Sat 13th May – 5th XI v The Roebucks

THE ROEBUCKS 42 (34.5) beat DULWICH 122 (40.5) by 20 runs

Scorecard

Good to see the Dulwich CC junior policy is working so well. With a few players promoted to the fours and a couple of absentees the side was bolstered by the returns of the sprightly Blench, Woods, Johnson and the actually much younger Legg. Fielding positions were going to be at a premium and the also returning skipper Rutherford had a few decisions to make. There were first league games for Dulwich for Raman Sarao and keeper Siraj Durrani. We had a balanced bowling attack with three seamers and an off spinner, leg spinner and left arm orthodox.

Both sides had won last week so although it was early in the season this was a top of the table clash. Roebucks play in a lovely setting near Hayes and as Blenchy struggled to find the ground in time Jack won the toss and decided to bowl first.

The skipper and his immediate predecessor Simon Peters opened the bowling and the Roebucks chanced their arm with some lusty hitting to the two short boundaries. Despite one swinging Yorker (ok a little bit fuller than that) from Jack thy raced to 67 for 1 off the first 8 overs. Sometime in this spell the stylish Blench graced us with his presence.

A change was required and the cool heads of David Woods and David Begg were brought into action in a smart move by the skipper. Almost immediately the game looked a different one. The run rate started dropping and wickets began to tumble. Together they bowled 20 overs, 8 maidens and took 6 wickets for 35 runs to wrest the initiative back from Roebucks. Woods 2 for 14 and Begg 4 for 21 leaving Jack with another tricky decision regarding John Lawrence award points. In the midst of this spell was a rarity, 2 wides from David Woods – not sure anyone has seen that before. Catches from Jesse and a tumbling Simon Peters, a run out and an all round solid fielding performance supported them well. There was a little bit of tail wagging but first the impressive Raman and then a caught and bowled from Brown finished them off with a score of 142 from 34.5 overs leaving us 46 overs to get them. A great position, particularly given our start.

The batting looked rusty and tentative for most of our innings. First Blenchy fell, Tim played a nothing shot and then Piran managed to get a little snick which the keeper snaffled, caught up in his thighs. We were 23 for 3 and needed to rebuild. Next came the best partnership of the innings with Siraj and James Worley batting well together against some good bowling. Drinks came and the game was finely balanced.

Siraj's advice at drinks was to be patient and to avoid cross bat shots. As is often the case having given the advice Siraj (16) failed to listen to himself and managed to be bowled by the impressive Muhammed Amin who bowled a tight spell of 2 for 14. James top scored with 19 but was bowled by a beauty. Jesse and Peters fell and despite looking in good knick so did Rutherford. We needed 50 to win with only two wickets left as first Raman and Woods and then the bowling heroes Woods and Begg inched us towards the total. The tactics were spot on until playing a full blooded leg side shot (for those that have been at Dulwich a long time no surprise there) Begg fell over and was given out plumb to end a fascinating match. We were all a bit rusty and a bit impatient, with most of us getting ourselves out we really should and could have won.

However for all the ifs and buts We picked up 12 points in a close game to go with our 20 from week 1. Roebucks now top the table on 40 points from Bickley Park (37 puts), who by chance we play in another almost top of the table clash at DSG next Saturday.

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