Sun 22nd May – Development XI v Sidcup

DULWICH 163-8 beat OLD RUTLISHIANS 107 by 56 runs

Report 1

The Development Team recorded their first win of the season at the fourth attempt with an ultimately comfortable victory over Sidcup in a 40-overs encounter at Burbage Road on Sunday. Electing to bat after winning the toss, Dulwich’s early order failed to come to terms with a difficult wicket and Sidcup’s opening bowlers. One by one the talented tyros perished as Dulwich slumped to 38-5 with nearly 30 overs still to negotiate. It was then that the adult players dug the side out of trouble, especially the sixth wicket pair of Julian Dean and Zakir Rostami who steadied the ship with a mixture of watchful defence and measured aggression. The pair took the score past the 100 mark and on to 119 before Zakir chased a very wide ball and holed out to mid-off for 36. Julian followed two runs later, one short of his half-century, totally bamboozled by Sidcup’s stalwart slow left-armer, Brian Smith. James Chudley (11 not out) and Alex Irvine (18) then continued the recovery with a useful stand for the eighth wicket and Dulwich eventually closed on a competitive 163-8.

In reply, Sidcup too lost early wickets and batting in indifferent light were soon in trouble at 34-4. Although not as accurate as usual, Seb Connor still produced enough good balls to capture three wickets, whilst Henry Shine bowled with lively pace at the other end. Sidcup’s number three Dom Hart batted with great assurance and led a mini-revival, but Zakir Rostami (1-17) and James Chudley (1-22) bowled their eight overs with such economy that the visitors fell increasingly behind the run rate. U15 Mario Lambrette also produced a tight spell (1-8 off 4 overs). When Hart finally succumbed for an impressive 47, neatly caught at square leg by Mario off a loose ball from Harry Chathli, the end was nigh. As the light continued to fade and the numbers on the scoreboard shone brighter than ever, the rarely-used bowling skills of Trevor Griffiths were introduced into the attack. Generously given a second over, ‘young’ Trevor’s mixture of flight and filth induced Sidcup’s last-wicket pair to commit hari-kari, attempting a suicidal run to Zakir at mid-wicket; Zakir’s accurate throw duly applied the coup de grâce.

Seb Connor received the team’s Young Man of the Match award after the game, but special mention should also be made of Theo Chaudoir who kept wicket very tidily in tricky conditions.

Report 2

The Development XI took on Sidcup at home on Sunday winning by 60 runs.

JL won the toss and took first use of the same pitch used as the day before. Harry Chathli and Henry Stone opened confidently with Henry playing a good shot off his legs before being undone by a low bounce and losing his middle stump. This was the start of a bizarre period of play where Seb Connor, Theo Chaudoir, Mario Lambrette and Harry Chathli each succumbed in the same way, all having shaped up nicely to start with. At 30 for 5, old heads Julian Dean and Zaki Rostami came together with over 30 overs of the innings to go. They played the opening bowlers off with a degree of discomfort, before the opposition skipper obligingly switched to a young leg-spinner. Zaki promptly launched the first two balls onto the croquet lawn and Alleyne’s square and the innings was spluttered into second gear. The introduction of spin at both ends lead to further difficulties as the ball refused to come onto the bat. Zaki was more assured against the spinners and waited for the bad ball whilst Julian ran down the track to get the ball ,lumping it to deep mid-wicket to give him catching practice or padding up ten yards down the wicket. Old foe, Brian Smith was his usual frugal self at the other end and bowled beautifully.

The two somehow took the score to their own 'par score for the pitch' of 120 before Zaki smacked a long hop that pitched twice to mid-off and Julian on 49 padded up to a ball that hit off stump (only because he had kicked it off middle). Quality jug avoidance of the highest order. Enter Chuds, the run machine, to be joined by Alex Irvine. Alex played a number of exquisite cover drives and hit a sweetly time six over square leg before perishing for a very good 18. He played with commendable fluency where nearly every other batsman struggled. Meanwhile at the other end …….zzzzzzzzzzzz Chuds, in the form of his life had settled into red ink mode. Trevor Griffiths was also keen to protect his somewhat more moderate average. We then had the bizarre spectacle of Trevor and Chuds playing out the last 4 overs by leaving everything. Chuds finished with a high quality 9 not out (from 12 overs) whilst Trevor will be pleased with his equally high quality 2 not out. The opposition and team mates were somewhat bemused but 163 seemed a challenging total on a pitch giving some assistance to the bowlers.

Seb Connor and Henry opened the bowling after tea, Seb was uncharacteristically a little wayward in his first over but struck in his second, the emphasis for the innings switching from middle stump to knocking leg stump out of the ground. Henry followed suit and bowled very quickly and accurately in a hostile opening spell. Seb followed up with a couple more wickets and bowled beautifully for the rest of his opening spell despite a spate of unfathomable no balls. James “Tavare / Mr Averages” Chudley took over from Seb and Zaki from Henry to carry on the early good work. Scoring which was always at a premium throughout the match now slowed to a trickle as both settled into a good line and length with wickets falling regularly.

The opposition number three batted beautifully and was resolute in defence and kept the scoring ticking over but it was becoming obvious that there wasn’t a lot of support at the other end for the run chase although the young lady who batted at number 8 played resolutely to help put on 30 or so runs. Mario bowled quickly to pick up a deserved wicket and Henry perfectly yorked the number 9, who was somewhere near square leg at the time (and was then told by JL to pitch it up a bit more in the dark!). The number three fell cruelly short of a richly deserved 50 when he clipped Harry Chathli to Mario who took a good running catch and Seb thought he had wrapped up proceedings when he picked out the number 11s leg stump only for him to be called for over-stepping again.

This allowed Trevor G to give it a twirl and the darkness and for us to have a second weekend opportunity to discuss rule 42.6 again and for the leg side umpire to miss the final run out as he was busily trying to Google the Laws. Fortunately, the batsman had given up the ghost and accepted his fate so no harm done.

This was a much better performance than last week and a deserved win. Man of the Match was Seb for his excellent first spell and special praise should go to Theo for his wicket-keeping which was top notch on a difficult wicket for keepers.

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