The midweek 20/20 side got under way in The CIL League (the first game having been rained off last week), with a resounding win against Henleaze Old Boys.
On a flat pitch at YMCA the cowboys put on 187, with RT2 caught out on 98, including 8 sixes, avoiding a double jug. Sahil hit 5 4’s and Angelo (once his hamstring went) put his shiny new bat to good use.
Henleaze gave us a scare being 134 for 2 in the 14th over, but 3 quick wickets put paid to any hopes of an unlikely overhaul. Kalpit bowled a tidy 2-16. Newcomer Sayed, and RT2 were both quick and accurate with the ball.
Cowboys won by 27 runs.
As Garnier served a barbecue at the conclusion of the match against Old Park that tempted your correspondent into the bony realm of pesco-vegetariansm, the fishy was on the little dishy but the boat had failed to come in.
It started so well on a gorgeous first day in June, the cow parsley high, the sun negating a stiff breeze on which wafted pig shite and silage. Ian won the toss for the fifth time in succession and had no hesitation in inserting the opposition on the second-hand strip from the week before and within a trice, RT1 showed that he had very much recovered from injury, in a devastating opening spell that reduced Old Park to 10 for 3. Bolivian-bound Budge bowled beautifully, trapping another batsman LBW to have the opposition in the mire at 18 for 4.
The next partnership put on ninety-five, not for want of accurate bowling, as Matt D and the Landlord prevented the runs from flowing, supported by a busy field, constantly preventing and allowing singles to engineer the strike away from the better bat. One or two sharp chances went to ground and slowly the score advanced. Post-birthday boy Garnier eventually made the breakthrough, springing down the hill with the grace and confidence of a deer that doesn’t know it’s venison, as Lalith plugged away at the other end, explaining LBW laws to the umpire with eventual success.
The Cowboys did well to restrict the opposition in the final overs, Garnier dismissing the big gun for 79 and trapping another batsman LBW, Ev buying a wicket thanks to a superlative forward diving Matt D and Ian bowling one tight over that had everyone wondering why the skip hadn’t bowled more. Old Park’s number eleven didn’t bat because of a cast on a broken bone and the innings ended in the penultimate over on 153-9.
Duncan provided a sumptuous tea and followed the frittata fad, remembering in the nick of time a green salad tossed with balsamic vinegar to perfect the culinary delight. Brave though, to cock a snoot at the warning last week about the supplier of said egg-based thing not taking any wickets or scoring (many) runs.
Tooley opened the innings with Ev, requiring four an over to win. However, one of the opposition opening bowlers had other ideas and was only allowing one run an over to leak: It was slow progress. So slow in fact, that your correspondent was foolish enough, when sitting next to the fines-meister, to remark, “Isn’t that a kestrel?”, incurring an immediate financial penalty for twitching with ornithological interest near the field of play.
Back on the pitch, the foundation was being laid and although the builders were a bit slow, it was good firm workmanship. Tooley downed tools on being caught for a dozen, bringing B-b-Budge out to bat for the last time this season. Naturally he made it count, scoring three boundaries and developing a near fifty run partnership with Ev, who was the first to go, for 34: At 84-2 the Cowboys were more than halfway home.
Batting like a man with a boat to catch, B-b-Budge was soon bowled for 26 and when Matt D came and went for a duck which wasn’t on the menu, alas, the curse of the frittata led Duncan to depart early for half a dozen (eggs?), the fourth Cowboy to be caught. The skipper came in to partner Lalith, but the little man within urged him to poke at a wide one he’d intended to leave well alone and he was caught at point with the score choking at 103-6.
Your correspondent then came to the crease, intent on giving the strike to Lalith, who whopped two mighty sixes with it before being caught LBW on the back foot for a baker’s dozen: Seven down, thirty-odd runs still needed from around the equivalent number of balls. Helpfully, the opposition gave away a few wides to reduce the target, a four was edged behind and mid-off spilled a chance that was drilled at him, allowing the run rate to progress as required, but when RT1 was bowled the Cowboys were still twenty runs short and Garnier was not a happy bunny to have to come out to bat with Bambi to barbecue.
A dozen runs short, the Landlord was bowled for 21, bringing Preash to the wicket to help Garnier scramble over the line but on the penultimate ball of the innings, with four runs required for victory he was run out by the plaster cast-assisted arm of the Old Park number eleven.
After the match, SteveO’s ale and Garnier’s tucker provided a perfect evening to an imperfect day, B-b-Budge was voted Man of the Match for bowling, batting and bicycling and Matt D’s diving catch was adjudged the Cider Moment.