MSCC won by 1 runs
Match Date & Time
|August 13, 2023||2:00 pm||2023|
The sun was making a decent effort to show for the visit of Pelicans. Despite the recent uninspiring weather the ground looked in fine condition, testament to the hard work of (mainly) Tim and Paul. Thank you, gentlemen. The outfield proved to be rather on the slow side leading to a low-scoring match but the wicket was true and blameless for any of the day’s dismissals.
One of Middleton’s favourite pre-match traditions was observed, the ringing around of reserves half an hour before play. Max Langdale was roused from his slumber and arrived in time to take his place on the field as Matt Dipple opened the bowling alongside Jacob Ford-Langstaff. The skiddier Jacob looked more threatening on the low pitch and soon bowled the opening batter, who did not seem to be a big believer of getting in line with the ball. Jacob drew the edge of the other opener in his next over but in a manner befitting W. G. Grace declared himself “not out” and simply carried on, the umpire declining to get involved. Matt Carpenter behind the stumps took it well, it is perhaps fortunate that it was he who took the catch and not another of our regular keepers.
The number 3, Arif, looked like he could really bat. Not much failed to find the middle of his bat and it took a tidy bit of fielding to dismiss him. Called through for a very tight single, Michael Robinson scooped and threw the ball to Matt who completed the job. Credit to umpire Fairweather for raising his finger on a close decision. With one end now open Matt Dipple bowled the numbers 4 and 5 with balls persuaded to move away off the pitch. Mike Simpson, Seril Shah and Paul Wordsworth all had a go with the ball without immediate success and drinks were taken after half of Pelicans’ allotted time at 51-4. Some acceleration was required.
The opener, unused to batting for such a length of time, had started to struggle to turn ones into twos and was generously allowed a runner. Twenty minutes after drinks, the score had doubled, though Seril was unlucky to have catches dropped off successive deliveries. Tim decided to take matters into his own hands and enticed his opposite number into hitting aerially. One ball disappeared into the brambles over cow corner, the very next into Max Nalborczyk’s safe hands at deep midwicket. The Jordan brothers both departed first ball, LBW to Tim and bowled by Mike. The opener blocked Tim’s hat trick ball but was finally dismissed for a well-made 56, well held by Mark Ford-Langstaff at extra cover. Mike cleaned up the tail including dismissing the number 11 for another golden duck, the field having crept in after hearing the umpire greet him with “right arm over, only one ball to survive”. The catch was duly taken at silly mid-on, 138 all out.
Tea was taken slightly early, thank you to Mark who had certainly not under-catered. Despite the best efforts of all players and spectators, not much of a dent was made in the volume of sandwiches. A light drizzle arrived and some of the home team rushed to put the cover on, generously helped by the Jordan brothers of the opposition. The weather soon blew over and play restarted.
Michael and Max N opened the batting against a good seam attack. Scoring was difficult and Max soon tried to drive one that he should have blocked, well caught at second slip. Extras were plentiful, and with Matt Carpenter regularly biffing the ball to the deep Middleton looked to be cruising to victory. Pelicans’ change bowlers proved to be even tighter than the openers though and picked up a couple of wickets each with Matt C, Michael, Max L and Mark all receiving good deliveries. Another of our favourite traditions, the scramble of the lower order to pad up while sorting who could umpire and sub-field for the opposition, was duly observed. Tim joined Jacob at the crease, half the runs scored and half our batters dismissed. Suddenly Pelicans were favourites, though the required run rate would not pose a problem. Could the remaining batters survive long enough to knock off the runs?
It transpired that the anticipated close finish never transpired. Jacob hit the gaps, Tim played inventively and the runs were knocked off without too much alarm with overs remaining. Both were dropped with the target in single figures, but by then it seemed immaterial. A pair of not outs, it was very fitting that the two all-rounders could walk off together to the acclaim of their teammates and crowd who had gathered to drink sauvignon blanc in the evening sunshine.
All that was left was to enjoy the bar and barbecue (thanks as always to Andrew and Rona, alongside Max and Seril) and the company of our very amiable opposition. Middleton Stoney remain undefeated on a Sunday this year, just 5 fixtures remaining.
Great Missenden Pelicans CC
Reserves: 1. Jamie Lumb 2. Anirudh Sharma 3. Arvind Sharma 4. Robin Cummings
|Chris Greer||Mark Ford-Langstaff|