CURDRIDGE vs MANSBRIDGE - 28th May 2022
Curdridge made the trip to Chandlers Ford on Saturday to face a Mansbridge side that have always been a decent match for the Machine.
Back into the team came Skipper after a week away pasty tasting, and Dan Clark made his long awaited return to the Saturday side following his spell on the Australian version of Love Island.
The Machine was missing a cog though as late on Saturday morning, as New Jack had some issues. He was due to replace Nearly New Jack who himself was unavailable attending a Jackson Five tribute troupe.
However New Jack’ s pet dog ‘Jackson’, a Jack Russell, had been taken poorly so a trip to the vets was required meaning the Curdridge 11 was now 10, and was Jack ‘less’ for the first time this season.
The magnificent ten then showed some further cracks, as both Skipper and Gary arrived at the ground sporting matching side strains, and Dom declared a dodgy achilles meaning the Machine was extra low on mobility, and coupled with an outfield the size of the Isle of Wight it was potentially going to be a long day.
Toss won (2 in a row for the Skipper) and a bowl was opted for on a green looking deck.
Del Candy, now promoted to being one of the more mobile members of the side, opened up with Dan C at the other end.
Steady bowling and batting ensued and the score had reached 44 until Del tempted the opener to loft one to mid-on and Punter did the rest - CUM ON!
Another partnership then built, and Skipper rang the changes, calling on the invalid Quincey who tempted the well set bat to launch one high and swirling. Ladbrokes were quoting 10-1 on the catch but Punter surprised us all with a stellar effort - CUM ON!
The Mansbridge total continued to rise to 138 and Skipper had turned back to Dan C who got his opener second time around and a flurry of wickets from Sammy gave Curdridge a sniff at limiting the total.
The assembled walking wounded never gave up on the job in the field, with commendable efforts from Dan and Rob who covered many a mile patrolling the boundaries whilst the rest of us leant on our crutches.
Another final partnership from the Mansbridge boys got the score beyond 200 as Skipper tried all options available with 8 of the assembled 10 having a bowl.
Tea taken, and lacking his normal opening options, the prolific Quincey / Leigh partnership opened up.
A decent mix of Skippers Singles and Dom taking boundaries off Mr Chirpy meant a decent start was on the cards before Dom missed a straight one, and Skipper soon followed to a half tracker that lacked bounce and clattered into his pads.
Clarkey scratched and went, before Bollard and Punt got the innings back on track with a solid mixture of block and biff, Alan in particular showing he had two Weetabix that morning.
Punter then lost his stumps and Alan fell to an excellent C&B leaving the tail to wag,
It was a familiar story though as four wickets clattered for only 2 runs and the Machine was facing the last rites.
With two ‘young guns’ at the crease in Del and Mark, the instruction from Skipper was to nudge the score onto 100 to secure the batting point.
What followed was a pleasure to watch, with the straight bat of Candy, matched by some booming shots from Mark, together with some rocket speed running took the Machine not just to 100 but past 125 to close the innings unbeaten at 129.
Given the circumstances this wasn’t a bad result, with some decent points acquired in defeat when it just wasn’t our day.
Next Week: Home vs Fawley 1pm start
Man of the Match: The Volcano matched an excellent performance behind the stumps with a clubbing 34 so Alan takes the prize this week (which is to make the tea next week!)
Champagne Moment: It would have been Punter for his steepling catch, but he was disqualified for declaring himself the winner at tea so this week it is shared between Mark and Del for a thoroughly entertaining last man partnership.
Donut of the day: No obvious contenders but Dom shelled a couple in the field, so he can enjoy the multi-pack this week