Sat 7th May – 4th XI v SinjunGrammarians

DULWICH 222 (44.5) beat SINJUNGRAMMARIANS 137 (27.3) by 85 runs

Scorecard

As summer finally arrived on Saturday, Dulwich started the season with a home game against old friends SinjunGrammarians. Surprises always come in threes, the first being the sun was out, the second being that our old friends at Sinjun 4s are now Sinjun 3s, the opposition therefore being an unknown quantity and the biggest surprise of all… Matt won the toss. He must have been practising over the winter (if only you’d called right on the mud slide at Reigate – Matt!). So surprised and taken aback by winning one – Matt thought long and hard before opting to bat first on the new upgraded DSG Road.

As ever Dulwich started brightly with Guy Woodgate quickly into his usual mix of authoritative pulls strokes and copious amounts of playing and missing, Julian Dean tipping and running at the other end and sometimes not even bothering with the tipping. With 30-odd on the board in the first 6 overs, the enigma that is Guy inexplicably kicked one off the stumps playing no stroke to bring James Read into bat. James looked imperious cracking his third ball through the covers for 4 and carried on in similar vein, the two adding 50 in 8 overs before James got an unplayable delivery which he edged behind.

Matt came and went and Julian introduced debutant Rob Hawke to his esoteric style of calling and running to cut short his promising first innings by the small matter of 19 yards! Fellow debutant Paul Charlton (20) joined Julian and the two took the score to 170 for 4 off 27 overs with the home side well set for a score of 300 plus. To Sinjuns credit they remained lively in the field throughout and got a break when Julian walked past one to be stumped for a scratchy 68. Dulwich being Dulwich, do everything the hard way, so promptly collapsed to 192 for 9 through a series of injudicious shots. With the best part of 10 overs to go, enter Ubaid and Gilo. They batted intelligently to add nearly 30 valuable runs with most of them coming through the arc of 1st slip to 3rd slip. Gilo was unfortunately run out in the last over, 97 short of his hundred. Ubaid finished with a very valuable 18 not out.

222 felt like enough, though we know we should have got 300 and will be punished in other games if we don’t get there. The opposition just had the feeling that, when it came to batting, they were there for a good time rather than a long time and so it proved with Prasanna’s traditional first ball long hop being despatched by the opener over square leg. Gilo having injured himself during his extended batting stint hobbled through a steady first over and Sinjuns were 17 for 0 after 2. Prasanna then got into his stride rolling off 9 straight overs of precision line and length bowling, (not words you normally see in the same sentence), and had the opener caught behind by Shok. A collector’s item, Matt then caught the other opener off Gilo, prompting his dad to go home for his mixed grill (sadly missing Matt trying to catch one with just his stomach later!).

The wheels, if not off were at least punctured and deflating badly. Step forward third debutant Darren Cason. Fielding at 2nd slip, “Buckets” caught everything that went near him snaffling the next 3 batsmen – all stunning catches. At 30 for 5 it was game over and Matt sensed a quick victory so in came a third slip (or was it an attempt to find somewhere to hide Ubaid and Gilo). Sadly the next three slip chances were shelled by the erstwhile batting heroes as Sinjuns showed spirit and went on the attack. Prasanna ended with 4 thoroughly deserved wickets and Ubaid and Darren came on with some immediate success. Ubaid bowled well to pick up 3 wickets, two well caught by Rob Hawke and Darren and Rob himself picked up a debut wicket each too. A good win, despite some rustiness and plenty more to come from the Super 4s.

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