Archive | June, 2011

Sat 18th June – 7th XI v B of E


The banking industry has endured something of a bad press recently. Thanks to their mismanagement and reckless gambling with other people’s money, the world is now staring into the abyss. It is something of a surprise, therefore, to discover that the Bank of England Club continues to offer superb facilities for the playing of Cricket, Tennis and Squash. Even banks seem to be able to get something right. There is a sting in the tail, however: Young’s Ordinary was priced at £3.45 a pint. Your correspondent has it on reliable authority, that no-one has ever charged £3.45 a pint for this excellent, but usually reasonably priced beverage. Could it be that the private caterers who now run the Bank of England bar, not unlike Messers (sic!) Cameron and Osborne see the way to economic salvation in the following way: “Screw the bastards till the pips squeak and then screw them some more?”

After driving through heavy rainfall for most of the journey, suddenly, over the leafy suburb of Southfields a thin sliver of azure sky appeared: just enough to keep one naval seamstress in gainful employment for a couple of days. As a result the game started on time with Griffiths and Afzal opening the batting for Dulwich. The wicket turned out to be something of a two-faced untrustworthy Nick Clegg of a pitch. It was wet one end but dry and unyielding at the other. Griffiths succumbed quickly to a ball that climbed steeply from back of a length and the game became very attritional for some time as Afzal and the talisman Gibson tried to establish some sort of platform for the innings against some accurate bowling from the precociously talented Ramesh and the more mature Eddows.

Some more critical observers were quick to point out that Gibson and Afzal should have done more to get the score moving. Gibson, in particular, seemed to find himself in the firing line of this vituperation. As a neutral observer, with the benefit of hindsight, your correspondent would like to go on record as saying these criticisms are not entirely without foundation. He persistently missed quick singles that were there for the taking and his mind only seemed half on the problem of nudging, nurdling and rotating the strike. All one can surmise, is that the prospect of becoming a grandfather may have been “getting” to him. Happily, the birth of a 6lbs., 6 ozs. boy on 20th June may have resolved some of Gibson’s off-field concerns and we can look forward to some more fluent innings from this cricketing yeoman in the future. At length, Gibson succumbed to a full toss which may have had some late reverse swing on it. He was swiftly followed by what on paper should have been the Howitzers of the Dulwich batting order: Rochford, Pylas and Owen all failed to make significant contributions and at 55 for 5 it would be fair to say that the 7th’s found themselves deeply embedded in a particularly noxious and copious amount of foul-smelling excrement.

It was at this point, that things took a dramatic and unexpected turn for the better. Drafted in at the eleventh hour by his tenant, Rochford, Rob “Landlord” Branch arrived at the crease and without too much ceremony proceeded to cow shot both J and R Kendall to most parts of SW17 with some uncompromising and effective biffs. Branch finally succumbed with a debut score of 22. Meanwhile, at the other end, Afzal, who had survived all the innings’ vicissitudes, was steadily acquiring a shrewdly compiled 43. The pair added 39 to the score. Branch was replaced by the saxophonist O’Higgins, who had eschewed a “gig” at a Swanley nudist camp to play here today. We can only conjecturalise as to why O’Higgins made this surprising decision. Did O’Higgins have some inside information that the female residents of this establishment were not a particularly attractive bunch? Did O’Higgins worry about his own “equipment” being uninsured and therefore vulnerable to misuse? Your correspondent has never attempted to play the saxophone in the nude, but one does wonder if certain parts of the anatomy may impede a musician of O’Higgins undoubted stature while attempting to play a particularly intricate solo number. Whatever, O’Higgins batted very creditably for undefeated 8 and John Smith was run out on 3. Dulwich finished with a total of 120.

