Goff on Course as Wadhurst found to be Lack-ing!
Unless the wise old sages (or our esteemed archivist) say otherwise, a Martlets side took to the field of Wadhurst for the first time as the Over40s played their Midweek XI (aged 8-70 almost, the 8 maybe an over estimate….).
In the absence of the MM (in court , not facing charges of affray), we had struggled to reach 11 but a late pick up by Alan Newman meant we had finally reached the target. Or least we thought we had… The question on everyone’s lips being not “When is Christmas?” (Answer: 138 sleeps) but “Where is Christmas?” (Answer : On holiday) as Dave was the 11th man on the MMs team sheet (reminder , the MM was in court, charged clearly with mis-representation of facts).
We are therefore 10, Wadhurst 10 + as it turned out, a very important 6-8 y.o. Reggie , stationed as sweeper on the cover boundary.
So to the cricket, we win the toss and bat, the Secretary and new recruit Damian sent out to open by the General (carrying on from Cuckfield) who this time avoids batting by scoring the innings. After the first passes at nose height, the Secretary is bowled by Asad for 10 by one that rise no higher than a foot from a similar length. Enter former Junior Martlet, now resident in Switzerland, Martin Goff, fresh from a fifty the day before , he starts cautiously before compiling an excellent century, retiring on 110 and then admitting he never really felt in….
Other useful contributions were made by Phil Rimmer (29) , Damian (14) and Paul Lack (13*) enabling the Martlets to declare on 203-6.
A substantial and highly recommended tea followed.
Opening the bowling with Cantrell and Lack, Wadhurst were in no trouble at all and things began to look ominous for the Martlets as the openers put on 50 quite comfortably with several shots down the slope into the One Acre Wood. A change was needed! Enter Jeremy McGahan , exit the openers , one bowled, the other caught by the ever alert Savage behind the stumps. By now ,Paul Lack had settled into his rhythm with a thoughtful mixture of field placings, away drift, gentle offspin , 22 yarders, 24 yarders and whilst batsmen got in they got out soon afterwards as Paul nibbled away. The Martlets score was threatened again by Asad (30) before he was grabbed one handed by a vertically airborne Bushell at cover. With some resolute defence Wadhurst attempted to see out the match but the 9th wicket fell with an over to go. In comes Reggie to stand (thankfully) at the non strikers end as the over was defended well, overcoming a slight confusion over running on the first ball.
In summary an excellent match played in good spirit and to be repeated next year.
- Martin Goff arriving at the ground having discovered the other ground in Wadhurst first after asking a local for directions
- The Secretary’s revenge on Asad by , when umpiring, removing him from the attack for 2 high full tosses.
- Cheese scones at tea.
- The fixture secretary to request that for a rematch next year, steps are cut into the slope at the Road End or ropes laid down.
- Neil , when asked after his left hand grab at cover, whether he was left or right handed, taking a considerable pause before answering.
- Andrew Cantrell’s low grab at backward short leg for Paul’s fifth wicket
Alan Newman in lieu of John Goodacre (not on day release from Wandsworth)
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