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Sat 2nd June – 6th XI v Mottingham

DULWICH 170 for 8 (46 overs) BEAT MOTTINGHAM 139 (44.2 overs) by 31 runs


On a weekend when the nation celebrated the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, another momentous event took place just off Dulwich’s very own Mall (Turney Road, that is!), at the Dulwich Sports Ground last Saturday.  Peter Rice’s cricketing career at Dulwich may not quite match the longevity of Her Majesty’s reign, being five years shorter, but an innings of 56 against Mottingham took him past the milestone of 30,000 runs for the club.

Dulwich were invited to take first knock after the visitors won the toss, and Rice along with fellow opener Malcolm Persaud got the side off to a slow but steady start against some challenging Mottingham bowling.  They put on 48 before the junior partner departed for 22 in the 21st over of the innings.  A solid platform had been built, but the departure of Greg Bond and Tony Ebert, neither of whom troubled the scorers, either side of the drinks interval, threatened to dismantle the innings.  However, Rice then found a more than useful ally in Finbarr O’Connor and the pair not only regained the initiative but also stepped up the scoring rate.

Shortly after reaching his half-century, Rice past his historic landmark and the occasion was appropriately marked with generous applause, not only from his team-mates on the boundary’s edge but also the sporting fielders.

A few runs later Rice was bowled for 56, but young O’Connor continued on his merry way before being run out for a sparkling 45, an innings which included six fours and a six.  Vice-captain Matt Craig added a useful 20 and by the end of their allotted 46 overs, Dulwich had reached a commendable total of 170 for 8.

Mottingham made a good start to their run chase with opening bat Craig Stevens threatening a big score.  Joe Hale eventually made the breakthrough, having the other opener caught behind by Peter Rochford, the first of three catches for the veteran stumper.  Stevens then went for 28, also caught behind, after getting tucked up trying to pull a short ball from Finbarr O’Connor, and another youngster, Luke Connor, picked up a wicket during a tidy spell.  Batsmen numbers four to eight all got into double figures as the Mottingham innings progressed, but they fell behind the required run rate as the ever-reliable Matt Craig and spinner Tony Ebert tightened the screw.  Craig was unlucky not to claim at least a couple of wickets during seven economical overs, but it was Ebert who turned in a match-winning spell, taking 5-29 in 12 overs, four of his victims being clean bowled.  Pace bowler Rehan Malik returned to wrap up the innings, with two wickets in as many balls, to leave Dulwich victors by a 31-run margin.           

Sat 5th May – 6th XI v Streatham & Marlborough

STREATHAM & MARLBOROUGH 65 lost to DULWICH 66-3 by 7 wickets


The 6th XI got their season off to a winning start with a comfortable seven-wicket victory over local rivals Streatham & Marlborough at an unseasonably cold Turney Road last Saturday.

After the wettest drought in living memory, both teams were pleasantly surprised to find a playable wicket at their disposal.  However, the start was delayed due to drizzle and, with further rain likely, the captains agreed to a reduced match of 80 overs.  On winning the toss, the visitors elected to bat.

Multi-layers of clothing were the order of the day as Dulwich’s brave souls took to the field in temperatures more akin to the winter months and one of their number was even spotted donning thermal gloves in between overs – wimp!

David ‘Foxy’ Hawes and Lyndsay Morton bowled steadily as the S&M opening pair attempted to come to terms with a slow-paced wicket.  With the score on 16, ‘Morty’ made the breakthrough when Moss tickled a catch to veteran gloveman Peter Rochford.  Another wicket followed shortly afterwards when the S&M number three lofted an injudicious pull-shot off Foxy straight into the arms of Rob Branch at mid-on.  S&M’s third-wicket pair then raised the score to 45 with what proved to be the highest stand of the innings before two more wickets fell in quick succession.

Midway through the innings, with the score 47 for 4 off 20 overs, the teams adjourned to the pavilion for an unusual drinks break – hot mugs of tea!!

By now, medium-pacer Matt Craig and off-spinner Tony Ebert had been introduced into the attack and after the break these two quickly polished off the rest of the innings, Matt finishing with 3-15 off 9 overs whilst Tony captured 3-9 from 6.4 overs.

