2012 Match 17th June - Sunday 1s vs Brislington

Fielding

Batting

* includes 25 points earned for playing in a win.

** including 30 points for winning the MOM election

*** not including 10 points for Saturday XI selection

If this had been your fantasy XI for the week, you would have scored 625.33 basic points, & with Neil as captain, 677.33 (but it would have cost £105Bn).

General match notes:

A report from our esteemed skipper describing the obscure & mysterious strategy employed to bring about this incredible win has now been processed. Reading it, you might think no-one in this team can catch, but actually this is not the case; 2 catches were in fact taken, & quite good ones too; they just slipped the skipper's attention, or he's just blanked the whole idea of catches altogether...

ECCC Sunday 1sts versus Brislington 3rds. 17/6/12 – NSCL Sunday Conference Division 3:

Mmmm, the rush you get with a 1st kiss. However, love is not the drug I am thinking of, today. No,

it is the rush produced by turning round an almost certain losing position, in a cricket match, into a

win. 1st kiss doesn’t come close and this time I had my eyes open.

Despite drop outs from Andy Chester (secret mission with missus) and Sayed (‘emergency’) we

were able to put together a strong xi as the Saturdays lost their game to the weather but provided

willing replacements to our team with Iggy and Steve O joining our happy band. Blow me down,

the game is only on.

Brislington CC have a fine ground, today hosting both ourselves, and their Premier Division team

taking on Hinton & Charterhouse. Their team is made up of a few teenagers who were in their

Premier team but couldn’t handle it so started their 3rds to give them a chance to develop. The

sun (big yellow ball in the sky) was out. Having a look at the soggy but drying wicket, it is obvious

to bowl 1st, well isn’t it? So, for the 1st time this season I lost the toss but we were asked to bowl

anyway. Look into my eyes, not around the eyes but into my eyes etc.

Omar and Duncan open the bowling, as is their custom, they keep the opposition openers very

quiet. 10 runs off the 1st 6 overs but no wickets a-tumbling. An acceleration is attempted and RT2

takes advantage. 34-1 in the 10th over. Like a bearded 20-something, he steamed in and Brislington

seemingly on the ropes at 41-3 off 13 overs. Now the game swung, which our bowling should have

been doing but failed to do as we desired to show the world that bowling short on a damp and

sticky wicket is not the best idea. Compounding this, there was witnessed a terrible, terrible, easy

dropped catch from Skipper ( As the ball gently fell into my perfectly positioned hands I began

to think, ‘I really should call for this, but it is a bit late for that and no one else is going for it, but

I really should call as it focuses my mind, oh balderdash’) and a missed chance off the batsman’s

gloves, both off the growling ‘How do you get a wicket round here’ Stratton. Taking advantage,

the Brislington 5 & 6 proceeded to bash 113 runs off the next 14 overs. Looking grim, but we never

fell apart, negativity was at a minimum, spirit held together and we rallied. RT2 completed a 5

wicket haul. Stratton got his deserved wicket. Omar and Duncan finished with a wicket each. Iggy

weighed in with 2. Steve O also ‘bowled’. Brislington all out for 230 off 37.2 overs. Could have

been worse was the feeling as we trooped off to a delicious looking tea, of which I ate none as I

was still ‘having a word with myself’ about the dropped catch.

With the weather closing in, and Brislington’s openers using the wicket as they knew it should,

our glorious openers struggled (well Justin anyway) to keep up with the run rate (it looked a good

chance that the match would not go our full 40 overs so wanted to be in a good position should

Brislington wish to abandon). Bolts departed to a juggled (bugger) catch with ECC on 49 in the

13th over. Justin followed and we were 68 -2 in the 17th over. Time to put the ‘big-hitters’ in and

get the run rate up. Iggy (14 off 9 balls) RT2 (Golden Duck) and Omar (8 off 2 balls) tried to put a

spark into our innings but 102 – 5 off 21 overs meant it was a big ask. With over 500 years worth

of experience between them, Wilko and Duncan put together a partnership of 45 off the next 6

overs. A bit of pride restored. Brislington still very chirpy, no worries about the game being called

off due to the prevailing drizzle as they sail to victory.

