Monthly Archives: September 2013

Season finale: Whalers beat weather but not Judd Street Tigers

Whalers V Judd Street Tigers; Winchmore Hill; 15th September 2013

 

After a week of bad weather most Whalers were pretty certain that rain would call of the last game of the season. Undaunted, Skipper Giles bullied and chivvied and led us all to the dark north (Winchmore Hill). An hour on the north circular, looking at the bright red twinkling brake-lights of a thousand cars did little to encourage us, but eventually we got to the ground.

The Whalers only had 8 players but the Tigers loaned us one of their players for the day (thanks for playing Steve Rennie). Despite predictions of rain (surprise surprise) the toss was tossed and the Whalers were put into bat. It would be a reduced overs game (24 overs) but already the pitch looked muddy.

Rich and Al started the innings and continued their fine form. It took the Tigers 12 overs to secure a wicket (Giles – bowled for 27). The Whalers were 65 for 1. Next in was Patrick Joyce, who I don’t believe has played since Amsterdam last year.

Al and Pat poked and prodded for the next 7 overs, which yielded a well fought 50 for the President. There was a moment of hilarity for all and sundry when the Tigers conceded 6 overthrows (1 run, 1 over-throw, 4 over-over-throws). When the rain finally hit the ground the players decided to stay on and play. It would take something harder than a light drizzle to call this game of. Fortunately the rain was short lived and 15 minutes later it was, once again, just overcast.

With the soggy conditions and poor visibility the batsmen were never given the opportunity to get stuck in, Patrick was dismissed  for 7 and Steve Rennie, who replaced him, was run out for 2 in the next over. The Whalers were 113 for 3 of 20 overs. The run rate was between 5 and 6 per over with Channa joining Al at the crease. Runs were difficult to come by, boundaries even more so and after a mighty heave and miss Al was dismissed in the next over for 67 well-crafted runs. Matt Lucas came in, brimming with energy and looking to score some quick runs. The score was 116 for 4 of 21 overs.

The Tigers brought back their two most experienced bowlers, who restricted the batsmen to 1s and 2s. However with Matt verbally abusing Channa (“run Channa run“) the runs did start to flow. There were a few large swings and misses (mainly from Channa), and a lovely straight-as-you-like boundary, back over the bowler’s head by Matt. By this point the pitch was like the Somme and neither batsman could really get the bowlers away (apart from a afore mentioned boundary). Whalers trickled to 139 for 4 of 24 overs (Channa *12 and Matt *10). Judd St Tigers needed a run rate of 5.8, but with a soggy pitch and slow outfield would it be a gettable target?

 

The rain was still on hold and unanimously it was decided that we would battle on and have tea at the end. With no keeper in the team roster Patrick took the gloves (via Channa) and the Whalers took to the field.

From the outset it became clear that the opposition batsmen were up for the challenge. While they treated Khalil with a large degree of respect they took out their aggression at Adris on the other end (5-0-31-0). It wasn’t long until Khalil (6-0-14-1) had a wicket after dislodging the off-stump of batsman number 2. Skipper Rich then brought on Special K and Lucas to make a dent. Given their recent performances we were hoping to see a flurry of wickets. Kamal is the leading wicket taker this season with 28 scalps. Matt is hot on his heels, after a lucrative September, with a total of 24. Would we see Kamal hang on to the top spot, or would Matt come back strong?

We were cold, the ball was wet and the opposition batsmen were in form. Lucas got spanked around in uncharacteristic fashion. The wet ball didn’t help as he was tonked for 26 of his three overs.  He did have one caught and bowled opportunity, which would later win him Muppet moment. The batsman hit one straight up in the air. Matt screamed for it. We stayed well away. Easy does we thought. Wicket number 25 Matt thought. Dropped!

