When the Plough descended on Raynes Park Sports Ground on Saturday 12th September the signs all looked positive.
Despite the early morning mini golf outing by a covid-safe group of 5 ploughmen, the team was all there (mostly) on time and ready to go, on what looked like a great batting wicket.
Unfortunately, Bec Old Boys were not. With just seven members of their side available they promptly lost the toss and were asked to bowl. The addition of one Chris Silvapulle to their fielding ranks would soon prove a master stroke.
What was far from masterful however was the admin from the opposition which saw them provide plastic stumps at one end. This providing a splash of colour to the proceedings and a ‘first wave’ spike in the blood pressure of Tom ‘admin’ Lonnen.
New man Hanzi opened the batting with Issy and the two navigated the first couple of overs before Hanzi was bowled at the plastic stump end. That brought Logan to the crease, a dangerous prospect with only 6 fielders.
Logan and Iskander took a liking to the numerous gaps in the field, including the gap between Silva’s palms as he did a stellar job as sub fielder – dropping Issy at point. The oppo eventually had three more players turn up and Silva walked off to applause from the batting side.
A partnership of 135 for the second wicket followed, with both batsmen notching up their 50’s before Iskander was LBW for 61.
Ovens joined Logan and for a while the opposition slowed the scoring, the pick of their bowlers having Ovens dropped and then caught for 12. He also collected the next man in, Skipper James Tisato for 18, and finished with 7-0-32-2.
On 94* Logan was joined by Suri and decided there was only one way to bring up his maiden hundred for the club, pumping a six over midwicket. The premium Kashmir willow bat had apparently done its dash for the day though, Cassin was out caught on the boundary for 100 off 77 balls.
Suri followed soon after, before the two Toms (Lonnen and Parrish) both continued their good form with the bat, notching up 30’s at better than a run a ball. Both were dismissed trying to lift the rate, Plough finishing on 286/8 off their 40 overs.
Lonnen and Silva opened the bowling attack for the Plough.
The opposition skipper clearly thinking there were bonus points on offer as he tried to hit virtually every ball into the nearby driving range. He connected with a few before being bowled by Silva, Lonnen collecting the other opener for 5.
Lonnen chimed in with his second as a powerful shot was hit to Ovens at mid off, having been switched to this position a drop would’ve surely confirmed a ‘thanks for coming’.
Puff and Oli were next up as the oppo continued to try and win the game in the first 20. Puff had their number 5 LBW before a tricky fifth wicket partnership.
I would tell you how many this partnership was but the opposition approached their scoring with the same lackadaisical attitude they applied to their timekeeping and stump selection.
A few big hits and a couple of questionable decisions and they were on track at drinks. However a couple of quick wickets, including Silva plucking the ‘big fish’ out of the air at deep midwicket off Puff, saw the game swing comfortably back into our favour.
Some tactical wides from Puff saw him extend his final over in the hopes of getting his 5 fer. And off the second to last ball of his spell he dismissed their last batsmen to finish with 5 for 34.
A thoroughly village but enjoyable game nonetheless, sun in September and few beers together before we can only have 5 mates again – you love to hear about it.