Whalers bt Roehampton Bats by 15 runs, Sunday May 24th
The Whale made it 3 wins in a row, with the captain Gilo, steering the ship home on a challenging day of cricket to win by 15 runs. On an inclement day of weather fine batting, bowling and fielding fully justified captaincy of Richard Giles in his landmark 100 game. His reputation only dented by the loss of the game ball mid-session… also apparently justifying his ‘muppet of the match’ selection by unanimous decision, all-be-it some may say unfairly.
The skipper arrived promptly at 12.45 sweaty from his arduously cycle from down the road to see most already ready and raring to go. Ben, running late suggested via text, he would run from Barnes station to make sure he would make the 1.00pm start time.. Zia however made no such declaration and rocked up 45 minutes into play. Pre-game this week, there were to be no Dan Osgood led antics of running around headless throwing balls at stumps as Gilo sensibly decided to go for the more comfortable ritual of a couple of catches, a few stretches and the usual laxadasically inspired speech. A further presentation from Al reminded us of the significance of Gilo’s 100 game achievement. Cap presented…35 overs was the order of the day. Game on!
The opposition this week had some very good quick bowlers as discovered by the opening pair Rich and Stu. Both battled the speed and wit of the opposition with some fine shots. Rich eventually made 26 but was caught of the bowling of Harris. Stu also playing some inspired shots similarly made 25 but was caught at point to a fine juggled catch by the Roehampton Bats skipper…Al after lots of pre bat ‘throw downs’ walked out to the crease to face 2 balls and then reinact Stu’s previous shot and was promptly caught at point again to a fine catch by the Roehampton Bats skipper. There was some discussion post game in fines if he ‘was’ or ‘wasn’t’ wearing his trademark head sweatband. The emphatic debate continues.
Zia and Tariq stopped the collapse continuing the run rate at a competitive rate. There didn’t seem to be much communication out in the middle however. Never the less Zia’s stand and deliver strokes dispatched balls to various parts of the ground. Similarly Tariq made a handy 17 before hitting a skyward shot and promptly being caught, introducing Jiff Judd to the crease. Geoff battled hard to get ball on bat and scampered some runs before also being caught for 9 off the bowling of Cava. Zia kept the runs coming scoring 39 before being bowled by a yorker from the very quick Harvey. Nick and Dan were left to make some runs off the last 6 overs. Nick opted to allow Dan fortuitously to take the strike and make 35 runs very quickly. His fitness was brought into question as he battled to complete the “2 mate” shuttle run test introduced by Dan over the last overs. He finished 11 NO, and the Whale made an impressive 182.
The introduction of rain started the Whalers bowling session. Khalil, not phased in the slightest, opted to open the bowling from the far end and took an inspired wicket bowling Evans off his last ball. He bowled a further 4 overs of good bowling limiting the oppositions run rate. Howes bowled some good line and length straying a few leg side finishing on 4 overs 0 for 18 runs. G. Judd and Ben Blane were introduced into the bowling attack. Geoff increased his speed over a very short run up and induced a rash shot to take a wicket caught Terrell. His bowling figures of 7 over 1 for 24 were good. Ben also bowled very well despite his year long absence and put a lot of pressure on the run rate of the opposition taking a good wicket and finishing on 7 overs 1 for 23.
The game looked sown up and the mystery of a lost ball over drinks wasn’t going to slow the steely determination of the Whalers faithful. However, the dangerous Darnall?? wasn’t sticking to the script. He played some fantastic shots off Jamal (formerly known as Kamal), Dan and Khalil, inducing dropped catches and putting further of pressure on the Whale. The opposition needing 20 off the last over with D. Osgood, after some words of inspired encouragement from the skipper, stemming the flow. Despite making an impressive 69 not out, they were still 15 runs short.
(Author N. Howes)
Man of the match – Dan Osgood for figures of 6 overs 2 for 31, and 35
Champagne – Stu’s run out
Muppet – Gilo for losing ball during the drinks break