Kamal (6-0-38-1) on the other end didn’t do much better but at least got a wicket after Batsman 3 was caught by a diving Al at square leg. Batsman 3 had scored 40 and with the opener still going strong, things didn’t look promising. Giles (3-0-22-2) brought himself on to bowl and while he did take two wickets the Tigers were well above the curve and the damage was done.

It didn’t help that the Whalers kept missing easy run out opportunities, but with only 9 players on the field there were just too many holes for the Whalers to close. The fielding was as tight as it could have been under the circumstances but irrespective Judd St Tigers reached the target of 140 in the 22nd over, with their opening batsman top scoring with *42.

Despite the loss the Whalers were still in a good mood. It had been an exciting season full of ups and downs and frankly no one had expected to play on the day. The tea was awesome and the Judd St Tigers were thoughtful hosts.

Excellent season everyone! Looking forward  the end of season dinner! The Whalers record for the year – 15 won. 7 lost.

Proper cricket breaks out (mostly) in Whalers win versus Elthorne

Elthorne CC vs Whalers CC; Saturday 7 September 2013; North Acton Playing Fields

Whalers won by 7 wickets

The Whalers convened at North Acton Playing Fields and there were instant mutterings about the state of the pitch. This was relegated in the list of priorities however when it emerged that the opposition Elthorne had forgotten to bring any stumps. The start of the match was delayed by 45 minutes while this was rectified and in that time Matt won the toss and chose to try and make first use of the unpredictable looking pitch.

Nick and Khalil opened the bowling and both were accurate without getting a break through. Matt and debutant Ashish then took over and Matt soon had both openers back in the hutch. Ashish was unlucky as he twice found the edge only for the ball to evade Pete in the slips. At drinks Elthorne were 42-2 and shortly after Matt took his third wicket with a scuttle trapping the skipper in front of middle stump. Elthorne’s number three batsmen Shubbs was providing some resistance and hit some nice lofted drives however wickets continued to fall at the other end with fellow debutant Amyn taking 2 wickets, both bowled.

With Matt bowled through Tom Bateman was chosen to turn his arm over and in his third over took the vital wicket of Shubbs for 36. Elthorne were now trying to accelerate and did get a few boundaries through along with some scramble singles. Khalil and Nick were bought back in to the attack for the final 4 overs and Elthorne tried one quick single too many and Khalil threw down the stumps in his follow through. Nick took a wicket in his last over for Elthorne to finish on 128-8 from their 35 overs. The pitch did offer some assistance, although not as much as initially thought so it was a good all round effort from the bowlers (if only Pete could catch in the slips the same could be said of the fielders).

Matt Kelly was selected to open the batting after positive analysis of his debut the previous  weekend and along with Pete got us off to an excellent start, passing 50 without loss in the 11th over. Both batsmen punished anything loose and coped well with the inconsistent bounce. Pete, perhaps realising he was losing his tag of dashing opening batsmen with a boycott style innings tried to force a straight one away and was adjudged lbw (cue massive strop). This bought Pip to the crease, however he didn’t last long before being caught off a top edge. In form Toby then joined Matt K who had now past his 50 and was playing some excellent shots including a big 6 over mid-wicket. The score was now racing along with Toby scoring solely through the square leg region however one big shot too many from Matt had him caught for 81 with 4 runs needed. Toby then hit the winning runs (through square leg of course) and the Whalers had won be 7 wickets with 10 overs to spare.

With the bowlers taking wickets and the batsmen scoring runs it was almost like a proper cricket performance (bar the obligatory drop catches). With most people having to rush off it was down to Matt, Pete and Nick to dish out the fines (£5 to everyone who wasn’t there) and decide on the formalities.

