Youth team suffer narrow defeat

by Vince Reddick

Tuesday 15th May saw the new venture loosly called 'The Under 21 Team', get their season underway with a home game against last year's Evening League Division 2 winners Topsham St James. With a side consisting of 3 Under 14's, 5 Under 15's, 1 16 year old, 1 18 year old and a 21 year old (Alex deputising for his sick brother) against an assorted Topsham team, a close game looked to be in prospect.

Skipper Marcus elected to post a score on a sunny but cold evening, and Will Street (11) and Paddy Poustie (10) made a steady start against TSJ 1st teamer Ross Treleavan (3 for 25) and U13 spinner Jim Shepherd (1 for 21). With 18 on the board we lost our first wicket and Marcus Hoddinott immediately looked to push the board along with some intelligent stroke play, although the running between the wickets could've been a bit better. Marcus made a good 34 before falling to the star bowler Treleavan.

With a lot of early season rust visible due to the lack of activity thanks to the weather, we lost some cheap wickets before Ben Green managed 24 before he too was 'Treleavened' with the score on 85 for 5.

Jo Fanous made a valiant late effort, playing the shot of the game with an imperious straight drive for 4, as the Youth team posted a slightly light 109 for 7.

Topsham St James started slowly, helped by an accurate opening spell by James Vanstone (4-0-6-0) and Dom Gaywood (4-0-16-1). a steady second wicket stand of 66 between B Ward (48) and W Pratt (26) left TSJ with wickets in hand for a late onslaught. Man of the match, Ross Treleavan, was there at the end to deliver the required firewpower as he hit an unbeaten 16 from 8 balls to see Topsham home with one ball to spare.

A very creditable start by the young Exeter team, but a lesson in looking to take every run on offer - an extra 10 runs probably would have been enough to win. Next Tuesday the team take on the Met Office on the plastic at Exeter Civil Service Ground.

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