Played at Old Cholmeleian Sports Ground, London NW7
Report by Steve Hamilton
A pleasant day for cricket. Temperatures around 20C with the sun
breaking through occasionally with excellent facilities and a well
groomed pitch to boot!
Azaz Khalil won the toss and elected
to bat. Bharat Reddy and Farhad Waqar got out early to opening
bowler Cotterell. We were 32 for 2 in 9th over before Azaz and
Hemant Patel put on 82 for the third wicket. Azaz reached 39 in
quick time, blasting the ball to all parts of the ground.
drinks we were 112 for 2 off 20 overs. A mini-collapse happened when
our captain [Azaz], who looked all set for fifty, lost his stumps to
an inside edge. Meanwhile Mr Composure [i.e Hemant Patel] continued
to bat with style and play the perfect opening batsman role -
rotating the strike and attempting to make ones into twos at every
opportunity he could muster and waiting patiently to punish the bad
Andy (Boycott) Huckle joined Hemant at the crease, the
run rate dropped significantly and we only scored 10 runs in next 6
overs! Hemant had reached a well deserved 50 and felt he had to do
something to change the situation as things had come to a
standstill. He he selfishly played a more attacking role and hit one
straight to a fielder for a catch with the score on 122 for 4 off 26
We needed a boost when Ravi Chandra came in with
scores of 71 & 28 already this season!
He’s a man who plays
the perfect middle order batsman and doesn't mess around – he
reached 43 with classy cuts and textbook drives, including seven
fours and plenty of twos, as well as important singles off the last
ball of the over to get the strike. Especially as Andy was in Chris
Tavare mode now contributing just 2 with 2 wides in that partnership
of 47 for the 5th wicket! Ravi did his job and was also unlucky not
to get his fifty when he was prematurely bowled.
We were on
169 for 5 when Raj Rejender took control of the situation and with
some meaty blows battered the bowling to all areas of the ground
with elegant on and off drives, reaching 46 before getting out with
a 6th wicket stand of 51. Andy remained not out on his favourite
Excellent teas! Everyone got stuck in while I
held the bar up and had my medication.
Our two debutants
opened the bowling with Yorkshire-born and bred Pete Taylor - with
cricket in blood and a no-nonsense approach - came roaring in from a
30-yard run up, hitting speeds of 70mph plus. He definitely kept the
St John's Wood opening batsmen on tenterhooks and unable to figure
out how to play his hostile deliveries. He served up a mixture of in
and out swingers, back of length balls and yorkers, and soon got
both openers out with a plumb LBW and an outside edge, an excellent
catch taken by keeper Andy (Knott) Huckle.
St John's Wood
were on 11 for 2 off 5 overs, the perfect start for us. Pete was
well supported from young Hamza Saeed who bowled a consistent line
and length and only went for 20 off his 5 overs making an impressive
debut for the Fallopians.
St John's Wood reached 65 for 2 in
the 16th over when Sohaib Saleem came on and he mixed his pace up
well, throwing in the odd beamer and then taking two quick wickets!
We were well in control of the match by now, with McNee looking like
the opposition’s only real threat.
Farhad was unlucky not to
get a wicket with his repertoire of leg breaks, doosras, googlies,
flippers - you name it he's got it! He almost dismissed McNeee with
an outside edge – but it was a difficult reaction catch that went
into the keeper’s hands, who was right up close to the stumps, and
it just popped in and out. Farhad bowled extremely well and was
unlucky not to get a wicket – he is still our 2nd-highest wicket
taker this season, only five behind … ahem, Steve ‘Singh’ Hamilton!
Raj came on and got star batsman McNee (53) first ball with an
outside edge that Andy at keeper took with a magnificent catch.
At 107 for 5 in 24th over St John's Wood began to look fragile
and Raj took another wicket from his next over - the batsman hit the
ball high into dark sky behide the wicket, Andy shouted “ANDY!” and
took his third catch of the match. Great keeping!!
came on it wasn't easy at this stage to bowl as the rain was falling
lightly and it was getting darker by the minute. But I managed to
take a wicket as per usual. Then off my final ball I got hit to
cover - but Raj came running in from point to collect the ball and
threw the ball under arm to hit the stumps for the run out!
Pete was hungry for another wicket and bowled an unplayable yorker -
just clipping the bottom of leg stump - that would get many top
order batsmen out. He finished with figures of 3 for 16 off 6.4
overs, closing the innings and ensuring that we had won comfortably.
Man of the match: Raj Rejender
A very satisfactory
day with great all round team performances and played in good spirit
with a competitive edge.
Laps of luxury: Old Fallopians tuck into
to the quality facilities
Photo: Steve Hamilton
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