Elthorne 128-8  35 Overs  Matt Lucas  3-19

Whalers 130-3  25 Overs  Matt Kelly 81

M-O-M – Matt Kelly

Muppet – Nick H – Comedy fielding, attempted lunge/dive feet first resulting in getting no where near the ball

Champagne – Tom Batemen – Beating the opposition’s best batsmen with nice flight to knock out his off-stump

Believer’s Faith is Crushed

Whalers CC vs Believers CC; Kings House Sports Ground; Sunday 1 September 2013

Whalers 179-5 Kev 47, Rob 37 Toby 28 ,
Believers 111 all out Matt Kelly 4 for 26

Whalers win by 68 Runs

A very dry and dusty looking wicket greeted the Whalers on another fine late summer’s day. The usual pre match faff was conducting in trying to recruit an extra player or 2 in which Sandy Bhogal  obliged bring the Whalers up to 10 players. Al duly won the toss in bizarre circumstances trapping the coin with his foot and when the call was at last made, Al made a wise decision and duly elected to bat.

It took Al a while to elect the Batting Order but Rob Eberstein and Kev Albery took on the duties. Kev immediately nominated Rob to face the first over and the fines committee had already started to take notes. Rob showed his prowess with the first scoring shot after the third ball with a six to a very short looking mid wicket boundary. Meanwhile at the other end it took a while for Kev to get settled and he was watchful against early seam movement. It took him 9 balls to score with his first 4. Soon after he was missed in the slips as well. Indeed after 24 balls Kev was still marooned on 5. Rob after a few additional singles was also watchful the Whalers on the sidelines were soon horizontal with sleepy appreciation. Wicket perseverance at this stage was the main target and it wasn’t until the bowling changes that the runs soon accumulated. Rob soon started to hit on the mid off side from one end and was running 3’s to the long sided boundary. At drinks after about 16 overs whalers were roughly 50 for nought. Whatever Kev drinks suddenly woke him up and hit pulled the first 2 balls for 4, tripling his score. Soon Rob, fell bowled by yorkerish length ball for a fine 37 runs. And at this stage whalers were 59 for 1. Kev upped his stroke rate and soon deceived the Believers keeper and first slip into an impressive leave from both of them. AL, third man in, took 12 balls to get off the mark and was soon running a set of 2 x 3 to the long side boundary. Kev was blowing hard at this stage , so decided to hit a couple more fine boundaries with straight drives and wristy pulls to save his legs. Al had added about 5 more singles before he again was bowled for 15 bringing Toby to the crease. Toby was soon quickly off the mark to the Believers third change slower bowlers with 2 x 4’s to the short sided boundary. Kev was also accelerating nicely and was soon dropped on the boundary rope for a good looking 6. However this was downgraded for a 4 by the sheepish fielder, This was cue for a couple more 4 including a miss-timed pulled that just cleared a fielder followed up a  more impressive hit, However Kev soon died by the sword  with a skied one up to the short boundary and was caught just shy of his 50 for 47 runs.

Debutant Matt Kelly was quickly into the attack with a 4, 6 and another 4. At this stage a score of 195 to 200 was on the cards which would be tough in this 35 over game. The Believers had other ideas by bringing back their opening bowlers. Toby got stuck trying to locate his bat with the ball with anything like his previous menace. Kelly was bowled for a quick 20 with the score on 156 and Bhogal had 3 overs to negotiate  but soon followed him back in the hutch for a 3 Leaving Roland and Toby for the last 4 balls which soon ended a total of 179 for 5. However it’s worth noting that extras was our third joint top scorer on 28!!!

