipper, who also posted his season-high score (20). Steven Vuyk contributed well with 24 runs in the middle order, which he has been doing well all season.

But that is all there was to the innings. There was no other score of double figures. Malahide won the game by 16 runs. 

Unfortunately Wexfords T20 Cup run has come to an end as they failed to top the group and make it to the next stage of the competition. For the First XI, their focus turns to Division 5 while the seconds are still competitive in their Division 14 competition. 

Luca Forte

From Wexford, Luca contributes to Wexford Weekly with football and cricket articles.

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