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Sat 14th May – 5th XI v Ex Blues

DULWICH 228-7 (40) beat EX BLUES 125 (33.4) by 103 runs

Scorecard

Third game of the season and the weather was set fair. Despite a few changes post-selection with two players coming up and James Chudley switching down from the 4th XI to concentrate on his opening batting role we went into the game with a strong side on paper with a long batting line up, many years of experience and a lot of bowling options. Simon lost the toss and the opposition decided to give us first use of what looked quite a good wicket.

Guy Woodgate and Chuds got us off to a steady start, although Guy soon perished which was a shame as he was hitting the ball well – just straight to the fielders. Brad Burgh joined James and they put on 98 in fine time. We were over 100 at drinks and only one wicket down. They both made 50s – James 59 and Brad outscoring him by one. The opposition skipper confided with us afterwards that he thought we might make 280 to 300. However a few wickets fell soon after – Chudley and Simon Bailey bowled, Brad to an excellent catch right on the boundary and Tim Brown caught behind. At that stage we were looking as though we may waste the excellent start the top three had given us and we had to battle to first get to 200 and then in a flurry of late order hitting from Steve Walker (42 not out including two sixes from the first two balls of the last over) and some exquisite shots from Kanak Patel we managed to post 228 in our 40 overs. Will Burgass was also out to a great catch and Simon Peters to a direct hit run out although he had rather overestimated his ability to get through the 22 yards. We felt that if we bowled well then we should win the game.

Unfortunately in our innings and at the end of a lengthy spell of umpiring David Woods was struck by an errant throw and with a nasty cut and much blood had to be helped from the field. As we will see David is made of tough stuff and continued on to play his part in a good team performance.

I'm not sure how many of you know the Ex Blues ground but it has a distinct slope and skipper Simon Peters gallantly toiled up the hill to allow Kanak to use the down slope to his advantage. Both settled into a good line and length despite the unusual run up conditions. Both bowled solid 7 over spells Simon taking 1 for 26 and Kanak 1 for 27. We were always in a good position but the Ex Blues skipper Ashley Harris was hitting aggressively and we knew we needed to get him out in order to win the game. A double bowling change saw Matt Craig replace Simon and David Woods replace Kanak. Both bowlers also settled into a rhythm on a pitch that was just holding up a bit. Their bat continued to take the positive approach and at drinks they were a similar score to us but with 1 more wicket down. The rest of the Ex Blues line up are not of the same class and we had to remain patient. Eventually Harris played one expansive shot too many to Woodsy and holed out to an excellent catch by Steve Walker at long on. Matt did what he does and bowled straight – four wickets all bowled and a few near misses as reward. David ended up with 10 overs 3 for 38.

A strong side and, if we can keep something similar through the season, we should be competitive are currently in fourth place and play third placed Orpington at DSG on Saturday.

Sat 11th May – 5th XI v Old Wilsonians

OLD WILSONIANS 170 lost to DULWICH 171-8 by 2 wickets

Scorecard

On a damp, windy and cold day the fives started their league season against Old Wilsonians who included in their side past Dulwich player Jeff Mascherenas.  In a tight game both sides battled to gain supremacy and in the end Dulwich sneaked home to win by 2 wickets.  A similar story to last year when most of our games were really close good teamwork got us over the line to kick off the season well.

Tim won the toss and decided to use the greenish pitch conditions first.  Kamran Munawar and Luke Howard opened the bowling – fair to say Kamran didn’t bowl as he's capable of, in the slippery conditions.  Luke got both openers to bring Jeff M to the crease.  A bit of light hearted banter about reaching the tail already followed and Jeff soon went LBW to a fine ball from Mangal who replacing Kamran, bowled two good spells to end up with 4 for 44.  The 3rd wicket then settled the game down and although Sudhakar bowled well Rob Webster was a bit under par and we let them get to 110 for 3 at drinks

