In the penultimate fixture of the season, Westcott 2nd XI, with a weekend off League commitments, handed the Whalers a lesson in quality cricket.
Arriving in the depths of Surrey with just 9 players Whalers spirits were lifted with the realisation that the opposition had only 10 including the captain’s twelve-year-old son drafted in at the last minute. This high was short-lived as Al Dickenson lost the toss and was asked to field. Rain was already falling at the start, after 4 overs, the rain was at least able to disguise Osgoods and Clipsham’s tears as their bowling was carted all over the park at a rate of 10 an over, on one occasion Osgood decided to slide in, and ended up trying to bowl off his arse.
A 45-minute rain break gave the Whalers a chance to regroup, and with the match reduced to 35 overs, Clipsham provided the breakthrough dismissing the opposition captain, bowled for 36 from just 23 balls. Thereafter the Whalers stuck well to a difficult task as Westcott’s more experienced players went for big hits, while their colts players steadily accumulated runs. Kirkness was the best of the bowlers finishing with 3-34 from a seven over spell. A few catches went astray again, including one involving a trilogy of Whalers players that they all managed to leave to each other. Well-done chaps. With chances missed, Westcott took full advantage and began to accelerate. The smallest of the Westcott players came in at 9, however Osgood had saved his best ball of the day for him as he was duly sent back to the pavilion. At tea, the Whalers were left a challenging total of 222-8.
A solid start for the Whalers was needed, but alas it was not to be with Dickenson and Beale departing cheaply, the latter to an extremely useful Surrey under-15’s player. After a few weeks unhappy with his lowly number 8 batting position Osgood was promoted to 4 with great things expected. However one ball later he was on his way back to the hutch courtesy of a sharp slip catch. Hall survived the hatrick ball to relieve a little pressure. Rotating their bowlers to good effect, the aforementioned 12 year old was brought into the attack. As Hall’s eyes lit up he was bowled for 4, and buoyed with enthusiasm the bowler was retained for another 3 overs. By then though it was past his bedtime and he was swiftly withdrawn.
It was left to Osbourn with a sterling 68 and Williams (31) on season debut to add some respectability to proceedings as they put on 70 for the fifth wicket, including a mighty straight six from Williams which provoked a temper tantrum from a Westcott youngster. With both batsmen looking in good form the chance of an unlikely victory looked not impossible, but any hope was swiftly extinguished as Westcott called upon their 2 senior bowlers to end matters. As Sherratt ambled to the crease to join Kirkness exactly 100 was the difference between the sides. We lost by 99.
It is rare to enjoy losing, but this one of those games played in a good spirit throughout, and we were comprehensively outplayed, particularly when batting. Half of our “batsmen” were out bowled, the other half caught in the arc between keeper and gully. It was a testament to the quality of the colts system in Surrey. In the bar afterwards it was suggested that the Whalers should produce some colts of their own. So boys – better get working on it. One can only assume that Nelson has been putting all his time off cricket into longer term ‘investments’??
|Man of the Match:||Ed Kirkness|
|Champagne moment:||Andy Clipsham’s slower ball for his second wicket caught by Ed Kirkness|
|Muppet moments:||Dan Osgood on his arse
The dropped catch trilogy