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Match report vs Sudbrook 08 July 07@ Sudbrook (Skipper JF, report Smitts)

“Have nothing to do with coaches. In fact, if you should see one coming, go and hide behind the pavilion until he goes away." - Bill O'Reilly

After 18 days of infuriating weather the Casz arrived at the quite splendid cricket ground of Sudbrook and were greeted by warm weather and blue skies. It quickly became apparent that the opposing team was a fine balance of young strapping 20 something’s and an endless stream of rigorously coached young tykes. Spirits were high after the unseasonable downpour and everyone was chomping at the bit to get stuck in.

First blood to Sudbrook as they won the toss and elected to bat first.

"A very small crowd here today. I can count the people on one hand. Can't be more than 30." - Michael Abrahamson

Skipper for the day, JF threw the ball to the ever reliable Winky and the match was underway. Unfortunately the radar was on the blink and with Andy having to scrape off the rust, 7 runs were conceded off his first over. Muff on the other hand was exceptional and started with a maiden. In his second over the Winky we all know and love returned and Sudbrook lost their first wicket. A fantastic ball bowled at pace that nipped back off the seam, through the gate and demolished the stumps. Shaw bowled by Hood for 7. Muff was eventually rewarded for his disciplined bowling with the wicket of Gibbons who was trapped LBW having scored 9. Winky and Muff maintained this excellent start restricting the Sudbrook batsmen and the pressure built. The fielding on the other hand was less than impressive. Ash dropped a difficult chance standing at second slip off the bowling of Hood and Muff was also guilty of putting one down off his own bowling. Around 6-7 decent chances went down and heads in the field dropped. Would the Casz be made to pay for these missed chances? Only time would tell. Muff and Andy finished their opening spells having bowled 6 overs each, taking a wicket a piece and conceding 18 and 20 runs respectively. Sudbrook 39 for two off 12.

Next up to bowl was The Doc and Pikey. The Doc struggled a bit with his line but also bowled the odd bobby dazzler. One delivery turned and bounced so much that it nearly decapitated Smitty standing up behind the stumps. Pikey started off well but took a little bit of punishment in his last 2 overs with the batsmen looking to accelerate. The Doc finally made the breakthrough the Casz needed when the batsman chopped one on to his own stumps. Willis bowled by Davies for 41. Tesh took over from Pikey and started with his medium pace reverting to googlies after a couple of overs. He bowled a couple of beamers and a couple of double bouncers keeping the batsmen on their toes. Davies conceded 36 from his 6 overs taking one wicket. Pike conceded 34 from his 4 and Tesh conceded 31 from his 4. Sudbrook 145 for 3 off 28.

The Casz were in a little bit of trouble. They needed to improve their fielding, stem the flow of runs and take some wickets. The two turning points of the game were JF’s team talk at drinks, after which the fielding improved remarkably and the introduction DT and Bagpuss. These two bowlers kept it tight and took wickets. DT clean bowling the oppositions Danger Man who finished on 56 in his first over and went on to only concede 15 from his 6. Shakey picked up 2 from his 4 overs. One LBW and the other stumped by Smitty in a strange dismissal where neither umpire or keeper were sure what was going on. To explain, the batsman had clearly been confused by the encouragement coming from behind the stumps. After one dot ball Smitty called out, “Ohh top bowling that Shakey, we like that line Monty, nice flight bagpuss, lets get him driving counsellor, more of the same please Mark.” The batsman looked around a little bit bemused obviously under the impression that either the wicket keeper was an idiot, or the bowler was some kind of crazed schizophrenic who could flip at any moment, charge down the pitch and bludgeon the batsman to death with his own arm. Next ball he got down on one knee trying to paddle the ball round the corner from outside the off stump, missed it and fell over. Smitty in a flash had the bails off and the square leg umpires finger was up……but no appeal came from the keeper….then after about 5 seconds Smitty ventured, “How is he?” The umpire remained unmoved not sure as to what was going on. Smitty tried again a little louder, “ HOW IS HE?” Still nothing, and again, “ AHHHHHHHH ISSSSSSSSSSSSEEEEEEEEEEEEE?” Well what happened was this. Smitty had taken the bails off and then was unsure as to whether or not he was holding the ball. The umpire had given the batsman out and now with the absence of an appeal was not so sure. Smitty regained his composure, realised he had got the ball and began to appeal. The umpire was now not convinced that Smitty had the ball either. After a short conversation we sorted it all out and the batsman was dismissed. Back to the action. Winky finished off his overs picking up another wicket and the surprise packet of the day JF bowled two at the death picking up a wicket LBW (Even thought the batsman clearly hit it, but it was obvious that no one like him much so off he went) and completing a run out.

