In what seems potentially a more regular occurrence of PCC fielding a second side outside of the fixtures due to strong availability, the PCC GOLD team was established. The fixture was arranged at the last minute following some hard work behind the scenes by Leon Parks with the opposition described as weak/ medium. Noodle was asked to skipper, which he dutifully accepted.
All arrived on time except for Jon Ryves , who really should’ve been advised to put his clock and hour further forward when the British clocks embraced British Summer Time. This would surely increase the chances of arrival close to the requested time (which in this case was 12.30pm). The time zone could even be herewith labelled JRT (Jon Ryves Time). Anyway, lets move on.
Ridgway lost the toss and PCC Gold were asked to bat. O Lonsdale and P Gledhill (aka Freddie Mills’ replacement) opened and it was immediately apparent that the weak/medium description must be more aligned to the oppo’s batting rather than their bowling. The opening bowlers bowled tightly and at the appropriate length on the track (Hollies) that was slow and low (but at least looked to be consistent). After a gruelling few overs P Gledhill got a good ball and was bowled. After 10 overs we were 13-1. With the change bowling equally tight, N Ridgway and O Lonsdale looked to dig in and accumulate where possible. Unfortunately O Lonsdale fell LBW a few overs later and N Tailor didn’t trouble the scorers with a second-ball duck (shame to get a good nut so early on, but the dismissal did highlight the need to get forward given the pitch conditions.)
With 3 down this brought T Lockhart to the crease and thankfully a partnership developed until N Ridgway fell for 32 with the score approaching 60. G Sutton joined T Lockhart and the scoring shots continued to come through and soon PCC Gold got past the 100 mark. As the score was increasingly becoming ‘competitive’ given the conditions the mood of the onlooking batsmen clearly lifted and the sun even came out for some action. However, an acceleration in the innings didn’t quite materialise as G Sutton fell for a well-made 25 with the score in the 120s. T Lockhart forged onwards to his 50 and a few cameos around him (JRT ‘timing’ the ball well; Martin Flannery getting into the action; and R Lonsdale stroking a few around) PCC Gold finished their 40 overs on 149/9. Not great, but something that would be defendable so long as PCC Gold could keep things tight early on and crucially take early wickets.
Tea was taken.
In reply, Noodle opened up with R Lonsdale and A Prasssaaaddddd with R Lonsdale on the money right away securing PCC Gold’s first wicket in the first over. AJ was less accurate but when he found his flight he did create uncertainty with the batsmen’s shot selection justifying being given the opening spell. R Lonsdale got the second wicket in quick time (getting their #4 caught behind by P Gledhill) and then set about a gruelling assessment of Pimlico’s left-handed #3. This duel was superb with constant beating of the bat until the edge was found and the catch behind was taken. However, unfortunately the umpire didn’t hear (or see) the edge and the bat didn’t walk so our vital 3rd breakthrough didn’t materialise. The #3 ended up amassing 30-odd before being dismissed by N Ridgway (who came on to replace R Lonsdale) courtesy of a very tidy catch from J Ryves at mid-on. N Tailor replaced A Prassad and found more flight to keep the batsmen honest, but unfortunately didn’t get further breakthrough.
At drinks the score was 70-odd for 3 which could’ve been regarded but we all knew that Pimlico’s wickets would end up the crucial factor. After drinks G Sutton came into the attack and after a few overs managed to prize a wicket to get the breakthrough. A few more wickets followed quickly and a strong position for the oppo was beginning to crumble. Yet while G Sutton got to his 4th wicket, Pimlico’s #4 continued to progress through his innings and accelerated at the right time haul them over the line 7 down and with a number of overs to spare.
So all in all a disappointing result considering the efforts all round. A hard pitch to bat on but pleasing to get to a competitive total after such a slow start. But we didn’t have enough runs and it told in the end. Yet we all left the ground pondering what could have been had that #3 been out…
Onwards and upwards…