Bells Yew Green
6 Jun 2012 - Gavan Burden
Team: Alfie Berger-North, Harry Bevan –Thomas, Jack Brown, Angus Chambers, Sam Collens, Zak Iqbal, Hugh Jones C, Jack Larsson, Matt Oster WK, Tom Spurin, Henry Woods, 12th Man – Max Beverley
After a day of torrential rain we awoke on Wednesday to gale force winds and dark black clouds but no rain forecast til later. Keen to play the match your writer drove over to Otford mid-afternoon to check on the pitch and all appeared fine but knowing it wouldn’t take much more rain.
After much telephone and text exchange the oppo finally agreed to make the journey up the A21 ( mistake number 1 ) and so we all met at Orchard Field under the expected shower but nothing too heavy.
With BYG having only 9 players at this point your writer agreed to lend them our 12ther, Max Beverley ( mistake number 2 ) and they won the toss and elected to bat in a reduced match of 16 overs per side.
Our opening bowlers Angus Chambers and Harry Bevan-Thomas started in fine fashion conceding just 10 runs from the first four overs with HB-T ending his two-over spell with excellent figures of 2-1-1-0. The next pair of Sam Collens and skipper Hugh Jones continued this solid start with SC‘s figures of 2-1-6-0 and HJ enjoying another fine wicket maiden for figures of 2-1-1-1. But the BYG opening bat was looking comfortable picking up singles and two’s and then took full advantage of a wayward opening over from Alfie Berger-North Then young Zak Iqbal over-stretched his delivery action to lose impact in his second over and BYG were moving along nicely with Ball retiring on 26* and Gibb keeping the momentum going to find themselves 45 -2 after 12 overs. AB-N came back with a fine second over and Henry Woods was bowling very tidily for figures of 2-0-5-0. But then 2 loose overs at the end from AC and HJ saw the oppo add 15 runs for the loss of Gibb to another run-out again well executed by ‘keeper Matt Oster for a fine 20, and BYG finished on 68.
After a wonderful tea kindly provided by Michelle Oster at late notice ( thanks very much once again !) your writer gave the boys the usual pep-talk and genuinely felt that making 69 runs was well within our grasp to record our first win of the season. This being the case I changed the batting order around ( mistake number 3 ) believing that our known batsman would get us off to a good start, and knowing that we had HB-T to come in at the end to knock of the last few runs if needed…..
As HJ and SC marched confidently out to the middle little did I expect to find us 11-2 after 4 overs with the opening pair out for 2 and 0 respectively, and then 20-4 after last week’s hero MO hit across the line to a straight ball for just 4, and AC clean-bowled at the other end also for 4 and also to a straight one.
It wasn’t looking good and wasn’t getting any better as first Tom Spurin for 3, then Jack Larsson and ZI both going for ducks, and Jack Brown scoring just 1 also failed to deal with this tame but straight bowling, the latter from our own 12th Man MB to cap a solid game albeit for the oppo. Well done Max and for agreeing to play for them. And then HW went for 3 bringing HB-T to the middle with 25 runs on the board and us needing a little more than I anticipated with 9 wickets down but with 5 overs to go…
But Man of the Match HB-T showed the other recognized batsmen how to deal with both straight and wayward bowling in a remarkable innings which took us into the last over needing 15 to win from a seemingly impossible situation when he started. Sadly AB-N was clean bowled first ball after a fine supporting innings for 3 and one of the greatest comebacks and innings in SVCC history was finally laid to rest. Well done though Harry for a fantastic effort ! While I will take some responsibility for the defeat in my desire to get the game on and my generosity in giving them a player, both in my belief in The Spirit of Cricket, I can only really be blamed for the change in batting order which perhaps left us exposed and under pressure in the middle order..
But, as I told the boys after, the target was well within their reach and if our more experienced batters had played with a greater discipline the less experienced players would not have been under such pressure and we would have won this game with ease. I hope all the boys will feel as disappointed as I was, but more importantly learn to be more focussed next time out.
On a brighter note the inaugural Savills Player of the Month Award for May was awarded after the game to Matt Oster for his 49 runs from the opening two innings including last week’s excellent 30, and some fine work behind the stumps. We thank Savills and Bat & Ball Sports for their support and congratulate Matt on a fine start to the season.
Onwards and upwards boys !!
Man of the Match: Harry Bevan-Thomas