Thame strengthen survival hopes with vital victory

Matt Macdonald
Matt Macdonald

Thame Town secured a vital victory in their fight against relegation when they beat second-placed Amersham with an excellent all-round display in Home Counties League Division Two.

Thame lost the toss and were asked to bat and with a positive approach, their innings got off to a flyer with Matt Mcdonald (78) and Mike Beard (35) taking them up to 130-4 with 21 overs left.

However, a mini-collapse left Thame on 174-8 before Chris Jeffcock and skipper Mike Higgs led Thame to 205 all out in the 48th over.

In reply, Amersham started well but Thame produced a determined bowling and fielding display to dismiss the visitors for just 155 as wickets for Hassam Mushtaq (4-28), Adam Phippen (3-33), Mike Higgs (2-26) and Will Rooney (1-25) secured the much-needed victory, which takes Thame 14 points clear of relegation.

They travel to take on Datchet this Saturday.

After stumbling the previous week, Thame IIs knew that to maintain top spot they simply had to win away at bottom-of-the-table Banbury IVs and they didn’t disappoint.

Banbury won the toss and chose to bat, but were soon struggling at 42-4 against opening bowlers Matt Furness (2-16) and Ian McStay (2-25).

Despite Banbury staging a recovery, putting on 58 for the fifth wicket, George Patey (2-8) then made the breakthrough and Chris Penny polished off the tail (4-38), the home side finishing up 134 all out from 46.3 overs.

With rain clouds a constant threat, Thame had to score quickly in reply as Richard Carr (81no) and Andy Jinman (19) put on 74 in just 11 overs.

With Matt Furness (27no) then joining Carr at the crease, Thame reached 135-1 from only 22.1 overs.

They now entertain second-placed Horspath IIIs this weekend.

Thame 3rd XI have now all but sealed second place in Division Nine North after their nearest rivals Twyford forfeited the match due to a lack of players last Saturday.

Thame still managed hastily to organise a friendly against Stokenchurch IIs, however, only to be ultimately frustrated by the weather.

Thame bowled the home side out for 110, Ally Ilsley picking up three wickets on his return to the side, while Vimal Desai, Will Bruce-Morgan and Ollie Oxby took one each. Some excellent fielding also gave Thame three run-outs.

In the chase, Thame started well at 30-0 after eight overs, but the heavens opened and the game was sadly abandoned.

They entertain Cropredy IIIs at Lord Bills Upper school ground this Saturday.