First of all a big thank you to all the players that turned out for this fixture. At 11pm on Saturday night I was looking for 1 more player, by 10am Sunday morning I was then desperately hunting for 3 players. After a lot of scrambling and begging the team made it to the magic number of 11 players. Ed Akers, Dan Collington and Liam Aldred-Abram sacrificing any plans they had for Sunday to make sure that we got a team out.
We arrived at Calverton and it was clear to see that Saturday had taken its toll and those that had played as there were a lot of stiff and achy muscles but the spirits of the team were high as always and we were ready to get going. The toss was done and in usual fashion for Fisko’s skipper, the toss was lost. Fiskerton put into the field.
Joe Cope and Jim Kirkham opened the bowling with the usual lines and economy that these two bowlers can consistently achieve. Joe struck first removing Calverton’s opener with an exemplary short ball which would have troubled most batsmen in the league, the batsman only able to protect himself by gloving it straight up into the air and Max making no mistake in catching it. Joe quickly followed this by trapping their number 3 LBW with a slower ball and finished an excellent spell of bowling with 8 – 5 – 10 – 2. Jimmy supported Joe with good consistent lines and eventually got his reward with Laughts catching the batsman at short cover. Jimmy finished his spell with 6 – 2 – 14 -1. A good start for Fisko and into the mix of their batsman quickly. Phil Z took over from Kirkham and Dan Collo from Joe. Dan started his spell with 2 wickets in a row with his 2nd and 3rd ball of his first over. Dan finished his 1st spell with figures of 6 – 1 – 31 – 3 and Phil bowled through for figures of 8 – 0 – 38 – 0. Fiskerton in a good position and hopeful of an early tea. Calverton dug in though and the mix of youth and experience paid off well for them, Calverton’s skipper batting his team out of trouble, eventually falling to Laughts for 69 and the young number 8, playing some shots with control way above his experience level to finish unbeaten on 53. Calverton had made it through the 40 overs managing to get a total of 189.
A total that given the quality of the pitch, not dissimilar to the standard of pitches we are used to at home, I was confident that with enough application at the crease from everybody, this total was a one that we could chase down. Max and Laughts opened with Hedgie and Dan Jones missing today, Max very quickly at ease at the crease and playing some lovely drives. Laughts was the first to fall, playing inside the line and seeing his off stump knocked back. Dan Collington strode to the crease on the back of a strong batting performance on Saturday, only to have a mix up on a run and being needlessly run out. From here Max saw batsman come and go with nobody really giving a supporting role to him as he was smashing every bowler round the ground including the opening bowler for a huge six of deep mid-wicket. With Max successfully passing 100, he really took the game to Calverton, playing shots with confidence and meaning that Fisko were only 40 runs away from a victory which given the start had seemed somewhat unlikely. Unfortunately Max was run out trying to get back on strike in order to continue his push for victory, a well-constructed and flawless 108. It wasn’t long now until the end, Fiskerton eventually all out for 151, with Liam left 0* after Ben was the last to fall.
Given the players that were not available, 3 of these being batsman who would usually slot into the top 4 and add at least another 50-60 runs to the total. I believe that this was another match that would have been a different result with a full first team out. It still however highlighted that some batsman who have talent are not applying themselves at the crease and are exposing the middle order too early and leaving them too much to do.
Man of the match goes to Max for a wonderful early season century and gives him a platform to build on for the season. Captain Calamity goes to Dan Collo, first for his comment of ‘what is there only 1 ball left’ after I had spread the field to try and keep their top scorer off strike, but the main reason for him getting it this week, is for fetching a chair mid game whilst at 3rd man and being sat down when the bowler is running in. Not what I expect in my team at any stage of a game!!
We move on to next week lads, at home to Notts and Arnold. Let's get some points on the board.