Whalers 201/5 (35) Beat Salix 191/6 (35) by 10 Runs
18th May 2014, Kings House
Report from Kev:
It was great weather for cricket at King’s House as we welcomed Salix for the first of the annual double header for the season. The sunshine and pitch were in complete contrast to last week’s game, played in near arctic conditions and on a pudding of a pitch. Some things don’t change however, and Pete turned up late again, maintaining his 100% record for the season. He was joined on the tardy list by PipSkip, leading to general confusion about just about everything until Dan took charge and told us what was going on.
The pitch looked a cracker, albeit covered in goosesh*t it resembled a rather large and rectangular Friesian cowhide. PipSkip won the toss (having arrived in the nick of time) and had no hesitation in batting first. Given Pete’s second no-show in two weeks, Kev and Channa were the sacrificial lambs sent out to face the much vaunted Salix bowling line up (well, someone had whispered to Channa that they had bowling in depth, leading to a crisis of confidence that may have led to his demise…).
A young angry man opened the bowling and with the exception of the first ball, a rank long hop that cannoned into the keepers’ knee to much hilarity, was right on the money, swinging and seaming the ball at a good pace. Bowling straight through his 7 overs, following a booming on drive for four by Channa, he soon produced a ball that CK2 played all around and was sent on his way. His brought captain Pip to the crease, and as both Kev and PipSkip tried to cope with the accuracy and movement from the Salix openers, the game settled into a test match mode. Indeed, I was woken up after a few overs to rapturous applause from the boundary as PipSkip scored his first run after 22 deliveries. The Whalers built steadily to drinks with the partnership passing 50 and the openers seen off. Trying to force the pace, an ugly premeditated slog sweep soon after saw Kev bowled for 39 and Pete came in, having woken from a deep slumber.
At this point, Mrs Pip decided to stop watching Pip play and miss, which led to a startling change in attitude, with PipSkip plundering the vast majority of his 40 runs off about 15 balls, with Pete at the other end. The partnership fell just shy of 50 (Pete only scored about 10) when Pip holed out for a hard fought 40. Hitting his straps, Pete then accelerated, and with a whaler’s innings looking “proper” for the second week in a row, played well for 31, before Gilo and I’m a Batsman only Gould in particular finishing the 35 overs strongly with some good running and a fine straight six by Gouldie as Whalers totalled just over 200.
After a refreshing shandy and tea we were out for the second innings. Nick took a leaf out of the Salix bowlers playbook, bowling fast and accurately and dismissing the opener for a duck in the first over. CK1 came in and having been dropped (#1) by Pete started flaying first change bowler Luckett to all parts. Following shoegate, which led to the team realising that we would have to teach JT how top tie his own laces before the innings in the future, CK1 was soon joined by (Not Captain) Darling. The pair threatened to take the game away from the Whalers with a good stand and taking advantage of some loose bowling. Kamal made the breakthrough by trapping CK1 for 35, with at least 2 catches going down in between. Increasingly desperate, Pip turned to Dan and Nick to get some wickets, asking specifically for bowled and LBW as by this time Pete had dropped Darling (#2), and Nick also shelled an absolute sitter in slow motion. It seemed like luck would finally go Salix’s way after 2 extremely tight finishes last year, especially when edges flew through the empty slips of Nick for 4 and catch #3 being put down by Pete. However, with the realisation that he would be one over short following Nick and Dan bowling out, Kamal complaining of a dodgy shoulder and Gouldy refusing to bowl, Pip turned to titanium balls Luckett. Never mind his first 3 overs having gone for 31 runs, we all knew he was the man for the job to close the game out. As it turned out, a very close finish was avoided by a tight penultimate over from Dan, and Luckett was left just needing not to concede 18 off the last. A true measure of the greatness of the man, he kept the runs down, managed to not mess up a simple run out, and then had the last recognised batsman caught going for a desperate slog. Job done, all that remained was the last batsman to take the final ball in the nuts from a Luckett “arm ball” to finish off another close game with Salix and for Whalers to go 2:0 for the season.
With a clean sweep, Nick took MoM for a fine bowling spell of 2-22 off 7, the champagne moment for the wicket in the first over and then the muppet moment for his slow motion drop (with an honourable mention for Pete’s 3 drops).
Onwards and upwards, and we wait for the Dragon slayer’s match report from tour in 2013 and the first game of the season……