Opener Gallimore was dropped by wicket keeper Griffiths off the fully clothed O’Higgins on the first ball of the Bank’s innings. This was unfortunate as Gallimore proceeded to make a further 16 before succumbing to a viciously turning off break, delivered from round the wicket by Gibson. Could the old Merlin of spin weave his magic web yet again and destroy the bank’s batting through cunning flight and guile? Unfortunately, we will never know: Gibson was removed from the attack after a couple of his deliveries slightly strayed from “the corridor of uncertainty” and were smacked for four by the unforgiving Lewis. He was replaced by the ex-government apparatchik David Ward who deftly dismissed Broughton who did not offer a stroke to a well-flighted googly which thudded into the top of the stumps. Ward was to make further inroads by dismissing Campbell, but bowlers Owen and Umesh could make no further impact and the Bank passed Dulwich’s total comfortably with 3 overs to spare and losing only 5 wickets.

Sat 18th June – 1st XI v Esher

Dulwich 154-6 (39) Esher 98-8 (32)

Dulwich had much the better of their rain-affected match at Esher in Division 2 of the Ryman Surrey Championship, but were unable to force a victory and had to settle for a winning draw.

Dulwich were put in to bat and had reached 5 from 3.2 overs when a cloudburst sent the players running for the pavillion and caused a delay of 99 minutes. On resumption, openers Anil Mahey and Steve Hale, took their stand to 31 off 9 overs before Hale fell for 11. Mahey then added 36 in 12 overs with Majeed Jehangir without undue problems before a remarkable over by Khurran Irsha saw Mahey bowled for 37, Mark Kelly lbw second ball and James Soulsby bowled first ball. Nick Storey defended the hat trick ball succesfully before he and Jehangir added 62 in 10.3 overs for the 5th wicket. Jehangir fell for 51 off 74 balls, his 4th 50 in 5 innings (the one “failure” being a 49). Storey went on to reach 34 from 46 balls and James Balmforth and Chris Lester saw Dulwich to 154-6 before skipper Mahey declared.

Esher were left with 32 overs to get the runs and were quickly in trouble when Kelly struck in his second over to reduce them to 11-1, however John  Woolhead counter attacked vigorously adding 52 runs with Alex Szepietowksi in 10.4 overs for the 2nd wicket. At 63 – 1 after 13 overs Esher were well placed to push for victory, but Woolhead’s dismissal – lbw to Arshad Iftikhar for 34 off 38 balls – sparked a colapse in which 5 wickets fell for 4 runs in 5.1 overs. Kelly and Iftikhar each took 2 wickets in this spell with Kelly finishing with figures of 3-44 from 11 and Iftikhar 3-11 off 6. Jehangir then took a wicket in each of his first two overs to reduce Esher to 88-8 after 24.2 overs. With 7.4 overs to go Dulwich were chasing an unlikely victory but Chris Kane and keeper Grant Meadows successfully blocked out the remaining overs to leave Esher on 98-8 after 32 overs..

The winning draw keeps Dulwich in 2nd place ahead of next week’s game against Walton on Thames.

Sat 18th June v Banstead

SATURDAY 18th June 2011 (click thumbnails for larger images)

Surrey Championship 2nd XI – Premier Division

Dulwich 2nd XI v Banstead

Dulwich 165-5 dec (Raj Tulsiani 77)

Banstead 115-5 (Nick Pritchard 4-7)

Dulwich winning draw

Sat 4th June – 5th XI v Ex Blues

A trip to ex blues played on a ground we used to play Bromley Common.   A sloping strangely shaped ground but we set our warm up to get used to the conditions.  Having Allen Blackford in the side always helps and he convinced Mal Persaud that he wasn’t injured.

