President Cardinals Match Report (13th February 2016)

One Day Competition - President Cardinals vs BWU, Sydenham Park #3, Presidents, 13th February 2016

With as many as seven frontline batsmen unavailable for this game against Burnside, putting them in for a rinse and repeat of the thrashing handed out last time was our best chance of victory, and having won the toss, Ralphy duly inserted Burnside with that in mind.

With the grade top four decided and effectively nothing on the line in this game, we chose to play with the mix a bit, knowing full well that doing so hadn’t served us well in previous games going back several seasons. The approach this time was to play competitively, but also provide opportunities to those who hadn’t had one in a while, with our eye on bigger and better things in coming weeks.

We again found ourselves fielding in hot conditions, with normal opening bowler Waza behind the stumps, and Jase Miller and Ralphy with the ball. Both Burnside openers got starts, and it turned into a long hot afternoon. The first wicket, Conway (58) fell at 103 and Burnside went to drinks one down with the score at 119 – and Syds feeling the total was a bit light, given the road Syds 3 had clearly turned into.

However light we thought it was, we failed to back it up with quick wickets as we so often have after drinks this season. Burnside poured it on in the second twenty, and although they eventually started losing wickets, they amassed a total beyond what we’d successfully chased at any time this season, finishing 273/6, Rhys Barron making a well compiled 107 and almost carrying his bat.

Jase Millar bought another wicket, reducing his average to $50 each with his third wicket of the season in his second appearance and looking afterwards like he’d be dragged backwards through a particularly aggressive gorse bush. Brownie made a welcome return to the side, having not played since November, due to a knee injury, also delivering a tidy spell and perhaps unlucky not to pick up a wicket. Flem bagged three, and Ralphy, Ferg and Jase one each.

None of the bowlers really got taken to – Jase Millar 8-0-58-1, Ralphy 6-0-38-1, Ferg 5-0-32-1, Fleming 7-0-43-3, Brownie 5-0-31-0, Jules VD 5-0-27-0 and JK delivering the one maiden bowled, with 4-1-20-0.

Lacking the batting services of Laughton, Wild, Ski, Loose, Spence, Moore, Phil Walker and others who would normally feature in the top order, the batting line up was always going to have a new look about it.

It was left to JK and Bert to open Syds account – Bert going so quickly he barely opened at all. At the other end, JK with the bat and Brownie as umpire raised Crash’s blood pressure for a period when Burnside was convinced JK had nicked one behind. JK was adamant he hadn’t hit it, and Brownie was convinced he’d heard nothing, when those on the boundary definitely heard something. Crash muttered shortly after whether either of them would have trouble sleeping that evening. JK eventually departed for 2.

Phil Barclay was even more frustrating at the other end, batting at three and finally using his bat for something more than aesthetic purposes and occasionally disturbing the air. He survived a decent spell by Gibson before edging one over Crash in the slips for four, followed next ball by a cover drive. He also used the toe of the bat to good effect for at least two French cuts and, as frustrations mounted, felt obliged to mention he normally batted 11. He compiled 20 before getting yorked by Croft. Waza had been and gone for a quick 13 at the other end while Phil frustrated and after Phil was out with the score at 39, a collapse of sorts followed, the next three wickets falling at 40, with Jules VD, Jase Millar and Dunne all exiting after short periods.

Phil then fired Ferg, a full one hitting on the back pad dead in front – that even Brownie, by then at the non-strikers end, agreed was out. Phil declined at least a dozen other appeals as Burnside sought to snare the last few wickets of what they thought was a well-earned victory. Brownie ran himself out, for 21, having thought he’d pumped one past cover, only for Barron to grab it and return it to the keeper, running Brownie out by most of the pitch – though it was still a good return for Brownie that included a couple of meaty smites down the ground.

With the run rate mounting to about 18 an over, Flem arrived well down the order, and with Ralphy finally appearing at 11, Crash was heard to liken our batting approach to that of Easts Blue.

Ralphy inevitably hoiked a couple over cow for six, including one off the toe for a bit of late drama, before top-edging one to be the last man out for 13, with Flem bagging the not out (17) – Syds finishing up all out for 101 in the 35th.

Burnside retain the Frampton Shield, and we’ll be giving the Fail Bail back in a couple of weeks.

Man of the Match: TBD

Check out the scorecard from the game.