One Day Competition - President Cardinals vs OBC, Sydenham Park #3, Presidents, 20th October 2012
Long weekend unavailability always creates an interesting dilemma - do you feel vulnerable because of your unavailability, or see it as an opportunity because of their's? Our situation was acute, we were within 15 minutes of defaulting on Friday afternoon before Kev became available and thus gave us a game, and then when Spency helped us out 20 minutes before the start of the game, suddenly we had 11 and some confidence.
And that became doubly so when OBC elected to bat first, capitulated early, and then failed to get any momentum into their innings. In fairness to them, whilst they were probably guilty of failing to put pressure on our bowlers until the final three overs from which they took 34, our guys bowled superbly on a not too bad wicket. Jules and Jason's first 10 overs went for less than 20, each taking a wicket including their key batsman Tim McConnell cheaply, and thus putting us on the front foot. By the time that Jason had bowled his 8 on trot, his 1 for 13 looked outstanding. Indeed Jason's start to the season has been exactly that - a man who clearly enjoys the good things in life, who always puts it in, with his last ball of the spell exhibiting the same effort as the first.
But as hard to beat as Jason's figures were, Flem killed them. His 3 wickets for 4 from 8 overs is a target for the rest of the season that Flem will struggle to beat. But all bowled well - Jules set the standard with Jase, Bertie on his comeback went for 3's, as did Kev and Matt before that latter again tweaked his calf injury, but not before Spency had complained about the pace at which he was hitting his gloves off three paces, and deceiving the batsman.
So only 128 to get, and although we lost Matt early for 15, a paced partnership of 46 between Spency and KC for the 2nd innings had us well placed at 66/1, almost at the required rate. Then disaster struck, both out within 7 runs of each other - Spency trying to up the rate arguably too early, and KC to a familiar reframe, Congdon LBW Walker, (but "only just out" which isn't a consolation, but I still love you Bertie). It was all downhill from there - there were a couple of important 6 's at the right time from Brenden and Jason, the latter who had kept us in the game, but in the end it came down to the last pair requiring a boundary from the final ball, something that was always going to be difficult with everyone on the boundary, and so it proved to be. Perhaps the side was slightly unbalanced, and a batsman or two short, but the truth is that the bowlers totally did their job to make the batting task not onerous, and what batting we did have just wasn't smart enough on the day to complete the job.
So a loss by four runs was a disappointing result when we were clearly in the dominant position for the first 70 overs of the game. Such are the joys of cricket, it's never won until its won, or in this case, lost. Still, it was an exciting game played in good spirits, as you always say when you lose. Lets hope for a shitty win next week (sorry Ralphy).
Check out the scorecard from the game.