We won the toss and decided to bat on a hot day.  The decision seemed to be a good one as we counted the fielders to find that Ex blues were two short.  A slow start at the top but keeping wickets in hand is usually a good plan in this league.  Alan Edwards went early so Alan Clarke joined David Straker.  Alan looked good but after scoring 19 also managed to get out.  Batting at 4 and with a bad foot (refusing to agree with Allen that it was not painful) Mal Persaud joined the action.  Both batsmen after a short period of control started opening up and using the slope and varied short boundaries to dispatch the ball for 4.  Successive partnerships of 29 (Alan and David), 41 (Mal and David), 47 (Mal and Jesse Johnson), 38 ( Mal and Simon Jones), 55 (Mal and Allen Blackford) got us into a very good position of 211 for 6.  A good innings from David of 44 after a steady start and a 66 from Mal (on one leg) topped by an explosive 61 from Allen Blackford who went to 50 in (I think) about 23 balls.  One of the opposition had had a bit of chat with Allen saying he only had one shot.  Six balls later it was “But he plays it very well!”  Simon Bailey and Jamie Hall came and went and a measure of the scoring rate of Blackers is that of the 32 partnership with Tim Brown, Tim managed 3 and spent most of his time avoiding being hit at the non strikers end.  Allen eventually fell to one of their young bowlers who had stuck to the task manfully. Mangal Nasiri came in for a lovely 1 ball 4 straight past the bowler.  271 for 9 a pretty good first innings score.  I’m not sure of the exact score at drinks but I think we scored 90 in the first session and 180 in the second off the same 23 overs!

We made a bit of hard work of the reply.  Fielded OK but not as well as we would have liked as Ex Blues made 191 and we finally got them all out in the last over.  Mangal and Jamie were a bit loose to start with and they started with an opening partnership of 49.    Mangal disappointed to get the opener caught behind with the second ball which had just been called a no ball.  Jamie was injured and Simon Bailey came on to give us some control which worked well – Simon bowling straight through with figures of 2 for 18 in 12 overs, 4 of which were maidens.  Just what we needed to put the brakes on.  Tim was less consistent at the other end.  Bowling some really good balls but also letting the slope mess with his line and length to constantly give scoring opportunities to the batsmen.  Allen was brought on from the bottom end after Simon had finished his spell and although he too had a few loose balls early controlled the situation well and ended up with an impressive 5 for 41 off 7.1 overs being particularly impressed with one ball as he bowled their top scorer.  Mangal came back but also mixed some good balls with some not so good stuff.

In the end a good win but there was a sneaking suspicion we went out to field just expecting to roll then quickly.  We need to be more ruthless in our execution.

Sat 11th June – 5th XI v Burgess Park

With 1 point separating the teams at the start a close game was expected from a mid-table clash at DSG.    Again a few changes and again a late pull out didn’t help preparation.

We won the toss and decided to bowl first in order to take advantage of the dampish conditions.    Jamie Hall and Rehan Malik opened the bowling and kept the scoring under control.  2 early wickets for Rehan with good catches from Alan Edwards and Tim Brown.  We were on top but from that moment a really good partnership by the Burgess Park opening bat and their number 4 slowly took the game away from us.    David Hawes was not as miserly with the ball as usual and the skipper also went for a few although Tim managed to pick up a wicket.  With only 4 recognised bowlers Tim turned to a few from Simon Jones and Mike Owen and although Mike took a wicket Burgess Park continued to raise the run rate.  Rehan came back and took a 3rd wicket with a stumping for Shok and then Tim took the last wicket but overall we bowled and fielded badly.  Burgess Park finished with a challenging 258 for 6.

We set off in reply with our top 6 (all of whom prefer to open the batting) facing two very good opening bowlers.  Anthony Gaughan in his second game of the season looked well out of sorts and Shok soon followed.  Although Alan Edwards had managed to take some fight to Burgess Park he was next out for 23.  Jesse Johnson also went quickly to a good ball and we were 31 for 4.  Not a good position.  Mal Persaud and Simon Jones the tried to build a recovery.  Neither could take the attack to the opposition and we got stuck not giving wickets away but not scoring any runs either.  Simon was out for 8 and Mike Owen continued the cautious approach.  At this point there was the only slight chance of a silver lining in the clouds – a big downpour brought the teams off and checking the rules we were praying for continued rain and an abandoned game that honestly we did not deserve.

The sun came out for the first time in the day and we went back out.  Jamie Hall sneaked ahead of the skipper and hit a couple of fours.  We managed not to be bowled out but ended up on 99 for 8 and a day that is best consigned to the history books.

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