Skipper was happy with the total but a lot of hard work was needed to defend the total against unknown batsmen with just 10 players. He needn’t have worried  Khalil’s first ball an outswinger that  pitched on middle then located the batsmen inside edge onto the top of off stump with such speed it astonished everyone. Most fielders thought it was an outside edge onto stumps however we were soon corrected. This forced Believers into a similar style defensive approach and Khalil had everyone prodding and missing at the ball. His 6 overs were going to cost a miserly 11 runs. Nick did get hit for 4 boundaries in his opening spell, mostly by batmen 2, as The Believers cultivated the short boundary to quiet an effect. Nevertheless their  number 3 bat only hit 2 fours in a 35 odd ball stay for 13 runs when he out given LBW by a devious Luckett ball. This induced some evil stares by the batsman to their umpire and some verbal’s later on. However the other change bowler was very much up to the task of asking all the right questions of batsmen’s and fielders alike. Matt got a good LBW decision from his second over, by the 4 over the dangerous looking number 5 had straight driven to Khalil and was gone. The dragonslayer had chipped in with a peach to bowl their number 2 bat who had topped scored with 29, with Believers struggling on 69 for 5. A period of consolidation took place with Whalers trying to turn the screw and the believers trying not lose additional wickets. Soon Matt had induced a drive over his head, Nick from the slips had called out for AL’ to catch it running in from Mid off, this prompted Matt not to chase the ball over his head and the Dolly dropped nicely in between the two of them. !!! Al turned to Sandy for the breakthrough and he was soon rewarded with a rank long hop that was smashed into the diving hands of Roland at mid wicket. Sandy’s 3 overs cost only 10 runs. Rob was also induced into the attack and was whipping up some impressive pace and movement but his 3 overs cost only 8 runs for no additional wickets. Matt was still wheeling away and had claimed his 3rd wicket and 4 th wicket both bowled. Their number 10 walked to the wicket and claimed he was playing for the draw and bad light. From 87 for 8 it looked like mission impossible, however he dug in and took most of the strike. Al was forced to bring back Khalil and even more desparately Roland.!!! Roland’s nice slow ones didn’t threaten at all  and he was withdrawn after only 6 deliveries for 2 runs. Nick replaced Roland at the far end and the first over went 5 runs, power met with power. . However their Number 10 was off strike for the Nicks return over and he cleaned up number 9 with a lovely inswinger and ditto for number 11 with the next ball. Hat trick ball if everyone remembers for next game.

Man of the Match  Debutant Matt Kelly  4 for 26 and 20 runs

Champagne Moment  Roland’s Diving Catch

Muppet Moment   Nick’s H call of “Al’s”

President defeats all the captains

Match Report – Whalers’ Captain’s XI vs President’s XI

Chiswick House and Gardens; 11th August 2013

Presidents XI beat Captains XI by 3 wickets

 

It was the marquee fixture of the year, and we had the pavilion all to ourselves at the fantastic venue of Chiswick House and Gardens. The weather was beautiful, and there was a crowd of dog-walkers and parents with buggies.

A fair amount of the pre-match chat had involved Rich Giles:

 

  • Would his three-pronged captaincy attack (alongside Ed and Matt) outthink the mighty President-for-Life Al?
  • Would Helen reclaim the coveted ‘cake’ award (note to committee: we need to come up with a better name)
  • And finally, would his abysmal form of previous Captains/Presidents, including the infamous ‘double-duck’ at Ealing, be put behind him?

The crowd gathered for the drawing of the teams, new addition Munish being chosen for the Pres as WK, with newly fianceed Kev keeping for the Captain(s).

The teams were as follows:

 

Captains:

Pratty

Gilo (c)

Pip

Kev

Dragonslayer

Ed (c)

Tom Brownrigg

Matt (c)

Ben

Tom Bateman

 

Presidents:

Stu

Channa

Rob

Pete

Toby

J.T.

Al

Munish

Mike

Kamal

The records don’t show who won the toss, but it was the President’s XI who took to the field, and looked to their all-out-pace-attack to make good use of the new cherry.
And so it was that Rob opened the bowling from one end and Channa from the other. Unfortunately (or fortunately if you were on the Pres team), Channa didn’t last too long, as captain Gilo took a particular liking to him, taking three fours off his first over alone. Rob continued at the other end and saw off Pratty, who was well caught by Stu. Pip fell to an absolute belter from Kamal, caught behind by newcomer Munish.

