Match report by 4th XI skipper Steve Wernberg:

Saturday’s win at Sunbury was one of the most satisfying and thrilling matches I’ve played in (similar to Batterseas Ironsides in the threes a few years back in my first season at the club). After winning the toss on what looked like a belter of a wicket (nearly 500 scored there 2 weeks ago) I chose to bat. In the threes and fours we don’t get to play on such lovely grounds so it was a real privilege. Saf and me cruising at 70/2 and then the usual collapse (second time this season initiated by me giving away my wicket) and suddenly we were 70/5 then 75/6 and all out in the blink of an eye for 119.

 

What gave us some hope was the slowness of the pitch and that the batsman would have to chase the ball to get runs. Even so I opened with newcomer Ajay and Abdul but after 5 overs had to pull both as Sunbury were on 45/0. At this stage the fielding was sloppy and we looked a beaten team especially as we were down to 10 men after wicketkeeper Robert dislocated his thumb and had to leave the field in agony after putting it back into place. I brought on Indika from the one end bowling his slow medium pacers and Saf to bowl off-spin from the other end. And then it turned on 50, opener 1 playing on chasing a wide one. Opener 2 playing on chasing a wide one. Batsman three then swatted one to Jeevan at mid-wicket and batsman 4 played on, both out for ducks (bizarre to see three played on’s in one innings let alone in the space of 3 overs ), and in the space of three overs Sunbury had gone from 50/0 to 50/4. The WHCC heads lifted, Sunbury were in shock and the game became a very tense and tight affair with our players suddenly becoming quite brilliant in the field throwing themselves around as if their lives depended on it.

Indika got to 5 wickets, Saf had taken 3 and Sunbury were closing in on 100 with around 25 to get but with our two bowling stars tiring dramatically. I asked them both for one last effort but when the Sunbury number 10 was dropped after popping a sitter to point and then hitting 10 off the next over it looked like we may go close but like the Wimbledon game (where we lost by 6 runs) not close enough. With the Sunbury score on 108 Indika struck again twice and an ecstatic WHCC had won by 11 runs. Indika being the star man with 7/22 from 13.5 overs, followed by Saf who mixed it up between off-spin and seam with 3/36 from 12 overs and the rest of the team who played 2 hours of the most intense cricket in the field you will see in a 4th Eleven league match.

There was however a Tango moment and that belongs to an overexcited Khayam who when the ball popped straight to him at point with the Oppo 8 down shouted ‘It’s mine I’ve got it’ and then proceeded to …… drop it!! Well done lads as newcomers to the 4th Eleven Premier Division we are certainly mixing it with the big clubs in Surrey cricket. They are sitting up and taking notice which means it will only get harder. We sit joint third with Sunbury behind Wimbledon and Dulwich (the big two who are both unbeaten) after three matches.

 
 
 


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