After our thumping last week at Crowmarsh Steve decided to go for a new option with the batting this week, bat first…and my gosh did it work! We managed to rack up an impressive 256 before taking enough wickets to keep them short of the total with out actually bowling them out.

Although rain had been forecast for Sunday it turned out to be a very nice afternoon for cricket, warm enough with plenty of sun but occasional cloud cover. As Steve elected to bat first he decided he should lead by example and The Chief followed him to the crease to open the batting! Cold Ash opening the bowling with a fairly sedate attack, with swinging but not especially pacey deliveries at one end, and spin from the outset at the other.

Ollie managed to add three to the total before being caught chasing a wide ball from the spinner, and after a promising start Steve followed again caught chasing the spin for 10. Next entered our supreme pair of the day, POD and Longdog, who both excelled with the bat after their mid season breaks. Coll played some very technical but flowing shots on the way to his 83 Not Out (including 11 fours). He successfully passed a sticky patch in the middle where he barely faced a ball for about five overs but in his own words said ” I did a lot better when i actually played cricket shots, and stopped trying to slog everything!”

Longdog was a bit more brutal in his 62; battering two huge sixes, one over the road opposite the club house, and 10 fours as he refused to do any running due to a painful back. However it seemed to work, as both he and coll scored more than our entire team the week before! Mongo, a last minute addition to the team sheet waded in with a handy 43 as well before getting caught attempting a huge hoik and getting it slightly wrong.
We then attempted out usual middle order slump, but it was too late, we were already cruising and Col was set on getting to 250, and not even myself or young Andy Warne (no relation to the fat womanising spinner) efforts of 1 and 0 respectively could slow us down.
Barrrriiiiiii Martin came in and helped Col along to the end, adding 24 not out to his average for the season! Somehow we ended up with a very impressive 256, but a huge impressive innings from the POD was inspirational to all and earned him Man of the Match for his efforts….if only it had been a forty over game, he might have got his ton.

A beautiful tea from Judith… i mean Longdog (at least 4 teapots, i think the ice creams from the freezer would have made it a five) so full of baguette and tea we headed out to the field hoping we would be able to keep the runs down and win a game for the first time in a few weeks!

The Cold Ash opening pair were looking like they meant business and certainly took on their challenge of 256 with relish. Tweeky and Peachy were the opening bowlers with the challenge of taking early wickets, but their batsmen were up to the task and both ended without taking a wicket. [Tweeky 7-0-36-0; Peach 7-0-35-0]
As the Cold Ash openers were looking on course to reach our mammoth total so in came Barrriiiii and Diddy to try and stem the tide.

Barriiii eventually broke the stalemate as he bowled their number one for 28, but their danger man was still at the crease. Now entered an almost comical stage of the innings as their number three came to the crease and succeeded in edging Barry through the slips at least three times; managing to evade me at wicky, two slips and a gully! Including an attempt when a fairly thin edge came through and I dived for it, but only succeeded in knocking it away from Chief’s hands at first slip. This was eventually ended as the edging batsmen got another thicker one off diddy’s bowling and i took the catch behind the timbers. Now with Cold Ash at 113-2 the Chief was brought into the bowling attack, and after a a rather expensive first over managed to dismiss their number 4 who was making progress on 37, finding some good flight to confuse the batsmen until he edged one, I just about managed to take the catch behind with a huge stretch but the effort earned me Champagne Moment for the day! The following delivery from Chief Haine also caused problems as the new batsman charged down the wicket before missing it and i promptly stumped him, how ever as i was falling over myself to get to the stumps the umpire failed to notice where the batsman was, and did not give him out.

At the other end Barrriii was given a lucky break after his misfortune last week, he got their number two (55) who was looking to be the danger man with a very lucky LBW (the phrase not in a million years was thrown around, but it was given and he walked…so game on)

Longdog also attempted to coax the batsmen with some spin, and took a wicket as their number 5 was caught by Nordic in a superb show of catching prowess! Mongo felt his hangover has subsided enough to have a bowl, and refused to bowl spin so cranked up the arm and took two wickets for 16 runs off his two overs. Including a slower ball to their little un in the final over, who then tonked him for 4!! haha

All in all they ended up at 208-8 at the end of their 35 overs, so we took the win!! It was a really good game with everyone getting involved and doing their bit, nice weather and a good tea topped it all off.

Home again next week to Mongo and his barmy Uffington army, so lets see if we can top 256 eh boys?