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Archive for August, 2013

Team for Saturday

Ahmed
Dave P
Phippsy
Dave M
Boycie
Ashley
Andy
Nihal
Simon
Chris
Nadir

12th man: Ricky

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………..CHAMPIONS…………..

The rain has played a major role in the outcome of games this season. Saturday was a wash out and as a result, every team was awarded 4 points and therefore Munden have an unassailable points total and are champions of Division 6.

We’d have preferred to have won the league playing cricket, but we can now relax and enjoy our last fixture at home next Saturday against Sawbridgeworth V.

There will be plenty of time to review the highs and lows of the season and to thank those who have contributed, but first let’s do what we’ve done all summer and put a team together to win one last game of cricket.

Thanks to Mark Vigus for providing the headline 😛

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GAME OFF

Please stay at home and watch Arsenal play like Barcelona 😆

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Late weather check

The Fyfield captain is contacting Dave P shortly after 11 to decide whether the game can go ahead today. Please keep an eye on the website and have your movie phones turned on for any news.

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Ahmed
Dave P
Dave B
Phippsy
Dave M
Martin
Boycie
Ashley
Andy
Mark
Rashid Ali

The postcode is CM5 0RF, please arrive by 1:00 pm

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This was yet another Saturday when a win was required to maintain our march to the title and when the weather threatened to play a role in the outcome of the day’s fixtures.

We received the news of Faraz’s late withdrawal from the side as we drove to Hockerill. Ahmed knew the Chairman was planning to come over at some point, so a quick phone call to Peter with the suggestion he bring his whites was successful and Munden were restored to the full complement of 11 players.

Ahmed won the toss and elected to bat in the hope we could post a total that would put us in the driving seat.

Munden opened with the double A pairing of Ahmed and Ashley.

The sky was overcast and added weight to the expectation of rain before the game was finished. In the conditions, it seemed likely that a score of over 200 would be required to give us a reasonable chance of victory.

Our openers got off to a solid start but both fell to catches before reaching 20. Andy and Dave B took over and the runs soon began to flow. Andy’s first 5 scoring shots were all boundaries.

Dave started lofting shots for sixes and the fielders began to lose their enthusiasm to retrieve the ball. Unfortunately one such shot fell just short of the boundary and he was caught.

Middle order Phippsy was next up seeking to continue his recent good form.

At 115 for 3 we were still on course for a decent score on a pitch where the ball was slow to come on to the bat and also slow in the outfield. The sky had been overcast throughout  and with the occasional ball swinging late, the batsmen had to work hard for their runs.

Phippsy scored 19 and rotated the batting with Andy to push the total on to 157 before he was caught and made way for Martin to continue in the same vein.

Andy seemed to lose his rhythm a bit and started to mistime his shots. These were hardly what you’d call Australian conditions – damp, overcast and windy, and when he was out on 88, it was down to Boycie and the tail to get us past 200.

Boycie’s appearance was short lived when he was given LB. Dave P connected sweetly with a couple of shots but each time picked out the fielder. Hockerill’s pace attack had given way to nagging line and length bowlers one of whom turned the ball on occasion.

Dave received one such delivery that turned and avoided the bat but not the stumps.

Martin was holding the tail together admirably at the other end and scored the important runs that pushed Munden over the 200. Badger joined Martin but shortly after it was he and Chris who were to see out the overs as Martin was out for the second highest score of 29.

The middle order had done its job.

Munden were 216 for 8 from the 45 overs.

Sadly the Chairman didn’t get to bat and we feared that his sterling effort in turning out at short notice might not be rewarded with any great involvement in the game.

Munden batting:

Ahmed 17

Ashley 15

Andy 88

Dave B 21

Phippsy 19

Martin 29

Boycie 1

Dave P 2

Dave M 6 not out

Chris 0 not out

Tea was taken and the sky continued to darken and the chill wind appeared to be driving rain laden clouds in our direction.

We knew that if we were to secure the 26 points we would have to bowl the opposition out before the rain came.

