22nd Aug 2015 - Langdon Hills Rec
Basildon & Pitsea CC v Old Southendians - Jamie Brittons maiden 100.
Lovely sunny day was on the cards albeit probably not as warm as it should be given the date, but since early July here in the UK what with it being an El Nino we've had consistent Northerly winds blowing down from the Arctic. Places like Norway and Denmark have had far better weather than we have!
The toss was conducted and as I recall Dutton was looking to bat first for some reason and we lost the toss and the opposition decided to bat first. The wicket looked good and I'd been over the night before and had bowled on the adjacent wickets in trainers and the ball as usual was turning nicely.
I shot some images of the wicket this week to show a point I've made previously on other posts about the position of the wicket in relation to the sun.
This is looking down the wicket at midday from the 'Estate End' my preferred end and you can see the angle of the shadow running left to right, so as the sun moves during the afternoon it eventually ends up over your shoulder from this end. So for me as a batsman and everyone else at batting at the end of the match your looking up the wicket from the other end in this image straight into the sun!
The sun ends up just above the houses in this shot from the other end, so it's an advantage to bat first in some respects.
All I was hoping for was to land the ball in reasonable areas and to be able to get some spin on the ball and to have some idea of an approach to the crease that would help all that some together. All season I've been faffing about with my run-up, partly hindered by my Achilles injury which is still there lurking. I'd played so little cricket whilst on holiday whereas normally we play loads of cricket and I end the season with a bit of a flourish, so I came into this game with a plan to just come off of one or two steps and just put loads of spin on the ball. It worked okay as I got to bowl 13 overs and produced 3 maidens and took two wickets, both were edges caught in the slips by Tony Harms, one of them as I recall was pretty spectacular. As usual there were 3 or 4 chances that went awry for some reason or another, but writing this a few weeks later, I can't remember them now.
Although reasonably happy with that I went home thinking that the 2 step Terry Jenner approach wasn't how I wanted to bowl - yeah ,maybe in another 5 years or hopefully longer, but not now while I'm only 55.
The opposition declared on 49 overs leaving us a target of 184 to win. On previous form and given our players a pretty difficult task, but if Tony Harms in particular made a good start and word was that recently he'd had a couple of good knocks, there was an outside chance. Tony and Liam Harms made their way out to the crease as openers (Father and son).
The afternoon plodded on and Jamie continued to swing the bat and get the ball over the boundary and he edged close and close towards his first century. Batsman all around him fell by the wayside supporting him as well as they could.
They tried the slow bowlers bowling out of the sun tactic - you can see here in these images the angle of the sun by observing the shadows. It didn't work.
My son Joe makes his way out as No.9 congratulating Jamie on his 103.
Jamie looking well chuffed makes his way back to the boundary and the applause of the crowd and team mates.
The combination of my son Joe and Nick gradually saw us draw closer to a positive outcome. Joe took us all by surprise and posted his all time PB score of 14 in any format of the game and given a little longer would have gone past my all time PB of 16. Unfortunately Nick was bowled on 16 LBW leaving me as the last man at no.10 which was always going to be a big ask. With 170 on the scoreboard and still three overs left to reach 184, with Joe hitting the ball as well as he was there was the chance of Joe being the 3rd hero of the day after Liam with his 4 fer and Jamie's 103, but it wasn't to be as I was bowled having only faced 4 balls for 0. Joe was pretty disappointed, but as I said to him - Joe you could have batted up the order instead of saying "I don't like batting - I'll bat at no.10.
There were a couple of win scenarios here if things had panned out differently...
1. If Joe had batted further up the order and not been stranded with me, he may have gone on to score a fair few more runs, he looked more than comfortable out there, but had sold himself short as usual when being asked where do you want to bat? He'd said at 10 and I said no you go 9.
2. If we'd have had that 11th man - the outcome may have been different?
Check out my other blog here - this is all about Leg-spin bowling and nothing else. Double click on the image below.