Won by seven wickets
Saturday, game day, and our first home game in the senior league.
The weather was okay for cricket and the track looked resplendent with the new fresh paint applied by Mark Dallas, who had been reading the law book and had put all of the correct lines down onto the track much to the pleasure of the umpires.
With the sight screens up, Kev, our skip, walked out to the middle for the toss, which he won, and chose to field.
As we went out to start our forty overs, the Nairn opening pair were looking confident, as they always do. Anjum bowled the first ball which was quick and accurate and this carried on through the first over, giving the batters a few headaches right from the start.
Ross opened his overs at the canal end and his first ball shocked everyone, including those at the crease when it hit the seam and became the perfect bouncer, great start. Our bowling attack did well to keep the runs down until Ross bowled a slower ball that was returned straight to him, one down, caught and bowled.
The bowlers were changed on a regular basis so that Nairn were unable to get used to the pace. After three overs from Anjum, Nilesh was brought on and from the first ball was sending them down quickly and they were hard those facing him to get them away. Still, Nairn toiled away, with Woodward batting particularly well.
Ronan was brought on from the canal end. Bowling left arm over at a brisk pace, the change of angle brought a wicket, clean bowled. Two down and things were looking reasonable but we still needed to get wickets. Woodward was batting well and was proving a problem, scoring steadily and leading the way.
It was time for some spin and so on came Charlie. By this time Woodward had scored fifty, a great innings where he gave us very few chances but Charlie was up to the challenge and floated one up. It was hit straight to Charlie’s safe hands, caught and bowled, a great wicket to get.
Then came the middle order eyes wide open thinking that with a spinner on one end they could get the runs to maybe make us struggle chasing, however, our bowlers had other ideas. Keeping everything tight at the canal end, Charlie went on to tease and frustrate Nairn’s middle order. Next a big swipe went straight to Ross, a great catch. Now the runs were starting to dry out but Charlie wasn’t finished; another swing, another high shot caught by Ronan quickly followed by another big swing and another catch by Ross. The first left hander came in and Charlie bowled what would have been a very wide, wide, but swing and click, bottom of the bat into the keepers glove. We were on a hattrick ball. It wasn’t to be this time but another great over followed and the next wicket fell with another catch by Ronan.
After forty overs, nine wickets had fallen thanks to great bowling figures from everyone and exceptional bowling figures from Charlie: eight overs, one maiden, sixteen runs and six wickets, a club record.
Time for the batters to do their thing chasing a total of one hundred and forty the only down side to this score was the twenty-four extras that we gifted Nairn.
Out to bat went Ross and Nilesh and they started quickly putting on twenty-five for the first wicket with Nilesh being bowled for eleven. In went Charlie who put on thirty runs with Ross but unfortunately fell for fourteen. Anjum follower and put on another twenty-two runs before Ross fell for twenty-six.
At this point were sitting at seventy-seven for three. It wasn’t entirely comfortable, another quick wicket and the game would suddenly turn around. Carrying this burden, in went Oz and who in great style took the game home with Anjum scoring forty-six not out and Oz scoring twenty not out.
A great game, a famous win – our first senior match victory – and one played in a hard but fair way. On to Ross County next week with the hopes of keeping up the momentum.
Notable Mentions – Batting:
A. Anjum – 46 (Not out)
O. Crasto – 20 (Not out)
R. Lavin – 26
Woodward – 52
Whitehorn – 26
Elvines – 13
Notable Mentions – Bowling:
C. Thornton – 6/16 (8 overs)
A. Anjum – 0/16 (8 overs)
N. Pote – 0/26 (8 overs)
Whitehorn – 2/30 (8 overs)
Elvines – o/33 (5 overs)
Hayward – 1/44 (6.1 overs)