Lilley lost the toss and Offley decided to bat first:
Offley (203/8, 40 overs) beat Lilley (197 all out) by 6 runs
Lilley arrived at the ground in high spirits, and was greeted by a huge crowd. Unfortunately the majority were either watching the ladies football, or the Arsenal Spurs match. Lilley were first to bowl on a wet track but were unable to make early breakthroughs. Perry and G.T opened the bowling but with little success. G.T struggled with his run up and suffered as a result. Perry was close on several occasions and finally picked up a wicket trapping Brideland lbw for 11.
Brad replaced his brother and was the pick of the bowlers. After getting Large out for 4 after a smart catch from Taz, he then took the wicket of Tattersal bowled. In the meantime Taz had replaced Perry at the Pub end. 3 overs 1 for 32 was the explosive result. Wides and beamers galore were quickly forgotten when off his third over he took the wicket of Bigmore for a duck. Paddington chipped in with a run out after Rizwan slipped in the middle of the pitch and was left stranded. Offley were now 92 for 5 off 20 overs.
Phil Clark replaced Taz and bowled tightly at the death taking the wickets of Cerasale for 35 and Gourd for 3. The story of the show however was stolen by indoor player Richie Barker. Playing for Offley he smote the ball to all parts on his way to an excellent 116. He was caught off his last ball by the Dragon off the bowling of Perry. He was however dropped on not very many and countless other drops and generally poor fielding cost Lilley dear.
A total of 203 seemed out of sight but Offley’s opening bowlers inspired confidence giving away 14 wides in the first couple of overs. Brad Tompkins was the first Lilley batsmen to depart scoring only 2 after getting run out. His brother Gareth then smashed 35 in quick time hitting one massive six in the process. G.T and Tomsett put on 68 and Lilley were looking good. G.T was first to go hitting a straight drive in the air but just failing to clear him and was subsequently caught. 3 overs later Tomsett was out also caught for a well made 32. Horner was next to go making 7 in quick time before giving an easy catch to Cutts. Clarke joined Perry at the crease and together they put on 58. By the 30th over Lilley were on 157 for 4 needing 47 for victory. By this stage however Offley’s premier bowlers had been brought in to slow the run rate. Clarke went first for 36 bowled by the quick bowler Cerasale.
Captain Mik Carmen came to the crease looking to make an impact but was out lbw for nought after being caught on the crease. Mellor was the next to go after slipping mid wicket during a mix up with Perry for 1. Perry was the next to go again bowled by the paceman Cerasale for a gritty 28. Lilley were struggling at 178 for 8 with only 5 overs left. In strode the Dragon and put lilley within touching distance with a quick fire 9 before being bowled. It came down to the last over of the match with Lilley needing 8 to win. With Craig and Taz and the crease Lilley were feeling confident. Taz hit one off the first ball of the over giving Paddigton a chance to hit the winning runs. He swaggered up the pitch but missed the ball and was stumped. Lilley fell short by 7 runs but for the first game of the season the batting looked impressive. Bad fielding and average bowling cost Lilley this match but they will not be down hearted with the return of Ashby to bolster the team for the Caddington game.