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2nd XI v Broadbottom (away) Saturday 27th July 2013

posted 30 Jul 2013, 12:36 by Mike Madden
Just like Martin Luther King, I have a dream, and I had a glimpse of that dream in this remarkable match at Broadbottom. My dream is probably a couple of years away, but it involves at least a couple of the youngsters on show as we dominate the division and clinch promotion in early August. For those of you who do not regularly scan the DCCL 4th divison tables, Broadbottom were sitting pretty on top by a handsome 40 points. Only two teams have prevented them from recording a victory this season, Compstall who beat them last week, and ourselves when the fixture was rained off earlier in the season. Broadbottom isn't the biggest of grounds, and with the wicket cut close to the edge of the square, it was a good toss to win, which Broadbittom duly did. We took to the field with 10 men as Sam Slack had not yet arrived, and in my mind I would have been happy to restrict them to less than 200, though 250+ was definitely on the cards.

Sam's car came screeching to a halt as we walked to the middle, so at least we had a full complement of fielders, but at least one of them was not completely switched on as Sam spilled a catch in the first over. After mentally adjusting the anticipated score to 300, the team tried to lift Sam out of his depression, but the best way was to dismiss the fortunate batsmen. This we did just a couple of balls later, when the ball was pushed out to Harry Bold at square leg. He picked the ball up and threw down the stumps at the bowlers end, leaving the batsman stranded and Broadbottom were 0 for 1. The second over went just as well, as JJ Goldfinch threw down a wide half volley that was played on by the other opener. Five for 2 and 250 was looking good again. Broadbottom didnt get where they are today by having a flimsy batting order, and numbers 3 and 4 looked eminently capable. Sadly for them, their running was a little chaotic, and none other than Sam Slack hurled the ball to Elliot behind the sticks, who calmy removed the bails for a third wicket. Colin decided that it was time for him to get in on the act, and two clean bowleds in successive balls reduced the hosts to 13 for 5. Surely 200 was now out of the question? Colin claimed a third as the captain snaffled a catch at gully, then the game settled down for a while, with a succession of maidens interspersed with singles. This changed when Dave Marchington came on to give the struggling batsmen a chance.

His first over only went for 5, but after Colin's 9 overs 3 for 17 and JJ's 7 overs 1 for 11, this was a trifle expensive, though nothing compared to his second. A mixture of long hops and wides could have gone for a lot worse than they did, but a mistimed drive fell kindly to Colin for the 7th wicket. Dave finished with 1 for 17 off 2, but that was far from the end of his involvement. Reuben Cutts started with 3 maidens, and he eventually got the wicket he deserved as Marchy clutched one at point. Meanwhile, Peter had replaced the ex first team medium pacer, and he also struck with Marchy again standing firm at point for the catch. The dangerous Broadbottom first team captain was at the wicket, but he had number 11 for company, and when he miscued a drive to Colin off Peter it was all over, with the league leading hosts all out for just 53. Reuben bowled 6 overs taking 1 for 4, whilst Peter had the remarkable figures of 2 wickets for 0 runs off 2.1 overs. Surely the first team beckons.

Tea at 3.10 and a relaxed batting performance to follow? Not if you've played for Whaley for any length of time. I wasn't having any shilly shallying. I told the squad this was a 250 track and the game was won. Just go out and get the runs. Harry Bold survived a drop at slip and a close call for a run out, but when he was eventually out for 14 the score had moved serenely on to 46. Next ball, Peter Crowley was bowled for 0, and the Whaley wobble was in evidence (no not Gibbo, just the fragile batting). Dec Ryan, a most welcome addition to the second team lineup, calmly stroked the ball around, whilst his new partner, the villainous Samuel Slack, played an awful shot to be bowled for 4. Elliot was having none of it, and confidently smashed his first delivery for the two required. Broadbottom were magnanimous in their praise and gracious in defeat, and it is a shame that we are unlikely to play them next season. We won by 7 wickets, it wasn't even five o'clock, and on this occasion I will not mention the appalling behaviour of Marchy and Gibbo in supping pints before the game had officially ended, but I will next time.