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Match 11 (21st scheduled) 2022: July 24

Pimlico Strollers CC vs The Times CC

Rampant Ron and terrific Tim write off The Times
posted: July 25, 2022

Pimlico Strollers v The Times, 24 July 2022

A devastating 8 ball 36 from Ron brought a swift conclusion to our match against the scribes of The Times newspaper at Ferme Park yesterday, securing a handsome 5 wicket win with 8 overs to spare.

Initially, that result seemed far from assured. Having won the toss on another hot and sunny day when the mercury topped 30 degrees, with a straw-coloured outfield offering easy boundaries, the oppo naturally chose to bat first and made hay – our first four overs being flogged for 32 as openers Preston and Cronje got stuck in. The latter especially found a liking for hoiking the ball over the fence onto Crouch End's pitch but, when he lofted a cow shot off débutant Kavi to deep midwicket, Varun was waiting and cooly took the valuable catch – the first wicket falling for 67 with Cronje narrowly missing out on a half century.

Shortly afterwards Kavi struck again nabbing a frankly generous LBW decision to dismiss Preston and from there the run fest dried up. Spencer joined Kavi with spin from the tennis court end and was rewarded with the cheap dismissals of Gilbert and Tribe (not a duo of Broadway musical composers for those wondering). Left hander Evans looked more threatening and, with the help of Dornan at the other end, The Times ship was steadied.

However, after adding 70 odd between them, our next breakthrough came from spin once again with George enticing Evans to slog to Spencer on the fence and Ron castled Dornan shortly afterwards. With only one further wicket falling (Harry yorking Martin late on) The Times' tail regrouped and managed to add a few more and the oppo closed on 229-7 ...always a bit modest for Ferme Park but would still need getting.

In response, Gav and George got us off to a solid start – both finding the boundary early on. However messrs Brown and Richardson kicked themselves as they each managed to get themselves out in the teens playing down the wrong line to what seemed fairly innocuous bowling. Ali capitalised on a promotion to three with some attractive shots as he made his way to a handy 24 before being caught behind. Varun fell cheaply with a return catch to Tribe and what started off looking like a routine chase started feeling a bit more like hard work.

We needn't have worried. Spencer came in at a slightly lowly six and joined his old compadré Tim in the middle. Rolling back the years, the two Strollers settled into their groove and began building a textbook and chanceless hundred run fifth wicket partnership – the Sturminator taking the lead with some powerful striking on both sides of the wicket. With the opposition attack clearly flagging in the early evening heat our batsmen took advatage as Tim, running a rare three on Ferme Park to notch up a well-deserved 50 as we seemed to be cruising to victory.

Meanwhile, on the boundary, Ron was getting bored – this was far too sedate a display for his liking – and when Tim eventually edged behind for a superb 67, with Atkins taking a sharp catch, the Rabbit scampered on ...clearly wanting to 'give it some humpty'. What followed was nothing short of unadulterated brutality as he firstly belted a pull shot for four (bringing up our 200), did it again and then clobbered the next successive four balls for six! After allowing a single dot ball Ron finally smashed the last ball of the 27th over for a four to long on and with that, before anyone really knew what was happening, we had won.

So early beers it was. But despite withstanding a full on assault, The Times lot were remarkably good humoured in defeat and said they'd be happy to have another go next year.

Gavin Richardson

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