Strollers put Trundlers to the sword in thumping T20 win
posted: August 6, 2020
After two successive defeats, we happily righted our ship at Highgate CC last night with a dominant display to notch up a towering win over the Tetherdown Trundlers in, ironically, our only T20 clash of 2020.
Batting first, having won the toss, we thankfully bounced back from the early loss of Abhik, triggered out LBW. George set the tone with a couple of thumping drives until he chipped a return catch to Kohler. Tim - making a very welcome return to the side after over a year – ground out a probing spell from Buxton whilst Gav, in at four, wasted little time in finding the boundary with some powerful hitting to the on side and a searing drive to the boundary that momentarily threatened to decapitate Tim at the non-striker's end.
With the Trundlers immediately setting their field back on the boundary, from then on Tim and Gav had to deal almost exlusively in singles (quite exhausing really – Ed) but managed to keep the score ticking over until Tim, having hit a valuable 31, ran himself out off a wide ball from Ritterband. With 8 overs to go a somewhat puffed-out Gav, knowing that the Strollers' IPL contingent was waiting in the wings, gamely decided to make way for our big hitters and retired on 30.
This brought Ron to the middle to join Harsh who between them, kicked our run rate into fourth gear - taking us past the hundred mark in no time. Harsh unleashed his trademark strokeplay whilst Ron scampered between the wickets as only Ron can until Francis got the better of him by bowling a low one through the gate. However, insodoing, the Trundlers only succeeded in bringing Viral to the middle and, though it was the master blaster's first game of the year, it seemed like he had never been away as he belted the ball to all parts.
Passing the 150 mark with ease, a big score looked on the cards and even though Harsh pulled his thigh muscle, Ron raced back out to the middle to kindly run for him. This he did with so much gusto that, on our penultimate ball, he stitched Harsh up beautifully with a trademark 'Ron-out' ...thankfully not before he had notched up his well-earned 50. With Dave attempting something like a makeshift switch-hit off our last ball we closed on a sizeable 172-5... a big T20 total by any measure.
Nevertheless we were mindful that the Trundlers are usually a strong batting unit and, as the oppo openers began their innings with some fine strokes, we knew we'd have to stay on our mettle. However, any potential fears failed to take hold when Varun had Ball trapped LBW. Phillips, in at three, survived a half chance edged to Gav at gully but did not last much longer as Varun repeated the trick, striking his front pad low and plumb.
Viral came on first change and, as with his batting, returned to bowl with just as much ferocity and skittled oppo skipper Adam's stumps. Varun followed this up with a vicious late inswinger to send off the potentially dangerous Jim Laddie – guesting from the Archway Ladder – in identical fashion. Olly Buxton, also a handy bat and in next, fared no better as Viral (by now steaming in with furious pace) cleaned out his stumps too. Varun wasn't done either and, in his final over, skittled the next man in (Bunfield) with a deadly late inswinger to complete a superb 4 wicket spell... one which, combined with Viral, was one of the most searing bowling displays this Stroller has ever seen.
If the Trundlers thought they might get some respite with the change in bowling, they were dead wrong, as Abhik yorked Francis with his first ball. Dave's savvy in wringing the changes was matched by his own efforts when he brought himself on to bowl from the Muswell Hill end – firstly with Abhik snaffling a neat low catch from a heavy ball at short cover to see off Binns followed by Viral pouching a catch lobbed high from Ritterband up to where he was waiting at long on. All that remained was to wrap up a huge win which we tidily did when Kohler nicked one from Rohit behind to Tim.
Joyous in completing as conclusive a win as one will ever see, the jubliant Strollers marched off to repair immediately – as is the custom – to the Belash in Crouch End for celebratory curry. A wonderful end to a wonderful evening – the victory bringing us back to parity for the season and setting us up nicely for our annual trip to Chippenham on Sunday.