Detail: 11-06-2023 - Shamley Green
Result: Won by 3 wkts
*Sunday's match report*:
You may be forgiven for thinking that the Blues haven't played since their successful tour of Exeter 2 weeks ago. However, you would be mistaken as the Blues also triumphed last week and I know you are all eagerly awaiting the write up of last week's heroics. With no rail strikes this week I'm sure it will be forthcoming soon.
From 15 boys on Monday, to 10 by Tuesday the week started scrambling around for players. With a last minute ticket offered to Brando on Saturday off he went to watch the Aussies mop up Kohli + tail & in stepped Eddy J, keen to shake off any emerging 'all rounder' tag and get some runs on the board for the boys.
Toss lost, we were asked to field in 26 degrees heat. On the plus side, it does make beer o'clock come round much quicker: field in the sun, gorge at tea, miss a straight one, sink a beer. A great four course Sunday for all.
With Glenn and Chellis sitting top of the tree of the bowling stats, it was a fearsome new ball attack the Blues boasted this week & the dynamic duo did not disappoint.
Chellis bowling with customary vim and vigor took the first wicket of the day. After a few overs of playing and missing, the opener got a thick edge that cannoned to debutant Tom Beck at gully. Diving one handed to his left T. Beck took an unbelievable grab and the Blues were jubilant.
Redefining the term 'miserly bowling' G. Moore settled unerringly into his line and length to restrict their batsmen to a grand total of 5 runs from his 7 overs, picking up 2 scalps in the process. A bit of wobble in the air and a great deal of variable bounce in the pitch kept the batsmen guessing & kept Archie busy behind the stumps. After 6 overs of playing and missing, finally a top edge was found flying over the keeper and into the arms of HJ at first slip. A few balls later an inswinging ball sent all 3 stumps clattering & Glenn had picked up his 2 wickets.
23-3 from 14 overs. 19 to go. On a small ground with a rock hard outfield, half of it consisting of asphalt & tarmac, runs in theory should be easy to come by... Not when you are facing the Blues attack.
After finding his rhythm nicely last week, Tom Verity got in on the action and bowled tidily. Quickly he too got his man, with a nice catch from Chellis. 44-4 the Blues were on a roll.
Part of Shamley Green's charm is that the boundary rope consists of desirable and expensive real estate. This has the drawback that when a 6 is hit the ball can sometimes be lost as it's been smacked over a house and into a neighbours back garden. Predictably, their batsmen dispatched the new swinging ball with a hefty blow, which left us bowling with a ball that looked like a local labrador had chewed it for 35 overs. The batsmen took advantage of this and numbers 4 and 6 combined nicely & started showing that if you timed the ball well boundaries were easily found.
Tom Beck on debut entered the attack with some left arm in-duckers that got the slip cordon interested. With a Tom-Tom bowling attack, sadly the trusty sat nav ran into a glitch and the dreaded yipps reared their ugly head, snaring T. Beck in their wicked web. After a few javelines over the bowler's head and into the jumping arms of Archie behind the stumps, TB withdrew from the attack to be replaced by John Syfret.
Fresh from Eastern Europe & sporting a healthy glow from working in the Maldives, John was straight into the action producing a superb dot ball courtesy of the local rules... If a 6 goes over the house and into a back garden then it is a dot ball & no run is scored. John bowled aggressively & eventfully making the batsmen play and was consistently unlucky as each time a mistimed shot occurred or an edge was found it fell agonisingly short of a Bluesman. The Umpire was giving nothing & John had 2 good LBW shouts mercilessly tuned down: plumb & plumber.
With the score now at 169-5 the Blues were in for a real battle. 200 minimum was par according to veteran Glenn and Shamley still had 10 overs or so left.
Enter Harry Baker stage left. After a 50* last week opening the batting (again, those heroics may be lost to the annals of time due to a glaring absence of a match report) HB was trusted with the ball this week. After finding good rhythm and surprising wheels Bakes soon got the batsmen jumping about the crease and looking fidgety. A few overs later he was in on the action after another well taken catch by Tom Beck. 1 brings 2 and suddenly the next lad was bowled by a Baker beauty, ripping out middle stump. A few balls later a push to Eddy J at mid off resulted in a fumble & the batsmen turned to steal a second run. Ever calm Eddy snatched up the ball and hurled it into Bakes at the bowler's end. A one handed pick up, a nonchalant knock into the bales & the run out was complete. 179-8. Steaming in Bakes picked up his third wicket of the day smashing into all 3 again.
