Sunday XI v Britsh Airways - 8th June 2014

Sunday XI v Britsh Airways - 8th June 2014

Sunday XI v Britsh Airways - 8th June 2014
15 Jun
Sunday XI v Britsh Airways - 8th June 2014
Posted by: Mat Armstrong
Year: 2014

The M & B Sunday X1 were finally off the mark at the fourth time of asking as they easily beat a weak British Airways side by 9 wickets at Bray. Again a late cry off from the original opposition(the third time already this season) meant a late arranged fixture via the CCC.

Skipper Armstrong was disappointed to lose the toss and after much deliberation BA eventually decided to bat in the blazing sunshine ! Opening bowler Joesph Blackett delivered a couple of fine overs before the petrol began to run out as did the radar, albeit he was unlikely with a few edges and streaky drives going to the third man boundary. Fellow opening bowler, Arul Appavoo, overcame an horrendous first over to eventually find his line and length, added to his natural left arm round angle, Appavvo quickly had an early lbw appeal upheld as soon as he had his radar locked in. He was eventually rewarded in his final over with the wicket of opener Mak, bowled top of off stump, for a strange innings of 8, which lasted 16 overs, to finish with figures of 8/1/24/2. In the meantime no.3 Balwinder played a number of fine cuts and drives through the off side to give the BA score a resemblance of respectability, before he went to the well once too often and was bowled by Armstrong, as he missed a full length delivery and was yorked off stump. The game saw the return to the bowling crease of the ageless Atif Amin, who quickly found his away swinger groove and garnered an early scalp. No. 4 Ramandeep kept BA afloat with his leg side play and assistance by no. 8 Jay, in a 7th wicket partnership of 47, at least meant BA had something to bowl at. Not surprising Amin tired in his closing overs but figures of 8/1/34/2, which was a fine reward for his sterling effort.

As always Armstrong finished off proceedings with his spinners, Chris Butler and Thomas Noakes. Noakes accounted for top scorer Ramandeep(50) with a much quick ball, which totally foxed the batsman, who moved away to the offside to give himself room, but found his timbers shattered before he could get his bat down. Butler gained two scalps courtesy of a finely judged catch by Raoul Cheema and another stumping by Dixon, making it three successive games where Butler and Dixon had combined for a stumping. Noakes totally killed the scoring rate by finishing with figures of 4/1/11/2 to leave BA on 158 for 9 after their forty overs, which was well short of the par score, which was around 200.

BA needed to get off to a quick start and make early in roads into the M & B batting. Alas opening bowler Andy delivered 7 wides in the opening over, which together with 3 off the bat meant M &B had 12 off the first over. BA's breakthrough did eventually come in the 7th over when opener Jamie Odell played too early on a flick to leg and was caught at square leg, that said the score was on 42 at the time, aided by 19 extras! The wicket though meant M & B had their two major batsmen at the wicket, Yusuf Qureshi & Raoul Cheema. Both batsmen feasted off a plethora of poor balls and merely defended the few good offerings. Cheema was more technically correct with his drives and pull shots, one of which cleared the hedge and disappeared into the church yard, on the admittedly shorter boundary. That said the pull shot should have brought his undoing, but he was given a second life when the square leg fielder dropped a reasonably straightforward catch when he was on 48. Qureshi on the other hand was immensely strong driving off the back foot and once it looked as though M & B would win easily he bludgeoned two sixes over long on, each on opposite sides of the ground. In the end M & B raced home in the 25th over for the loss of only one wicket, Qureshi and Cheema both finished on 64no, albeit Cheema had a 7 over start on Qureshi. Cheema posted 10 4's and a six to Qureshi's 8 4's and 2 6's in an unbroken second wicket partnership of 119, with M & B finishing on 161 for 1."

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