Cricket Tour to Antigua
The Cricket squad will be touring Antigua over the Easter break. All of the latest updates will be posted here and on Twitter @BromsSchool
Final Match of the Tour
U18 vs Island XI
After a fantastic eleven days, the U18s took on an Island XI in their final match on tour, again back at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium playing 40/40.
Batting first, Mr Fallows made it clear to his top five that the priority for today was for one of them to register three figures; a tough ask but all were capable. Henry Moberley duly obliged; 102 retired off 83 balls. An excellent innings well supported by Ben Herridge (46), James Kinder (38) and Jujhar Johal (32); Bromsgrove 302-5 off their 40 overs.
In response, the boys were set a target of bowling the opposition out inside 30 overs. The boys did just that, with excellent bowling from James Kinder (4-9), Jujhar Johal (2-23) and Karan Gour (2-30) helping to dismiss the Island XI for 132. A great performance to finish what has been a superb tour.
After the match was the Tour Dinner where the following awards were given:
Best Batsman: Henry Moberley
Best Bowler: Barney Morgan
Best Fielder: James Kinder
Best Tourist: James Taylor
At the end of a successful tour the boys had time to visit Government House in Antigua to meet the Governor General and his wife which was to support the HALO foundation in Antigua for underprivileged children. We were made extremely welcome, having a formal and very traditional function with the boys meeting the Governor General. The development side attended whilst the first team were playing their final rearranged game, as well as donating cricket equipment, books, pens and some tour clothing. The kit was greatly received with local press attending the handover.
The closing of the tour saw the group take in two iconic venues both steeped in cricketing history - the first being the Stanford 20-20 ground being somewhat infamous, which took some explaining to the boys. The Stanford ground, next to the airport has stood still since 2008 and that million dollar match with endless memorabilia kept the staff interested for hours. Mr Dudley got a bit nostalgic as he played their back in 2003 when on tour as a pupil at the school and could not believe how it has gone in to disrepair. Still owned by the Stanford consortium, we could not believe how a cricket loving business man has not bought the beautiful ground, which would not take a great deal of money to have it up and running again.
The second, the ARG; one of the most iconic test venues in the world, famous for many things but most recently the Lara innings of 300 and 400. Being set up for a music concert whilst we were there, the old famous scoreboard still stands as does the pavilion and stands, one is condemned.
Again staff loved the experience; I just hope the boys understood the relevance of visiting these great grounds.
Shopping for gifts on the final morning before we headed off the the airport.
I'd like to thank Phil Tongue, Mr Higgins and Mr Dudley for all their hard work and guidance on the trip.
Match Day 6
Development XI v Otto’s Secondary School
Winning the toss, Bromsgrove batted first, but were soon in trouble as wickets tumbled through a combination of poor shot execution and some stunningly good catching from the Otto’s fielders. Opening bowler Uri Smith was destroyer-in-chief with 4-28.
Captain Ben Turner was joined by George Marshall and between them they first steadied the ship, then started building a total. The pair put on 47 runs which meant that Bromsgrove posted 98 having been bowled out in the 26th over.
Otto’s began well with some powerful ball striking but nagging bowling by Marshall and Sam Fitzmaurice pegged them back. Once the prize wicket of Smith was collected by Ben Humphries Bromsgrove unthinkably had victory in their sights. Matt Collins continued his excellent tour form by bagging another 4 wickets and Humphries got 2 more in consecutive balls. Otto’s were suddenly 9 down with 20 runs still needed. A couple of cruel deflections went for 4 as Bromsgrove pushed hard for the win. However, numbers 10 and 11 held out and victory was achieved in the 26th over.
This match certainly turned into a thrilling game of schoolboy cricket.
U18 vs Otto’s Secondary School
A 40 over game at the SVRS should have been the highlight of the tour for the first team, providing the boys with a strong lasting impression of playing cricket at one of the best cricket stadiums in the world. A weaker side than expected turned up as our opposition, and they were bowled out for 85 with Jujhar Johal taking 4 wickets. After half time, Jack Bewick 48 not out made sure we chased down the target in quick time.
The first team will now play an Antiguan schools select side on Friday in a 40-40 game back at the SVRS.
Both teams return to the stadium tomorrow to play back to back T20 matches with the 25 travelling supporters in tow, which should be a lovely day.
The charity event, with the HALO Foundation on Friday will still happen, final logistics are to be agreed now due to the rearranged match. After which the team will enjoy the end of tour dinner and awards at the infamous Sticky Wicket ground in the restaurant, with access to the floodlit playing area and amazing memorabilia in a stadium where time has stood still.
