15 Apr 2012 - Gavan Burden
The pre-match net at the White Hart was notable for three main events, Skip trying to explain how an iPad works to Chaz, the mutual introduction ceremony where new members welcome each other (it was delightful to welcome all new boys, John Boyden, John Dinnis, Paul (Bernie) Clifton and Nigel Taylor) and Yeehaaa (Bob Pettit) doing a runner without paying his luncheon bill.
By the time we arrived at the ground the sun was shining (it was still two sweaters and frozen fingers) and we negotiated that we would chase, again. There was the familiar sight of a Mikey steaming in down the hill, this time it was Mikey (Rocket) Smith who took the new ball and David Brigden up it. The opening few overs were tidy with only the odd rogue ball but it was enough to leak runs where old limbs can’t beat young ones. Both opening bowlers, however, worked out that bowling well doesn’t always paid dividends and that rank long hops and full tosses are more likely to get wickets. Clearly a bit of ‘Ello ‘Ello was called for so debutant John Boyden replaced the Rocket down the slope and Gibbo teased and tantalised then up to claim a well-earned victim. The brakes were squeezing on; our very own JB (our second one, even) bowled 7 tidy overs for 10 runs and 1 wicket; it might have been two have BP not thought twice, or thrice, about a catch drilled just about head height and ducked out of the way; too cold to risk hands! BP replaced Gibbo and once John replaced the other. I think it is reasonable to say that BP matured with age, his 4 overs cost 15 runs of which 11 were off the first 3 balls! John Dinnis was intent on getting back to watch the FA cup semi-final (though the Lord knows why) and his 4 overs cost 13 runs for 4 wickets! The pocket Rocket finished off their innings and ended with 2 wickets for 11 from his 6 overs. Nigel Taylor only had a chance for one tidy maiden before we had bowled out the school for 131 inside 33 overs; that was a quite remarkable performance really. Well done us.
A few warm cups of tea later and what was left of the sandwiches after the kids had eaten them all and Nigel Taylor strode out to bat with new partner Paul (Bernie) Clifton who kindly had stepped in at short notice; it should be noted that BP had taken some sort of fix or other and was so high that he asked to be dropped down the order thus landing Bernie in it! I think it is fair to say that Nigel grew into the role and a class act he looked too. It was a shame that nobody else, with the slight exception of JB, stuck around long enough to build a partnership. Three LBWs later (some very wooden/ hip bruises) and a few rash shots Nigel was left stranded on 47 when our last wicket went down. Next tops scorer was Senor Extras followed by JB with 10 leaving our score just shy of 100.
So the school report would say “bowling was competent, even good when concentrating. Fielding was average, with flashes of both brilliance and comedy; reward was not commensurate with the effort invested, (but bruising was!) Batting; more application required; could do better.”
Rock on RHB’s tea for the Kent Over 50s. Our strategy will be to stuff them with delicious chocolate cake so they can’t run either! Hahaha.