After an eventful over from Ed, Chellis was brought back into the attack to fast track our lunch plans. He soon made quick work of their number 10 & in we headed for some well earned tea. 179 all out from 30 overs, 5 overs short of the full allocation. From 169-5 to 179 all out is particularly impressive, no Shamley tail wagging today.
Despite an underpar score it seemed Shamley had a serious bowling outfit today. No pie chuckers in sight and a little too much pace and unerring accuracy for the blues top order's liking.
Sam Mirchandani, again also off the back of a 50* last week (off about 24 balls), opened up with Tom Jordan. Sam was quickly into his work with some lovely wristy off side flicks and some well timed 4s. Then a customary dot ball, clipping their opening bowler clean over the nearest house into their back garden. "That's the best I've ever timed a ball & it's got me zero runs". However, just as it was all coming too easily, Sam (16) erred in judgement. Looking In superb touch he tired to feather it down to third man Kane Williamson style, but instead guided it into first slip's hands. Celebration from shamley green. Danger man gone.
Tom Jordan (6) also quickly removed, missing a straight full toss from their opening quick, and suddenly multiple Blues were strapping on pads in a hurry.
Batsmen 3 and 4 saw Jenkins junior and senior batting together. So far this season the brothers have batted together twice, each previous time ending in failure & single figure partnerships.
Ed Jenkins - determined this week to get more runs than beers - (he did) played confidently & together the brothers settled things down nicely and got the scoreboard ticking over. With the ball swinging H Jenkins started walking down the crease to negate the swing & put the bowlers off their line. Cue a few angry bouncers from the shamley bowlers. In reply a 6 & 4 sweetly struck from HJ & suddenly the bowlers & local homeowners started to sweat in the heat.
All was going well, the 100 mark was approaching & then Ellie appeared to watch her man bat. Of course the predictable happened. The gnarly bowler produced a slower ball, HJ (40) thought he'd smack it back to Colliers Wood. He didn't. Instead an ugly top edge sent the ball flying skyward to be taken by the keeper - second week in a row, same dismissal. Cricket.
With H gone, Ed (31) swiftly followed after getting an inswinging yorker that smacked the pads. Finger went up and he had to go.
The Jenkins brothers faced 74 balls, scoring 71 runs & getting the lads to 99-4. Halfway to the total, plenty of overs left.
T. Beck completed the dream debut with a quick golden duck (LBW). Archie (4) missed a devilish straight one & suddenly panic was setting in. 111-6 & suddenly 70 more runs seemed a daunting task.
However, the Blues as always boast a surfeit of all rounders & Tom Verity aka Vez combined beautifully with John Syfret to get the boundaries flowing again. They took the Blues up to 131-7 as Vez (11) was dismissed as he looked to motor onwards. Hitting it high trying to lob point for a 4, he didn't quite get hold of it and their scrambling fielder running backwards off the grass and onto the road managed to stick out a paw and pluck the ball home safely. Like a modern day Diomedes, a disgruntled Vez had to slowly trudge from the field, shaking his head, sweat stained locks glinting in the sun. The heroics would have to be left to others.
After a 3-for, H Baker had bowled himself down the order, moving from 1 to 9 in the space of 7 days. Unfortunately for Shamley Green Baker proved the best batsmen of the 22 boys assembled & struck some incredibly elegant 4s with exemplary high elbow and superb front foot movement. Not since the days of Mo's lower order fireworks has the Blues tail wagged so fiercely. Three 6s quickly followed, with one 6 hit so far it crossed the far road and almost landed in Will ham's lap in the pub garden. With a strike-rate of 162.5 Bakes got to 39* very quickly and the win was in sight.
Playing the Iolas figure to Baker's Hercules, John Syfret backed up his team mate admirably, hitting some lusty blows square of the wicket to stem the flow of wickets and move to a tidy 20*. A clipped 4 was hit by John to secure the W and get the boys into the pub before 6pm. A great result allround.
Lastly, a great shout out to Will Hams and the lovely Alessandra who came to cheer on the Blues, accompanied by their adorable 10 week old puppy - our best mascot so far.
Onwards to Barnes Common where James Howe takes the reins. A ground nestled in Putney/Barnes heath, the site of an Alex Pike heroic century where we fell short by 3 runs. Go well.
Harry Jenkins 40
Harry Baker 39*
Ed Jenkins 31
Glenn 5-2 (7)
Chellis 17-3 (6.2)
H Baker 32-3 (4)
5 catches: HJ 1 (Glenn), Tom Beck 2 (Chellis + Baker), Chellis 1 (Vez), Sam Mirch (chellis)
[updated 14 06 2023]