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Match report vs White Hart 17 sept 06 @ Caerleon (skipper Shagger, report Shakey)

Match report vs White Hart 17 sept 06 @ Caerleon

When we turned up early, as normal, it was clear that the match lacked a certain something before it had even begun. Namely a pitch. Due to some breakdown in communication with the Council the normal pitch (so suited to spin that our team was packed with slow bowlers) was being scarified and was totally unplayable. Moreover, much of the playing area seemed to be taken up with the pointless spectacle of something called football between two youthful teams of questionable intelligence - well they weren't playing the great game of cricket.

After a little debate with the oppo we decided on a 35 over game on the artificial. Captain Dan won the toss and we decided to bat. After Tesh departed for 3 in the 3rd over a second wicket partnership of 65 between Kim and Smitts took the early initiative for the Cazh. Kim was circumspect in his shot selection but when he decided to go for it he proved very effective with his innings of 38 interspersed with 6 boundaries. Smitts played an equally invaluable knock, punctuated with some effective hitting and well judged singles.
But after their sudden departure in mid-innings the Cazh lost valuable momentum. Goughy and Shakes, eager to outdo each other in the season long run chase, couldn't hit a cow in the arse with a banjo for the next 10 overs. The score moved along but there were few shots of note (one nice on-drive from the Goughster sticks in my mind) and a lot of streaky runs all round the wicket against an attack which to be fair was very accurate.
After 29 overs we were 131-3 but with Goughy out for 31 and Stevo undone by a straight yorker length ball things didn't look good. It got worse when shakes ran out Dan for 2 and Paul was caught to a wonderful catch at the long-on boundary going for a six. Fitzy played a brief but entertaining cameo to leave Kevin and Shakes not out at the end with a very disappointing 16 coming from the last 5 overs.

As Tea was still being prepared we went out for a 5 over stint in the field. Dan and Paul bowled very well but with no luck as they reached 17-0 including 3 boundaries.
My personal highlight of the day was Tea. There was pizza, sausage rolls, sarnies, twix, cake and old fashioned tubs of ice cream that I thought had been discontinued years ago (an idea for us next season I'm sure). It was washed down with a cuppa. Then something wonderful happened. The oppo upped and left leaving large quantities of tea on their table. Sensing that I wasn't going to bowl after running the captain out I decided to stuff my face with what was left - bloody marvellous.

Paul got a breakthrough as soon as we started with a catch at backward point. But that was our sole success off the next 14 overs. Dan bowled very well (7-1-16-0) but with no reward and runs came at a steady pace off Kevin (7-0-38-0) and Tesh. Fitzy missed a hard chance at wide mid-on when he seemed to be claiming a mark rather than catch a high steepler and Tesh was unlucky early on with numerous edges in gaps between the keeper and backward point. White Hart hit well and deserved some luck as we had it in abundance during our innings.

Tesh took a career best 3-48 including a good high catch from Kim to get rid of the freescoring opener but with the unlucky dan failing to get a wicket we were really up against it. A brisk 5th wicket partnership of 47 took them home with 20 balls to spare.
We tried hard in the field but in hindsight we knew that we were 20 runs short of a decent target. No complaints about the result. Thanks should go to Smitts for supplying me with quantities of twix during our spell in the field.

Where on earth the next win will come from is all that we discussed in the Red Lion


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