Remarkably, on such a cold day, Dulwich held all their catches (five in total).  There was also the bonus of a direct-hit run out by the youngest player in the side, Laurie Davidson, who performed splendidly at cover-point throughout the innings.  Such a fielding display on day one could be setting a dangerous precedent!!

After a more traditional break for one of Jackie’s fine teas (plus more hot drinks!), Dulwich set about knocking off the runs.  Any thoughts that chasing a meagre 66 would be a simple task were quickly dispelled.  With only 13 runs on the board, messrs Johnson, Rice and Branch were already back in the hutch.

However, once S&M’s impressive opening bowlers were rested, the remainder of the attack failed to produce too many testing deliveries and Laurie Davidson took charge with several fine attacking shots, finding the boundary four times despite the slow outfield.  Trevor Griffiths lent valuable support and together the pair steered Dulwich to victory with Laurie finishing on 36.

Having bowled out the opposition, the 6th XI took five bonus points to finish with a maximum 20 points.  An encouraging start to the season, but no doubt there will be sterner tests to come.

Sat 13th Aug – 6th XI v Old Colf’s

Dulwich 144-9 beat Old Colfeians 143-9 by 1 wicket

After successive defeats against Blackheath, Orpington, Old Elthamians and Sidcup, the 6th XI recorded their fourth win of the season at home to Old Colfeians.

Old Colfs won the toss and decided to bat, but were soon two wickets down thanks to good catches by Craig at mid-off and a stunning one-handed effort at first slip from Redmayne who was returning from long-term injury. Old Colfs’ no.3, Jagger, took the responsibility for the recovery, batting most of the 46 overs for his unbeaten 36. He blocked out for long periods but got his team to what proved a competitive total of 143/9 on a DSG wicket which was playing a bit up and down. Gratton at no.5 batted with him longest, timing the ball well through extra cover, until he was bowled by Ebert on 47. Witts was the pick of the Dulwich bowlers, with figures of 3-22 on debut. Craig and Ebert chipped in with 2-36 and 2-31 respectively.

Dulwich’s innings got off to a bad start: the top five all fell for single figure scores except Rice, but he soon followed Sealy (0), Ford (2), Redmayne (3) and Straker (1), scoring 13 before middling a long hop straight to mid-wicket. Old Colfs looked like favourites at this point but Witts at no.7 played a counter-attacking 29, hitting a series of huge fours over mid-wicket, to give Dulwich’s innings some impetus. With Witts in destructive mood, the pressure was off Ebert who passed 50 for the first time this season, the sweep being his most productive shot. After Witts was bowled, Ebert was well-supported by Wilkinson (8), with whom he’d shared wicket-keeping duties earlier in the day, although both were dismissed in quick succession and Hale (2) soon followed, leaving Dulwich nine down but needing only one to win. A one-wicket victory was sealed in the next over, an off-target delivery from mystery slow left-armer Pamment beating the keeper for Craig and JL to complete a bye which took the score to 144/9 off 41.1 overs. Skipper Hunt was the pick for Old Colfs with figures of 3-20, backed-up by Bahra (3-35), and Pamment (2-20).

Next week: Blackheath Select away.

Sat 4th June – 6th XI v Sidcup

Sidcup 198-8 beat Dulwich 163 all out

The sixth eleven were left to contemplate what might have been as they slipped to a third successive defeat  – this time against Sidcup’s fiths at DSG.  On a glorious early-June afternoon, skipper Craig called correctly for the first time this season and inserted the opposition.  Late call-ups weakened the batting a little, but saw sixth team debuts from Chris Ford and Joe Hale.

As has often been the case so far this season, dropped chances have been crucial in costing us games. Tevon Spencer (0-31) bowled a beautiful eight-over spell without any reward, though he was very unfortunate to see a good chance from opener Adrian Crust grassed when only a few runs were on the board.  He will bowl far worse spells for greater reward.

