After last week's 'rain off', the Boys returned to action with a match against Wiltshire at a sun-kissed Steeple Langford CC.
Rory Oram-Evenett took on the captaincy reigns for this one and the toss looked immaterial on a belting batting track. The toss was lost and we were invited to bat first. With Heardy's challenge of "35 with the loss of no more than one wicket at the 13-over drinks break", the Captain took to the wicket with James Talbot.
That challenge evaporated as both Rory and Ed Wilson, on debut, were both trapped in front in the first over. So 2-2 after 1 over, which quickly became 3-3 in the next over when Matthew Whalley was bowled. Devon continued to struggle against the Wiltshire opening bowlers accuracy and ability to swing the ball and subsided to 14-5 after 7 overs - a mountain to climb from here!
Henry Squire and Arti Evans (20) added 18 for the 6th wicket and Alfie Mason (24) and James Pugsley added 19 for the 8th to lead a mini recovery. Devon were eventually dismissed for 79 in the 25th over. It would take a massive team effort to turn this around.
The Wiltshire openers were cautious in their approach against the opening attack of Henry Hassell and Archie Shawcross. The score stood at 14-0 after 7 overs. Step up Jules Hughes (3-12) who managed to break through in his first over and then take further wickets in his 2nd and 3rd overs - duly helped by 2 smart catches by the Captain. Wiltshire were wobbling at 29-3 at drinks.
The Wiltshire batters came out with a determination to play sensible and reduce the target slowly but surely - pretty solid plan that. Devon rotated the bowlers to get another break through but to no avail. Wiltshire completed a 7 wicket victory in the 24th over.
Devon's Man of the Match award winner was Alfie Mason for his batting calmness and contribution.
This defeat reinforced the need for the boys to value their wickets more and build partnerships to be more competitive.
Next up for the Boys is a tough trip to Oldlands CC to play Gloucestershire on Sunday July 1.