Monthly Archives: August 2015

Magnificent 8 star after the rains

Whalers v Judd St Tigers

23 August 2015

Winchmore Hill CC

In the days leading up to the game the weather forecast was not looking good and premature emails questioning whether it was a good idea to play were already circulating. So as the Whalers started to gather in north London for the match, the first spots of rain initiated the pessimistic comments and general air of foreboding…was this a waste of a Sunday afternoon or will we actually get a game?

As the grey clouds piled over and the spots turned into steady rain, there was a sense of inevitability about the whole situation. But the Tigers were relaxed and happy to sit it out for a couple of hours and Dan was the one Whaler trying to put a positive spin on it. The pitch was covered so if the rain stopped we had a chance, and we decided to give it until 3pm before making a decision.

At about 2.45pm two solid hours of rain gave way to some blue sky and suddenly the atmosphere lifted. The covers came off and it all looked good, so we agreed that we could get going with a game of 20/20.

We only had eight players this week due to some last minute drop-outs (see muppet moment) and we had a strong bowling line-up, so we hoped to start in the field…but Geoff lost the toss and we were put into bat.

Dario and Jack started things off. Conscious that we were short on numbers the aim was to get through the first overs unscathed, and that’s exactly what they did. The bowling attack was varied so the bad balls were hit hard, but likewise the good balls were respected and there were plenty dot balls by the time we got to 10 overs. But with the score at 58 we were happy with our lot and in a position to start taking some chances. Unfortunately the signal to pull the trigger on the run rate caused Jack to do a lot of swinging and missing before being caught behind off the back of his bat to a ball going well down the leg side…and Dario left the pitch in similar fashion when he had a “head-in-clouds” moment to a slow, straight, double-bouncer. Nevertheless a platform had been made and the space in the field was the perfect setting for Dan’s hit-and-run style as he pushed things along with Nick swishing at the other end. Dan’s urge to keep the runs flowing got the better of him when he was stumped, but Matt took over where he left off and we were swiftly getting to a total that we knew we could defend.

By the end of the innings we had reached 140 for 4 with good contributions from all who batted.

After a quick tea we started the defence with lots of talk about being sharp in the field and by trying to fill the gaps as best we can with eight players. Nick and Jack opened the bowling and a quick wicket from Nick in his first over to dismiss their number 2 really got everybody’s tails up. Jack and Nick made way for Matt and Kamal but the outfield was drying out well and with 3 short in the field the gaps seemed large and the boundaries started to flow for the Tigers. After a few overs of this doubts started to creep into our minds as to whether the 140 run target was enough. They too were short of a couple of players but seemed to be in no mood to be patient and were playing their shots. Even though the runs were flowing at least one or two chances were appearing and our hope was that one of them would come our way.

Finally a frustrated Matt got his victim as their number 1 hit a thick top edge that was easily caught by Dan behind the stumps. It got us back on track but their number 3, Dane, was looking comfortable and we were not on top of this game yet. Nevertheless we were working hard in the field and the bowling was tight so the Tigers had to earn their runs. All of the Whalers were putting in a shift as they were diving for balls and chasing around the boundary and this was epitomised by the skipper in one ball. Dane struck one towards Geoff at deep mid-wicket and started off on what should have been an easy two runs, but Geoff attacked the ball at pace, scooped it up and sent it back to the keeper in one flowing action. Dane meanwhile was trotting back for his second run but as the ball left Geoff’s hand you could see panic suddenly appear in his eyes as he knew it was a good throw. He quickened his stride but it was too late as the ball appeared at the top of the stumps and Dan whipped them off in equally smooth style. It was a wonderfully seamless and brilliant piece of fielding.

That was probably the moment that rocked the Tigers because after that the run rate dropped and the pressure built up. Paul Soppitt took his debut wicket for the Whalers with his first ball, which was caught behind by Jack who was debuting as keeper. As we got through the overs it was slowly becoming clear that the total was going to be too much for the Tigers and the excellent Whalers fielding performance continued with a couple more run outs and Matt picking up his second wicket.

After 20 overs we had restricted them to 110 and it was another victory to the Whalers. This one was all the more satisfying because we doubted whether we would get a game at all and that all Whalers performed and contributed well…no fines for “anonymity” today.


