For the second week in succession, Disley 1stXI exacted revenge for one of their three league defeats thus far as they avoided a banana skin at Port Sunlight. Heavy showers and leaking covers made life tough for all batsmen on Leverhulme Field but the Rams emerged victorious from the kind of scrappy encounter that has been commonplace in 2017.
A captain’s innings from Jake Reynolds was the difference on a day dominated by the bowlers, even with the Rams’ attack beset by injuries. It meant extra pressure on Martin Blackbourn (6-27) and Jamie Henderson (2-38) but they responded to help dismiss the hosts for 115.
Signs were that batting would remain tough, with only three home batsmen making it into double figures and cloud cover preventing the wicket from drying out. It meant Disley faced a tough chase, particularly when it became evident that pacemen Cox and Howard would continue to find assistance from the pitch — Josh Henry the first to suffer, copping an unplayable delivery that he gloved behind.
Runs were at a premium as the game became about the survival of two spells which eventually yielded the combined figures of 28-14-33-5. Jake Reynolds remained unmoved though as the captain produced the right combination of technique, guts and luck to survive a testing exchange and cash in against the change bowling.
Jamie Henderson again played a useful lower-order hand with a vibrant 18* to contribute to an unbeaten stand of 38 for the eighth wicket as the skipper carried his bat. Reynolds occupied the crease for 166 minutes in compiling a match-winning 53* (5×4, 0x6, 119b) that took him past 500 league runs for the season as he registered his fifth, and most valuable, half-century.
Support for the 1stXI was boosted by some members of the 2ndXI who sadly couldn’t recover the DASC to a playable state for the visit of Macclesfield. As a result they drop to third but a defeat for leaders Chelford means they are still in the hunt in the remaining seven weeks.