Saturday’s game is what I can only describe as a bit of a shitter. We were away in Chertsey (which is miles away), it was hot (and I mean really hot), the pitch was a minefield (even Logan wore a helmet AND it was Max’s smelly one) and we lost by 12 runs. Despite this, there were some positives to take from the day…
After losing the toss, we started off strongly in the field and bowled, caught, and fielded excellently over the first 15 overs. Puff opened the bowling on his return from his mid-season break and he was joined at the other end by the unlikely opening partner of Duray. This turned out to be an inspired choice however as Duray (new nickname from the day: “bag”, ask for context), picked up their top 3 batters in his first spell. This was well supported by CRS and Rumford who grabbed 3 more quick wickets to leave SW struggling on 51 for 6.
Credit to the SW batters though, they dug in with the type of resilience rarely seen in this league and battled admirably, navigating through the heat and worsening pitch to survive their overs and ensure we had to suffer in the field as long as possible. Plough had to work hard and restricted them to 160 for 9 off their 45 overs. Further wickets for D-bag, Rumford & Puff.
Refreshed with a round of Calippos from the local shop, the chase was approached with an air of optimism. We knew the pitch would cause problems but also if we applied ourselves then it was a very gettable target.
The batting, however, didn’t start as planned with early LBW decisions not going our way to dismiss Suri, Logan, and Ben Fletcher leaving us 31-3. Joey Anderson was very soon a victim to the pitch, being bowled by a ball that had so little bounce that he was left to question if it was even a legal delivery!
This brought the skipper for the day, Max to the crease. Max and I worked hard for the next wicket and put on 70 runs before Max (36 from 33) was unfortunate to be caught in the deep and I fell victim to another LBW call after battling to 45.
Duray holed out shortly afterward for 14 leaving the final 4 with 40 to get. There was some good resistance from Ben Hamilton & CRS and the onlooking Plough were feeling optimistic but a combination of some unlucky calls and the pitch ballooning two balls off a length into our batters gloves left 12 short of their total and pretty deflated all round after a long day and a lot of effort.
The law of averages meant SW had to win at some point. We’ll use it as a motivator for next week.