Another Sunday, another victory as the Whalers juggernaut trundles on to the end of the season. The fact that for the first time this season there was not one noticeable hangover on display was certainly a contributing factor, however the absence of Ian Gibbins is probably the main reason that this record was achieved.
The skipper kept to his policy of losing the toss and Whalers were put in on a somewhat temperamental wicket for their 40 overs. With a family gathering of 20 people conveniently placed behind the bowlers arm at the “Tennis Court End” and the possibility of any delivery either rolling along the ground or taking out your front teeth once pitching, the conditions were not perfect.
The opening pair of Osbourn/es took the score to an impressive 9 in 4 overs before Duncan decided to watch a flight of geese passing overhead to be comprehensively bowled for 4. This brought Stu Terrell to the wicket to join Paul Osbourn. They proceeded to keep the scoreboard ticking over for 10 overs with a fine display of clean hitting and clubbing the ball round the park and the score has soon moved onto 77.
ECA then brought on their slow left arm bowler Cullen and the inevitable Whalers collapse was brought into effect as Stu was caught at deep mid wicket having scored a quickfire 37. This brought Paul “one shot” Mildon to the crease and having played out one over including a magnificent late cut for a single, decided on another shot (the hoik over square leg) and was soon walking back to the kitbag. The skipper, having had 35 overs in his pads on the sidelines the week before looked keen for a bat however after scoring 11 was out to a magnificent catch in the covers from a pretty awful stroke. Ollie Bayne was then bowled again by a full toss and suddenly Whalers were 104 for 5 with Duckfries on his way to the crease.
Dave Humphreys has not had the most successful season with the bat and his walk to the crease was not one of a confident man, however after surviving 3 balls (more than in the past 3 weeks) managed to paddle his way to 35 runs. Despite all this chaos around him there was one unmovable object, Paul Osbourn. The usual stylish play of cover and straight driving was reaping the rewards yet again. Despite valiant attempts to deny himself a third century this season, including a sprint down the wicket whilst on 95 a missing it, it was in vain as he recorded a score of 120 not out. Only a club record score was denied by Dan Osgood’s strike stealing in the final over. However his speedy 18 took the Whalers total to 241 for 6, certainly something to bowl at.
A fine display of opening bowling from Dan Osgood and Andy Clipsham meant that, for the first time in Whalers history, a bowler was using a 8 to 1 field with Adam Hamner, at short leg, in charge of the on side and 4 others in the slip cordon waiting to fetch the ball from the boundary. Osgood was constantly beating the bat and on the occasion when he did enforce the edge the ball flew to the fence past the on-looking slips. It took a while to attain the breakthrough before both openers were dismissed in successive overs with both Clipsham and Osgood taking the wickets.
It was at this point that Adam Hamner, leading wicket taker 2001, was brought to the attack and was promptly carted for 4 runs. He did however soon regain composure and quickly picked up 3 wickets (despite trying to bowl without a wicketkeeper at one point). From here on the scoring slowed down and wickets consistently fell. Three quick wickets for Paul Mildon and one for Kamal meant that Al Dickensen brought himself on to try and bring his bowling average down into double figures. This was achieved when final wicket eventually fell to him with a comedy stumping that the keeper Ollie Bayne successfully took but decided not to appeal for preferring to replace the stumps !!
ECA innings ended on 106 all out and Whalers won by 135 runs.
|Man of the Match:||Paul Osbourn|
|Champagne moment:||Dan Osgood’s bowling finally getting rewarded with a wicket|
|Muppet moment:||Ollie Bayne’s stumping debacle|