We’re on the final stretch of the league season and thankfully the weather held this weekend and all 4 league matches took place.
1s v Boyne Hill 2
The 1s were on the road to Boyne Hill. Boyne Hill won the toss and elected to bowl first. Will Heyes got the openers early on to give Boyne Hill hope but Andy Murray (83) and Adam Smith (52) helped Ascot reach a good total as they finished on 204 for 7 off 45 overs. Najib Khan posted the best bowling figures with 3 for 39.
Boyne Hill got off to a poor start with Nick Wiggett taking three quick wickets. But Amma Ayub (43) and Callum Thompson (45) kept Boyne Hill in with the run chase and more importantly the run rate.
But a run out and the introduction of Andy Murray into the Ascot attack saw Boyne Hill’s tail swept away as Boyne Hill finished on 182 all out off 40 overs with Andy Murray finishing on 4 for 12 and Nick Wiggett 4 for 19.
2s v Bradfield
Bradfield were the visitors to the Racecourse Ground and on winning the toss elected to bat first. Unfortunately, while the 4 of the top 5 made starts, none of them went on to get a big innings as good bowling and catching restricted Bradfield. Jason Carr took the last 5 wickets for 19 runs to see Bradfield make an under par 112 all out in 30.5 overs.
In response, Bradfield struck early to remove the two openers but then Gareth Baker (30 not out) and James Docker (35) steadied the ship for Ascot before Jez Wing came in and with his trademark slog on drive hit the winning boundary to see Ascot home by 6 wickets with 15 overs remaining.
After scoring the winning runs it is only right that we take some time to reflect on the stalwart all-rounder for Royal Ascot 2s. Especially as it only due to a couple of bits of fate do we get to see Jez Wing grace the Racecourse Ground with his stylish batting and sumptuous spin bowling.
Some of you may recognise him from last year when the ITV Racing coverage picked up a 2s match and filmed Jez taking a wicket – probably the first televised wicket on the main ITV1 channel in 40 odd years.
But what many of you don’t know is that Jez was set for reality TV stardom as he was initially chosen to appear in the reality show – “Absolutely Ascot”. He was chosen to be the patriarch of the series after being spotted in Ascot High Street walking his two Pomeranian dogs “Wickets” and “Bails”.
However, he had a falling out with the producers, one with respect to the pubs being chosen for some of the scenes because they didn’t serve real beer but the final straw was on his insistence on growing a moustache which the producers took an instant dislike to and decided that it could attract the wrong type of audience. So his role was sadly cut from the iconic series.
But 30 years before this, not many know that Jez held ambitions to be an Olympian. In 1986, Jez was in Lake Placid, USA and decided to try his hand at ski jumping. He became proficient enough to hold the first British records for the event and set his eyes on competing for Team GB at the World Championships in Oberstdorf, West Germany the following year to get a place at the Winter Olympic in 1988 in Calgary.
While training and establishing himself at his US base he got the moniker Jez “Flying Without” Wings. But fate would change all of that when Jez had a chance encounter with a fellow Brit in Lake Placid called Michael Edwards. Jez invited Michael to a ski jumping training session and soon found that his performances were being overshadowed and the legend that is Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards was born and Jez’s hopes of being an Olympian died.
But ski jumping’s loss is cricket and Royal Ascot CC’s gain. And his winning runs against Bradfield will be remembered for many a season.
3s v Wokingham 4
The 3s were on the road, and had the tough ask against league leaders Wokingham 4. Ascot won the toss and elected to bat first, but found the going hard. Deep Mohain (21) and Hassan Sohail (18) got Ascot to a reasonable start but only the late order of Andy Wiggett (23) and Mike Wyatt (12 not out) got into double figures as Ascot made 125 for 9 off their 40 overs. Toby Barker starred with the ball with figures of 5 for 26.
In response, Wokingham were in early trouble at 2 for 2 but Glyn Clements (32), Ranjeet Sidhu (21) and then Edward Fox-Smith (47 not out) saw Wokingham comfortably home by 6 wickets with just under 10 overs remaining.
4s v Yateley 2
At Locks Ride, Yateley 2 were the visitors for the 4s. Yateley won the toss and elected to bowl first. A solid platform to Ascot’s innings was provided by Harry Johnston (24) and Neal Feely (62 retired hurt) and then some late order hitting from skip Richard Baker (28 not out) saw Ascot reach 190 for 8 off 40 overs. Nathan Mathew (3 for 34) and James Osment (3 for 52) were the pick of the Yateley bowlers.
In response, Yateley were unable to keep up with the run rate and wickets fell regularly with Anthony Mcgowan top scoring with 19. In the end, Yateley were bowled out for 103 in 35 overs. Rajiv Docker was the pick of the Ascot bowlers with 3 for 17.