Runs for Willis, DT and Doug, Rahul claims the Piggy and Jonty bowls 7 overs in 5 different spells!
After showers in the morning, the Nutters made their way down to one of their favourite fixtures in the tiny Village of Plaistow. As a small club that only plays one fixture a year, the match is attended by most of village.
Skipper Raggy Singh lost the toss and was inserted on a damp track on a small ground and was keen to set a competitive total. The ground at Plaistow is very small and many fielders found themselves on the boundary saving singles for most of the game. Plaistow new ball bowler T. Payne bowled some beautiful outswing in his first few deliveries before sneaking one under Singh’s bat for a duck. Graham Prior was given out LBW for 1 to opening bowler Gravestock the following over. Nathan Williams batting at 4, had been practising all morning and had belted the ball all round the park in training. He smashed the shot of the day for four on his third ball and was starting to find some confidence out in the middle with some solid defensive shots. Unfortunately Jonny Willis, who had been kept relatively quiet up till that point, ran Williams out in a dreadful mix up to leave Nuthurst struggling on 23-3. However some loose deliveries near the end of Payne and Gravestock’s opening spell were belted into the trees by Willis on his way to an entertaining 37.
Willis was given out LBW to Payne in his final over with the score on 53 and when Simon Whitehouse pulled one straight to square leg for 1 off change bowler T. Brunning, Nuthurst found themselves in need of a partnership. The perfect man for the rebuilding job was Dave Butcher (Doug) who defended his wicket well on a track that was starting to show signs of uneven bounce. He was initially joined by Charlie South who played a couple of lovely shots before he was too was given out LBW for 14 and Rahul uncharacteristically miscued his second ball and was caught. Both men were dismissed by C. Ross-Hurst who bowled a tight 8 over spell. DT then made his way to the crease batting at number 9 and he and Doug took the Nuthurst total past 100 before Doug was bowled for a vital 28. Jonty and DT had some fun down the order, Jonty hitting two sixes meaning he came back to the pavilion grinning from ear to ear after being caught on 23. Olly Prior was the last man out for 1 leaving DT not out for a very valuable 29 not out.
Nuthurst closing on 153 all out inside 33 overs, but they felt comfortable they had enough on the wicket despite the short boundaries. Both teams then took the short walk to the local pub, where Tea was being served. It was unanimously decided that it was the Tea of the season and contained the most excellent (and large) slices of cake the Nutters had come across for some time. Willis in particular enjoyed the cheese board selection and both sets of players appeared very full when they returned to the ground.
Graham Prior and Keith Greenwood were asked to start proceedings with the ball and Plaistow got off to a slow start in the run chase. Prior Jnr replaced Jonty after two overs as he bowled in partnership with Chippy to try and get the first wicket. Chippy eventually got Greaves LBW for 15 after a good battle. It took the introduction of our regular wicket-keeper Charlie South into the attack to get the next two wickets as Raggy Singh got two stumpings in South’s first over. We are still waiting for the official times on the stumpings but both South and Singh were delighted with the wickets. T. Brunning came in at 4 for Plaistow and started to hit some powerful boundaries as the Nuthurst bowlers were rotated regularly rotated. Greenwood in particular seemed to appear for just the one over before disappearing again off to the outfield every time he dropped a catch. Chippy finished his 8 over opening spell with the wicket of Lockwood. Simon Whitehouse bowled 4 overs without luck before Willis came over for a two over burst to dismiss Brunning for 25. Payne, Stapleton and S. Brunning added 11 apiece in the middle order with Rahul getting a wicket and a fantastic run out, claiming the contents of the piggy.
With Plaistow 8 down and still 60 or so runs adrift it looked as if it was just a matter of time before the Nutters were going to claim victory. However C. Ross-Hurst had been kept down the order at number 10 and scored heavily off Rahul’s last over. Each boundary was greeted with huge cheers from the assembled crowd and suddenly Plaistow had a chance to sneak over the line. Greenwood was recalled for the last time as he and Graham Prior picked up the last two wickets needed to end the game. Nuthurst ended up winning by 29 runs but a hard fought game with some excellent performance on both sides.
The teams walked back around the corner to enjoy many laughs in each other’s company and polish off the remaining slices of cake. An excellent fixture and we hope to see Plaistow again next year!