Monthly Archives: May 2021

Whalers Rainy Utopia

Whalers CC vs Utopers CC (T20): Sunday 16th May; King’s House Sports Ground

Fresh of the back of their first victory of the season, The Whalers were looking to continue their winning run with a home fixture against Utopers. With the weather forecast predicting heavy rain, it did look uncertain as to whether a game would be able to be played at all. A decision was made to start slightly later and reduce the match to 20 overs per side. Before we had even begun the dark clouds had started to descend and with most of the opposition yet to arrive, it was decided that it would make most sense for Whalers to field first and that is what we did.

After conceding just 7 runs from his 5 over last Sunday, Nick was once again trusted with the ball in conditions that could only be described as bleak. Ross was opening up from the other end and between them they kept it tight. The ball was beating the outside edge on a regular basis and the pressure was already beginning to mount on the opening batsmen. The first wicket fell when a looped edge (is that even a thing?) found its way into Will’s hands to give Nick his first wicket of the match. The second wicket fell not long after, a miscued drive off the bowling of Ross dropped into the safe hands of Dean, who would go onto take a further two catches. It was here that Utopers began to stage a mini fightback with Amit’s two overs going for a few, but in reality this was short lived. Batsmen 3 and 4 were dismissed by Will and Dean respectively, the latter who went onto claim a further two wickets- a busy 20 overs for Dean and a nasty ball to the shin area too. The collapse was well and truly underway, Josh got into the action with one of his trademark half trackers that managed to fool the batsmen (Whalers’ very own Rahul) into slapping back into his cold, wet but grateful hands. Nick came back on and claimed the final two wickets with some textbook death over bowling and that was that- Whalers were chasing 70 to win.

The target was certainly chaseable but the weather wasn’t showing much sign of improving- a half-hearted pitch inspection by Josh and Will deemed the conditions to be just about playable “as long as they get on with it”. They were able to do it within 13 overs without the loss of any wickets thanks to some solid defence and good running (including an all run 5).

All in all, the main thing is that we were able to get the game on. The bowling was good and we took our catches in some fairly tough conditions. As for the batting, you can’t argue with a 10 wicket victory but there will be some tougher tests to come.

Whalers 70/0 beat Utopers CC 69/9 (a/o) by 10 wickets

Awards

Champagne (prosecco) moment: Al & Pip’s all run 5

Muppet: Will for his ‘Nathan Lyon’ moment

MOM: Dean: 3-4 with the ball and also 3 good catches

New captain Josh leads Whalers to first victory of the year

After a couple of away losses the Whalers returned to Kings House for our first home game of the season against the Quokkas. Debutant captain Josh won the toss and we were batting.

Dean and Al made a brisk start punishing anything short on a good pitch that had softened a touch from the rain the day before. The boundaries were also long and the outfield slightly slow so some good running between the wickets would also be needed. Al and Dean both survived dropped catches, Al being particularly lucky, and the score raced on to 60 after 10 overs before Dean was the first out LBW. The Quokkas change bowlers then came on and bowled well, straight and on a good length and they got good rewards as the runs dried up and the wickets started tumbling, 4 in quick succession. Fraser and Will started to rebuild and hit some cracking shots before a running mix up saw Will sacrifice himself for the cause. Fraser was middling it well but was unlucky to be out to an early contender for catch of the season, a left handed diving grab inches off the ground at long on. Matt then anchored the lower order to the end with a team high 31no, despite a moment of luck when he nudged a very slow ball down leg and charged off for a single, only for the keeper, standing up at the stumps stopping it and somehow missing the stumps with a throw from a couple of feet. Fraser with 30, Al with 28 and with most other batsman chipping in (the author excluded) the final total was 171. Most felt this was around par.

In reply Nick and Matt opened the bowling with some steady line and length also making good use of an increasing breeze, but although they weren’t scoring many runs there were no early wickets, Matt was unlucky not to hold on to a fierce return catch from his first ball. The breakthrough came in the 9th over when Nick got the edge and Pip took a sharp juggling catch low down at first slip. Vishal after replacing Nick then got the second, enticing another edge to Pip at first slip who was starting to make slip catching look easy. Will at the other end also got an edge and Geoff behind the stumps after a bit of juggling of his own grabbed it low down to his right. Had some proper cricket broken out?. Vishal and Will both continued to bowl well using the wind to get some good swing and both took another couple of wickets to put the Whalers on top, and with the run rate increasing the Whalers were starting to feel confident. The Quokkas lower order then put up some resistance and it wasn’t till Josh and Dean came on to bowl some spin that the final 3 wickets fell. Notably Pip picking up his third catch at slip, though this one a gentler top edge than the first two. The Quokkas ended up 57 runs short after a pretty good Whalers bowling and fielding effort with all the bowlers using the wind and pitch well, and some good catching overall, despite a couple of drops.

M.o.M, Vishal for his 3 wickets in the middle of the Quokkas innings

Champagne, Pips slip catching but notably the first one low down to the left

Muppet, Matt for tickling a very slow ball down leg and charging for a run, despite the keeper, who was standing at the stumps stopping it and somehow missing the stumps with a throw from a couple of feet.