One Day Competition - President Cardinals vs LPW, Garrick Park #1, Presidents, 1st December 2012
A less than perfect weekend; the ABs lose to a better England side, and Sydenham Pressies lose to a weakened Lancaster park team. This should have been at least a fair contest with LPW missing two of its better players, and although we were short one or two ourselves, we had some pretty good replacements in the likes of Kev Moore and Kenny from the previous week.
Ralphy maintained his dismal record with the toss, and LPW put us into bat first on a wicket that looked good, and had produced a lot of runs this year, but was perhaps a little soft due to the two previous days of rain. The object had been to bat second, and look for some drying over the afternoon, and that probably would have proved the right tactic when several of our early batsmen got out playing too early. The pattern of recent weeks remained entrenched - again we lost early wickets, and were quickly 4/49, and struggled throughout the rest of the innings. The biggest partnership was a mere 31 for 6th wicket meaning that the innings never gained momentum. Such is our lot at the moment that the approach to double figures for most of our batsmen inevitably sees capitulation, and the top score is too often barely making it to 20. Ken Julian was one of those with 22, and Ralphy with 19, but the rest of us just kept the scorers busy recording words rather than numbers. Yogi, our new carpenter from Kent, looked promising with the bat initially (and tidy with the ball later) but inevitably joined the batting casualty list.
The bowling was another good effort, in this case coming from the two slows in Kenny and Flem. Each took two at around two an over, which put us in an even contest by mid-innings when Park were 5/50. And that included the dangerous Nathan Jones who was brilliantly caught by Mark Paget at backward square leg on the boundary, a piece of skill that we regularly see from Mark. After initially looking for it on his left, he suddenly realised his error and turned and swan-dived to catch it an inch above the turf, much to the delight of his team mates. But you aren't going to win many games posting only 111, and this proved to be the case. Ticking away at the other end for Park was 20 something James Baxendale, and ex-senior player and Canty league rep, who was pulled out of retirement to fill-in. He never really played a false shot in his 50* as he quietly took Park through to victory with little risk and the loss of only one more wicket and four overs to spare.
Three losses, and now a likely low mid-table position, certainly puts on the pressure for the remaining games before Christmas. But as Kevy rightly pointed out after the game, this competition is so even, and top teams losing to each other, such that any team that can string 5-6 games together is likely to have a run towards the lead - but in our case, it will involve making some actual runs.
Check out the scorecard from the game.