The skipper then came on and bowled a wide first ball – the second ball was even wider and the Wilsonians number 3 who had top scored with 41 inexplicably swept it and managed to play on.  Not the best wicket taking ball but they all count!  Tim soon took himself off as there were still overs from Luke and Mangal to use up.  Luke also got a bit of a luck with a run out at the non-strikers end from a  deflection off his feet.  Perhaps it was to be our day…..  At this stage of the innings Luke and Mangal were bowling well and they ended up sharing 7 wickets.  Tim then came back on for the last over to wrap up the innings.  Old Wilsonians 170 all out.  We had let a few runs slip in the field but were pretty happy given the situation at drinks

We then started our reply with Jay Mahey (57 runs)  in good form although on league debut Michael Faulkner struggled to get his timing sorted after his 50 of the week before (though he picked up an injury on the field).  Michael went for 4 and Ravi  followed soon after but Jay was keeping the scoreboard ticking and soon made his 50 and had a good partnership with Shok who was batting very sensibly.  After Jay got out a few wickets went quickly as the light started to go.  Vice-Captain Rob Webster arrived in the gloom and batted very well with Shok – hitting the bad ball but also putting great pressure on the fielders.  Rob then fell and Sudhakar went out and played a very nice little innings to get us within one shot of victory.  These two partnerships are the sort needed in a tough situation and  last year a collapse might have followed.  Shok was tiring and got out with only a handful required, leaving a composed little cameo from Sudhakar to hit the winning runs.  A late finish as due to the odd rain delay while both sides were slow with their overs.

A great match and both teams had a good beer and chat afterwards – Jeff managing to stay very late reminiscing!

Next week away at Caribbean Mix.

Sat 26th May – 5th XI v Orpington

ORPINGTON 3rd XI 317-5 beat DULWICH 5th XI 91 by  226 runs

Scorecard

A disrupted week with regard to selection as all the club's wicket keepers went on holiday together and various drop outs signalled steady phone conversations to get a settled eleven.

We knew we were in for a game against good opposition in Orpington and on a hot day they won the toss and understandably batted first.  We opened with Luke Howard who was in better form than the previous week and Joe Hale but we allowed the opposition to get away.  They were aggressive and with that got a little bit of luck and kept up a rate of between 6 and 7 an over all day.  A first wicket for the club for Paul McGowan and a good spell from Sudhaker were the only real plus points.  Jamie Hall did ok as stand in keeper and Julian Dean took over at drinks to allow Jamie to be added to the bowling attack.

Eventually they ended on 317 for 5 after 45 overs.

Our reply was dependent on one or two of our top 6 making big runs and it just didn't happen.  Jesse Johnson managed to work his way to 34 but no one else really helped as we lost too many wickets to the ultimate wicket taking ball -  the full toss.  Julian (after scoring 15) was a bit unlucky after a vicious lofted drive was tipped off the hands of the bowler and then looping nicely to mid off.  A paltry 91 all out and some work to do if we are to be challenging the better sides in the comp.

Sat 19th May – 5th XI v Old Colfs

DULWICH 167-6 beat OLD COLFEIANS 146 by 21 runs

Scorecard

Finally we get to unpack the whites, dust off the gear and start the season.  After what seemed like many weeks of dodgy weather we were all just happy to get a game on Saturday. 

In recent seasons we have had good close games with Old Colfs and with them having played a game already and having finished above us last year this was likely a tough test.  Skipper Brown lost the toss and in greenish conditions they put us in. 

Mal Persaud and Julian Dean opened but neither looked likely to get a big score against some clever and tight bowling. the ball was moving a round and Julian was done by a beauty of a ball.  Mal went not long after and then Chris Ford and Sam Taylor joined up to begin the recovery.  it was slow going and at drinks although only two down the target of 160 to 180 looked a long way off.  Both batsmen had scares with Sam giving a few chances and Chris surviving a confident appeal for caught behind. 

Sam eventually went in the thirties and Alan Edwards came in to join Chris.  We knew that if those two batted for a while we would be somewhere close to where we needed to be.  Alan made 40 to go with the few runs he'd made for Surrey over 50s in the week and Chris eventually went for a fine 73. 

