KEEPING LORD'S WORLD CLASS
Founded in 1787, Marylebone Cricket Club is the most active and famous cricket club in the world and owner of Lord's Cricket Ground - the Home of Cricket.
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MCC Head Coach Mark Alleyne insists his MCC Young Cricketers will not get carried away despite a 100% start to their second XI campaign.
The YCs have seen off Gloucestershire and Surrey in the three-day Second XI Championship and also beaten Gloucestershire in the Second XI Trophy.
A host of impressive performances from the likes of captain Paul Muchall, batsman Omar Ali and new recruits Chad Barrett and Jamie Porter have helped them overcome their county opponents.
The YCs endured a tough pre-season tour to Abu Dhabi but their excellent preparation in the Emirate appears to have paid off in the long run.
Alleyne was understandably delighted with his side’s results in the opening fixtures but warned against complacency creeping into the squad.
"Our focus for the summer is to do well in the Second XI Championship and Trophy, so it is great to get off to such a strong start in both competitions." said the former England all-rounder.
"The match against Surrey was particularly pleasing - it was a hard-fought win over three days, against a side that boasted several regular players from their first eleven ranks, on their home turf.
"The guys grafted really well, and played with great maturity, which is a big positive so early in the summer.
"It’s a great start, but no-one is getting carried away - there are a lot more challenges ahead - but the guys are playing good cricket with confidence at the moment, and I am looking forward to watching the rest of the season unfold."
After an early season friendly defeat to Cardiff MCC University, the YCs produced an excellent fightback to overcome Gloucestershire 2nds.
After dismissing Gloucester for 202 in their first innings, Porter starring with 4-23, the YCs struggled to 133-6 at the end of day one.
A partnership between Mubasher Hassan and Stuart Poynter helped them to a slender lead the next morning though, before an all-round effort in the field skittled the hosts for 136.
Ali made 76 not out as the YCs raced towards their target of 129 for the loss of only one wicket.
In their second championship game, against Surrey, a splendid century from Muchall (132) and 64 from Eddie Ballard gave MCC a superb start against the Oval-based seconds.
After racking up 365 on the opening afternoon South African Barrett, bowling with good pace, took 5-45 to help dismiss Surrey for just 207.
Barrett then smashed 65 not out to set Surrey an unlikely target of 430 to win.
Seventeen-year-old Porter then picked up his first five wicket haul as a YC, to help his side to victory with 16 overs remaining.