The Cricket Society

233/5 (dec) - 146/7
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Match Drawn

Match Report

The challenge facing young guns, when presented with the more gentle pace of ageing bowlers, is keeping that anticipatory rush of blood under control. With an average age of 54, exactly double that of a young Straggler showing, the pace of the Cricket Society opening attack somewhat lacked ferocity. However, it was skipper Simon Allport who succumbed to a grand yahoo and was bowled early doors, followed swiftly by Angus Ward essaying a similar shot over deep mid-wicket. Not the start envisaged, however, Al Smallwood (74) and Theo Allport (62), both batting with admirable restraint and treating each ball entirely on merit, recovered the situation, putting on 116 for the 3rd wicket. When an even slower bowler was introduced, Theo and Al perished in short order, followed by Henry Roberts, who had sat with admirable patience, but could not constrain himself once in the middle. However, age was beginning to tell on the fielders, and Hugo Ward, having played himself in for an over or two, and eschewing any hurried singles, smashed a short order, undefeated 52, bringing up a declaration at 233 for 5.

The Cricket Society openers had seen plenty of fire from around the world, and were just about keeping Bart Forster and Ed Prest at bay, when Ed produced a pair of ‘jaffas’ to remove two in two. This brought in the younger Graham, a substantial second row forward in whose hands a cricket bat looked rather like a wand. With father and son Graham slowly upping the pace, the target began to look just possible; twos became fours and then sixes; the run rate increased. Simon induced a slight miscue, which Hugo caught comfortably on deep long on, before stepping over the boundary for 6. Wickets were just not happening. Up stepped Henry Forster, and in a couple of overs the chase was abandoned, three wickets falling in quick succession. Simon chipped in with another couple, but it was all too late to press for a win. Reaching 146 for 7 at the close, the Cricket Society were well short, but at little risk of defeat.