Last Sunday there was a game of cricket in Verdayne Green. We batted first and did ok but feared we did not score enough runs. Turns out that was not the case and we won by 8. Read on for more elaborate details.
A strong opening partnership from Parrish and Barracluffino had PCC looking comfortable early against a bowling attack that was not menacing but nonetheless regularly asking questions that required batting answers. And boy did our batsmen to follow decide to fail such standard Jeopardy! questions such as “Where is my leg stump?” and “Is there a single here?”
The answers provided consistently failed to meet the standard. Simon Carson also decided to chip-in, fielding the question “Is there reasonable doubt?” and generously deciding in the negative, firing Tom Parrish (23) who was well forward and hit on the knee roll. A reminder to all Sunday umpires please to undertake revision through autumn as plums come into season.
Having established a strong start and seeing off the openers we were hopeful with Pauly joining the crease that we could push forwards. The arrival of a bloke known as “Moobs” however in the bowling attack was a strong portend of an inevitable batting collapse, and of course Pauly could not resist going down in the scorebook as “b. Moobs”. Just prior to that the intrepid Barracluffino (43), who had been spear-heading the batting charge, thought it would be a great idea to advance down the pitch to the leg-spinner, wide of the pitch-mark and play the ball with his eyes focussing intently above the horizon. Stumped. This wily leg spinner had a lucrative day, quickly claiming the scalps of Rahul and Dave Graydon, LBW and spooning to point respectively, then castling Yanni a bit later in the inning, all three contestants for quackers. All know they can do better.
Tom Lonnen who has the well-earned reputation as a middle order specialist finisher had his work cut out for him. For a while there he lived up to the hype, partnering with “Nobby” Nabanjan for a 7th wicket partnership to move the score along to 124. A tragic case of terrible calling saw Lonnen dismissed (31) by what I think was a direct hit with about 10 overs to go and only 3 wickets in hand. Things were not looking good. The PCC tail however wagged enthusiastically. Nabanjan, who compiled a useful 14, with Fiddes chipping in 5 and then Yasir and Carson putting on a brilliant final wicket partnership of 12 to have PCC bat the full 35 overs compiling 161.
A pleasantly surprising high quality bowling performance did the job and we bowled them out 8 runs short in the 34th over.
Archie Fiddes can bowl and he is not slow. He grabbed a solitary LBW to have the opening bat and he could easily have had a second if only he had not found the batsman’s edge and perfectly bisected first and second slip. Yasir had an excellent day with the pill, combining with gloveman Yanni to have the other opener caught behind. We had them on the run with early wickets.
Nobby Maitra was another surprise bowler who bowled flawlessly his entire spell. I say surprising because the old Liam Gray bowler recruitment filter usually works pretty well, but Nabanjan along with Archie and Yasir have somehow eluded Grayzer’s booby traps and become established bowlers in the club. Well done fellas – watch yourselves around Liam.
Nabanjan and Yasir each went on to take 3 a piece, clearing the way for the ever reliable Tom Lonnen to come on and serve up his usual diet of off-peg channel, taking two wickets in the process.
As well as the bowlers did, there was one oppo batsmen who is down in the scorebook and known only as “D” who stuck around like a turd that won’t flush.
Far from batting like a turd, he most certainly had us on the ropes and masterfully compiled a top score of 75. We were very concerned he could get the job done. Both Parrish and Graydon came on towards the end and toiled to get the breakthrough, but D conspired with certain other PCC fielders to ensure that plenty of decent catching opportunities were converted to runs instead of his prized wicket. The breakthrough came when Yasir re-entered the attack to find an edge to give Yanni his second catch for the day and then the big D-Man was finally taken off a solid catch from Rahul, who snaffled four catches for the day. Jug it up!
A great day of cricket at a ground in deep Surrey on a fine pitch against oppo who hosted well. Would recommend again.