The BOFs

238/9 (dec) - 238/8
Full Time
Match Drawn

Match Report

Match Drawn

The fixture against The BOFs is always tough, and this year was made harder still, with the new Headmaster, Gavin Franklin, having enjoyed a career in first class cricket. Tim Burleigh took full advantage and chose Ed Smith, England Selector, to strengthen his team. After failing to draft in Jasper, Tim and Gavin briefly struggled for options and had to lower their standards. They only managed 4 players with England or county experience along with a current Surrey 2ndX1 player; nothing the Stragglers couldn’t handle. The Stragglers realised there was only one thing to do: bat them out of the game (we would hate to bowl the ex-internationals out cheaply and shorten what was to be a long day of cricket). A strong opening partnership ensued with Theo and Joe both scoring 41, albeit Theo at a slightly slower pace… The bowling attack lacked pace but more than made up for this with consistency of line, something the Stragglers are not used to. With few loose balls coming our way, the normal Stragglers batting style of biffing pies for 6 did not get into full flow. With Al scoring 48, and a few other 20s in the mix, we slowly made our way to 238 for 9 from 50 overs and declared.

The declaration timing allowed us 5 overs at the openers so Toby and Hugo got to work. Despite bowling as fast as we could on a lively wicket, Hugo Loudon looked infuriatingly comfortable and under no pressure. Whispers circulated around the field when he got to double figures that “there’s no way this guy isn’t getting 100” (always good to know how much your fielders trust your bowling). Nevertheless, we managed to remove Andrew Cox from the crease before tea. A masterclass of batting followed in the middle overs with Ed Smith smashing 26 and Lewis Bedford scoring 92. The BOFs seemed to be coasting to victory and morale in the field was low. However, a fantastic spell from Hugo edged us back into the game and, after removing Lewis and Ashley Cox, we suddenly found ourselves into the tail, who struggled with pace and failed to get bat on ball. Defending 4 an over for the final 5 overs, we managed to bring it down to the final ball with the BOFs needing 2 to win and 1 for the draw. With Gavin on strike, Hugo managed to get the ball through to the keeper; and, despite carrying an injury, Gavin managed to scarper through for a single and the draw. A fantastic finish to a fantastic day’s cricket.