CSSC – 12/08/06
With a majority of Whalers sheltering from the rain somewhat beyond the allotted meet time it didn’t take us long to realize that we were missing some vital ingredients. The first was an opposition whose strength in number was greater than 4, there was also a small issue of any kit plus the debut captain Duncs Osborne, oh and he also appeared to have Mike Dennis – so we didn’t have any opening batsmen either.
The fines were already building up for the new captain and he hadn’t arrived yet. But this was just the start.
Duncs arrived with 10 minutes to go, luckily arriving with the other opening batsmen and the kit. They had all been waiting at the University of Westminster ground wondering where the rest of the team was. If Whales could salivate there would have been drool all over the fines book.
By this point most of the opposition had arrived and the rain had stopped. Time for Cricket…
After sizing up the oppo and a quick toss in the middle which was won by Duncs, Gentlemen’s Relish were asked to set a total for us to chase down on a pitch that any Whaler should have felt at home on – it resembling something like a squall in the Southern Seas.
Dan Osgood opened the bowling on a slow pitch with a fare amount of bounce. Dan bowled with pace and with an accuracy that had been lacking in earlier games. Rich Giles started from the other end, the batsmen taking advantage of the odd short ball on the slow pitch. We just couldn’t seem to get a wicket!
Time for a change of bowling with Ed Kirkness coming into the attack. Having decided to slow down his medium-ish pacers and develop the “swing” and “reverse swing” balls that the conditions provided (!!) the accuracy was much improved – with not one “Oh my God!” ball bowled! But like the proceeding bowlers wicket avoidance fines looked like they might be order of the day.
A change at the other end brought the in form Kamal on to try and upset the rhythm of the men at the crease. Sadly the 3-wicket haul of 2 weeks prior was not repeated. It wasn’t until Piers Morgan was brought into the attack that a wicket finally fell, the No 2 (Hughes) clean bowled on 25.
It wasn’t until now that we had a full compliment of players – our new Antipodean recruit, Waz, had finally made it to the ground. Chiswick is a long way away isn’t it? Surely it was time for the Whalers to take some more wickets. Luckily Waz produced some accurate bowling which allowed us to remove the middle order – although wickets tended to fall to the worst ball of the over apart from one beauty that pitched on off and removed the leg stump bail.
Finally the no. 1 batsmen (Harrop) fell when Ed Kirkness was reintroduced to the attack. An unlikely “genuine cricket wicket” with the batmen nicking one and Mike Dennis holding onto a smart catch (smart only because he caught the ball rather that it knocking out his teeth) at 2nd slip (ish).
The runs dried up as wickets fell, and with Osgood finally getting a deserved wicket, he fell to the ground Mohammed Yousuf style paying homage to the crickets gods.
Giles finally wrapped up the innings and Gentlemen’s Relish were all out for 143.
Time for some much deserved teas (sadly there were no Montana chocolate bars, but some very good cakes – we even needed to order extra tea and Ollie wasn’t even there!).
With the weather still holding up the Whalers went into bat with the unknown opening partnership of Mike Dennis and Duncan Osborne. Dennis had clearly decided not to let Osborne see the ball, with a quick single at the end of each over. This tactic clearly worked as Dennis accelerated the score leaving the captain on zero for what seemed like an eternity.
Dennis and Osborne, when the latter was allowed to face the attack, both took advantage of some wayward bowling and scored a succession on boundaries. Finally Osborne was bowled on 22 with the score at 99. This brought in Geoff Judd who was so intent on winning the ‘six challenge’ that he used the mighty Power Bow.
From this point very few singles were scored, with both Dennis and Judd scoring quickly. After some punishing batting from Geoff he finally found the middle and hit one of the biggest sixes in Whalers history to wrap up the game with a very quick 34.
Teasell (Waz) 6 ov – 0 mdns – 27 runs – 3 wkts
Kirkness 7 ov – 0 mdns – 14 runs – 2 wkts
Dennis 58 not out
Judd 34 not out
Man of the Match – Mike Dennis general batting performance
Champagne – Geoff’s six to win the game (biggest in Whalers history)
Muppet – Duncs – Skipper turning up at wrong ground