SJFCC vs The Washington
2006-04-30. Lose by 91 runs By Dave Boxer
Result: Washington CC, 169 all out from 36.1 overs; The Mighty Fishers, 78 all out from 28.5 overs.
Not a great start to the season for The Mighty Fishers, but some encouraging signs nonetheless. When the game finally got under way – having been delayed due to a football match being played over half the pitch – Dave won the toss and elected to field. This appeared to be a wise choice when, in the third over, he dismissed one of the openers for a duck, bowled leg stump. The second wicket followed shortly afterwards, when Pat Fogarty induced an up-ish square cut by the no.3 which was snaffled by Boxer at backward point after a shamefully uneccessary dive.
The other opener, meanwhile, was looking pretty solid and began to build a decent partnership with the incoming no.4. Marriott broke the budding duo up though when the former played a late cut straight to Fogarty at point.
Bungle came on at the other end, and, after a ‘loosener’ for a first over, began to find his rhythm and deservedy dismissed the no.4 thanks to a brilliant catch by Fogarty at mid-wicket, diving high to his left, complete with smile for the camera.
Things were looking good for Fishers and the momentum was maintained by Marriott, who was piling the pressure on with his consistent line and length bowling. It was too much for the no.5, who was left helpless when one turned in the rough (and there was a shitload of rough!) and took his off stump.
A dampener was quickly put on preceedings though when Bungle pulled a muscle (yes, he has got one) in his back in his bowling action. It was a flashback to last season’s infamous ‘over-rotation’, presumably caused by the sheer speed and agility of movement for which Bungle is renowned. Lying on the ground like a beached whale, he was clearly in agony, and the thought of not being able to make it off the pitch to the food that lay in store in between innings was making his anguish even worse. After getting to his feet and being helped off the pitch by Magnet, Gary Hodgson assumed bowling responsibilities and did a fantastic job, bowling a nagging line and length that got its reward when he clean bowled the no.10.
Jakubowski, making his Fishers debut, was on at the other end by now and was bowling well. His first victim was the no.6, drawn into a forward drive which caught the outside edge and was taken magnificently by Egre at slip, diving to his right to take a fantastic one-handed catch that will take some beating for catch of the season.
Jakubowski then dismissed no.s 8 and 9, both bowled, to leave Fishers in a great position. Unfortunately, the oppo’s missing player turned up just in time to bat and it’s fair to say that the guy could hit a cricket ball. In little more than 4 overs, he racked up 26 runs, inlcuding a huge straight six off Boxer. Thankfully for Fishers, the no.11 was not of the same ilk, and Boxer bowled him to finish the innings at 169.
After a spot of tea and taking the piss out of Bungle, who was slowly regaining mobility but still walking like an incontinent pensioner, Fishers went out to bat, confident of knocking off the runs. This confidence took a knock when Williams, who had made a solid start, got a leading edge straight back to the bowler who took a very good diving catch. Things went from bad to worse when King was trapped LBW for 4, and Fogarty went the same way for 10. Marriott steadied the innings with some classy shots and his partnership with Egre restored some belief. But the former succumbed to a ball that sat up and was caught at cover, and Egre followed soon after, also caught, for 18.
Ethan then came in and played a very mature knock, dabbing 1s and 2s and also a couple of tasty 4s off late cuts. But the wickets kept on falling at the other end – first Jakubowski was bowled second ball, then Walters was caught for 5. It was left to Hodgson and Boxer to try and knock off almost 100 for the last wicket – an attempt that lasted precisely two balls. Boxer had a look at the bowling first ball and concluded that it was there to be hit. The air shot that followed proved otherwise, however, and he was stumped for a duck, bringing to an end a pretty dismal batting display.
So, a losing start to the season, but positives to be taken in the form of a cracking bowling and fielding display and a good source of comedy provided by Bungle.
Man of the match – Contenders were Jakubowski for his superb spell of bowling, taking 3 for 13 on his debut, and Malcolm for an age-defying catch and stubborn innings. But the award goes to Marriott, who bowled a consistent 8 overs on the bounce, constantly testing the batsmen with his variation and spin that brought him two wickets, including the dangerous opener.