Words: Jono Robinson
Chobham graciously hosted the 1’s this weekend. The 1’s arrived on time, even though there was a minor detour to get essential cricket equipment from the local sports store. Always a good start.
What was to greet us was a track that looked full of runs, with a lighting fast outfield to add to the bowlers worries. The team gave Dharms strict instructions to win the toss and bat, which he duly did.
Out strolled the confident opening pair of JP and Phil. They went about their work in the usual fashion, punishing anything loose and keeping out the good ones. Phil was looking very good in one over smashing 3 fours, only to give a soft catch, which still had to be taken and alas it was.
Enter Sticky, now be fair it’s been a while since he batted and he has had a new arrival in the family (congrats Sticky!), so understandably he was slightly rusty. But he stuck to the job and grafted his way to a respectable 20. Some might say it could have been more, but Barry called it as he saw it and was out lbw.
Now for the mini collapse! Max, JP (Boots? I don’t need no stinking boots?) and Stu amassed 13 runs between them. With 3 fours from JP ‘boots’. All this time the other JP was marching effortlessly on to his 50.
Enter Mo at 143/6 after 25 overs. Not an overly bad score but we were in danger of being bowled out for a score that would be well below par. Mo was not going to let this happen. With sensible batting and some every elegant late cuts put on a 100 runs with JP.
During that time JP got his first 100 (off 95 balls) for RCC, with some batting that look so easy, it almost looked like he was bored. But it was a privilege to watch. A good effort, hopefully much more to come in the coming games! No pressure!
Mo got 60 (50 off 41 balls). Eventually holding out to point. JP soon followed for a well-crafted 112.
Needless to say that partnership broke that back of Chobham resistance, who must have thought it they were in with a chance to bowling out RCC for a modest score.
Umer contributed some big blows to propel RCC to 268/9 off 45. A pretty healthy score indeed!
Lunch was taken. And there was even time to take the long awaited team photo. Just in time before the season ended.
Umer began proceedings in the usual way that the 1s have been so accustomed to this season, bowling testing lines, giving nothing away. Max decided to take a gamble and open with spin, hoping that the carrot balls would entice the openers into expansive stroke play to get quickly up with the run rate. Oddly this was not to be as the openers played two maidens out from the spinner, with spinner not really threatening to take wickets.
Max swiftly changed tactic and replaced Jono with Mo. Mo proved yet again why his one of the leading wicket takers in the league by removing the opener with the help of a sharp catch from Dharms off a bottom edge. One brings two, and the very next ball Mo struck, Bowled! CHabham safely negotiated the hat-trick ball.
Chobham decided to make RCC work for their wickets. It was 19 runs before the next wicket was taken by super Mo. The Chobham Skipper and Batsman 6 played out Umer and Mo successfully. Both Mo and Umer finishing their spells with figures of 0/28 and 3/29 respectively in their 9. RCC giving very little in the field with aggressive fielding to cut down the run scoring opportunities, there was however several dropped catches which threatened to drop our sprits, but the team stuck to the task at hand and quickly focused on the next delivery
Ron came on to replace Mo. And took out the number 6 for a hard earned 29 off 48 balls, with the help of an outstanding catch from Joe ‘I am in the hundred club at last’ Pantling. This provided the opportunity for RCC force home the win. Jono came back and bowled his remaining 7 overs, taking 4/22, again backed up by an excellent one hand catching in the deep by “now I can do anything” Pantling
Ron picked up one more wicket, by removing the skipper a hard fought 30 off 60 balls. Ron took 2/54 in his 8. Max (1/14) accounted for the last wicket.
A hard fought win in the end. Good all round performance in all areas.
Man of the match was a tough one. Mo performing with bat and ball. But was edged out by Joe Pantling’s maiden century for RCC.
Thanks to Chobham for an enjoyable game.
Well done Lads!