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Week 8 (30June19)

Hello my little Peeping Toms

I thought I’d start this week’s round up with a rare bit of classic literature for you all. It was William Shakespeare who wrote

“Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.”

I have considered this weekend’s action in the light of this and put forward for your consideration the following 3 nominees:

Some are born great – that would be Brad Richards. Despite another drubbing this week for the 3’s (Spoilers!!!), skipper Michael Collins returned from his annual pilgrimage to St Reatham with a rare smile on his face purely because the attitude and geniality of Brad had made the day worthwhile. For a beleaguered 3rd team skipper to say this is a mark of something special.

Some achieve greatness – step forward Chris Heane (more spoilers ahead) whose 6 wickets for the 2s propelled them to victory. Well done on a tremendous spell of leg spin bowling.

Some have greatness thrust upon them – that would have to be the legendary Keith Ford who two weeks ago “retired” from cricket, then last week became the oldest player to ever score a half century for Normandy and this week came within one run of beating his newly acquired record. For a guy who is only playing because we would otherwise be struggling to field a 4th team this is pretty special.

What links these three guys? Simply put they are three of the club’s nicest guys (a rare accolade) and on occasions such as this its worth praising the good guys. Bravo Gentlemen, we salute you!

Most of you will have given up reading at this point, but for those still with me here is the news….

The 1st XI lost their unbeaten record with a defeat to basement side Walton-on-Thames. After a string of top order batters got in and then failed to make a big score, it was left to the long handle of Will Pereira to push the tally upwards of 200. He, Callum Green and Russel Withey taking the score from a dodgy looking 172 for 7 to a much more defendable 234 for 8.

Despite having the baddies at 85 for 4 the normally reliable bowling attack were unable to take the 5th wicket until a further 90 runs had been added, and by then it was game well and truly on as Walton (with nothing to lose) gave it a good old fashioned go, overhauling our total with 2 wickets and 5 balls to spare. It goes without saying that Little Viggy was again the pick of the bowlers with 4 for 59. I am reliably informed it was dropped catches that cost us dear. The 1s remain top but the lead has been slashed to just 3 points. Next week’s game against third placed Cranleigh could be a ripper.

Back at a sun-drenched HQ, the 2s enjoyed an excellent win over Farnham, who included former Normandy regular Richard Phillips in their ranks, the prodigal even bringing his “once met never forgotten” father with him for support.

After Torquil (25) had helped get us off to a start, Club Captain Rossi took centre stage, showing his class with a magnificent 84 before heat, fatigue and possibly gout got the better of him and he was castled, leaving the field to rapturous applause. However, at 155 for 6 Farnham thought they had a fair chance of rolling us over but Burts (30*) and the Riders of Rohan (28) had other ideas. Their partnership of 56 for the 7th wicket not only took the score over 200 but also drained the energy from the toiling Farnham side. It was a match defining partnership and terrific to watch. Aaron -Smallbone rubbing salt into the wounds by creaming his first ball for 4 through mid-wicket as if he had been batting all day.

A final tally of 227 always looked enough and so it proved as AK grabbed two early wickets and skipper Elon Robinson grabbed the prized scalp of this Phillips fellow and at 47 for 4 the door was wide open for Heane Dog to work his magic. 13 overs 6 for 20 may not have the headline grabbing ring of 5 for 0 but are still excellent figures and the Farnham lower order had no resistance as Heaney bowled them out with 10 overs to spare to send the 2s up to 4th place in a very competitive division.

For the 3s a trip to Streatham on the hottest day of the year was an extra kick in the teeth for the basement side that they could well have done without. On the plus side Founder won the toss for the first time this year and looking at the lack of depth in his batting line up, and then at the baking sun and cloudless blue sky elected to bat. He may not be the luckiest captain we have, but he’s no fool. The side were duly rolled out for just 127 (Fitz top scoring with 23 for which in the skipper’s own words “he deserves a handshake and no more”) and the home side knocked them off for 4 in 20 overs but my goodness that was better than chasing leather for 50 odd overs against a side who “like to give it some stick”. The 3s are still bottom but only two wins away from safety and there are rumours of the cavalry on its way…..

On the top deck where Teresa May was apparently sighted around the boundary edge (thanks for that one, Hemers) the 4th team posted 143 thanks to the heroics of Fordy (49), plus some vintage stuff from Benji the Bear (27) and Driftwood (21). Had a caught behind been given it may have been a different story, but it wasn’t and the visitors cantered to victory 5 down. Pick of the bowlers was Xavier Deacon with 3 for 16 that shows great promise. There was also a wicket apiece for Medders and Alfie Beardall. The 4s lie 6th in a league that has the feel of a Countdown numbers round (a couple from the top, two from the bottom and the rest from the middle, please).

The 1st team’s poor weekend got poorer when they were beaten in the National Knockout by Havant on Sunday. At this stage details of the game are sketchy as my correspondent in the field (CJ) is not big on specifics. I can confirm that we batted second and lost, Little Viggy bowled well (again) and Freddy Austin looked magnificent.


Put it on the Slate

The usual one to check Slate and make sure you are fully paid up please.

Please read this bit

I normally put something flippant here about MyClubhouse which triggers some of you into marking your availability, leaves Simon Howarth and Torquil panicking they have got the technology wrong and the rest of you routinely ignore. However, this week please can I direct you to tread carefully as we also require those eligible to mark their availability for the Sunday Academy game at home against Worcester Park, and the Monday Under 19 T20 also at home against Guildford. These games are on Sunday 7 and Monday 8 respectively and we will be selecting the teams on Tuesday this week as soon as we have removed our blindfolds and taken out the pins from the Saturday selection sheet. Callum Job has worked really hard in organising these fixtures and trying to galvanise support for two excellent competitions in which we aspire to perform well, so please those of you who are eligible, mark your availability and help get these two competitions off to a flying start.

Back to NCC – Saturday 6 July

Some of you may have seen on the FaceBook that CJ is trying to entice all players to come together after cricket on Saturday in what he is calling a “Back to NCC night”. The two away teams have relatively short journeys and the 1s are keen to play host, so can all players make the effort to return to NCC after their games for a drink and a catch up. In the past this used to be a given every week, but I understand times have changed (we never had Love Island or gluten intolerance back then) but it would be great to please give CJ’s excellent idea the support it deserves and all pile back to NCC after cricket on Saturday to catch up on the days events and generally see what the other teams look like.

Fantasy League

No update on the Fantasy League as yet as the scores are not all in – but I’ll update you when the teams go out. In the meantime, here is a special message for Brad:

Consider changing your captain as whilst being no expert myself, I think clinging to the hope Wardy is going to score anything else this year is vastly optimistic.

Right that’s it from me – I’m off to read and enjoy The French Lieutenant’s Woman.

Until me meet again

Scottie Dog

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