Mitcham 2nd XI v Woking and Horsell 2nd XI
That’s a bit more like it!! A last! The 2nd XI got their first points of the season with a victory at Mitcham despite a late wobble as wickets tumbled, thanks in the main part to Jerry Days captain innings of 95* delighting everybody involved.
Despite two crushing defeats in the previous two weeks when we just didn’t turn up at all, optimism was surprisingly high as set off for Mitcham. Availability had improved, there was an injection of youth, (although M was still young enough to play in the youngster’s football team in the pre-match warm up much to his delight) and the previously weak batting line up had been lengthened.
Optimism was further heightened when we won the toss and the youthful bowling line up of Henry Peters and John Hargan tied down the opening batsmen with the first boundary not coming up until the 12th over. Despite the intimidating atmosphere, the locals were singing, We’re Mitcham, we’re Mitcham, we’re Mitcham and that’s the way we like it, we like it, we like it, we continued to trurn the screw although the lack of wickets was a concern particularly given the new 50 over format. The lack of wickets did become an issue as we the innings went on as the Mitcham batsmen became more expansive. A couple of key wickets at crucial times did keep the score below 200 which was a good bowling effort from everybody that turned their arm over. Special mention must go to the two youngsters but also to Chris Dunbar, who bowled an excellent spell despite no success which was all the more remarkable considering he collided with a fence and also with the sightscreen which he got up and kicked, and also to Paul Fortescue who took crucial wickets at crucial times and bowled some tight final overs which turned out to be so important.
So, over the road for tea, cheese and onion sandwiches, lovely, Frank Lampard blockbuster, not so good.
Our innings began so well, Tommo and Malcolm looked comfortable and we reached 30 without too much alarm but in the time it took me to walk from the scorebox back to our changing room, albeit a bit further than Brewery Road and across a busy main road we had lost three wickets. The mumbling had started and the lack of confidence shone through again. “At least we’ll get more than we did against Ashford” followed twenty minutes later by, “at least we’ll get more than we did against Valley End” but to be honest we were always going to be in the hunt with Jerry and John at the wicket. They both batted beautifully and timed our run chase pretty well although we could have done without the wickets going at the end. Although Jerry scored the majority of the runs, much must be made of John’s contribution (34). He hit the ball beautifully and on another day they would go past, rather than to fielders. Once John was out there was a bit of a wobble but we only needed four an over off the last eight and despite the run out of M (“you don’t get run out by direct hits at this level” Oops) and the slog\miss by Deano which “costus” a bonus point we got home due to some further impressive striking from the skipper. We’re off and running.