However, there was a legend at the wicket. A legend who had hit 3 boundaries in the 1st 5 balls

he faced. Duncan was joined at the wicket by Steve O, a legend yes, but an opening batsman

with a certain reputation, and we need 83 runs off 13 overs and the recognised batsmen are all

gone (no disrespect to Dean, Jeff or Mr Stratton). Personally, I have seen plenty of Cowboy teams

that have folded at this point, or chosen the slow death route, but not this time, oh no. Every

single one of the next 13 odd overs went for between 5 and 9 runs. Age, cramps, dehydration, the

opposition, nothing could stop these two. Duncan ended with 74 n.o. from 55 balls and Steve O 31

n.o. from 35 balls. The winning run was hit off the 1st ball of final over. Much rejoicing, cuddling

and rushing.

MOM : Duncan for his fabulous sustained fury, attacking, winning, innings. Possibly also for 8

overs of bowling. 5 of them as opener.

CM: Duncan – my ‘D’ button is wearing out on my keyboard. Cider moment for yelling, ‘fuck you,

cricket ball’ as he mashed it over the bowlers head for 4.

3 wins in a row for us now. Divisional leaders up next weekend. At last the season seems back on.

In order of batting appearance here are some notes and comments, but no verdicts.

Disclaimer: despite the godlike importance of the admin team, these pronouncements are subjective interpretations of reality only & are not intended to offend unduly. One of us is more inclined to nurture & the other to nature & if you feel unjustly treated, short of incitement to physical violence, we will publish any reasonable response to our comments

Justin Avery - £11Bn - Batsman

Points scored: 56

Comments: Exceptional millimetres off-the-ground instinctive catch from a well cut RT2 short ball ending up at backward point, to get the wickets falling & set a transiently good tone in the field. Saw off & protected our vulnerable skipper from their dangerous opening bowler, took a sharp blow on the foot from a viciously late inswinging yorker with the replacement new ball (Neil having got the original soggy one lost after a lofted cowish boundary) & got bowled by a peach, nipping out sharply to take the top of off.

Neil Boulton - £11Bn - Batsman

Points scored: 52

Comments: Experienced an unfortunate attention span failure at mid on off Martin's bowling when a catch seemed the far more likely option & became somewhat muted thereafter in the field. Allowed things to slip away a little during the fielding phase, insisting our bowlers bowl short & wide in order to set up the appropriate level of challenge & drama for the batting phase. Got the runs ticking over well at the start of the chase before a restrained pull to backward square was successfully juggled. Dealt with the sideline pressure admirably by choosing not to umpire

Mark Wilkinson - £13Bn - Allrounder

Points scored: 63

Comments: Virtually nothing to do sat deep at first slip throughout & not called on to bowl. Came in & scored solidly whilst the mini-collapse took place at the other end & was still there to help bring the initially high run rate to within a more reasonable reach when Dunc began his miracle work, before managing to scoop a dropping full toss out to extra cover. A critical knock for the team under the circumstances.

Ian Higgins - £10Bn - Allrounder

Points scored: 46.33

Comments: Gave his all in the field & nothing went through him, but chased largely in vain & struggled for the right length with the ball. Took a bit of stick but came back well with 2 late clinically taken wickets. Scored 3 quick boundaries & didn't hang about, but fell to a floated full bunger trying to elevate the run rate.

Robert Taylor - £11Bn - Allrounder

Points scored: 107

Comments: Unique among the cowboys bowlers in finding the right rhythm, line & length pretty consistently over the day. Rewarded well for intelligence & full exploitation of the swing & seam movement available in 2 devastating & innings defining spells. Maintained a healthy 4:1 bowled to caught ratio, following a tricky start, with more than one Cyder nominated wicket. Good footwork to make a mishit lofted drive an easy overhead catch. Best bowling of the season to date, but threw away pole position in the MoM running with the bat, in what seems to be fast becoming an aspect to his game worthy of only minor application. Admittedly, may have been confused by conflicting instructions to both up the run rate & play a long innings, so skied his first ball into the waiting hands of deep point as a sort of compromise.