A few runs added after this to take us to 167 for 6.  A competitive score in conditions that were not easy to score quickly but we were going to have to bowl well to win.

Mangal Nasiri and Luke Howard opened the bowling.  Particularly good to see Luke back after one game in the last three years.  Fair to say his bowling was a bit inconsistent with some really good deliveries mixed in with some short stuff that their opener took kindly too.  With 6 (probably 7) good bowlers in the side it meant a quick change and Rob Webster was brought on when they we 40plus off 6 overs.  Rob has been hiding (I mean hidden) in the 7th team but having wintered well and been available through the warm up games managed to get a chance at this level.  He bowled a good spell and together with Mangal they brought the run rate back.  Rob got the opener early in his spell to get us going and eventually took 3 for 25 .  He reminds me of Andy Mills a solid no nonsense cricketer who will do well at this level.

Jamie Hall replaced Mangal after a really good spell that unluckily not given I'm any reward.  Jamie also bowled well with both of them bowling a perfect line and length for the pitch.  Mangel ended up with 8 overs but no wickets only conceding 27 while Jamie took 3 for 29.  Rob and Jamie kept getting wickets just as the skipper was thinking of a change. 

At the other end we turned to spin as young leg spinner Sudhaker Rethinsamy came on and took a wicket with his first ball.  The batsman obviously wanted to attack immediately but was too aggressive and was bowled to start what is hopefully a long and successful career at Dulwich for Sudhaker.  The whole spell was good to watch and probably deserved more than the single wicket.

Old Colfs had started confidently but they still needed 34 with only three wickets left and although they were ahead of the rate we had pulled the scoring rate back quite a bit.

Tim Brown came on as 6th bowler and the first couple of balls were awful.  Fortunately the third full toss ball was swung high into the air and Jamie Hall took a good catch.  Wickets with successive balls in Tim's next over finished the game off.  A good team win by 21 runs to get the season moving.

Next week is top of the table Orpington at DSG.

Sat 2nd July – 5th XI v Old Colfeians

The fifths had a good 4 wicket victory over top of the table Old Colfeians, thanks to accurate bowling from Foxey Hawes (4 for 46) and a fine unbeaten innings of 71 from Shok, to record their 3rd win of the season.

Old Colfs were invited to bat first, and made a solid start until Tim Storey (1 for 30) made the initial breakthrough.  Forthright batting saw them reach 105 for 1 from 20 overs.  A big score seemed on the cards, but Dulwich kept their heads up in the field and brought on Foxey Hawes for some of his metronomic medium pace.  He duly delivered, ripping through the middle order.  He was well supported by some steady bowling from Tim Brown (1 for 41) at the other end, and some good fielding from Dulwich, in particular Chris Ford, who took two tricky high catches.  Sparky Peters (2 for 0) was then introduced into the attack, and promptly took the two remaining wickets to close the innings on a below par 151 all out.

Dulwich’s reply started badly, with David Straker falling LBW for a duck.  Next man in Chris Ford didn’t fare much better, caught behind for 1.  At 10-2, but with loads of time left in the game, some solid, sensible batting was required.  Debutant Sourish Mukherjee (47) was joined at the crease by Shok (71 no) and their partnership prospered.  When  the hitherto untroubled Mukherjee was caught behind sweeping, off his gloves, in came Jesse James Johnson (14) who kept the score moving on.  Colfs reintroduced opening bowler Reeves, who immediately removed Johnson, quickly followed by Anthony Gaughan, LBW for a duck – Old Colfs were suddenly back in the game.  Jamie Hall (8) provided some sensible resistance and supported Shok who was now seeing the ball like a football, but with the victory target close, was given out LBW. He alleged to have been struck on the box (Ed’s note – one of the photos seems to show it hitting on the back leg on the knee roll!), which brought a laugh and a cheer from the crowd (mostly the  4s who had finished earlier), followed by a bigger laugh and a cheer when umpire Reardon raised his finger.  However Skipper Brown (2 no) calmly helped Shok complete the victory with 4 wickets intact and 7 overs remaining.

Next week, Roebucks at home.

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