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”