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:
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.