Captain Gilo was accumulating pretty quickly (helped along by a couple of dropped catches), and was joined in the middle by Kev, who was not playing particularly fluently, but definitely had a vibe of “there’s no way I’m getting out to these f@ckers!” (note to the committee: apologies for the swearing, but it was Kev, so it would have been what he was thinking). They took the score along nicely to 72-2, at which point Rich was forced to retire, by the Capt/Pres bye-law. 72-2 became 72-3 very quickly with Paul ‘Drangonslayer’ Luckett finding Channa off Kamal.

The President shuffled his unlimited bowling resources well, and the score moved along at about 5 an over, with Kev mixing it up with dogged defence and occasionally sumptuous boundaries. Particular highlights included Pete’s first (?) over for the Whalers which went for one run and included bowling Ed, some interesting fielding positions given our ‘insider knowledge’ for Paul, captain Ed and captain Matt, and some tight bowling from Mike who bowled pretty much exclusively to Kev.

Al brought himself on to bowl in those all important death overs and took an absolute cracker of a return catch to get rid of Tom Bateman. Munish then took a debut wicket of the returning captain Gilo, before Rob wrapped up the tail by bowling both Ben and Kev (as last man stands). Captains had made 176, but hadn’t used up their overs. Could it prove to be costly.

Lunch was picnic style, and pretty relaxed with Whalers, Whalettes and mini-Whalers (Terrells jnr, Kirkness jnr and Giles jnr) enjoying some fine wine, beers and ciders. The standard of food was fantastic – especially ‘Pip’s Pie’ and there were enough mini-sausages to feed a mini-army.

The now-traditional throwing down the stumps competition provided some light relief, with Channa winning the Men’s competition, Ele (after a mammoth sudden-death element) winning the Ladies’ competition and Zoe winning the Kids’ competition (Terrells jnr keeping their clothes on long enough to take part in the comp!)

So, amply refreshed the teams took to the pitch again, this time umpires with beers in hand. President’s favourite Channa was opening the batting after opening the bowling (let’s see if he can make amends), alongside Stu. The opening overs were tight, with debutant Tom Bateman opening up alongside captain Matt. Channa took a while to fall for one in the fifth over, but after a circumspect start Stu was motoring along and fell just before the change bowlers came on – Pres were up with the required rate.

Rob had replaced Channa, and despite comments from the field, was content to play sensibly and build an innings. Pete played as he normally does and departed for a run a ball 12 (bowled by a jubilant Dragonslayer), leaving the score at 52-3. Captains were happy as they were now right into the Pres tail. Toby joined Rob in the middle and they managed to withstand the fairly average chat and some good bowling from Ben, Paul and captain Gilo to keep up with the run rate; Rob with some proper cricket shots and Toby with a couple of lusty blows here and there.

Both fell to catches off Pip and it seemed that the run chase could falter. However, JT and Al steadied the ship, in a similar style to above – Al playing some lovely shots and JT, well, being JT! With the score at 173 for 5, it seemed that the President’s team must get home.

But that was not taking into account the cast iron will of the captains! Both JT (bowled captain Ed) and Al (caught captain Rich – who had just moved to that fielding position, bowled captain Matt) fell on 173. This brought Mike out to join Munish, with Kamal still in the hutch and 3 runs needed to win – captain Matt with that look in his eyes and smoke coming out of his ears

The first ball to Mike was left in a slightly unorthodox style, the second was dispatched through mid-on for four. And the match was the President’s XI’s by three wickets.

A great match that was significantly tighter than last year. So the answer to those pre-match questions:

  • Almost, but not quite
  • Amanda won the ‘cake’ award (yep, we really need to come up with a better name), but it was a difficult choice and thank you to everyone who provided food, drink and cake.
  • A resounding yes, with Gilo taking the Batsman of the Match Award for his 55 (Rob Eberstein won the bowling award, 3-17; Matt Lucas with an honourable mention)

 

Thanks to all for making it such a fantastic day. Here’s to next year.