Tuesday, December 23, 2008

v Elmbridge - 17th June 2008

Date: 17th June 2008

Versus: Elmbridge

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: OC's win by 100 or so runs


There’s the usual caution with new opponents such as Elmbridge, how seriously do you take them, how do you play the game if you open the batting or bowling. Even if you play well, will the other team do better.

Well Elmbridge had one set of credentials for a half decent team, everyone in whites, the usual second credential, southern hemisphere accents was absent, so the possibility of a close game based on these two assumptions was on.

Despite having a relatively large squad of 14 or 15 to choose from plus Deando occasionals, the skipper & sec’s work was cut out to get an 11 from an available 9 bolstered by two late stand ins supplied by Knoxy.

Skipper Bisson won the toss and elected to bat stating his intention to go for it with Knoxy and hero of Wandgas, Dan Reuben, opening the batting on a pitch with markers laid out so generous to the bastmen they could have been mistaken for fielding restriction markers!

Knoxy dug into the bowling taking the shots while Daniel dug in the anchor providing a grand opening stand keeping the run rate ticking over about a constant 7 or 8 an over. Knoxy reached his 50 with ease and a century looked on the cards until Elmbridge brought on a serious bowler & took Knoxy for 62 with a dubious LBW decision which was one of the quietest appeals I have ever heard. Sparky came in and restored some order knocking a measured 36 not out while Dan had a good knock but fell in the penultimate over with 35. Test match Trevor came in for the last couple to slow down the run rate and make it a reasonable target of 152.

Even the most optimistic of skippers with a target to defend would still open with their best bowlers to test the water before putting on the pie chuckers to make a game of it. Dan opened as usual and lasted two overs for 1 wicket. In a strange twist, and maybe trying to prevent Manuwar running away with the bowling trophy, Bisson put Bolland on who had got rid of his rust and took two wickets for 4 runs with 3 maidens! Mahesh came on at change and took another wicket, while Bisson, smelling rabbits, brought himself on for 4 fruitless overs which would have been fruitful if author had not dropped a simple catch at gully, sorry skip. Manuwar finished off the top end with two wickets in successive balls, the hat trick ball nicked to second slip between Daniel and Ducklin at 1st & 3rd.

The reluctance of the Knoxy volunteer corps to bowl and the lack of batting depth meant that the run rate ran away from Elmbridge with Ducklin taking a wicket off his second spell caught by a generous Bisson who should have dropped it. Ducklin took it upon himself to make a game of it with two successive wides for the final ball, unfortunately, by that time Elmbridge needed him to channel the spirit of Harmison and bowl 98 more wides to make a game of it as OC’s finished comfortable winners.

Champagne moment, John Bolland half heartedly appealing an LBW which not even Collett behind the stumps shouted for, the umpire then gave the batsman out but only about 3 people noticed, EXCLUDING Bolland and the game carried on as if nothing happened…….

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