CURDRIDGE vs CALMORE III's - 29th July 2022
Apologies for the delayed report this week, Skipper has been engaged on manoeuvres hosting a two year old birthday party weekend and now feels like he has bowled nine overs up the hill
Calmore were the visitors on Saturday, and faced a Curdridge side missing a couple of parts but largely intact and focused on acquiring key points in a relegation six pointer.
Dom was competing at Mr Topiary UK so back into the side came Rob with his tweakers but otherwise the Machine was unchanged.
Reading Room Lane is starting to resemble Reading Room Desert as a combination of the tropical climate, and the recent show have left the outfield a dirty shade of yellow.
The track was fine though courtesy of another sterling effort from Monsier Hillier, and when faced with a decision at the toss, with some clouds in the sky the decision was taken to bowl first.
Del and James were chosen and it wasn’t long before we were in business, with the opening bat sent back by a tumbling catch on the top of the hill from Rob, with Del the beneficiary.
The Addis show then rolled into town and ripped apart the upper order, with four wickets courtesy of his swingers, with Gary, and Alan with particularly good grabs behind the stumps.
The five for though didn’t arrive - (which reminds me James, you are still owing a jug from our overseas tour,) as the Calmore batsmen consolidated.
It was a case of deja vu for the Machine as the score sat at 58 for 5, and definitely wobbling, but then as has been the case for many games this year, we have run into a good partnership and the game has drifted away.
Skipper rang the changes with Rob, Mark and Sammy tried at the spinners end, and Dave employed up the hill but without success.
It became clear we had run into another batsman who had been employed at a higher level, as the Calmore number 7 displayed shots all around the ground and passed his ton with ease.
Dave finally got some success courtesy of another catch from Robbo, but the partnership had taken the score to a more than healthy 224-6.
The tail then wagged further, and some more clubbing generated further acceleration to the scoreboard (Skipper even tried some declaration bowling himself) but the score finished at 306, with the number 7 unbeaten on 146. (Did I mention we dropped him on 17???- I won’t mention the guilty parties name as he got 4 wickets this week).
Jack and Jules (not Jill) went to the middle to take the opening overs but Jack got a good one so Alan made his way out and saw off the dangerous opening bowler courtesy of a sniper taking out his calf, before Skipper removed another bowling option by getting in the way of a couple of beamers.
With the bowling attack weakened the scoreboard started to shift and passed 50 before Alan got one that went underground leaving him with no chance to keep it out.
Craig got a start but was then trapped plumb in front, and at 70-4 the game was almost up.
Dave and Gary however had other ideas, as they tucked into the attack with gusto, challenging each other to a biggest whack competition which Dave would just take on points.
The scoreboard sparked into life and the required run rate was suddenly tumbling as Dave passed fifty and Gary made his way to 41 before finding a fielder on the fence.
Mark then continued the whackathon, and when he left the score was 172-6, and the Calmore lads had suddenly gone quiet as the onslaught continued.
Rob lent support to Dave who has closing in on his ton when he too got one that grubbed along the ground and he had to depart for an excellent 84.
A big wag was still needed from the tail but alas it wasn’t to be with the Curdridge innings closing on 217.
A game that followed a similar pattern to many, with a good start at the top of the innings, but then running into a high class batsman who proved to be the difference, the batting is much improved though, and despite the large total, there was a point in the Curdridge innings when we were close to favourites to chase it down.
Next week - A tricky trip to Hythe
Man of the Match - Despite his second domestic with Skipper in two weeks, Dave takes it with a couple of wickets and a swashbuckling 84 - could whacking mate.
Donut of the Day - I won’t mention his name (as he got 4 wickets) but an expensive drop takes the sweeties this week.
Champagne Moment - Skipper with a boundary off all six balls in the over - but as he was bowling it then this is a close second to two monster straight hits from Dave, one that cleared the net, and the other that clattered into the sight-screen on the full