Match Day 5
Development XI v Clarehall Secondary U16
After finally winning a toss, Captain Ben Turner opted to bat first on what promised to be an ideal wicket for run scoring. Unfortunately, excellent bowling by the Clarehall opening pair of Raphael Loobi and Xavier Hunt reduced Bromsgrove to 5-20 in the 5th over. Joe Harper came in to join Ben Turner at the crease and proceeded to batter the ball to all parts. Joe hit 4 massive 6’s, including one which went out of the ground, over the road, over a fence and came to rest in a cow field some 80m away! It was phenomenal hitting. He scored 52 in 41 and put on 98 for the 6th wicket with Ben (42* off 54 balls). Bromsgrove set what we felt was a slightly under-par target of 133 to win.
Needing 6.7 runs per over from the start, Clarehall began breezily, with opener Zeus Vale bludgeoning his way to a quick-fire 27. However, accurate bowling by Sam Fitzmaurice and Ben Humphries slowed the run rate to put pressure on the batters. Matt Collins came on as second change and immediately took the wicket of Vale, Ben Fitzmaurice taking a smart catch behind. From that point, Bromsgrove seized control of the game. Good fielding supported the bowlers; Tom Maidment took another super catch in the gulley to remove the limpet-like Asher Cornelius. Wickets continued to tumble with Charlie Marshall weaving a web of spin from which the batters could not escape – he finished with 3-10 as Bromsgrove won by 42 runs.
A very pleasing result overall as the team managed to extricate themselves from a very poor start to run out convincing winners.
U18 vs Clarehall Secondary School U18
The U18s fifth match of the tour saw the boys take on Antigua Grammar School for the second time in a T20.
Bromsgrove batted first and did not start with the aggression Mr Fallows was looking for. This, combined with the loss of wickets at regular intervals, left the boys in a difficult situation with 5 overs to go. An outstanding knock from James Taylor (36 from 15 balls), well supported by Jack Bewick (25* off 22 balls), meant Bromsgrove posted a very competitive 148-8.
After disappointing with the ball and in the field the previous day, Bromsgrove were back on it today. Neylan Chauhan (4-25), James Kinder (2-8) and Jujar Johal (2-11) were the pick of the bowlers, which combined with some much improved fielding saw the boys limit AGS to 111-9.
Victory by 37 runs to setup the boys up for what will be one of the highlights of the tour; back to back matches at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.
Match Day 4
Development XI v Clarehall Secondary
A very exciting day for all as this was the chance to play at Sir Viv Richards Stadium. On arrival, the boys were struck at the size of the ground, plus the quality of the wicket and outfield. Captain Ben Turner lost the toss and Clarehall elected to bat. What followed was an outstanding display of bowling, ground fielding and catching in searing heat. Sam Fitzmaurice struck in the second over to set the tone as Bromsgrove kept taking wickets regularly to bowl out Clarehall for 102 in 27 overs. Matt Collins took 3-8 in his 5 overs.In reply, Jacques Banton and James Moody took the score to beyond 40 in quick time before Jacques was caught in the gully from a loose shot. James kept the momentum going with some beautifully timed strokes all around the ground finishing on 66 not out from just 58 balls.
A fabulous display from the junior team (the “1.5’s” as they have become known) showing their ability to learn from previous games quickly.
U18 vs Antigua XI
Match 4 saw the U18s take on a very strong Antigua XI. Losing the toss, the Antigua XI elected to bat which put Bromsgrove in the field on what was probably the hottest day since we arrived. James Kinder (1-20) and Neylan Chauhan (1-32) were the pick of the bowlers; it was evident the heat did not enable the boys to bring their 'A' game with both the ball and in the field. Antigua XI finished on 231-6.
In reply, apart from Henry Moberley's 37 and James Kinder's 26, no batsman reached double figures as Bromsgrove were bowled out for 131. To credit our opponents, they bowled and fielded exceptionally well but soft dismissals played their part in the boys demise. We move on with lessons learned.
Match Day 3
Development XI v Antigua Grammar School
Unfortunately, monsoon-like rain made the pitch unplayable at the Rising Sun Ground, which meant the game was abandoned without a ball being bowled. The Development XI players instead went to Pigotts Sports Club to watch the senior team play.
U18 vs Antigua Grammar School
The U18s third match on tour saw the boys take on the highest ranked school side on the island.
After a huge storm and a 5 hour delay, there was just enough time to play a T20 match against our opponents. On a difficult surface, Bromsgrove never really got going; Barney Morgan's 28 and Jacques Banton's aggressive 16 saw the boys post 109-9.
Bromsgrove knew they had to be at their best with the ball and in the field, and what followed was quite simply outstanding; in fact Mr Fallows described it as the best bowling and fielding display he has seen during his time at the school. Antigua Grammar School were bowled out for 45; Barney Morgan 3-6, Neylan Chauhan 3-18.
