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.