Sudbrook finished their innings 172 – 9. Some members of the team commented that this was probably 100 too many. Oh ye of little faith.

Bowling Figures

Hood 8-1-28-2
Foote 6-2-18-0
Davies 6-0-36-1
Pike 4-0-34-0
Hinrani 4-0-31-0
Thomas 6-0-15-1
Stephens 4-0-12-2
Furnham 2-0-5-1

"Now, Pakistan are in real trouble." - Tony Greig, with Pakistan on 9/58

With 173 runs required for the victory JF and Easy took to the field to open the batting for the Casz. It quickly became apparent that scoring was going to be difficult with athletic fielding and the young classically coached bowlers all finding a good line and length from ball one. They started well, playing sensible cricket picking up ones and twos when they were on offer. In the sixth over the Casz lost their first wicket. Easy caught off the bowling of Clemence for 6. This bought Akbari to the crease and together with JF they kept the scoreboard ticking over. The eleventh over was a wicket maiden. JF tried to kick one away that pitched out side leg and unfortunately for him the ball went straight through his legs and on to the stumps. JF bowled for 8 by Williams. Akbari and The Doc were now at the crease but the partnership didn’t last long. The very next over Akbari top edged one to first slip playing a one knee paddle. Akbari caught for 8 off the bowling of Williams. The Casz were now 27 for 3 off 12.

"Alright, this bloke's a prime candidate for a run out: he's a bit fat and he's wearing rubber soles."-Peter Bickle

In at number 5 for The Casz was Smitty. He started well taking two off his first ball and after a conversation with The Doc the plan was to hang around and see where they were in ten overs. The scoring started to pick up with a lot of twos and threes and it looked like the Casz were back on track. Then disaster, The Doc was caught off the bowling of Williams for 11. With The Casz now four down and with only 43 runs on the board things were looking grim. Tesh strode out and after a conversation with Smitty the plan was to hang around and see where they were in ten overs. Two overs later Williams struck again and Tesh was clean bowled for four. In came Shakey and after a conversation with Smitty the plan was to hang around and then see where they were in ten overs. (Sound Familiar?) It also needs to be pointed out at this point that Smitty was starting to suspect that it might be his day. He’d already missed the ball on more than one occasion only to see it fly past the off stump by a whisker, fallen over twice and been dropped several times. However he was still in and edging closer and closer to his top score of 33. The main problem was that he knew this as Muff was very kindly providing ball by ball updates on the massive scoreboard. The nerves kicked in and were followed by some silly shots spooning the ball up in the air only to land just short of a fielder. Shakey on the other hang with his reliable dabbing was looking quite comfortable only being troubled by the occasional jaffa from one of Sudbrooks many wonder kids.

"Yorkshire all out 232, Hutton ill! I'm sorry.Hutton 111" - BBC news announcer

Just as Shakey looked as if he was finding his feet he pulled his groin and a runner was called for. Tesh stepped up to the plate. As we all know the runner must be wearing the same equipment as the batsmen, so once Tesh had his gloves, pads, bat, extra pillows and glasses on we were ready to get back to the action. Unfortunately with his limited mobility Shakey struggled and was soon caught behind for 7 yet again off the bowling of Williams. The Casz were now 89 for 6. Pikey was in next. See if you can guess what the plan was? That’s right. Sudbrook’s youngest player was brought on to bowl, obviously the young lad was a little nervous. Now how would Smitty and Pikey play him? Well Smitty being the mean spirited, cold hearted bastard that he is decided to spank the small child all over the ground. In truth the young lad got better the more he bowled and Smitty was lucky not to be caught on the boundary on several occasions. The increase in run rate meant that the Casz were not only back in this game but controlling it. Smitty passed his 50. His first for the club and together with some quality batting from Pikey the two managed to edge closer and closer to the winning total. The Sudbrook skipper decided enough was enough and bought his big guns on to bowl but alas it was too late. Smitty and Pikey managed to get within 4 runs of victory before Smitty was caught (by the young kid) trying to hit a boundary to finish it off. Smitty caught by Shepard off the bowling of Bajjada for 82.

The Casz 169 – 7 off 36,

Surely they couldn’t lose it from here.

Enter Winky. . . . . .Exit Winky,

The Casz 169 – 8 off 37,

Enter DT…………..Exit DT,

The Casz 169 – 9 off 38,

Enter Muff

Pikey managed to nurdle a few runs and soon the Casz only required 2 for the victory. They came from a genuine edge and as the keeper was standing up the ball ran away to the boundary for 4.

The Casz finish on 175 -9 and win by 1 wicket

An exceptional innings from Pikey seeing the team home. He finished on 39 not out. Muff finished on 0 not out.


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