Hales and Loddon A, 49-10 (30 overs), 2 points
GMCC C 51-2 (12 overs), 22 points
The C team welcomed two new debutants, Tom Moyes from the U13’s and Craig Attewell from the U15’s, for the game against Hales and Loddon on a warm and sunny Saturday afternoon at Town Close. The skipper duly lost the lost for the 10th time this season and Melton was asked to field against a Hales team with a very young looking line up featuring several U13’s. Zef “Ziggy” Ishtiaq (7-0-11-0) and Connor “Bashful” White (6-0-13-0) opened the bowling immediately putting pressure on the senior opening pair of Whiting (7) and Stacey (5) who batted cautiously from the start. The breakthrough came in the fifth over with the score on 13 as Whiting made the mistake of attempting to turn a comfortable single into two, losing out to a smart pick up, throw and direct hit from Marcus “Beamer” Mawby at mid-on. Soon after, his opening partner suffered the same fate, making the costly mistake of running on a misfield to Tom “Monty” Moyes who having made a diving stop in the covers recovered quickly with an accurate throw to Steve “Too Many Donkeys” Clarke behind the stumps to beat the struggling Stacey. The only blotch on an excellent seven over spell from “Ziggy” was missing a rather straightforward caught and bowled chance, for which he was fined double! The miserly “Bashful” was also unlucky not to take at least one wicket with his probing and accurate line and length. “Beamer” and the skipper duly replaced “Ziggy” and Bashful. After what is becoming his customary opening 8 ball over and keeping deep fine leg interested and occupied, “Beamer” (4-0-7-0) settled into a rhythm of sorts and was able to worry both Palmer (13) and Weston (8) with his pace and some variable bounce from the Pavilion end. The skipper (7-7-0-5) meanwhile found the Town Close pitch very much to his liking bowling three consecutive maiden overs before finally beating the stubborn resistance of Palmer, and finding the edge of his bat with “Too Many Donkeys” snaffling up the chance. That was to be the end of any serious resistance from the Hales and Loddon batsman as the skipper ripped through the middle order, bowling Kaye (0), Dempsey (0) and Weston with delightful off-cutters and also taking a smart return catch from Cook (0) to end his seven over spell with seven maidens and five wickets – his best ever figures! It might have been even better had “The Silver Fox” Grenners not gone down in installment to put down a rather simple chance at mid-off, for which he received a triple fine! The skipper (eventually) took himself off giving an opportunity to Craig “Six Fingers” Attewell (2-0-5-0) and his mystery leg spin. “Six Fingers” had a very nervy couple of overs, struggling to find his line and length and the form he has displayed this season for the U15’s. “Beamer” meanwhile having worried for too long both the batsmen and “Too Many Donkeys” as well as deep fine leg with his “variation” was replaced at the Pavilion end by debutant “Monty” Moyes (3-1-3-3). “Monty” quickly found his line and length and some prodigious turn was soon claiming his maiden wicket in senior cricket, clean bowling Rolph (0) with a full toss. He was soon followed back to the pavilion by Buckingham (0) who was also bowled (by one that bounced this time!) and finally White (0) who was caught at short cover by “Bashful” to end the innings on 49 after only 30 overs.
Forgoing the tea interval, “The Silver Fox” (7) and “Buckets” Greenslade (23) strode out to the middle to start the Melton innings. “Buckets” immediately took a liking to the bowling of young Western (4-1-0-11) hitting consecutive boundaries off his first over. “The Silver Fox” was a little more circumspect to both Western and his opening partner Rolph (4-1-11-0) but eventually started to find his stride and the middle of the bat with some nicely timed shots into the “V”. “Buckets” eventually succumbed to one too many expansive pull shots, missing a full toss in front of the stumps and being given out LBW to the impressive young Buckingham (2-0-5-1). David “Two Jumpers” Bunn (5no) joined “The Silver Fox” desperate to avoid the ignominy of two successive first ball failures, which he duly did with a rather nervous prod outside off-stump. After a few bat-pad shots and strangled appeals for LBW “Two Jumpers” settled in and it wasn’t too long before he unleashed his customary powerful cover drive and the dispatching of the ball to the boundary. “The Silver Fox” then contrived to get himself out slapping a wide ball from Cook (2.3-1-13-1) into the hands of Rolph at point leaving “Bashful” (2no), batting at number four, to smash the winning run with his customary Kevin Peterson-like clubbing of the ball to the long on boundary. With the game over within 12 overs it was time for an “early bath” accompanied by a rendition of some 1940’s classic or other by “Too Many Donkeys” and “The Silver Fox” and much bewilderment and mumbling and groaning (singing?) from the rest of the team. “Too Many Donkey’s” tea and home made cakes were duly dispatched mainly by the juniors leaving most of the seniors with the problem of knowing what to do with their new found free time and the rest of the afternoon; some DIY, shopping or gardening perhaps?
Overall a satisfying end to too short a game (“Two Jumpers” didn’t get warm enough to dispose of even one jumper!) that featured two promising new juniors and spin bowlers, with “Monty” Moyes being a particularly exciting prospect. The C team has now won eight games this season equally the total number of wins of last season and look quite confortable in the upper reaches of the Norfolk League. This is a strong testament to the strength in depth of the club and its impressive junior section which continues to produce fine young prospects for nurturing in the C team and preparation for bigger and better things in the clubs’ other senior teams.