There were high expectations of the annual match against the mid week St James’s & Montefiore team after the nail-biting last-ball finish last year. Due to heavy rain in August we had had to re-schedule for 9th September which turned out to be a beautiful late summer day – warm and sunny with a light breeze becoming more cloudy and humid as the afternoon wore on. Many of the players on both teams had played in the match last year and the anticipation on both sides, as we gathered for a 1.30pm start, of a finely balanced match was palpable. We won the toss for this 35 over match and elected to field, making the most of the conditions. Our bowling unit’s strategy was to keep the run rate down and make scoring difficult which worked well restricting them to 89 runs after 28 overs with 7 wickets down. At this point, they started to swing the bat, with both Mike Edmunds and Dale Stevenson playing some powerfully fluent driving shots to add 67 runs in the final 7 overs, scoring 33 and 35 retired respectively, setting us a target of 156. Highlights of the Martlets’ fielding were Will W-D’s 7 overs 23-2 in his debut for O40s side, Paul Lack’s silky footballing skills in dealing with a driven ball heading to the fine leg boundary and Phil Savage’s one handed diving catch to dispatch an opener in the first over.
The COVID friendly tea situation continues to be a sorry sight with very meagre personal rations of battered bananas, cereal bars and tales of delicious teas forgetfully left on kitchen tables! Here’s hoping for a return to normality next summer.
Our batsmen took the field with some confidence, and sure enough the opening partnership of Mike Loveday and Willie Boulter put on 70 runs for the first wicket in the 16th over, Mike retiring on 35. We then made a collective frenetic display of chipping, nurdelling and slogging to take us into the familiar territory of 6 runs required off the last over, with one wicket in hand off Malik’s bowling. What odds would you have given us? In the event, we came up short and St James’s were the well deserved winners of this tight fought and very enjoyable match. In the final analysis both teams were well matched and played some good cricket. St James’s superior ability to race around the outfield and stop boundaries was perhaps the main difference between the teams.
Many thanks to our scorer, Mike and our umpire, KC, for helping to add to the enjoyment and also the our gracious hosts at St James organised by Malik.
Go back to all fixtures in 2020
For detailed information on each venue, please visit our Venues page