Omar Miakhail - £9Bn - Bowler

Points scored: 39

Comments: Once again was unrewarded for quick, fairly tight bowling, but kept the pressure on early as their openers scored very slowly. Returned well with one classic fast yorker to get some reward in his second spell. Faced 2 balls batting & ended up with 8 runs at a strike rate of 4, before being run out not backing up or calling or commtting to the run or running his bat in, a situation which didn't need to have been the case if any one of those factors had been different. Was not happy about the outcome; needs education in some running fundamentals if this is not to happen again.

Duncan Brewood - £10Bn - Allrounder

Points scored: 137

Comments: Unrewarded for a decent opening spell against stonewalling batsmen, then tragically slipped into old familiar desperation patterns of ball-chasing fielder movements following the outcome of each delivery, as if where the ball was delivered wasn't relevant or the batsman couldn't tell that the field had been changed & noticed where the new hole was, & unpredictable variations of approach, over, around & under the wicket. Got a deserved wicket for a brave full ball bringing a mistimed drive to RT2 at wide mid off, but this was the highlight as he also took a fair bit of tap. When he came into bat, still in conflict with the batting role of finisher, failsafe & tail marshall at number 7, after a mid-order mini-collapse at 102 for 5, chasing 231, with less than 20 overs remaining, the game was all but lost & the most likely outcome seemed to be all out for maybe 150, if we were lucky. Heroic partnerships with Mark & Steve O later & a miracle had been achieved in storybook fashion. The most extraordinary innings in one of the cowboys' truly great matches, this knock combined audacity, intelligence, execution, luck, commanding running, sheer bloody will & no shortage of pain & opiates, first bringing the target within range, then keeping it going with a run a ball & finally making the result an inevitability. May still be in conflict accepting the role, but never fails to rise to the need for a hero, so it's his own fault.

Not only got MoM in a game featuring 2 jugs, but his shout of "Fuck You!" which completed a lofted straight drive over the bowler's head for 4, some moments later politically corrected by a slightly more muted & self-conscious cry of "Cricket Ball", to avoid the opposition taking undue offence, deservedly won Cyder Moment in a match with no shortage of contenders.

Old Ned - £7Bn - Allrounder

Points scored: 55

Comments: Not his best day in the field, although when he came on to bowl, it was against their well set future centurion & he only suffered for 2 overs. But an indispensable batting performance saw him turn the game around with Duncan, bunting the ball into gaps & taking sharp runs which the fielders were powerless to prevent, effectively maintaining a run a ball for the whole of the long home straight.

Dean Carter - £7Bn - Bowler

Points scored: 25

Comments: Energetic & solid in the field, but wasn't called on to bowl & wasn't able to keep the captain on the case during his time of personal lamentation. Did some umpiring; did not bat, but was prepared to do so for nearly 20 overs.

Jeff Otterbeck - £8Bn - Keeper

Points scored: 25

Comments: Stopped the ball well on a pitch where judgement & prediction of speed & carry were difficult; one slight blip when failing to cling onto an edge standing close for Martin, but then slip was virtually 5 yards too deep for it, so responsibilty is unclear. Otherwise more or less faultless in tricky conditions & reliably supportive with the banter. No need to bat; dress impeccable as always.

Martin Stratton - £8Bn - Bowler

Points scored: 20

Comments: Cyder nominated for his funky jungle interpretations & was notably keen when fielding close for anything he felt was in his zone. Ended up scoring negatively with the ball after a punishing spell featuring some truly awful deliveries, including some that were fortunately so short they became second bounce yorkers, scattered amongst some marvellous variations. One early over in particular could easily have reaped up to 3 victims but ended up with none, & typically only the 8th & final over brought any reward with a successful LBW shout. Remained cool while preparing not to bat & saw no reason to unnecessarily upset his adrenaline levels by padding up, so knew we had it in the bag all along.