Based on the final league standings from last season this was a game that we expected to win. We were confident going into this game with a good end to last season and two good wins in pre–season friendlies.
I selfishly got married last summer, with my wedding and stag having a big impact on our availability for both games against Nonnington last year. As a result, we weren’t able to do ourselves justice in either fixture.
During the warm up we discussed the merits of bowling and batting first if we won the toss. It didn’t matter in the end because I didn’t win the toss and ideally their skipper opted to bat, providing us with the opportunity to gain 20 points batting second.
Beast and Naughty Tom opened the bowling. One of their openers was determined to cut most deliveries backward of square and the other looked quite strong driving through the covers. It soon became apparent that the wicket was pretty flat, and despite the overcast conditions, the ball was not doing a great deal; it was going to be a day for squeezing and containment.
Both opening bowlers bowled with excellent control and we soon got some reward for some very disciplined bowling. Naughty got one to nip back a touch just clipping the top of off stump to account for one of the openers. Beast soon followed up with a full delivery cleaning out the other.
Their skipper came in and looked solid, timing the ball well from the outset and whipping anything straight to the leg side. We got him early though! Naughty bowled a good length delivery that wasn’t quite there to drive and we got him caught behind with a thin edge. Tom soon accounted for another batsman trying to drive him; a solid slip catch at slip by Martin Pratt.
Both Beast and Naughty bowled with real discipline and deserve great credit. At times we were bowling with an 8-1 field and they stuck to the plan of bowling fourth and fifth stump really well. This left Nonington at 70 odd for 4 at drinks with the potential for the innings to go either way.
After drinks their number three batsman and their overseas started to bat with more purpose, scoring quite a few through mid wicket. Scotty Gallagher got hit a couple of times but he kept his cool and eventually we got their number three, driving uppishly towards mid off, a well taken catch taken by Joel Couldrey. Joel also completed a run out towards the end of the innings with a really athletic piece of fielding, moving quickly and diving at long off and quickly slinging the ball back in. I’m not anyone else at the club would have turned it into a run out!!
Joel also made a key contribution with the ball. He bowled 10 overs 1-30. In the context of bowling at the end of the innings this was a superb effort. Joel also accounted for their overseas batsman with Mark Trevatt taking a superb catch diving to his left at long off. This was a big wicket, which helped us to contain their score. Colin Couldrey also bowled a few overs towards the end of the innings and was unlucky not to get their overseas player himself. For further details about the dropped catch at deep mid-wicket please speak to Mark Trevatt……
They finished their 50 overs on 182 for 7. I felt that this was below par in the context of a decent wicket and a very quick outfield. It was simply a case of bat the overs and win the game.
I think it would be unfair to mention any other batsman than Scotty Gallagher who scored a fantastic hundred. If Carlsberg did maiden league hundreds…..
Scotty left the ball well in the first few overs and was patient, putting bad deliveries away. With ten overs gone he only had around 20. He then proceeded to dismantle their attack with a range of shots all around the wicket. He drove the ball well through the covers and he was prepared to sweep the spinners when they strayed onto his legs. Scott reached his hundred in the 35th over scoring at a run a ball; an unbelievable knock!! Well done mate!! That’s definitely up there for me as one of the best innings I’ve seen in a 1st or 2nd XI game. Thanks to Scotty we won the game at a canter, three down with about ten overs to spare.
So, a great start but a lot of work to do. We’re all looking forward to what will be a tough game against Gravesend next week.
A special thanks goes out to Harri Kallas who umpired yesterday and has kindly put a rota together for the season. Thanks for everything you have done Harri! We are still looking for an umpire next week if anyone fancies it?
A great day at the club all round with all the sides winning. There is definitely a feel-good factor at the club at the minute and we all need to work hard and stick together to ensure we can sustain it.
Updated 05:42 - 12 May 2017 by Harri Kallas