Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Mandarins lose to BBC in high scoring season opener

On a gorgeous day at the cunningly concealed ground of Amersham Hill CC, BBC Mishits prevailed over Mandarins by 6 wickets in a keenly contested and amusing game. So warm were the conditions that there were two drinks breaks in each innings, a feature particularly appreciated by those Mishits whose favoured form of drinks were the flasks of rum cunningly concealed behind the scoreboard

Controversially opening in place of Temple ("Thanks Chris. Literally the first time in my entire career I haven't opened."), Manian and Lowen edged forward against useful bowling from Roop, and gentler stuff from Nav, before gamely departing. No.3 made little difference to Barrie's pet mode of dismissal, and the inevitable LBW followed. The meat of the innings was left to Sam Brand, whose composed 33 included a couple of marvellous back foot punches, and David Williams, who eventually got bored of scratching around and instead despatched everything that wasn't a half volley over square leg for a stream of much needed boundaries. One moment of outright controversy did occur though. Bottom edging a cut from a gentle spinner into the keeper's gloves, Narayan seemed to be the only person on the ground not to notice. Eventually he was alerted to his mistake by a combination of the umpire having reluctantly to actually raise his finger, and the keeper explaining at close quarters and indeed at some length what had occurred. Maximum style points in the innings was reserved for Eastaway, who made a superb unbeaten 30 at his usual number 8, reminding us all of what might have been a career spent up the order instead. 185-8 was about par, even if the declaration, slightly after the nominal tea time, did also leave open the prospect of bowling slightly more overs back than we had faced.

Rob and Andy then bowled tight opening spells (assisted by one of the openers being unwilling to run for more than a single at a time), Andy adding a wicket with a deliberate and skilful deflection of a fierce drive onto the stumps. Hurst came on and increased the pressure, although against good batting, runs were still coming. Martin eventually won a couple of battles, but this year the depth in the Mishits line up was just a little too much for us. A couple of huge sixes launched off the bowling of your correspondent by his old friend Maurice Sukul eased the tension, and from then on we were always second favourite. Still we took it almost all the way, but the chance never came and after 43 and a bit overs, Mishits crossed the line, if not at a canter or without alarm, then certainly without too much difficulty.

Chris Healey