Having had a dreadful start to the season, Boxmoor’s first team finally looked more like a top team on Saturday and eased to their first victory of the season against North Enfield.
Winning the toss and batting first on a hot day set a positive tempo for the hosts Boxmoor, despite losing an early wicket.
The experienced Moor pair of skipper Richard Crowther and Aidan Pimm set about laying the platform for a big score by punishing some loose bowling.
Crowther reached his half-century first and was heading towards three figures before being dismissed for 80 in the 31st over and with the partnership standing at a healthy 160 runs.
Pimm carried on in a positive manner at the crease before falling for 68.
In so doing, he passed the mantle to his son Sam who scored a fluent, back-of-the-innings 41.
Boxmoor were denied reaching the morale-boosting total of 300 with a flurry of late wickets.
But they were more than happy with 287-9 from their 50 overs.
Despite a number of extras which contributed to a quick start for the opposition, the Boxmoor bowlers were able to make inroads into the North Enfield line-up, with regular wickets from Stan Harper (2-28) and Lloyd Larkins (1-28).
A few chances went begging as North Enfield reached their 100 total with only three wickets down, thanks mainly to their skipper Orton, who knocked a patient 55, and they were still very much in the game.
But the introduction of Boxmoor spinners Amit Mahajan and Crowther helped to stifle the runs and the final seven wickets were picked off at regular intervals as the visitors collapsed to a total of 140 all out.
Mahajan was the pick of the bowlers with figures of 8.4-2-21-4 with Crowther chipping in with 3-11.
Boxmoor’s second team made the trip to Enfield on a scorching Saturday to play Old Minchendenians.
The returning skipper proved he’s still got the golden touch and promptly lost the toss.
Put in to bat on a slow wicket, the 2nds got off to a steady start with Rob Smith (18) and debutant Steve Alderton (25) looking at ease and putting on 37 for the first wicket, until Smith was run-out looking for an ill-judged single.
Wickets then fell regularly with most of the batsman getting a start but not kicking on.
Dan Smith (27) tried to hold the middle order together before Boxmoor were bowled out for a well below par 126.
It soon became clear that the home team were going to attack a small total and a pitch, that they knew how to play, contributed to this.
Riding their luck somewhat, runs came quickly as The Moor struggled to make inroads into the batting line up.
Alex Harris (1-20) exerted some control and bowled well and the three Under-15s players, Josh Low (1-21), Euan Mathie (1-20) and Freddy Hockin (1-29) all performed well against much more experienced batsmen.
It ended in a six-wicket loss as Boxmoor 2nds still look for their first win of the new campaign.
It was a steep learning curve for the four under-15s players in the side, but one that they will undoubtedly benefit from in the future.
On Sunday, the Boxmoor Blackbirds held on for another draw, this time against Pinner away from home.
Winning the toss, Pinner started at a great pace before being pegged back to 60-4, largely by the bowling of Paul Biddle (2-31) and John Scott (2-18).
Pinner then slowly stabilised their innings and the fight-back was spearheaded by their captain, who retired at 50.
Pinner ended on 193-4.
Boxmoor’s reply was steady, reaching 110 for the loss of no wickets, but after captain Kelly Low retired on 50 and opening partner Ed Shaw was out on 42, the inexperience of the Blackbirds side as a development team was exposed.
Boxmoor slumped to 146 -8 but did managed to still draw the game.
The Blackbirds, however, measure success by a different standard.
It was a great game, played in the right spirit, involving five juniors who gained more senior cricketing experience, as well as two lapsed players, being drawn back into playing the game.