C.E.C.C.| Shepherds Cot | Crouch End | North London | N8 8JJ
For the second week running the 4th XI came up against a side with a lot of experience. This was considered a strong Crouch End team and it was happy to be put in to bat. However, George went in the first over, Tom was put out of his misery when he eventually got an edge, and progress was understandably slow in the face of some very tidy bowling. Mike D and Naggers waited patiently for a hittable ball and slowly got the run rate from one-an-over to the dizzy heights of almost two and promised to provide the basis for a defensible total. However, Naggers pulled a muscle and was LBW shortly afterwards for 31. Joe joined Mike and played sensibly and forcibly until on 19 he reverted to schoolboy type and obligingly hit a ball into mid off’s midriff. Hikmatullah, after seeming to struggle for touch, hit two steepling sixes into the allotments but then failed to take the on the mantel once Mike missed a straight one and was LBW for 50. So; a disappointing total – 154 in 49 overs: but if we struggled so could they.
Not so. Their openers set off like a train. Neither Dhamendra nor Hikmatullah were at their best and Chiswick had two pragmatic, experienced batsmen to exploit the fact. A semblance of order was restored with spells from Mike and Joe. Joe made the breakthrough and bowled with a lot of good sense though he still teetered on the brink of a tantram when he had the other opener dropped at long off, twice. Such catches are never easy but a lack of steel in the fielding meant that the man dropped was undefeated on 74 when Chiswick reached their target. Before that there had been a frisson of excitement as Chanchal took two wickets with unstoppable Yorkers – just a part of his varied repertoire; but even the Chiswick middle order knew what they were doing and the total was reached for 4 wickets in 28 overs.
So another disappointment. But at least for those who might reasonably have expected to be playing at a higher level, Chiswick 4th provided a proper game of cricket; an encouragement to any others who find themselves in this position.
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