On a beautiful sunny Saturday morning, 11 Plough legends arrived at lovely Watford Town Cricket Club with the captain Liam Grayzer being late as usual. The lads were full of energy and wanted to win this game for club legend Chris Silva as this would be his last competitive game for Ploughmans.
Grayzer, keeping his reputation, lost the toss and Ploughmans were asked to field.
Bowling first did not go well with the boys, as the pitch looked to do its bit and turn heaven in the second innings. Nevertheless, Ploughmans were up for the task and on went the skipper to bowl the first over. Leading by example, Grayzer finished with a wicket and from the other end was the legend himself Silvapulle.
Watford CC’s batting line up started to tumble as the legend grabbed two quick wickets and putting pressure straight away on Watford CC, to which the oppo responded pretty well putting on a partnership of 50 runs.
The skipper then trusted fan favourite Niraj to break this partnership and he did not disappoint with the help of Alex Hickson who grabbed one of the best catches ever seen. Original Hickson then came onto bowl and the perfect all-rounder delivered again.
Watford CC then put up a good partnership with the tail hanging in there and scoring what would prove to be vital runs.
Anusha and James Sully were given the task to take care of the tail with Anusha bowling left-arm medium and James ‘Shane Warne’ Sully bringing his leg spin into play. Anusha finished off with a 4fer and the team wondered why he was not brought on earlier.
After a strong finish Ploughmans looked to chase the target with a strong batting line up. Adeel Riaz on debut opened the batting with the Wall of Plough, Paddy Gledhill.
As expected, the wicket started favouring the fielding side and Paddy had to go out cheaply. Next to join Adeel was Hanzi on his second innings for Plough.
Two fairly new batsmen to chase what looked like a huge total. Hanzi was caught saying, ‘Mountains are there to be climbed, and as a Ploughman you never give up’. Adeel and Hanzi were looking strong as Hanzi scored 3 quick boundaries and Adeel punished every bad ball.
For a man on debut, Adeel looked pure class and a joy to watch. Back foot punch, front foot drive, he had everything in this book. Unfortunately, the partnership ended soon as Hanzi chipped one in the air and had to make the long walk back.
On went perfect all-rounder, Original Hicko, unfortunately though his stay on the pitch didn’t last long and he had to go out cheaply as well.
Ploughmans looked under pressure but Adeel stood strong as he continued to score. Soon to follow O-Hickson was Tom Lane, again an unfortunate wicket.
Bharat then joined Adeel and looked strong scoring some crucial runs but sadly Bharat didn’t last long either.
Niraj, the man himself, came in next – and with the batting trophy on the line – he had a lot to play for. Unfortunately for him he got out on a duck and lost his chance on what was, I’m assured, his trophy to lose. Better luck next year Niraj.
James ‘Warney’ Sully, playing his second match for Plough, was sent in next. 7 wickets down and a huge total to chase.
Sully started aggressively by scoring some quick boundaries and pushing the pressure right back.
Watford CC brought their best bowlers back into the attack, but Sully wasn’t taking no for an answer. He took the charge to them by hitting the only six of the game and losing the ball in the process. Watford CC had to borrow a new ball as Sully and Adeel looked to bring the game home.
Unfortunately, Adeel got out after scoring a well-deserved 77 on such a challenging track. With Sully still in there, Plough looked the favourites.
Last over with 11 runs to win, Sully on strike, the pressure is on.
Ploughmans cheering every run from the touchline. 2 dot balls in a row, more pressure as every run counts now.
Sully hits one in the deep and wants the strike back but unfortunately couldn’t make it back in time… and that’s the end of the game.
What an end, Ploughmans disappointed yet proud of the effort from the lads. Unfortunately, Chris Silva couldn’t get the win in his last game but the effort must have left him proud.
This brings an end to an emotional and proud day for Ploughmans Cricket Club. On you go legend!!
Been a pleasure.
Mic drop Hanzi out