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Saturday 8th June v Compstall (home)

posted 9 Jun 2013, 14:17 by Mike Madden
Cry offs are never a good thing, and when Bails cried off for the firsts and Sam got promoted, recently ex second team vice captain Tommo stepped in. Unfortunately that was not the end of it, as Harry Bold damaged his thumb on Thursday night so we called upon Fid. "I finish work at 1.30 so I'll be ok if we bat first," he said, and to be fair he arrived shortly before 1.30. Sadly, we had already lost the toss and been asked to field, so Fid's arrival, complete with a parcel of pie and chips, was not as good as it could have been. All good captains have to make critical decisions, as do bad ones! I elected to allow Fid to eat his lunch, taking to the field with 10 men and opening with Gibbo and Ole. 

Ole was a little wayward, suffering from being a man down, whilst Gibbo exerted a  little more control. Ben Williams took over to stem the flow, and finally it was time for Fid. Gibbo got the dangerous looking captain clean bowled, and that was about it for a while. Charlie Kitchen, on his second team debut, managed to bamboozle the batsman into lofting a catch to Ben Williams, and we had our first point of the day. Charlie finished with creditable figures of 1 for 10 off 3, whilst Bruce struggled in his two overs for 16. Ben Stones was tidy as usual, with two overs for 8, but the entertainment really began when Ivan was called upon. He struggled with line and length, but there's a famous saying about not  having to bowl your best to get wickets, and when the batsman swung at a wide one it dollied up to Fid who took the catch at point. The ball would almost certainly have been called wide, but as players gathered round in celebration Ivan simply asked, "Is that out, cos the umpire didn't put his finger up". Later in the same over Ivan was on for a return catch, but he stumbled backwards into the stumps and the ball fell to the floor. At this point Clayton announced that he had a new hero, and I am sure that Ivan will live up to that billing. He finished with 1 for 6 off 2 overs, whilst Ben Williams returned without success, finishing with 5 overs for 23. Ole put aside his traumatic first over to bowl a very controlled spell that kept Gibbo out of the attack. Fid, meanwhile, took three wickets, two clean bowled either side of a diving catch from that man Ivan again. There was also a run out, the details of which escape me. Ole finished with 5 overs for 34, though he did have two chances dropped, whilst Gibbo took a return catch to give himself figures of 2 for 53 of 12. Fid was the pick of the bowlers with 3 for 52 off 13, and the Compstall total of 232 for 8 looked to be just about within reach.

After yet another splendid tea the captain opened with Ben Williams. Ben was lbw for a duck, though the opening partnership was 41. Twenty runs later the captain was adjudged lbw for 47, even though it was suggested that he could have shook hands with the umpire at the time he was struck on the pads, even though notorious appealer Mike Hawkin said it was a bit harsh, and even though Fid said, "How far down the watchamacallit do you have to be?" Compstall went for the jugular as Tommo was caught for 8 and Ben Stones was bowled for 12. Charlie Kitchen was lbw for 5, Ivan hit a few lusty blows before being lbw for 9 (there's a pattern emerging here), and there was a lone voice muttering in the outfield about not having bowled yet. Compstall rang the changes as Ole Madden and Ethan Williams came together at the crease. The field came in, so Ole went over the top, and he and Ethan added 30 to take the score within sight of a second batting point. Ethan looked bewildered as Ole called him for a quick run. It was close, but Ethan was run out for 5. Ole was bowled for 20, and with 8 wickets down the muttering had turned to chuntering about not having bowled yet. Bruce was caught for 6, then Gibbo and Fid ensured that we reached a third batting point with some good clean hitting. Gibbo was bowled for a breathless 12, whilst Fid was about ready for third or fourth breakfasts as he finished not out on 8. The final total was 154 all out, a heavy 78 run defeat, though yet more valuable experience gained by our juniors. Unfortunately they did not get to see the old master at work, as Mike Hawkin was not called upon to bowl.