A queer feeling of déjà vu spread through the assembled Fishers on Sunday 1 June for the reverse against Caddington. The sun was out, Watson was late and Bungle won the toss and decided to have us field in the heat. Even the line-up was relatively unchanged, with Hazon relieved that Robin’s toe had recovered sufficiently to allow him to keep.
Caddington’s openers took a while to get going in the face of Boxer and Hargreaves and a few edges and uppish swipes found the gaps in the fielders. As the innings progressed, it turned out that it didn’t matter whether the balls in the air went to the fielders or not as five or six catches were shelled (some harder than others). The score limped towards 80 at the half way point as the first of the oppo made his 50, aided by Pottsy experimenting with his length to bowl one straight over Robin’s head and another directly into the floor in front of him. Threapleton finally made the breakthrough in the middle of what might have ended up being a 10 over spell (as once again rather a mess was made of the scorebook) as an edge was feathered behind and Robin managed not to drop it. The other opener, dealing almost exclusively in dots, eventually made 50 and having been quite disciplined for the past three hours had a massive swipe and lost his off stump to Boxer, who capitalised on Threapleton’s efforts to take two wickets in the first over of his second spell. A few edges later the innings was over with Caddington posting 154-4.
After an excellent tea, Anil, who had to leave by 6.30pm, and Bambi opened the batting and with only four an over needed, plodded gently along. Bambi was done for trying to cut one that nipped back in and number three Hazon followed him back shortly afterwards for a two ball duck. Watson was in at four and, having assessed the quality of the oppo’s bowling, had traded his proper bat for the Mongoose. Despite almost being dismissed first ball trying to reverse sweep, to say the run rate accelerated when Watson arrived would be to say that the Liberal Democrats have suffered a slight dip in popularity since 2010. More of the next 30 minutes or so was spent looking for the ball than it was actually playing as Watson flayed the bowlers to all parts (but mostly the field at cow corner) to bring up his 50 in just 18 balls, including 26 (and a bye!) off one over. Meanwhile, having witnessed the dismal catching display from Fishers in the first innings, Boxer’s youngest was teaching Hargreaves (who was actually one of few not to drop one) how to cup his hands to catch more effectively. Wise words indeed.
By now Anil was plodding towards his 50 and Watson was very gracious in allowing him to get close as the game was now effectively dead. With one needed to win and Anil on 49, Threapleton, as umpire, passed up a brilliant opportunity to give a wide and Anil carved the next ball through the field to the cover boundary to give Fishers the win by 8 wickets. Anil did remember to buy his jug before he shot off to whatever waited for him.
MOM – Watson