1st XI v Holmesdale | Match Report - 27/04/19

Will MacVicar continued his astonishing start to the new season at Montreal Park on Saturday with only the second double century this scorer has had the privilege of recording.

The weather could not have been more different to last week with a biting wind and grey skies giving the pretty little home of Holmesdale a rather mournful look.  Home skipper Rupert Harbig won the toss and inserted Beckenham on a very green pitch.  Again both openers were dismissed for single figures in the face of good opening spells from Dave Hudson and skipper Harbig before the rot was stopped in no uncertain fashion by the partnership of MacVicar and ex-Dulwich captain Richard Farrow.  With Beckenham’s star all-rounder in awesome touch, five years of not playing gradually fell away from the tall, left-handed Farrow who gave fine support with his shots beginning to come back the longer he stayed at the crease.  MacVicar was unstoppable with the inevitable fifty up in 41 balls quickly followed by the century in 71.  Brutality is probably the most apt description of MacVicar’s batting as huge sixes disappeared to all parts at will.  With Farrow coming into his own, the stand was worth 157 before the left-arm spin of Dom May disturbed his stumps for a fine 43.  Jason Bilimoria then continued to push the score along as MacVicar, his bat akin to the mighty broadsword of the warrior in battle, continued to decimate the home attack.  The previous week’s 152 vanished in a blur of heavy artillery and the 200 loomed and was duly achieved in an amazing 116 balls!  Fair play to the bewildered home side, they stuck to their guns and the fielding was admirable with the carnage ending at the end of the 40th over with Beckenham 289-4, MacVicar 212 not out.

After an excellent tea and time to move the scoring table inside, home openers Dan Brabham and Harry Galpin set about giving Holmesdale a solid start against Shojib Ali and newcomer Luke Sanders.  The former again showed his potential as a 1st XI asset with another tidy showing while his Old Tonbridgian colleague bowled at a lively pace up the slope.  With no breakthrough forthcoming, skipper Senn removed both openers and gave the precocious Harry Jones the slope with the experienced Jason Bilimoria at the other end.  Both batsmen continued to bat sensibly and well with their fifties arriving in 57 and 62 balls respectively with Galpin being the first wicket to fall as newcomer Ollie Barnes, replacing Bilimoria, drew Galpin forward to give keeper Balmforth a routine smart stumping.  Now rested, MacVicar entered the fray replacing Jones and, in a short 3-over burst, dismissed Ant Bisset for 1.  Brabham, meanwhile, continued his excellent innings and gradually approached what would be a deserved century until MacVicar came back to strike twice in an over with Brabham being the second victim as he edged to Balmforth for 98.  Miller and skipper Harbig took up the chase with a useful stand of 37 before MacVicar struck again to remove Miller.  A fine fifty partnership between Harbig and May kept up the chase and the possibility of an improbable victory before Harbig (35) became MacVicar’s fifth wicket and, with May trying to keep the momentum going, finally gave Jones a wicket with the innings closing on a plucky 269-7.  It had been a most pleasant match played in a good spirit in wintry conditions but the match belonged to a certain W.A. MacVicar – 212 not out and 5-49.