A fantastic effort from the boys and they look forward to Match 4 tomorrow back at Piggots Sports Ground (hopefully this time with just the usual Antiguan sunshine).
Match Day 2
Development XI v All Saints Secondary
Two outstanding opening bowling spells by Sam Fitzmaurice and Matt Collins paved the way for a comprehensive victory. They bowled with pace on a good line and length making batting very difficult for our opponents.
Having restricted All Saints to just 20 runs in the first 10 overs, Charlie Marshall came on and immediately spun the ball hard on a really good line and length. Charlie scythed through the middle order taking 4-22 in his 8 overs. Only opener Kenny Sutton offered any resistance as he eked out a painstaking 51 not out; an excellent inning by him. Constant rain interruptions meant that the innings had to end with the hosts 8 down leaving Bromsgrove 118 to win in 33 overs.
Openers Jacques Banton and James Moody set about some wayward bowling racing to 56 in the 8th over before Jacques top edged an attempted pull shot and was caught. In came Joe Harper and carried on from where he left off yesterday hitting another enormous 6 on his way to 38 off just 23 balls. Joe hit the winning runs in the 13th over leaving James on 36 not out from just 31 balls.
Overall, a very satisfying win for Bromsgrove with notable improvements in bowling and fielding performances.
Day 1 after Arrival
There was a chance for the boys and staff to have a bit of a lie-in after a very long travelling day yesterday. Those who awoke early watched England v Afghanistan in the T20 World Cup – this being the Caribbean, the cricket channel is in each of their rooms. Breakfast was at 8:30am, followed by our first training session of the tour on the cricket ground at the Jolly Beach Hotel. We had to dodge a few showers, but it was a good session and great chance for the boys to get the journey out of their bodies.
We had two hours of practice, with lots of throwing and catching followed by bowling for the bowlers and throw downs for the batters. After lunch we walked down to the local shops and then spent the afternoon enjoying a bit of well-earned R & R at the hotel.
The weather was glorious – about 30ºC. There were a few pink cheeks and shoulders at the evening meal – the sun is really powerful so make sure you slip, slap, slop tomorrow lads!
Match Day 1
Development XI v Princess Margaret’s School
Fantastic individual performances by Ben Humphries and Joe Harper were not quite enough to get the Development XI a win.
PMS won the toss and batted first with openers Cornelius and Thomas putting on a steady 30 for the first wicket. Ben Turner took the first wicket and this bought the free scoring Xavier Marshal to the crease who, along with his partner really accelerated the scoring rate and putting the Bromsgrove fielders under pressure. Sustained pressure by Tom Maidment’s off-spin led to two wickets for him and left one open for Bromsgrove to attack. Ben Humpries duly did this by taking an outstanding hat-trick, finishing with 5-14 in 6 overs of outstanding pace bowling. PMS were bowled out, leaving Bromsgrove to chase 194 to win.
Ben then strapped his pads on and opened the innings with James Moody. Both began aggressively taking the score to 45 in the 7th over before James was well caught in the covers. PMS tightened their grip on the innings taking 2 further quick wickets to bring Joe Harper to the crease. He set about the bowling in blistering fashion hitting boundaries to all parts of the ground including 2 towering 6’s to reach his 50 in just 40 balls. A mix up led to Joe being run out which became the turning point of the game – the following batters could not quite keep under the run rate and they were bowled out for 176, 17 short of PMS’s total.
The boys were philosophical afterwards recognising that there were areas of the game they can improve for the match tomorrow.
Bromsgrove U18 XI v Leeward Islands U19
The first game of the tour came down to the last ball with Bromsgrove needing 6 to win after 465 runs had been scored, a perfect tour match that we very nearly won.
Our opponents posted 235 from their 40 overs on a very good batting wicket and a challenging outfield. Jacques Banton was the pick of the bowlers conceding just 30 runs from his 8 overs bowling a great deal to their captain, Kofi James who scored an effortless 80.
Tom Swift took an outstanding catch which made all the catching practice in the cold Lent term worthwhile. Our fielding generally was good.
Jack Bewick and Jujhar Johal set a solid platform with an opening stand of 80, but too many dot balls put us behind the rate in the middle overs, a valuable lesson for the boys. Selfless, heroic batting from Barney Morgan (54 off 23 balls) and James Taylor (26 off 12 balls not out) nearly pulled off a great win, losing by 5 runs.
Many positives and lessons learned in a great game of school boy cricket against a strong team.
Departure Day - 22nd March
After an early start at Bromsgrove, all of the squad were safely on their way to the airport just after 5am.
Upon arrival at the airport, the team received a lovely welcome message on the check in desk screens.
The team departed on their flight just after 11.30am and are due to arrive in Antigua at 15.24pm local time.