Match Reports 2008

CCC vs Nomads - 23 August 2008

Posted by: webmaster on Monday August 25, 2008 (15:12:47)
The well-travelled Nomads returned to Chantilly for the opening match of their August Bank Holiday tour of France. Having wined and dined at the Ferme de Conde and stayed overnight at the Hotel du Parc, their convoy made it out to Apremont on a fine and sunny Saturday afternoon. The only thing they forgot was to grab some chalk from the white cliffs of Dover on their way – In a vain attempt to disorientate their opening batsman, we were temporarily unable to provide chalk to mark their guard on the crease. A desperate dash into the village ensued, and the Elliotts came up trumps again, with Lucy returning with several sticks. Unperturbed by the numerous interruptions as the Chantilly captain, bowlers, and fielders all tried to solve the “Chalkgate” mystery, Lascelles and Newman opened slowly but surely.

The economical bowling of Gillette and Congreve, and the batsmen’s struggle to get their bearings, kept them to under 3 an over for the first eight overs. The run-rate began to pick up when an incredible display in the field was heralded by Newman’s dismissal, caught behind by Homer for 8. The middle order pushed on and took advantage of the first change pairing of Shepherd and Patrick Clarke with Hill and Lascelles in a 50 partnership, and the run rate up to 5 an over by the half-time drinks interval. It looked as if the refreshment was working to the advantage of the batsmen, as Hill reached 32 and Lascelles 51, before falling head-on into the Hedley trap. Accurate bowling by Charlie meant that father Simon picked up both high scorers with athletic catches at mid-on. Captain Clarke brought himself on to bowl and combined with Charlie to stem the runs. Gillette rejoined the attack for the final few overs. Pressure built on the tail enders who sought to force the scoring but further catches from the Clarke’s (two by Nick and one by Patrick) rounded off with well-taken chances by Charlie Hedley and Gillette meant that the Nomads had reached 153 for 8 (ALL CAUGHT !) at the close of their innings after 40 overs. Gillette had tidied up the loose ends to finish with impressive figures of 3 for 19, tight sessions from Patrick and Nick Clarke had slowed the run rate, but the real performance came from young Charlie Hedley whose line, length and control helped him to earn 4 wickets for just 21 runs.

Denzil proved that he is not just a talented wicket-keeper, likened to Mark Bosnich on cocaine, but also pretty handy with the butter knife. He roped in his wife, Amanda, his daughter, his brother and sister-in-law to serve up another in the series of marvellous teas – the highlight of which was the lemon sponge.


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Two of our three Nicks opened the batting – Sansbury and Shepherd were intent on staying around and waiting for the bad ball, since the target of just under 4 an over did not seem too daunting. Good running between the wickets to some looseners put some early runs on the board, when Nick Sansbury got the first of two absolute corkers from the young fast bowler, Woodhouse, falling for 4. Matt Gillette was trapped soon after caught and bowled, and Nick Clarke joined Nick Shepherd out in the middle. They clearly knew what they were doing with the bad ball, but were not so sure about the good ball - the young Woody produced his second corker which was good enough to send Captain Clarke on his way. Shepherd, having decided that we needed to stop the rot, gave clear instructions to his partners to hang around, and not take any risks. In theory, this was fine, but the practice was very different resulting in a whole series of dodgy singles which the Jamaican sprint relay team would have had trouble making. However some over-eager wicket-keeping, and spot-on decisions by our visiting umpire, meant that all potential run-out victims somehow survived. In fact, Denzil had defended well for a few overs, until he mis-timed the accurate left-armer, Ireland, to be caught and bowled for 4. Drinks were taken, and Powell made his way eagerly to the middle. Chalkgate reared it’s head again, as Adrian, not having batted (or flown) for several months, struggled with his vectors and was stumped first ball. Historic scenes followed as Ireland pursued the first-ever hat-trick at Apremont. Simon Hedley faced the aggressive field with 10 men round the bat, and the vicious curling delivery from Ireland. The tension was palpable and Simon survived, only to fall the following over.

Congreve was asked to perform several Usain Bolt accelerations as Shepherd continued to make some crazy calls to keep the scoreboard rolling. Tris was trapped and caught off the bowling of Ireland and Patrick Clarke made his way to the middle. A couple of manly blows followed from the teenager, and there was a glimpse of hope. In an attempt to steer the ball down to third man, Shepherd played on and was the 8th wicket down. On paper a fine innings of 51, but the scorebook could have read “51 for 4”, given the chances that went begging. The Nomads tails were up, and the field closed in on our lower order youngsters. Patrick Clarke was clean bowled by Blumberg for 8, and the innings was over when the same senior tourist sent our youngest player Max Shepherd back to the pavilion (tent) caught behind for a duck. Our performance deserved better than the defeat by 67 runs, which was nevertheless a big improvement on last year’s match which we lost by 90. At that rate of improvement, roll on 2012, when we will be going for gold.

Socially of course we proved to be at least a match for the Nomads and were able to enjoy a cool beer together long into the evening sunshine. The Nomads had appreciated their first ever overnight stop in the area, and will seek local board and lodging for the 2009 tour. We look forward to welcoming them back next year, and hope that their victory against us puts them in good spirit for the visits to Thoiry and Standard.

Nick Shepherd
Nick C keeps the score

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