Going into the last game of the season against an already promoted Winterton A team the skipper’s instructions were to play with no pressure on the outcome and to enjoy the game and occasion. The skipper duly won the toss, again, and invited Winterton to bat on a green tinged wicket that looked like it would be of assistance to his bowlers. He was to be proved to be correct! The skipper and Daniel Hayward took the new ball and immediately put the batsman under pressure conceding only seven runs off the first ten overs during which the skipper removing B Clarke with an off-cutter bowling him between bat and pad with Daniel quickly claiming his replacement with a fine catch at slip by Duncan “buckets” Greenslade. The Winterton skipper T Witchelow and the dangerous Bryn Clarke then looked to re-build the innings until Alex “Chalky” Rennie took over from the skipper and in his first over removed Bryn for 15 with a fine catch at square leg by Daniel H. With the Winterton batsmen all at sea and unable to fathom Chalky’s leg breaks from his wrong un’s there followed a steady progression of batsman back to the pavilion. Chalky was supported well by his fielders with an excellent catch and then run out by our tame Aussie, Chris McKay, at deep mid on, and a very smart stumping by Tim Hales who kept well throughout the innings, conceding only one bye. Rob Smith, finally getting a game in the C team, completed a very good spell of bowling with a wicket and a couple of bouncers that dented the helmet and face grill of one the (junior) Winterton Batsman – what a fast track bully! Ben Carding bowled well after Rob began to tire being unlucky not to get a wicket and making the batsman play and miss outside off stump on several occasions. When Chalky removed the Winterton skipper lbw the innings ended quickly in the 41st over with the score on 106. After an outstanding tea during which the junior members of the club did their very best impression of a plague of locusts in devouring the contents of a very large cake table, the GMCC team innings got under way with Tim and Chalky opening the batting. The tone of the innings was set in the very first over with Tim smashing the first three balls of Donaldson’s one, and only, over for four; for which he was subsequently fined! The score rapidly progressed at between four and six runs an over and by the time Chalky was out mis-hitting a leg side delivery to square leg the game was virtually over at 68-1 in the 12th over. Chalky was replaced by the sartorially dressed Fergus Hughes in a pink shirt and strangely coloured shoes and a sticker-less bat (Liam’s hand-me-downs perhaps?) who was immediately put under pressure by the Winterton fielders crowding round. Fergus was very cool and calm and helped put on another 30 runs with Tim before succumbing to Bryn Clarks’ naggingly accurate line and length and being bowled. Bryn was the most effective of the six bowlers used by Winterton. Sam Carding joined Tim in finishing off the innings in only the 19th over which came with Tim adding a new shot to his repertoire with a leg side flick over midwicket for four to finish on 69 not out; an innings that has been a long time coming and should cement his place in the C team. The match was played in a great spirit with Winterton probably focusing more on their promotion and next season than on the game in hand. It was also very nice to have a fully qualified umpire, Simon, participate who was immaculately dressed and was both professional and very fair. He was very impressed with our performance and warmly congratulated the skipper and the club on producing such a talented, enthusiastic, exceptionally well behaved and disciplined “young” team. The performance capped an outstanding season for the C team winning a total of eight games and putting them in jeopardy of yet another promotion.
Winterton A (3 pts)
B Clark ct Hayward b Rennie 15; K Laws b SR Carding 4: W Ives ct D Greenslade b Hayward 0; T Witchelow lbw Rennie 38; K Drewitt ct McKay b Rennie 5; C Page ct Hales b Smith 0; J Pendergast Run out (McKay) 0; E Young b Rennie 23; M Stanhope-Smith b Rennie 9; L Donaldson st Hales b Rennie 0; P Drake not out 0. Extras 11.
Total 106 all out
D Hayward (9-4-14-1), SR Carding (9-3-1-19), A Rennie (11.1-1-33-6), R Smith (6-1-24-1), B Carding (6-1-10-0)
Great Melton C (23 pts)
T Hales 69no, A Rennie ct. Ives b. Clark 15, F Hughes b. Clark 3, SJ Carding 1no. Did not bat – R Smith, B Carding, J Wimhurst, C McKay, D Greenslade, D Hayward, SR Carding. Extras 19.
L Donaldson (1-0-12-0), T Witchelow (5-2-28-0), E Young (2-016-0), M Stanhope-Smith 5-1-18-0) B Clark 5.5-3-17-2) W Ives 1-0-4-0).