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Match Report vs Blaina 6 June 2010@ Blania (Skipper and report Captain Dan)

As Captain Dan sped across the Bridge from Somerset the clouds in the distant looked ominous and the forecast of rain looked to correct…however, the rain never materialised and on arrival at the lovely ground of Blaina the weather was glorious, hardly a cloud in the sky. With a few of the Cazh deciding to go the very scenic route via Caerleon (?) the toss was taken and lost with the Cazh asked to field first.

With a slight delay, the Cazh took to the field with Winkie and Digger opening up. There was a very short boundary on the road side compensated by a very large boundary on the other. Both opening batsmen looked accomplished, thought the no2 favoured the Chinese cut. In the 6th over Digger got the breakthrough bowling the no1 and oppo skipper with a super inswinging delivery. 23-1. Winkie continued to probe and bowled with good speed and bounce on the hard wicket. However, it was JB who was to get the next breakthrough in the 10th bowling the other opener. 33-2. The number 4 looked to be the ‘dangerman’ but he didn’t last long as with his best delivery, Digger uprooted his middle stump with a delivery which swung away and seemed in. Suddenly the Blaina top order was gone and with 6 of their side pulling out in the morning, it was uncertain what the capability of the lower order would be. 39-3 off 12.

With Winkie and Digger too effective they were both rested and Dev and Steveo took over. In a slight cock up Captain Dan put Steveo at the end which would punish any legside deliveries. There was however the positive fall back that anything that was carted that way might hit one of the growing number of drunken ‘barmy army’ louts who had congregated on the edge of the boundary. Completed unphased, Steveo enticed the batsman forward, tempted by the short legside boundary, and bowled him. 45-4-14overs. Dev at the other end bowled excellently, his line and length kept the batsmen honest, and started with a maiden. The pair kept plugging away, Steveo nearly took his second wicket via Dan diving forward for a catch at short midwicket, unfortunately spilling the ball on impact and taking much off the skin off his elbows and knees (or what skin was left after the previous weekend). But the Bearded Wonder continued to bowl straight and got his reward in his last over with Winkie taking the top edged catch at point. 86-5-22overs.

Mahesh Harmison took over from Steveo and Tesh from Dev. Starting with a wayward legside line, Mahesh steadily brought the line back on the wicket only to go the other way and twice bowled in directly to Steveo at second slip. However, when the deliveries were straight, they were bang on and when they weren’t Will was diving all over the place trying to stop them. In his second over, he put in a good straight one and took the important wicket of the no3 who was on 46. 114-6-26overs. Tesh bowled a combination of moonballs and slightly less flighted deliveries and the batsman favoured the legside and kept Winkie, Dev and JB busy, unfortunately none of the aerial shots went near the fielders. 151-6-32overs.

The Cheese was given the opportunity with the ball and got his first wicket caught by MaHarmy at mid-on. Unable to help himself Shagger came on at the end off the short run up and got a wicket first ball, bowled. Ed got his second wicket bowled in the 37th and there was a clear run out not given in the penultimate over, but the last 2 batsmen finished not out. Blaina reaching an eventual impressive a slightly concerning 187-9 off the 40 overs….helped no end by a massive 43 extras.

Andy – 6overs – 3 maidens – 11 runs- 0
JB – 6-0-23-3
Dev – 6-1-21-0
Steveo – 5-0-34-2
Mahesh – 4-0-23-1
Tesh – 5-0-24-0
Ed – 5-1-25-2
Dan – 3-1-7-1

Tea was taken, quiche, baps, cocktail sausages, porkpies, cake and biscuits plus a thirst quenching cuppa tea.

As expected, the Blaina openers were quick and the skipper liked to ping it in short, but fortunately wide, and was punished by the Cheese slice and a Caribbean style square cut boundary over the slips by Easy. 15 off the first over. The pair combined this flamboyant batting display with some suicidal calling but remained unscathed and were aided by some wild throwing from the fielders – one of which resulting in Easy picking up a 5. After 5 overs the score had reached 30, however, Easy was finally caught at cover for 12 in the 6th.

This brought JR to the crease. After chasing the ball a little, he was unfortunately out early in his innings chasing one too many and the thinnest of edges was taken by the keeper for 1. Big Willy was next up and set out his stall by blocking the good ball and trying to get the bad one away. A solid batting display followed and after 16 overs the Cazh were 78 for 2.

It was Big Willy that was next to perish, bowled by a Jeff style bowler, clipping the top of the pad and knocking the bail from the leg stump (10). Mahesh was next in and he and Ed ran well and were looking comfortable until MaHarmy played across the line and even the hint of an inside edge couldn’t stop Easy giving him the finger (5). During this partnership Ed reached yet another half century with 2 6’s. 100-4-off 18overs.

Steveo joined Cheese and started with a boundary, however, his stay was short lived as he tried for another and was undone by the straight one (4). After drinks Tesh started out and scored a couple before trying to manufacture an off drive only to be bowled (3). 126-6-22overs. Things were looking a bit shakey in the Cazh batting, apart from Ed who looked particularly comfortable.

With plenty of overs, but not too many wickets and 62 still required, Captain Dan made his way to the middle. The strike was rotated and the singles were taken that were on offer, each over helped by some misfields allowed the Cazh to creep nearer the required total. The openers came back for their 2 remaining overs each and the penultimate delivery from the oppo skipper, Shag survived an lbw and then got the expected short quicker delivery – fortunately managing to parry it with his box. The last ball of the other opener’s allotted overs, Shag was undone by one that didn’t bounce and was bowled for 13. 166-8-30overs.

With 22 still required, but the openers finished, Winkie joined Ed. With wickets in short supply, the pair played sensibly not going for any risky shots. In the 32nd over Ed finally achieved his maiden century for the club – and excellent innings. The Blaina fielding was still leaking runs and with a couple of quickly taken 2’s and the odd relieving boundary, the score crept up close to the target, then in the 34th over, Ed tried to finish it off by going for a square cut, however, he didn’t time it right and top edged it hard towards the short boundary fielder….who put in down…fired it towards the bowlers end, which was misfielded again and the pair picked up a valuable 3. The following over the scores were tied, and to finish off Ed smacked a four to win the game and finished on a tremendous 117 not out and Winkie 2 no.

A superb, and almost chanceless innings from the Cheese. Extra’s took the second top score with 21! Who said we’re a one batsman side! Though to be fair the game could have been different had the bowling not been shared round quite as much, similarly had Blaina put out the side they had intended, however, both teams had a great day out, everyone participated and the weather was lovely. The only slight blip, the drunken ‘crowd’ on the short boundary, but they were kept in check by the Blaina team whenever they started to get a bit too vocal. A cheeky pint in the club house afterwards and then the remaining Cazh made their way back to the Big Smoke.
Well done the Cazh, well done the Cheese!

ED – 117 no
Easy – 12 ct
JR – 1 ct
Will – 10 b
Maharmy – 5 lbw
Steveo – 4 ct
Tesh – 3 b
Shag – 13 b
Andy – 2 no


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