Man of the match – Joint award

Nick – 22 not out – 2 overs 8 for 1

Matt – 20 runs – 4 overs 22 for 2


Muppet Moment

JTs “I need to go shopping” (or something like that) excuse in response to Geoff’s call for more players


Champagne Moment

Geoff’s swooping run out from deep mid-wicket

Opposition report: HERE

Gilo Power Pushes Lemmings Aside

 Whalers CC vs Lemmings CC; King’s House Sports Ground; Sunday 16th August 2015
Whalers win by 8 wickets
A strong looking  Whalers team assembled at Kings House ready to take on the mighty Lemmings who had turned up with only 8 players! The Pitch looked very green after 2 days of heavy rain.
During the pre-match catching practice Richard was showing off his athleticism and power boost by taking a good catch and letting one rip at the same time.!Dan gladly won the toss and elected to field first handing the New Ball to Jack and JT whilst Roland was behind the Stumps for the first time in 5 years! The greenness of the pitch soon showed their was very little carry in it early on and thus ensued some low grubbers and some football fielding from behind the stumps. JT seemed to have less control but  great fielding / placement kept boundaries low plus the scoring rate down.  Ben Blane was soon into the attack and ripped out their opener bowled after a stand of 40 odd.  JT  was soon in on the act as Al Took a smart catch so their number 3 was gone for just one.  However it was not all roses in the Whalers camp at their opening bat/Captain was soon punishing any width with  cracking shots through mid off to the longest boundary. In fact most of his run came from this repeat shot.  Cue one shot that had hit so hard he assumed it went for the boundary so he chatted to the other batter halfway down the track only to realise it never made it and so only 1 run was accumulated!!Kamal was soon bought into the attack and Jeff shifted out of first slip. This proved to be a master stroke of Captaincy. Kamal’s flight and spin seem to be a match for everyone including the opener who was showing due respect.  Nevertheless the batsmen were pushing hard at the ball the edges were flying and Al snaffled his second catch with a low right handed effort.  By this time Jeff was also into the attack and was punished for a loose opening over. Jack also proved his own head in the clouds dreamy fielding by not picking up a drive early on and let the ball bounce a yard in front of him and then realising that a real run out was possible with him being 9 yards from the stumps but a lame underhand throw allowed their batter to stroll in. Ben had also dropped a couple as well allowing their runs to accumulate. However Ben was bowling pretty fast and had only allowed 5 runs of the bat in 5 overs..Kamal soon picked up his second wicket again to first Slip in which Al had taken another sharp chance with the appropriate squeal of Delight. Jeff by this time was bowling straighter and faster and picked up their opening batter with slap shot that went high in the air straight to AL safe hands. Lemmings were struggling for about 95 for 6 which is their lowest scoring batsmen were allowed to return to the crease.  More mistakes were followed especially behind the Stumps as Roland missed another chance off Gilo’s Bowling. Dan had seen enough and bought himself in to mop up the tail. Loose deliveries were dispatched another chance went down behind the stumps but Dan finished with 2 wickets both bowled and Lemmings finished their innings at 133 off the 35 overs.

Whalers opened their innings with Al and Paul C at the crease. Dan had lent the Opposition 2 fielders in the guise of himself and Kamal. Al plan was to stay in long time and get to knock in his new bat  However a head in the clouds pull shot looped gently into square leg’s throat where Kamal took the dolly and started much amusement and plenty of swearing from Al. JT went in number 3 and was soon back in the hatch after 3 balls with a catch off their other opener and Whalers were 11 for 2 off about 4 overs. Roland was kited up and ready. However he was not needed.

Whalers started an amazing  stand of 123 runs off 20 overs odd. Gilo and Paul accumulated runs with ease. Gilo straight driving was a constant joy whilst with watchful defence. Paul was already cutting their openers square of the wicket. Both looked at ease with a pitch that was not really helpful for the bowlers. Lemming fielders were also dropping a few dollies to help our cause.  After Kamal’s catch JT was sent in to help field whilst eating an apple with a hoodie a cap and a bit of a grump! After drinks break off 18 overs the scoring was 90 odd for 2. Gilo soon served up a sharp caught and bowled chance which was missed. Paul was soon in the forties were he seemed marooned a little whilst Gilo was still punishing any long hops by his continuous straight driving.  Paul C got their First and then a Slow Bowler appeared offering tasty full tosses which only increased the scoring rate. After some mighty leg side blows their captain has no option top bring back their fast right arm bowler. With the score levels and the field the said bowler produced 2 bouncers which wasn’t really necessary but the next fuller delivery was driven away for a Whalers comfortable victory.
Tight bowling and a great century stand and stunning catching from Al were all the reason for an impressive Victory. Due to an early finish we all gathered in the Bar to fine ROLAND heavily for wearing his second whites kit in the Bar whilst supposedly looking like a porn star.

