One Day Competition - President Cardinals vs BWU Foxes, Somerfield Park #1, Presidents, 22nd February 2015
Normally, being rolled for 90 batting first against a top four side would have you bracing for a rogering.
But when you decide not to drop your shorts, but stand as a team and fight, it can turn out quite the opposite. Cardinals’ effort in the field – in the circumstances of the game and the poor condition of the outfield – was nothing short of superb and had us in the game almost all the way. It had several players putting their hand up for player of the day, and several bodies put on the line, with bruises to prove it. It was an effort allowed us to think temptingly of a win against the odds, which had we got, we’d have absolutely deserved.
The pitch at Somerfield Park was described by most as a goat track – and that was being kind. The pitch was full of weeds, and the outfield rough and full of holes. Both Laughts and Wildy were out early, and Ken Julian was the only Syds player able to occupy the crease for any significant time, notching up 25 not out. An 11 from Kev Moore and a couple of 10’s were the best of the rest and it was all over after 32 overs. Batting was difficult, but as Ken proved, not impossible.
But it was the same for Burnside, and with the “Fail Bail” up for grabs for the first time for the losing side, we determined not to go quietly. Despite the pitch, the outfield and the always threatening rain, it was a game with so many twists and turns that only summed up exactly why we play cricket.
Ken Julian tied up one end so tight he deserved a cameo in 50 Shades of Grey. Six maiden overs on the trot from Ken, and Jules rolling out the miserly Dutchman routine at the other saw the pressure build and one, then two, then three wickets fall. Burnside were 3/16 and we were on the way. Ken finished with 1/7 off eight and Jules with 3/14 off eight.
Wickets fell at regular intervals. Waza Guy came on after Jules and quickly snared two, and then another couple. We held a couple of cracking catches. Suddenly they were 56/8 and we could smell it. This game was well and truly on. More than one player was desperate for a slash but didn’t want to jinx it. Unlike previous games, where the Cardinals had used as many as nine bowlers, Sunday was a day for was a day for long consistent spells. That meant the usual suspects like Ferg and Brownie didn’t get a bowl, but both saw a fair bit of the ball in the field – and ultimately, one tree seeing a bit too much of Brownie.
Flem was operating well at one end, Waza was 4/7 off seven at the other. If we held on a little longer, run rate was going to be an issue.
But Burnside had that one guy too. For them, Croft was batting well, collecting a 50, and with some eventual decent hitting on short boundaries, the game ran away on us. Waza got some tap in his last over to finish 4/24 – on any day, still respectable figures. Burnside finished up eight down, Croft putting one over long on to finish the match.
A loss for us, and the first holders of the “Fail Bail” but a fantastic game of cricket – and a determination to give it back as soon as possible.
Man of the Match: Ken Julian – 25no, 1/7 off eight and a sharp slip catch
Check out the scorecard from the game.