Matt Craig (1-21) bowled dependably, but was unable to make the breakthrough as both openers made themselves at home, apparently determined to cash in.  Newcomer Joe was introduced to the attack and bowled some good balls mixed with the odd wayward delivery which was punished – he was also unlucky as Crust tried to hook and hit it straight up in the air in the square as a transfixed fielder did not appear to want to move his legs a few yards to get in position before desperate urging from teammates seemed to wake him up, only for the ball to inevitably hit a bit of hand, then floor… sigh.

By drinks another 3 or 4 catches had gone down and the opposition were over the hundred mark with no wickets down at drinks.  Not ideal.  Scoring for the day, JL must have put something in the drinks as Dulwich mounted something of a comeback with Beechy (2-45) removing Crust for 68 and Stent for 40.  Tim Storey was next on to bowl and after an allsorts couple of overs bowled really well to rip out the next five batmen.  Dulwich even managed to start catching the ball, with 6 out of the 8 wickets caught.  180 was looking likely, but as Tim tired at the end of his spell, Sidcup punished some short stuff to finish on 198-8, with Tim the pick with 5-53.

The reply didn’t get off to the greatest start as Pratish Solanki was bowled for 4, but Chris Ford arrived at the crease and played positively.  Sadly, no one else was really able to stay with Chris who departed on 93-5, having made 48.  Sidcup used a number of promising youngsters along with the wily spin of Peter Newman who did most of the damage with 4-40.  Some lusty blows from Joe Hale and Matt Craig moved us nearer respectability, but in truth Dulwich were again well beaten, finishing 35 runs short.

With games against the top three sides out of the way, Dulwich will be looking significant improvement in the field and with the bat and to get some victories chalked up pronto!

Sat 21st May – 6th XI v Orpington

Dulwich 147-7 lost to Orpington 151-2 by 8 wickets

After a good performance last week against Bexley, Dulwich were well beaten by a strong Orpington third team on a glorious May afternoon at DSG.

Losing the toss for the third successive week, Dulwich were inserted onto what was hoped would be a better middle pitch (a rare privilege of not being the lowest home team). While the seven’s bowling attack was being dispatched to all corners of London by Natwest, the reverse was happening on the middle pitch as openers Rice and Ebert got us off to a steady start against some tight, competent bowling.  However, Tony was soon undone by some extra bounce and pouched in the slips.  Malcolm Persaud followed soon after with the score on 27 and Matt Leng was timing the ball sweetly before a rush of blood saw him depart with Dulwich in some trouble on 50-3.  Peter Rice fell for a patient 27, seemingly undone, by a little extra bounce.  Ralph Tomlinson looked in good form, dancing down the wicket to smash the spinner back over his head a couple of times before being pinned leg before by the opposition skipper, Game.

Steve Johns was unfortunate to fall to an excellent catch low down at gully, which would have befitted a much higher standard game and Rochy also fell cheaply. At 94-7 with 12 overs left, it was already looking like we’d be watching plenty of the second team from the bar, but Richard Beeching (30*) and Matt Craig (25*) batted very sensibly and purposefully to lead us to a still below-par 147-7 – something to bowl at least.

Tevon Spencer bowled a bright opening spell in his first game of the season, while the excellently named Orpington opener, Prince Sterling, took a liking to the usually parsimonious Craig.  With the opposition cruising at over 4 an over, JL turned to Beechy to reign in the scoring and look to make the breakthrough.  Ralph made a great diving effort to catch the opener Sterling in the twenties, then Beechy had the other opener Davis caught at slip after a ricochet off Rochy’s arm.  He was then unlucky to see a very fine nibble from Sterling go down before he had reached his fifty.

With Orpington seemingly strolling to victory, Matt switched ends and saw Ralph snaffle a catch to remove Smith and bring the score to 90-2.  After drinks, Steve Johns was introduced to the attack seeking to repeat his recent prolific wicket taking and a further catch went down in his second over.  However, he couldn’t weave a spell to beguile the batsman this time – Sterling (who has been playing in their first team this season) went on to score an unbeaten hundred as Dulwich were left to contemplate being comprehensively out-bowled, fielded and batted.

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