Steeple Aston 156 All Out O.Selway 4/28. R.Simpson 4/26
MSCC 82 All Out Longman 4/18. Renk 3/7
MSCC lost by 74 runs
It is often a cathartic exercise to have to write a report about a game where although your name is on the team sheet your contribution to that game is definitely not worth recording, and so it is that I shall spare myself further blushes, except to send a memo to myself to go to winter nets, or even early season nets in future.
On a pleasantly sunny day Steeple Aston batted first, with George and Olly opening the bowling with their usual accuracy and pace, even on a slow wicket from a fair amount of rain during the week. First blood to Olly as he got one of the openers trapped in front. We know he is going to bowl a slower ball fourth ball of an over, and I am sure most of the opposing teams do as well, but he still manages, time and again, to deceive them and gain valuable wickets. Which is just as well, as it was quite some time before the next wicket fell thanks to an excellent catch by the skipper for the day, Jon, off Darren’s bowling. Meanwhile, at the other end N Duggett was progressing ever closer to his 50. Olly picked up his second wicket, but the batsmen were in command and too many for the home team’s liking were getting in and scoring freely. Mr Duggett duly reached his 50 only to succumb to Richard’s bowling shortly afterwards. His departure, and approaching tea pushed Steeple Aston into looking for quick runs, and Olly and Richard soon found themselves picking up wickets regularly, and cheaply, and the last five wickets fell for just over 20 runs, leaving Steeple Aston all out for 156 with Olly having figures of 4 for 28, and Richard 2 for 26. It was a target that would be easily managed most weeks…
As ever, the standard of the tea was magnificent, and this may have been our team’s problem, as over indulgence led to a lethargy in concentration, or maybe, not to be harsh on ourselves, it was just one of those days. Dan and Nick started off with great intent, with Dan reaching the cover boundary with a great shot, but then misjudged a straight one and we were one wicket down, very soon to be followed by Darren. Jon and Nick steadied the batting for a while until one that kept low saw off Nick. Richard, in his usual style, looked like he had another engagement in half an hour and wanted to finish the game by then, but this wasn’t to be his day either, and he went cheaply, by his standards. With Jon out shortly afterwards, there followed a sorry procession of batsmen back to the pavilion, save for George, who showed many of us how to stick in there. It is very rare for MSCC to have four batsmen who do not score in a game, and that eventually was the difference, as the team was bowled out for 82. Well played to Steeple Aston, as this was an all-round performance by their whole team. We know that can play better and matches and results later in the season will surely show that. Just remember that practice is a good idea…