The victorious team enjoy a deserved warm down
On a day when outdoor cricket would have been more appropriate and whilst Derbyshire and Surrey battled it out above ground the Whalers attempted to retain their Cairns Fudge Indoor Tournament trophy at the Oval. As with last year The Whalers looked quite rusty in their opening game and thanks to some accurate bowling from Cairns Fudge Oxford (CFO) were restricted to 60 off their 5 overs. Despite a couple of tight overs it proved to be too low a score to defend and CFO hit the winning runs with a ball to spare. The Whalers carried on in the same vein in their second game against Kings of Spain with another slow start to the batting, however queue a barrage of fours and sixes from Stu and Rob and some excellent running between the wickets (turning wides into six runs on numerous occasions) 78 runs came off the final 3 overs and the Whalers had set an incredibly daunting of 98. Despite a slightly casual affair in the field Kings of Spain never looked likely to score the required runs and the Whalers ran out comfortable winners and were off and running in the competition.
Due to the earlier loss the third game against Cairns Fudge London (CFL) was a must win if the Whalers were to make the final and the team responded excellently producing a fine all round performance. The batting fired from the off and a good score of 87 was posted and thanks to some tidy bowling from Matt and Rob and some good fielding CFL were 12-4 off the first two overs and the game was effectively over. CFL were eventually all out for 35 and the Whalers were in the final against CFO looking to gain revenge for their earlier defeat. The Whalers batted first and again the opposition bowling was accurate, thanks to an excellent innings from Stu CFO were set a target of 70 to win the tournament. This was a little below par but certainly defendable. Matt and Si bowled the first two overs and restricted CFO to 18 with the fall of a couple of wickets which increases the required rate and put the pressure on. The next two overs were pretty even and it left CFO with 17 to win off the final over (to be bowled by last years victorious captain Dan). In a repeat of the last years final Dan bowled superbly (and very fast, as Stus ribs would attest to) to restrict the opposition to just 6 runs and the Whalers had retained their title.
Again, it was a really enjoyable afternoon’s cricket against friendly opposition and a good team performance throughout with everyone contributing with bat or ball.