Report by Arif Saad
Aberaeron beat Aberystwyth 2nd XI by 7 128 runs.
Aberaeron 352-6 (40 overs)
Aberystwyth 2nd XI 224-8 out (40 overs)
West Wales Conference
On a blustery afternoon on the coast, Aberaeron defeated a young Aberystwyth 2nds comfortably. A massive century from Ted Trewella proved the difference between the sides on a day where the bowlers struggled.
Aberaeron won the toss and elected to bat. John Fice and Steff Rees were looking well set, despite some accurate bowling from openers Sohaib Syed and Austin Thomas.
Once the openers had been negotiated, both batters attacked. Fice, having hit a Wilcockson full toss to the boundary attempted to repeat the shot again three balls later. A top edge skewed off the bat and the offering was gleefully accepted by the bowler, Toby striking in his first over.
Despite the loss of that wicket an opening stand of 70 had Aberaeron well placed to continue the attack. Steff (38) smashed some powerful fours and a couple of big sixes and looked set to go big before popping up a catch to Syed off the bowling of Cole. Cole struck again next ball as Kevin Regan was struck on the top of the pad, playing back to a straight one. Umpire Pat Cullen raised the finger and Regan was gone for a first baller.
Having gone from 70-0 to 76-3 in the space of 5 balls, Aberaeron were in danger of squandering their start. Captain Hywel Rees and Ted Trewella steadied the ship. Taking few chances to begin with, they both scored with relative ease bringing up the 100 in the 18th over.
In tricky bowling conditions, the pair were able to wait for the loose deliveries and extract full value from their shots. They brought up their hundred partnership in 12 overs and then accelerated to 150 together 20 balls later. A riotous three overs delivering 50 runs, with fours and sixes flying to all parts of the ground. Of many memorable strokes, a reverse paddle to take advantage of a gap at third man was perhaps the most audacious.
It was a harsh lesson for the young Aberystwyth players, who had to attempt to stop the balls flying to the boundary, but one which will hopefully help in their development as cricketers. That it was delivered in main by one of their former coaches was ironic.
Ted, a mainstay of Aberystwyth Cricket Club for the last few years, had surprisingly never reached three figures in his career to date. As the landmark approached, the tension in the onlooking Aberaeron team and spectators ratcheted up, willing Ted on.
A lofted straight drive with his score on 96 looked to have got him over the line but it was not quite perfectly timed and flew over the fielder’s head to land but not reach the rope - just two runs and Ted moved on to 98.
The very next delivery from Salmon sat up from slightly short and Ted, an immaculate reader of length, rocked onto the back foot and pulled to the long boundary at deep mid wicket.
Aberystwyth had spread the field in the face of the onslaught and there was a man stationed there for this very shot. Time seemed to move in slow motion as the ball sailed towards the boundary, would it drop to the fielder or clear him? He took two steps in thinking the ball would start to drop but Ted’s timing was faultless this time and it flew laser-like without losing elevation.
A despairing leap managed to prevent the six but the ball rolled over the rope for the four which brought up Ted’s century, accompanied by the sound of raucous applause and cheers from his new teammates.
Captain Nigel Salmon did eventually winkle out his opposite number, trapping Hywel in front with a full delivery. Unusually for such a fast scorer, Rees played second fiddle to score 43 in a stand of 164 for the fourth wicket.
Neil Snowdon and Sam Jenkinson both helped Ted to pile on the runs - contributing 7 and 9 in partnerships of 24 each before Josh Roper came out at 8. With just 3 and a half overs remaining and Aberaeron already on 287, the main goal was to get Ted to 150.
He did so in style, driving and pulling to put a big dent in the bowling figures of the two opening bowlers who had returned to close out the innings. 61 runs in the last three overs, of which Ted contributed 49, took Aberaeron past the 350 mark to close on 352.
A magnificent 181* not out from Ted Trewella will live long in the memory.
Aberystwyth were faced with a mammoth chase and losing captain Nigel Salmon to the first ball of the second over was a far from ideal start. Josh Roper delivered a perfect line and length to find an edge that was calmly pouched by wicketkeeper John Fice.
Of all of the bowlers on the day, Roper perhaps coped best with the strong cross breeze, which seemed to pick up during Aberaeron’s bowling innings. Two maidens left him with figures of 1-16 off his 6 overs.
Neil Snowdon, returning from injury, came on first change and duly struck in his first over. A full straight delivery beating the defence of Salter to bowl him for 10. Snowdon only conceded two more scoring shots in his next two overs to apply some pressure and Arif Saad benefitted, finding a bit of swing against the breeze to trap Cole LBW for a solid 27.
Aberystwyth were 69-3 after 16 overs as Hywel Rees departed, leaving Aberaeron in the hands of John Fice with instructions to give the younger bowlers a good go.
Ifan Rishko, playing his first weekend fixture of the season, immediately rewarded the faith shown in him. Syed attempted to punch his second delivery off the back foot but a glance off the face flew high to backward point where a leaping Saad was able to hold on one handed at full stretch.
Austin Thomas had been building a partnership with Syed but he too fell to Ifan in the same over, a top edged pull looping gently up to John Fice behind the stumps. With two wickets in the over Aberystwyth had slumped to 71-5 and were in danger of being bundled out cheaply.
Young Toby Wilcockson, in partnership with wicketkeeper Shaw, ensured that that did not happen. A fifteen over partnership began slowly, with Toby playing correctly in defence and looking to angle and glance singles, especially to the spin of Morgan Ashton. Shaw was more aggressive and dealt mainly in boundaries including two big sixes.
As Wilcockson’s innings continued, he found his confidence growing and introduced more adventurous attacking shots, including a couple of beautifully timed drives for four.
As Fice rotated his bowlers, Shaw advanced to 38 before eventually falling to Sam Jenkinson- a calm catch in the deep from Kevin Regan. An impressive two over spell of 2-7 from Jenkinson belying his part-time status as a bowler.
Steff Rees returned to pick up two wickets late on to finish with figures of 2-24 but the highlight of the innings for Aberystwyth was the 41* and top score from Toby Wilcockson. Aberystwyth closed on 224-8 to deny Aberaeron full points from the fixture, credit to the young team for continuing to battle to the end and showing great character.
A resounding victory for Aberaeron in the end by 128 runs, from which they will hope to draw confidence following a run of defeats previously. The last word must go to Ted Trewella though, 181* and averaging 87.5 since his switch, with six catches and a wicket, he has been the standout performer for Aberaeron in the early part of the season.
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