Aug 12th 2012, Shenley
by Keith ‘dot-ball’ Mac Cormack
London Colney: 129 all out off 37.5, Fishers: 125 all out off 32.1 – scorecard here
The sun was shining, the ground was a picture and had a bar and Bambi was in fine fettle. Unfortunately the same could not be said for the 2 reluctant potential wickies Summers and Cormack. Dave had been up late escorting some big knobs around London (I didn’t know he had a second job) whereas Keith had successfully attempted to drink his own bodyweight in alcohol at a BBQ. Unfortunately Summers was more convincing with his excuses, as the police usually are, and Cormack got lumbered, a decision that in retrospect may have been….wrong.
There was much talk about how many runs the wicket had given up on Saturday. By several excitable accounts over 500 runs had been scored and the bowlers had come close to spontaneous combustion. Clearly LC had made substantial changes for the worse to their batting line-up for this game. They lost wickets at regular intervals to some disciplined Fisher’s bowling as the run-rate struggled to reach 3 per over. Boxer as always was accurate and a bit unlucky, especially with a beautiful slower ball but was one of the few not to suffer from a Cormack clanger. Bungle was his usual mixture of absolute tosh and unplayable crackers. Afnan bowled a testing spell of high-paced spin mixed with inspired appealing, reminding us all of the glory days of Murali and was unlucky to only take 1 wicket, the keeper missing one tough chance and another not quite so tough (apparently ‘I couldn’t see the ball for my helmet’ isn’t an acceptable excuse). A Ringer, sorry, Dan Brown finished with the outstanding figures of 4-16 after keeping his balls on a string and intimidating a pensioner (exactly replicating his normal Saturday night out in Potters Bar).
Fishers lunched happily on their DIY sandwiches anticipating a gentle late afternoon snoozing in the sun as the openers galloped along at 1.5 runs per over. Cormack was aghast to be given out lbw to his 6th ball having smashed the first 5 for no runs. Ramsey and Tom batted steadily until Tom’s dismissal to the persistent Maclan brought the older, more substantial Watson to the wicket. As per usual, running wasn’t on the agenda as he smacked 7 fours and a massive 6 off the shell-shocked Colney bowlers. J Ray (is he a rapper?) in particular came in for some tap, being taken for 40 from 6 wicketless overs. Watson also came close to administering the last rites to the old man of the V with a potentially murderous lofted on drive which the fielder didn’t pick up until being alarmed by the sonic boom close to his left ear.
At this stage, with Watson making merry and Ramsey gamely edging (in all senses) his way to the wicket-keeper and 16 runs, we were in fine shape at about 70-2 and looking forward to a celebratory pint in the very reasonably priced bar. Then suddenly, horribly, expectedly it all went wrong. Ramsey was clean bowled by B. Ray, followed 2 dobbers later by Bayly. Summers assessed the situation and decided to channel the spirit of a young Shahid Afridi, being stumped for a single. Fishers looked down and out when Bungle departed for 5 bowled by a man with no hips of his own but Boxer and slimline Watson had other ideas. Whilst Dave unleashed some classical shots (who knew?) Watson somehow kept his wicket intact with a combination of studious defence and wild-eyed slogs which kept the spectators transfixed with tension.
With only 5 runs needed for a remarkable comeback victory, Dave went for his patented slog/sweep and to the horror of all involved (not least his health insurance company) Bambi reluctantly but still with way too much relish gave him out stumped. To say that this didn’t go down well with Dave would be akin to saying that KP might be a tad egotistical and should probably cut down a bit on the texting and the post-match retirement-threatening speeches. Looking at Boxer’s face as he stormed off it seemed that on the plus side we might be able to play for some ashes against LC next year….
As members of the Herbert clan attempted to recreate Mo Farah’s Olympic heroics on the instructions of Bambi, tempers calmed as the booze flowed and the sun went down. A disappointing result but a fantastic game played in good spirit on a glorious day. And Bungle was dismissed by a man older than our entire team combined. If only I hadn’t made a duck and dropped 3 catches. F*cking game…
Man of the Match: Watson Senior for his bombastic innings which gave us a chance.
Champagne moment: The look on Boxer’s face on leaving the field after the Bambi triggering.