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CCC vs Aulnay - A Tale of Two Teams

Match Reports 2013

CCC vs Aulnay - A Tale of Two Teams

Posted by: webmaster on Monday July 01, 2013 (08:07:49)   (4603 Reads)
 
What happened?
What happened?
It was the best of cricket. It was the worst of cricket…. It was also another grey afternoon in Apremont, for what would be the rematch between CCC and Aulnay. Chantilly had been competitive in the first game between the two teams a few weeks earlier, but poor fielding had let a potential win slip away from them. Had they learnt their lessons from last time? Would the game get washed out? Why do we not have a spare trumpet in the gear bag? Read on to find out the answers to these questions and more…..

By the time Captain Oakley had lost the toss, it was already raining heavily, and the players were sitting in their cars wondering why they waited all winter to play cricket when the weather was no different come summertime. Thankfully, the rain lasted about as long as most of our batting partnerships, which meant we were out on the field and ready to play within a matter of minutes.

 


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Richardson and Regan were chosen to open the bowling, and things quickly got interesting. On the fifth ball of the match, Shan was bowled by a Richardson ripper. Next ball, Praveen was caught by Powell for a golden duck, leaving Richardson sitting on a potential hat trick to start his second over. Powell’s catch was to set the tone for Chantilly’s fielding effort to come, and it quickly became apparent that his safe hands would have been useful to have around the last time these two teams had played each other.

Regan’s first over went for 6 runs, leaving him sweating over the possibility of being taken out of the attack early, with in form bowlers Patch and Shaban keen to get their hands on the new ball too. With Richardson at the other end it didn’t matter though, as he was in the mood to do it all by himself. He had the ball swinging beautifully, with good pace too. The opposition had no clue how to play him. In his third over he took another 2 scalps; catches to Patch and Shaban, getting their hands on the new ball after all!

By this stage Aulnay were 19 for 4, and Chantilly hadn’t dropped a catch. Chantilly’s bowling has certainly been strong this year, but coupled with some accurate fielding, they were starting to look a little ruthless. Regan decided it was time to join the fun, removing Soudran to a nice catch from Denzil, to complete a wicket maiden. Not wanting to be upstaged, Richardson then completed his 5 wicket bag, and a fantastic spell of bowling, with a smart catch from Sansbury.

Aulany were now 19 for 6, and the Chantilly players were enjoying the fact that a low score was going to be someone else’s problem for once. Captain Oakley was spoilt for bowling options (in the same way an All Blacks coach is often spoilt for talent) and Powell was given the nod to see if he could spin his way through the Aulnay tail. His first couple of overs were tight, putting even more pressure on the batsmen. Meanwhile, Regan continued to bowl through his 7 overs, repaying his captain’s faith by bowling another maiden and then getting a 2 wicket maiden to finish his spell (I’m not blowing my own trumpet here, just stating the facts), with Patch diving gracefully in the gully, and the middle stump diving gracefully out of the ground.

By this time, Aulany had just crept past 50. It was time to finish them off, so Prana was brought into the attack. Powell, realising it was now or never, removed Ranjith to a well deserved LBW, before Prana completed the demolition job by bowling Senthil in just the 18th over.

It was easily one of Chantilly’s best bowling and fielding performances in recent memory, but celebrations and teas would have to wait. There was a match to win….or to totally f&@k up! The decision to delay teas until after Chantilly had won the game, would prove to be about as smart as General Custer’s decision to delay his tea until after he’d returned from Big Horn!

Rob Oakley and Prana strode out to the middle with a target of 55 to get, and only 35 overs to get them in. The pressure was obviously too much (or perhaps the bowling was too good), as Oakley had his stumps removed in just the second over. This brought Patch to the crease, but before you could say ‘trumpet’, he was gone too, in much the same way as Oakley. Before long, Prana was also off the field, as he had retired hurt (again) due to a nasty knock to the knee. Powell and Sansbury formed something of a partnership, knowing that stability was the key, and the run rate was not an issue. It worked for a while, until both men were bowled with the score on 23, just under half way to the required total.

Shaban showed his usual class, and things started looking brighter, until he hit one too many in the air, and paid the price by losing his wicket. Jack Oakley was doing his best to see the team through to the end by playing some nice safe shots, and things continued to look possible with four more ‘batsmen’ to come and only 20 odd runs needed for victory. Things quickly turned sour though, with Prana adding 7 useful runs before being bowled, Regan getting run out for only 2, and Jack Oakley eventually being bowled for a hard fought 5, leaving Denzil and Ripoche at the crease, with 11 more runs required.

As the score reached 50, with one wicket in hand, and three overs still to be bowled, it was difficult to know who had the upper hand. Things became even tenser when Denzil temporarily left his crease, leaving his stumps at the mercy of the opposition wicket keeper. Some might say that a wicket keeper getting stumped is a bit like a policeman getting arrested, but Denzil tried to lighten the mood in the dressing room (on the bench) by declaring “I didn’t know my feet had to be behind the line!” Perhaps Richardson didn’t realize that his bails couldn’t be removed either, as he was bowled shortly after, and the game ended, Chantilly losing by an agonizing margin of 3 runs.

It was a tough pill to swallow, but the cakes and sandwiches provided by Jack and Jean Francois were not. They went down incredibly smoothly with a beer (perhaps an idea for each fixture). It was a pleasant way to finish a difficult game, and it was good to see a healthy crowd of non-players joining us too. Today we felt short of the opposition total. In the next game we’ll aim to trump it!

Ps. Special thanks to Sue for scoring and Patrick Heard for umpiring/coaching.
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