11 Ploughmen descended on DSG for another pop at Premier League opposition. Unfortunately, only three Balham and Tooting players were there for 1pm so the start was delayed. A 40 over match began at 1:30 with the familiar narrative of Bolsh and Gray opening up on Hollies with the Play Cricket win predictor heavily in our favour.
Some would say opening with spin at both ends is a risk in limited overs cricket but the decision soon paid dividends with their opening bat tidily stumped by Ben Hamilton as Gray got one to drift away, while the bat tried to send the ball into the church over the road. Grayzer picked up another shortly after to leave B&T CC 2-2. Their number four came in and looked very dangerous, scoring 25 runs in 29 run stand before Bolsh made the breakthrough, giving more aggression to the send-off than he’s ever given running up to the crease. Another quick wicket for Bolsh and B&T were reeling at 40-4.
The opener and the number 6 sought about repairing the damage, albeit patiently, with Puff and Silva bowling some tight lines and the fielders backing them up. The opener finally went caught behind to Puff, followed shortly after by the number 7 and the Plough were in the driving seat at 70-6. A crucial partnership of 37 followed which had a fair amount of luck and runs through third man before Lonnen and the original Hickson cleaned up the tail. An impressive effort all round left us chasing 134 off 40 overs.
It’s a sad sign of the times we live in that the Tea review is currently not a segment that requires much attention in the match report. I can’t comment on others but the M&S wrap I had really hit the spot. Some of the oppo supporters tended to prefer something a little more green for their half time refreshments.
The innings did not get off to the strong start seen in the past few matches. Despite a very strong candidate for who said it? ‘It says on play cricket that I’m most often out caught’, Ovens carved a wide ball to point who took a sharp catch. This was a sign of things to come and B&T produced a superb fielding display despite not appearing the most athletic of outfits. Iskander got one that kept low and that brought together A Hicko and Suri who looked to repair some of the early damage as we sat at 14-2. A good partnership of 53 between the two was very well made on pitch that was getting trickier to bat on. The original Hickson was finally out caught behind, although none of the oppo thought he touched it – an Australian walking didn’t get the comedic credit it warranted. Suri fell immediately after to a stunning caught and bowled and the Plough were 67-4. Hockings then went for a duck trying to hit the ball over to the pavilion, presumably hoping whoever fetched it could grab him a pint.
At 67-5 the opposition really stepped up the pressure and the chat in the field and around the boundary was exceptional from them. It really didn’t feel like a home game at this point. Lonnen and Hamilton tried to dig in and repair the damage but the bowling and fielding was very tight and the runs dried up. Lonnen feathered one behind and Hamilton fell to another excellent caught and bowled from the off spinner who was the pick of the bowlers, ending on 8 overs, 5 maidens, 8 runs, 4 wickets. Promoting himself to the lofty heights of 8, Bolsh attempted to ‘take it deep’ but with wickets falling at the other end he was the last man out, Plough all out for 93.
It was a really good game despite the dodgy pitch and a few moments of aggro. The oppo were a great bunch of lads and we’ll certainly need to be right up for this one in the Premier League next year.
As always, the post match circuit was the winner on the day. Plough on lads and ladies.