The morning of the Street End game began with some high catches, gearing up for a hard day in the field. Some of the squad, however, were still reeling from the celebrations of Raducanu’s win. Jamie Adams was gently informed by our resident stats man, Ben Simpson, that he was catching fewer than 5%.
Learning from the previous year where the pitch seemed to get better during the day, skipper George BW won the toss and elected to bowl. Jamie and Harry Pattinson opened up with little reward, Jamie bowled a peach that found an edge which bissected slip and keeper, but otherwise the Street End opening pair were pretty comfortable. Patch Clews, forced to wear some Reebok Classics after realising that his cricket spikes were by the front door in London, and Ben Simpson bowled tidy spells but the openers were still there to reach a century partnership at the 20-over mark. It was time for the spin twins. Christian Hollingworth (2-32), a debutant on loan from IZ, bowled a superb spell but it was Alex Reese at the other end who got the breakthrough with the opening pair. The big wicket of their captain Matt Hopper, beautifully bowled through the gate by Christian also came quickly and the game changed from there. A major moment arrived later in the innings, when Harry Churchill was brought on, his Phil Foden Euros haircut looking more like the early onset of grey hair. His experience shone through however, and his first Straggler wicket finally arrived. Alex Reese continued to pick up wickets with 4-32 from his 9 overs, Street End finishing on 189 for 8 from their 40 overs.
Jasper and Christian got the innings started with very different styles. Jasper looked in great touch, punishing any bad bowling while Christian (24) gave himself a bit more time to get in. Things were looking very comfortable for the Stragglers at 76-0, but umpire Harry Pattinson, was clearly keen to bat. Christian danced down the track and got struck on the pads, and all Harry needed was a hopeful shout from one fielder for his finger to go up. In came second debutant, Alex Rhodes, but sadly a great ball hit the top of his off stump. George BW then came to the crease and Harry again showed how keen he was to bat, giving him out for a very close run out. Jasper and the incoming Ben Simpson steadied the ship, cruising their way towards the target with no major concerns, Jasper bringing up another Straggler hundred (118*) and Ben falling for 45. In recognition of his performance as an umpire, Harry found himself moved down the order. Harry Churchill appeared briefly at the wicket, but Jasper only needed a few more balls to finish the game off, and with a young leg spinner floating them up, it was never in doubt. One of the Street End trees got a bit of a battering, and the run chase was complete – 193 for 5. Again, it was a fantastic day at Street End, the pitch was excellent and the ground looked superb; we very much look forward to the fixture next year.