Sun 27th May – 7th XI vs Fonthill Park

Dulwich returned to the sylvan arboreal delights of Fonthill Park still nursing the wound they received from Josh White’s savage onslaught exactly 12 months ago. Those of you that were here, will remember how Josh dispatched the Dulwich bowlers to most parts of Hindon, Mere and most of the other small towns to be found on the A303 between Yeovil and Andover. Whereas last year’s game was played in primary garish colours of Red and Yellow, today’s game was an infinitely more textured game full of burnt umbers, vermillions, magenta’s and cobalt blues. An attritional game for the connoisseur that looked more as if it were being played between Ratcliffe and Nelson in Lancashire League, with runs being prised from parsimonious bowlers like gold teeth.

I will not linger over the opening 17 overs of the Dulwich innings which produced a miserable 31 runs and it was not really until Comerford arrived at the crease did Dulwich look like posting anything like as respectable total. Comerford cut carved and cleaved and the scorebook tells its own story 444161144. Even the 3 members of the Canine species decided to stop doing those things that dogs do on the outfield of a Cricket match and watch the match instead. But 113 for 9 off 35 overs still seemed an uneasily attainable target for Fonthill.

However, they had reckoned without the shrewd tactics of Jeff Mascarenhas who decided not to give Gibson a bowl. In addition, he displayed a shrewd tactical awareness which was most probably, directly attributable to his experiences as vice captain in Dulwich’s celebrated 1993 3rd XI Div. 3 championship winning team, where he was something of a sorcerer’s apprentice. But I digress, the fact is Fonthill toiled and laboured to attain Dulwich’s meagre total. It must be said Dulwich were greatly helped by Nick Rochford who managed to stop as many fours as he could as the square leg umpire. All five bowlers matched the Fonthill bowlers for miserliness. They could not remove Howard Smith who doggedly stuck to the task until he was brilliantly run out by John Cross. Rob Branch hung on to a good catch and Fonthill continued to lose wickets at an alarming rate, but some lusty blows from Nicole and Catarinella saw them home with an over to spare.

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