Sunday 23 June -v- Bletchingley at Bletchingley
The Club comfortably completed a return fixture victory at Bletchingley, without a whiff of controversy. Nasser Schultz was again on the wrong side of the coin, but the responsibility of not having to make a decision seems to be a winning formula, as our unbeaten run stretched to 4 wins and 3 draws. Bletchingley asked us to bat and were soon regretting it, as Richard and The Skip took the opening attack to the cleaners. A very grassy strip appeared to have no demons, with Richard particularly dominant straight down the ground. Matters were not helped for the home side, by a regular supply of byes finding their way, unchecked to the boundary. Bletchingley eventually turned to spin and soon found success, with first Gord and then Nosperm looking equally uncomfortable. Gordon's ungainly lunge down the track resulted in the pegging back of his off stump, while Jim was caught by one of six mid-offs stationed for the inevitable. Dave Thomas -guesting from YMCA- joined a prestigious band of debutante ducks and ‘Blind Pugh', completed our regular middle order collapse. Chris found the new Reader ball, complete with bell, a great help in determining when to swing the bat. Has he had cataracts added or removed? The Oz was spectacularly and very surprisingly caught by a keeper, who had stopped little let alone held on to a ball, for an entertaining 58. TC and Deadbat restored parity and made sure we had plenty to bowl at. Gord had seen enough, making the declaration five minutes early with the hosts requiring 186 for victory.
Sensing it is easy to wind Darren up; the Bletchingley skipper justifiably wided Moysey, provoking a prolonged sulky run up for the rest of his spell. He was very lucky to remove the opener with a grubber and then nearly decapitated the very nice next batsman when the ball hit a lump in the pitch. Gordon quite rightly limited the hot-head to only four overs. Simon was rewarded for continually beating the outside edge, when he got one to hold its line to dismiss the DCB. Having witnessed at first hand the amount of turn in the track, it was no surprise when Lardy Wilsdon was thrown the ball (which he dropped). It was somewhat more surprising that Gord decided to unleash the 'Novelty bowlers'. First the master of the lob, Billy Webb with his particular brand of nonsense, and latterly after Chris had ripped through the middle order, TC with his tippy-toes run up disguising a vicious head high beamer. Bletchingley's skipper despite harvesting heartily on the produce voiced his concern that perhaps we were taking the piss. Hopefully Gordon's assurance that this was the only way they could bowl, was enough to prevent any more bad blood. Simply, who had already distinguished himself with two catches off Chris, added a third via a smart take from Spud's quicker ball. A sharp run out from Richard at short third man, which would have dismembered anyone unfortunate to get in the way, brought batsman 11 to the crease and it was only a matter of time before proceeding were wrapped up. As in the first game at the, YMCA, Spud brought down the curtain, trapping 'The Thing' in front of the stumps. Victory by 49 runs was achieved with 5 overs to spare.