Matt lost the toss and we were bowling. The openers kept things tight, and Dan picked up a couple of wickets bowled. Kamal and Gilo (described in their scorebook as a “tall blonde”) were also very economical, with Kamal continuing this season’s excellent form with some unplayable deliveries and Gilo taking a couple of catches off his own bowling. After 22 overs Merton were only on 38-4, but they started to accelerate a bit to eventually reach 101-7 from their 35 overs with another couple of wickets to Matt both bowled off their pads.
The general feeling at tea was that this was very gettable provided the steady drizzle didn’t get any worse. Yes we had fielded very well (the highlight was Rob Eberstein and Kev combining for a run-out) but the catching had been pretty ordinary (again!) and the bowling hadn’t been that special despite some fantastic-looking figures.
And so it proved. The first two overs of the Whalers innings were both maidens, and in the third over Pete Nicholls miscued a drive straight to mid-on… who dropped it. Carnage followed, with Pete bludgeoning the bowling to all parts to race to his 50 while Pip played the anchor role at the other end, when he got to face a ball.
A mere 10 overs later it was all over – Pete was on 79* including a six into the sightscreen and Pip had got 21* mainly off the outside edge. We retired to the bar (those of us who hadn’t already spent the whole Whalers innings there) to fine Kev for his socks and sandals combo, and Paul Luckett for forgetting the scorebook.
Overall, the batting especially was clinical and unWhaler-esque, and the oppo stuck things out well, but in truth this was probably a bit of a mismatch. Still, at least we got a game in despite the weather. A tighter contest is expected next week against old foes Salix. Can the Whalers keep their winning run going until Gilo’s next game in charge?
Merton 101-7 from 35 overs (Gilo 2-9 from 7, Dan 2-11 from 6, Matt 2-17 from 7)
Whalers 102-0 from 12.2 overs (Pete 79*, Pip 21*)
Man of the match: Pete
Champagne moment: Rob E / Kev’s run out
Muppet moment: Paul for forgetting the scorebook (with a late bid from Gilo, who had locked his bike to Matt’s for added security, and then couldn’t find the key…)