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North Parade looked a picture (as in the picture) for the 1st XI's opening home fixture of the season and the game v Cardiff proved to be a very useful, and successful work-out ahead of the Sunday Cup game and the season ahead. The visitors batting first made a good start, aided by a fair few wides delivered down the leg-side along the way. Carrying on from where he left off last year, it was the introduction of Jonathan Green that brought about the breakthrough as his combination of slightly-less-than-express-pace and swing immediately caused the batsmen concern.

Seeing the success that Green was having, Captain Lett then introduced his secret weapon in the form of James Campbell. It is a little known fact that JC did not leave the club to enhance his chances with the Unicorns but, instead, to develop himself into a genuine all-rounder and then return to take the WEPL by storm. That plan looked likely to succeed as he produced 10 fine overs, surprising the Captain with his intelligent and accurate bowling and took 2-29 in the process. The introduction of Marchant initially produced a flurry of runs, followed by a flurry of wickets which saw Cardiff slump to 114-6, before a lower order rally helped them to 193-9 at the end of their 50 overs. One other note - Luke Padgett did what Luke Padgett always does - namely not put a foot (or glove) wrong all afternoon.

The sight of Campbell and Lett striding to the crease produced waves of nostalgia in the massed ranks of supporters sheltering in the warmth of the pavilion and their opening stand of 90 reminded those watching of years gone by and, hopefully, things to come. Lett was imperious from the off, whilst Campbell took a little longer to return to his fluent best. In fact, just when JC looked about to explode, he holed out to long off and was gone for 41. Lett continued to take on the bowling with a mixture of beligerent blows, classical drives and creative scoops in his score of 84, whilst there cannot be many clubs who have the batters of Alex Barrow's talent coming out to bat at number 3.

A couple of late wickets with the score on 190 (and the skies darkening) did little to take the gloss of a very satisfying display and the promise of more to come. Bath look in good shape and appear ready to face the greater challenges ahead....starting with Knowle in the cup tomorrow.

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