Sunday XI v Thames Valley Ramblers - 7th September 2014
Sunday XI v Thames Valley Ramblers - 7th September 2014
Posted by: Mat Armstrong
M&B lost to Thames
Valley Ramblers(TVR) on Sunday by 21 runs despite a fight back
masterminded by GT(Thomas Allen). It was a very much Asianised TVR side
from the side which M & B used to play on the August Bank holiday
Monday. Like most nomadic sides players get old and players are
recruited from whatever source. There were a few of the oldies still in
existence though, Dave Boxall and Wayne Lester.
Skipper Armstrong lost the toss and opposition elected to bat.
Opening bowler Arul "Gunbarul" Appavoo was given a rude awakening by
opposing skipper Yunis, as he was deposited over mid-on for two
consecutive 4's in his second over, Gunbarul exacted immediate revenge
though as he disturbed the timbers next ball with a peach - swinging in
pitching and moving away to hit the top of off - to the utter disbelief
of the batsman! Gunbarul also dismissed the dangerous Alam shortly
after, courtesy of a juggling catch by Amit Giri, to leave M & B in
the ascendency. Senior pro, Chris Lowe, playing his first Sunday game of
the year was his normal steady self from the Road End, bowling his
allocation straight through, with the reward of a wicket in his final
over. First change bowlers were Sunday stalwarts Chris Butler and Atif
Amin(with his Duracell dogs in tow), who both bowled their allocation
going at around 5 per over, garnering three wickets between them. During
their spells TVR batsman D Singh manfully held the innings together
scoring 74, mainly through straight drives and pulls to leg. Skipper
Armstrong finished off proceedings from his normal Road End with GT
finishing off the innings from the River End. GT aided, by his headband,
claimed two wickets in a tight spell. Armstrong also chipped in with
two wickets, one courtesy of an expertly taken catch by Gunbarul to
dismiss top scorers Singh. This was one of three catches taken by
Gunbarul, two of which were high steepling catches, which he made look
distinctly easy. In the end TVR ended up with 173 all out in their final
over. Skipper Armstrong was happy with M&B's bowling effort as 173
was short of the par score, which was probably around 200.
Lowe - 8/1/27/1
Waffle - 8/1/42/2
Butler - 8/0/40/1
GT - 6/0/23/2
Reaper - 3.2/0/15/2
In response M&B got off to their normal shambolic start,
despite Will Cunliffe hitting two boundaries in the first over. First
ball of the second over, a full toss, was deflected onto his stumps by
Thomas Wilding, to bring a golden duck in his final innings of the
season, leaving him walking back to the pavilion staring at his bat
totally perplexed. Next over a rasping straight drive was flicked onto
the stumps by Boxall to leave Cunliffe stranded at the non-striker's
end. In the 7th over Boxall castled Yusuf Qureshi, whilst playing a
forward defensive shot. Worse was to follow in the 8th over as Brian
Dixon was expertly poached by Lester in the slips off an intentional
guide to leave M&B starring down the barrel at 36 for 4 and then 40
for 5, as Gunbarul was caught behind, to leave him run less for the
weekend in two attempts. As was the case the previous week all hopes
seem to rest with Amit Giri at number 5, and he appeared up to the task
as he batted with supreme confidence. driving confidently through the
off side as well as flicking and pulling confidently on the leg side.
Alas on 32 Mr Giri had a brain fade as he played a ghastly swipe across
the line at spinner Yunis and saw his timbers rattled. Luckily no
one was on hand to photograph the moment. That said Armstrong played a
similar stroke later in the innings, his excuse being he can't bat
anymore and he needed to up the ante with only 3 overs left! From 70 for
6 though an unlikely rescue act was untaken messers GT & Waffle,
who used up the overs and tried to score off the bad balls, these two
put on 55 for the 7th wicket in 15 overs to give M&B a chance. GT
was the more aggressive to top score with 40, which included 6 4's and a
6 over mid off, to cap a fine all round performance from this vastly
improved individual, possibly headband power(or is that McEnroe power).
Although Lowe batted gamely for 14 in the end M&B were dismissed in
the 38th over 21 shy of the target. From 70 for 6 the lower order batted
splendidly to in the end make the score respectable, albeit never
really threatening to reach the TVR total.
Player of the day - William Cunliffe
1. Turning up at the ground with all his kit;
2. Being banished from the bar for having the temerity to start
eating his McDonalds in view of head chef and bar steward, Big Tony!
3. With a run out on and the batsman at his mercy a thunderbolt
throw, when a crown green delivery would have done, way wide and at the
base of the stumps meant the batsman easily made his ground;
4. Smashing 3 4's in 10 deliveries, probably still running off the
fumes of the Cuban cigars the previous night, before being unluckily
run out at the non-strikers end;
5. Threatening to go early but happy to do his stint of umpiring(in the end staying to the end and doing a second stint).
M & B ended their Sunday season with a win to bring the curtain down…
Mat Armstrong - Sep 27, 2017
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