Ways travelled to Astwood Bank CC on Saturday with a pretty strong side, looking to keep up their early season form. Captain Alan Dabbs lost the toss and Ways were asked to have a bat on a grassy track that had some moisture on top after being under cover for a couple of days. Usual openers Steve Moore and Amir Hemraj got off to an explosive start, hitting Humby out of the attack after three overs, but some tidy bowling by Johnson and Neal, and the long grass in the outfield, soon saw the rate tumble, keeping the scoring to a minimum. Moore was the first to go, cutting straight to backward point when finally offered some width. James Reed joined Hemraj, and the pair continued to doggedly add runs, although some poor calling, and poorer running stopped them from gaining many extra runs. Hemraj was next to go, LBW to Clare Boycott for 28. Iain Wingfield only made 2 before being castled by a decent ball by Johnson, bringing Chris Webber to the crease to try and push the score on. The pair started to get to grips with the bowling and the outfield, but just as they were beginning to look set Reed was caught on the short boundary for 41. Chris Jones came in, and then ran himself out taking a quick single, and Naqeeb Majid picked out the fielder on the boundary again for a duck. Webber was striking the ball well at this point, and as long as he was in there was always a chance of Ways getting a decent total. However, it very much depended on whether anybody would be able to stay with him, as Tony Potter also holed out trying to clear the short leg side boundary. Webber was eventually bowled by the impressive Boycott for a top score of 58, and Mo Bhanji failed to add to the score, hit plum in front of his stumps. So Sabir Ahamedzah and Dabbs, Ways' last pair, were left with 8 overs to finish the innings. It always had the potential to end spectacularly, with Ahamedzah's all or nothing style of batting, and it proved just so, as he smashed a six and a four before missing with another huge swipe to leave Ways all out for 183, three overs short of their allotted 45.
Ahamedzah then got the visitors off to a great start when they entered the field, picking up two early wickets, and with Dabbs keeping the runs down at the other end, the hosts were behind the run rate from ball one. Wingfield replaced Dabbs, and soon found a fine rhythm, his mixture of swing and seam causing the home batsmen enough problems to pick up regular wickets during his nine over spell. Bhanji was very out of sorts at the other end, and was eventually replaced by the returning Ahamedzah, who quickly picked up another two wickets to leave Astwood Bank staring at defeat. Only Boycott, rounding off a fine all round display, managed to get to grips with the bowling, finishing not out on 53 as Webber, bowling for the first time this season, coaxed out the final two batsmen with his left arm spin to give Ways a win by 21 runs. A good bowling and fielding display by the visitors, with Ahamedzah and Wingfield picking up four apiece in a very hard fought win. A top all round display by Webber saw him claim the man of the match award.