To this end we opened with the pace and aggression of Dave B and Andy. Dave has looked menacing at times this season and today was no exception. He beat the edge several times before the No.1 bat got the faintest of edges and was well caught by Martin behind.

Andy must have been incensed that he was hit for 9 runs off his second over because after that he tore through the Hockerill order.

His first wicket was a delicious delivery where the sheer pace took the ball between bat and pad and splayed the stumps.

His second was a thick edge that was claimed by a diving catch by Ahmed … yes, no need to reach for your glasses, I did write ‘diving’ catch 😛 Ahmed is now equal 2nd in the Catcher’s Cup with Martin.

Another fine piece of slip catching By Dave B gave Andy his third wicket. Hockerill were becalmed in the 30’s while Andy helped himself to his last 2 wickets. One more bowled and then the finest of inside edges was taken by Martin to elevate Andy into jug status taking 5 for 23.

All the time, the sky was darkening, the light fading and those ominous black clouds moving ever closer.

There were shouts of “come on boys, let’s get round quickly” between every over as only the rain could rob us of victory.

Munden’s sense of urgency was contrasted by our hosts more relaxed approach to seeing the game out!

Andy and Dave bowled out their requisite 10 overs each and had done the damage by removing all but one of their top batsmen.

Ahmed and Ashley took over and the gentler pace meant that the light would not be questioned. The two asked questions of the batsmen though with almost every delivery and when Ahmed bowled Hockerill’s No.3 bat, we knew we were into the tail.

But the weather continued to deteriorate and rain seemed inevitable.

The pace of play slowed and the nail biting increased. The Hockerill tail was giving stubborn resistance.

Ahmed bowled the No.9 bat and we needed just 2 wickets to seal the win.

But still Hockerill held on with such determination that they could hardly keep their pads on 🙄

Ashley was bowling well and inducing edges but unluckily they fell short of the fielders and the frustration grew.

We needed something or someone special to get us over the finishing line.

The last minute reinforcement was to be our hero.

The Chairman held onto a difficult catch from Ahmed’s bowling and was greeted with raucous cheers from all corners of the ground. He waved in celebration  to Susan who was sitting by the scoreboard but she was probably more pleased that the game was soon to end and wishing she had brought her thermal underwear it had turned so cold.

Ashley continued with the next over and continued to baffle the batsman. In the background, Ahmed asked Peter to loosen up and take over from him from the other end.

Somehow Ashley wasn’t rewarded with the wicket he deserved and Peter received the ball to produce some Chairman’s magic.

Cometh the hour, cometh the man.

Peter’s first delivery was a wide. His second bounced twice, hit the inside edge and then ricocheted off the batsman’s boot into the stumps. … straight out of the coaching manual 🙂

Game over. Huge relief. Celebration of the win and great amusement at the Chairman’s significant influence on proceedings.

We’ve had some exceptional performances this season but until now, nothing that has leapt out as a candidate for the ‘Champagne Moment’ in our post season awards ceremony. This game may just have provided a couple for consideration.

Hockerill were all out for 88

As we walked to the pavilion, the first raindrops began to fall.

Munden bowling:

Dave B: 10 overs, 4 maidens, 1 for 26

Andy: 10 overs, 6 maidems, 5 for 23

Ahmed: 6 overs, 3 maidens, 3 for 6

Ashley: 6 overs, 1 maiden 0 for 26

Mr. Chairman: 0.1 overs, 1 for 0

This was a hardworking display by the team. It wasn’t our strongest side but 6 batsmen got into double figures and that was key to the victory. The bowling was of a very high standard. Andy’s figures were exceptional but the other bowlers were also on top form and on another day any of them could have taken more wickets.

This was a vital win as Epping were gifted the 26 points when Little Bardfield failed to put out a side.

A win next week away to Fyfield and we are guaranteed promotion and to finish top of the table.

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The team for tomorrow’s game against Hockerill III is as follows:

Ahmed
Dave P
Dave B
Phippsy
Dave M
Martin
Chris
Boycie
Ashley
Andy
Faraz

 

Please turn up by 1pm.

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