DULWICH V. FULL MONTY (Twenty20)
E. W. Swanton and Neville Cardus are rightly regarded as the doyennes of Cricket penmanship. Both are renowned for their sagacity and erudition but even they would have struggled to find the right adjectives to describe the bowling of Talisman Gibson in tonight’s pipe-opener of the Dulwich 7th’s tour of Somerset, Wiltshire and Dorset. (All 3 counties are mentioned as Gibson’s bowling was dispatched to each one of these shires, during the course of the tour).
The game was played in the sylvan delights of the Bruton School Ground, complete with doleful church bell and surrounding graveyard: the symbolism of which, was not lost on the hapless Gibson as the ebullient, pugnacious and agricultural Bundy (Full Monty’s opening bat) duly filled not only his boots, but also his coal scuttle and a conveniently placed Cement Mixer on the long on boundary. Gibson’s 2 over analysis make interesting reading: 64441. .416.6. Modesty prevents your correspondent going into any detail in describing the 4 “dot” balls bowled, all cunningly flighted, viciously spinning off-breaks, apart from one which bounced twice. After 2 overs Gibson was, unsurprisingly, removed from the attack. Bundy, however, continued on his merry way. Normally, when writing these reports your correspondent looks for a literary leitmotif to describe excellent individual performances. The only apposite metaphor in these circumstances would be that of Ming the Merciless from the Flash Gordon Comics. But even this could not be construed as a correct parallel as Bundy revealed his charitable side retiring unhurt with 54 not out to his name. The Full Monty completing their 20 overs with a daunting 152.
This total became considerably less daunting, however, when the Full Monty contrived to bowl no less than 25 wides. Such philanthropy still left Dulwich struggling to reach the required scoring rate. Cook, Branch and the rejuvenated Rochford (41*) struck some lusty blows and Captain Pylas ran between the wickets in much the same way that his Greek compatriots run their economy. He did, however, strike a mighty 6 which almost interrupted the progress of Great Western’s Taunton to Paddington 7.49. Dulwich hearts were lifted when The Full Monty’s two guest players – Rob Webster and Mike Owen – were introduced into the attack. Could this be Dulwich’s first chance to win this fixture in 5 attempts. Sadly, it was not to be: a tantalising 13 runs was all that separated the 2 teams when the 20 overs ran out and both teams repaired to the Montacute Arms and consumed several pints of Chuffin’ Ale: a passable beverage of questionable parentage, but with some redolent notes of Golding Hops and a flowery bouquet.