The final home game of the season was here already , and hasn’t the season flown ! It seems just the other day it was the first game of the season and we were all looking out the window at the rain – or was that just the other day ?
Three successive defeats for the 1’s is far from the sort of form wanted at the business end of a season and a visit from Eynsham , whom had held us to a hard fought draw earlier in the season and were buoyed by an upset win the week before, had all the hallmarks of another banana skin.
“We’ve been awful chasing so we might as well have a bat” was skips pre-toss analysis. Eynsham won it and we would be fielding first.
Will x2 opened the bowling and kept the scoring to a premium on a surface that was offering plenty for the bowlers , Wilbury taking the first wicket as opener Smitten wafted at a wide one through to Col.
After 10 overs Scotty and Craig were introduced into the attack and began to build momentum, Scott claiming a double wicket maiden in his second after a smart catch from Winston at point and bowling Pullen via inside edge and pad for a two ball quacker.
Fingers up and fingers down for catching ? Every cricketer has their preferred method. When a no ball for height was called early and the ball was skied Will saw the perfect opportunity to try his lesser preferred fingers up “ Australian” method. The “Harvey hole” was left so he could keep an eye on it, unfortunately the hole proved bigger than the size of a cricket ball and leather met jawbone. Thankfully no damage done other than a pigs award.
Meanwhile , Scott’s decent spell continued and a peach to left hander Cook ( not Sir Alistair unfortunately) saw him nick behind, earning Scott a champagne moment award. After a short rain delay , number 6 Prentice put one up the chimney , safely taken by Wilbury to give Scott his first league 4fer for the club. Craig finally got his just rewards for a typically tireless spell , clean bowling Wagerfield to leave the visitors in tatters at 63-6.
We didn’t have to wait to long for the next “village” moment , number 8 Magerison wildly swiping at a short ball and missing , the ball in Cols gloves , his bat at extra cover. This was a sign of his intent and he raced to a quick fire and important 20 runs for his team before being bowled off a jaffa from the re-introduced Will H who also removed opener Bowles in similar fashion for a resilient 32 from 87. Winston moped up the tail removing numbers 10 and 11 in short order to leave Eynsham all out for 119 from 34.2 overs.
The rain returned during the tea break , which aloud everyone to watch some depressing rugby from Twickenham. Thankfully the weather cleared without a huge delay and the chase began . An under the weather Col was dismissed early off the bowling of Pullen before Winston and TPL set a solid foundation for the chase. With the outfield now very damp , many shots weren’t getting their full value and 2’s and 3’s were aplenty throughout, TPL diving in to make a second – one of many brilliant camera shots from the day captured by Brammers on the boundary edge. Winston hit his obligatory six onto the road but fell just after bowled by Cooper for 17. TPL was also bowled this time by Parker , but had done his job with 24 at the top of the innings with the score 56-3.
Jonny joined Skip in the middle and the two moved through the gears nicely – accelerating to the finish line with the highlight a huge six for Jonny over deep square leg. “ Bit of a top edge “ he claimed. The shot earning a champagne nom , the comment a fine. Jonny finished on an unbeaten 27 from 18. Skip also joined the fun , a six of his own and a lovely slog sweep four the highlights from his unbeaten 39 from 31 as we coasted home in 18 overs to win by 7 wickets.
“Viscous” Italian shower gel and rumours of favourable results elsewhere followed. Final day trip to Chalgrove anyone ?