Roland models next seasons catalogue


MOM  Shared Paul C and Richard Giles 123 Run Stand
Champagne Moment Al’s slip Catch of Kamal and Self Congratulation Squeal of Approval
Muppet Moment ; Roland Post Match Clothes Disaster

Whalers out beavered in the dark

Whalers vs Battersea Beavers (T20)

29th July 2015 (Barnes Common)

Whalers lost by 10 runs

The Whalers began to mass at Barnes Rail for the prompt start at 6 as rain began to fall. The captain went looking for flags and stumps at the local clubhouse but returned empty handed. The executive decision to use Whalers kit as boundary markers drew some mirth from onlookers. Prior to the start of play no-one would have thought we would need 9-10 balls to get through the game. Unfortunately that was the case. 2 pink, 2 white and 4-5 red balls falling victim to the Barnes common undergrowth and dying light. Channa losing the toss decided to open the bowling…Dario a late arrival joined the team as bowling got under way.

The skipper sacrificed his shoes to allow one of many “muppet” contenders, Nick the chance to bowl. His flip flops (thongs for those bilingual), facial hair and absent mind symptomatic of a teacher during the summer. The Beavers came out hard hitting a number of 4s off Howes. Jack started at the other end with a maiden first over. After 5 overs the run rate was at a hefty pace before Nick induced a caught behind to Dan to remove the dangerous opener. Jiff was introduced and with his short run up speed bowling ensuring the Whale would not be accused of ‘slow play’ peppered the batsman with some tight bowling. Kamal replaced Jack from the other end and took a couple of very needed wickets including an LBW, finishing on 2 for 27 off 3. Jiff continued to bowl well controversially claiming a stumping to Dan…there is still some debate as to the difference between a stumping and a run out. Gilo was by far the stand out bowler as his figures of 4 wickets off 3 overs for 18 will attest. He also claimed a very good run out putting pressure on the Beavers run rate. Pete bowled courageously finishing at 0 for 30 off 2 overs, and Nick came back on to claim another wicket caught and bowled finishing 2 for 28 off 4. With 5 dropped catches (3 to the skipper; Channa, 1 to Pete and 1 to Kamal), the Whalers have definitely bowled and fielded better and would need to bat very well to chase 173.

Al sporting his good luck headband and Pip came out to bat and did a good job of scoring runs. Both looked very settled scoring 4s freely getting the Whale up to around 75 off 8 overs. A classic Whalers collapse would however ensue. Both Al and Pip holed out (Al finished on 39 and Pip finishing on 31) in consecutive balls bringing Dan to the crease…he departed quickly being bowled for a ‘golden duck’ (Dan debuting for the inaugural ‘most ducks of the season’ award). Pete although not directly part of the hatrick this time can claim to have played in all 3 of the hatricks of hatricks against the Whale this season further reinforcing his title of the ‘Jonah’ award. There is some speculation that perhaps his aura has had an effect on the Whales scorecard.

Channa came in and steadied the ship playing some nice strokes. Jiff hit a huge 6 (the ball perhaps landing on the railway line behind the common) and then proceeded to play the same shot…missing…head in clouds…bowled..departing for 7. Dario came and went also for 7 run out. This introduced Gilo to the centre. The good friendship between Channa and Giko built a strong partnership before their comradery was brought into question as ironically poor communication resulted in another run out…Channa out for 24. Pete came out and injured his shoulder playing a shot and retired promptly. Nick came out and added to the suicide run outs for 2. This left Kamal and Gilo the task of scoring 24 runs off the last over to win. Gilo’s no ball 6 left the Whale searching for 11 off the last 3 balls before getting out and ending the game


Man of the Match – Rich Giles 30, 3 overs 4 for 18.

Champagne – Geoff’s huge 6.

Muppet moments – Channa for 3 dropped catches, losing the toss, losing as captain, poor running between wickets and failing to bring an extra pair of cricket shoes for his fellow cricketers…amongst a plethora of reasons

(Honourable mentions) – Pete’s Jonah award inducing a hatrick of hatricks against the Whale.

  • Dan’s golden duck completing the hatrick.
  • Nick for forgetting his cricket shoes.