Normal Service Is Resumed
And Wrighty Lets The Ball Do The Talking
Yes folks, normal service is resumed in more ways than one as reports are back and winning results make a welcome return. Yes, there has been a brief interlude whilst Boycott couldn't bring himself to report on that game against Cartmel. One that will stay long in his memory as the game that got away and would have had extra resonance against certain mercenaries of that team. A question put to the pool players committee which has still gone unanswered, surprise, surprise!
Anyway, back to the here and now and it was Sedgwick's turn to host Burneside and after the, lets say, rather one-sided event earlier in the season, hopes were high for a more evenly matched contest, especially since it would be 11 on each side. Plenty of precipitation during the week and a damp pitch meant that Boycott on winning the toss elected to field. The big guns were missing and the Sedgwick team had a youthful look to it with only 4 players over the age of 25. Sam and Wrighty opened the bowling and it was at Burneside that Sam had his best figures of the season. He obviously enjoys bowling against them as he struck in his second over followed by Wrighty taking a wicket in successive overs to leave Burneside reeling on 1 for 3. Jacob Cunliffe-Soan and Paul Burrow then came together and started to repair the damage until Sam chipped in with his second wicket to remove Jacob with a smart catch taken by Will Richards in the covers. 23 for 4 saw Johan come to the crease and Simon Willacy make an unexpected but welcome guest appearance donning the white coat for the rest of the game. It wasn't long before Johan was trapped in front of the wickets by Sam to give him his third wicket and half the side were out for 34 runs. And then to make matters worse, a run out ensued followed by the first ball dismissal of Greenhow to a catch by Meg off Wrighty's bowling to put Burneside in the precarious position of 34 for 7.
Burrow was looking steady and he was joined by Giles who started with his usual positive intent and just as they were looking to put together a useful partnership, Wrighty picked up his fourth wicket when Giles holed out to Alistair taking a catch on the run at mid off. 52 for 8 as Giles departed for 12 and then 55 for 9 as Armitstead was smartly stumped by Matthew to give Meg her first wicket. It looked like it would soon be all over as Cook joined Burrow with still 20 overs to bat. However, Meg and Will Richards could not capture the elusive 10th wicket and the batsmen grew in confidence as the overs ticked by. Even the return of Sam for a couple of overs couldn't achieve the breakthrough and Boycott was becoming frustrated as the score by now had ticked into the 80s. Boycott then brought Ash into the attack and in his fifth over he finally brought Burneside's resistance to a close as he had the obstinate Burrow LBW for a creditable 37.
So Burneside had scrambled to 90 all out in the 41st over and in truth it was probably 20 to 30 runs too many and it gave them a target to bowl at. Wrighty and Sam were the pick of the bowlers and it was pleasing to note that the innings was completed without incident. Time to enjoy Sue's well filled baps as, for a change, we had burgers and hot dogs on the menu.
Over to the batsmen and Boycott and Jack Mallinson opened the batting to face the swing ad seam of Greeenhow and the spin of Cuffe-Soan. With 49 overs to face, it would be a case of win or lose with a draw being the most unlikely result and with recent batting collapses fresh in the mind a steady start was required. However, Jack was bowled through the gate by Greenhow for 6 with the score on 12 and then Sam was unfortunate to see the ball trickle back onto the stumps off his foot to leave Sedgwick on 17 for 2 from 12. So 74 required from 37 overs, a simple equation as Bernard joined Boycott at the crease. A partnership unlikely to get the crowd out of their seats but set on getting the job done. The opening bowlers weren't giving much away and patience was the key as the change bowlers could possibly offer greater scoring opportunities. And so it was as the overs ticked by and the score moved unspectacularly towards the target as 40 runs were required from 20 overs and still 8 wickets in hand. Ryan Airey was bowling economically but runs were started to flow at the other end and it looked like Boycott and Bernard would see the game out but Bernard was bowled for 16 by Houghton which brought Tom Willacy to the crease with 5 runs required. However, 2 ball later and it was all over with one scoring shot from Tom with 2 runs off the bat and four overthrows.
So there we have it, a welcome 12 points to keep SCC in the top half of the table with only 2 matches left to play. The season seems to have passed so quickly but then with only 8 teams in the division what can you expect. Lets hope that clubs will be more honest about their prospects before committing to the league next season.