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Frustration for Hales

PUBLISHED: 17:14 23 July 2009 | UPDATED: 08:22 01 August 2010

HALES' first team travelled to North Runcton to face a very frustrating situation of one paid professional stealing the show.

Hales won the toss and chose to bowl on a track that looked likely to be difficult to bat on to begin with.

HALES' first team travelled to North Runcton to face a very frustrating situation of one paid professional stealing the show.

Hales won the toss and chose to bowl on a track that looked likely to be difficult to bat on to begin with.

Hales got their first breakthrough in the fifth over courtesy of Graham Squire with the score on 23. Squire banged the ball in short and the batsman gloved it straight to wicketkeeper Ramsdale.

The next three wickets also all went to Squire, and North Runcton sat in a precarious position of 52-4.

However, it brought Clinton Birkenshaw to the crease.

To begin with he played sensibly, seeing off Squire, who was chasing his second five for of the season.

However, once he had played himself in, he hit a commanding 71, almost half of the North Runcton score. Wickets tumbled around him, and he finally went with some gutsy bowling from Neilo Pearce, who hit the stumps nearing the end of the Runcton innings.

North Runcton finished on 169 all out, with Hales feeling they had a chance.

In reply, Hales lost an early wicket as Harmer fell with just three runs on the board.

There was a slight steadying of the ship until North Runcton introduced their paid professional Birkenshaw. He ripped through the Hales top order, all clean bowled, as his pace and accuracy proved just too much for them.

A bowler of his stature would probably not look out of place plying his trade at major county level.

There was a very small sign of resistance at the end, with Matt Lovick, Steve Rowe and G Squire spending time at the crease and adding 23 between them.

The Hales innings came to a close on 71, with Birkenshaw taking seven wickets to add to his 71 scored earlier to beat Hales pretty much on his own.

The man of the match sponsored by Johannesburg International Airport goes to Graham Squire for his four wickets.

On Wednesday, Hales played at Acle in the final of the prestigious Coronation Cup. Hales skipper Rowe won the toss and decided to bat.

As on Saturday, Hales again had a problem with batting and from their 15 eight-ball overs, a total of 97 was required for Acle to win.

The poor batting was underlined by No 10 batsmen Steve Rowe top scoring with 22 not out.

Hales opened the bowling with Robin Andersen and Neilo Pearce but Acle knew they could bat at a steady pace, without taking too many risks.

As a result, the two opening batsmen picked up 80 of the runs between them, and when they fell to a good run-out from Joe Kaye, and a caught behind off the bowling of Matthew Flatley, there weren't many runs for the rest of the Acle team to get.

Acle cantered to the 97 total with two overs to spare.

The ex-Acle man of the match award goes to Steve Rowe.

Tomorrow, Hales travel to Beccles in what is sure to be a tight and well supported match.

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