Sunday 23 August –v- Sidcup at Crescent Farm
With Aythorpe Roding crying off in midweek, we were fortunate to pick up a bureau fixture at Sidcup to fill the void. Local talent Kevin Scoulding and legendary former skipper Billy Webb were drafted into a side depleted by holidays and the start of Ramadan. Sidcup fielded a strong side, which had expected to be playing Sevenoaks Vine in a league deciding fixture.
Sidcup won the toss and had no hesitation in opting to bat. Wajih chose to ally the mercurial talent of Nita with normal opening bowler Danglers. Opener Jenkins made no secret that he was after quick runs, as he drove Moysey's first ball back past him for four, but he was soon undone by the same bowler, who pulled his length back to find an edge to keeper East. Nita struggled with direction, sending down 11 wides in a six over spell, but in between the dross, he managed to execute a fine run out, as well as taking a wicket courtesy of the first of three good catches from Upkar.
The change bowlers Spud and Upkar, further turned the screw on the scoring rate, with each bowling a consistent line and length that frustrated the Sidcup batters. Sidcup began to play desperate shots in the search for quick runs, as well as attempting ill-advised quick singles. Having seen the direct hit run out from Nita, Stent must have expected the worst, when he turned the ball to the prowling Scoulding at mid-wicket and set off for a quick single. With seemingly all the time in the world to lob the ball to Spud for an easy dismissal, Kev managed to clear Spud by a good six feet. Chand maintained the good work of the bowlers with six tight overs and Wajih continued his bowling rehabilitation with 1-20 from his four over spell. With the inevitable scurry of late runs, Sidcup finished their forty overs on 162-8.
Wajih and Gord scratched about at the top, with the Sidcup bowlers making life uncomfortable. Nethertheless it was a solid enough base, considering the reasonably low score required for victory and when Wajih was 3rd out with the score on 39, we still had capable players in the hutch. Chand joined Silent Kev and together they forged a match winning position, by way of a patient partnership of 64. While Chand was the natural aggressor, Kev was happy to bore the tits off us in a mind-numbingly dull display. Both fell with the score just past the hundred, Chand out for another fifty and Kev an important 14.
Bill played some beautiful airy drives through the covers in an attractive innings of 12 and Nita launched into anything within range, battering a rapid 31. Unfortunately he failed to see the match to conclusion, which necessitated Spud buckling on his pads to stroke the winning boundary.
With England securing The Ashes earlier in the day, it was a perfect finish, with the hope that we can secure future fixtures at Sidcup.