Author: El Presidente Page 1 of 2

Semi Final vs Smithfield RSL A

Saturday 13th August 2022

Semi-final report by El Presidente

Kingsford bowl fairly well, but put on a disappointing batting effort against Smithfield.

Burwood park is a small ground, and a has a very skinny six-foot pitch. Grass from both sides had started to creep onto the pitch, and the ground was still a bit soggy underfoot alongside the pitch and in some parts of the field, making turning and stopping a little harder. Given the short boundaries there’s not a lot hit along the ground at these games, and today it would be more of a necessity than usual.

Smoke finally got to call in a coin toss, called correctly and sent Smithfield in. The weather reports had suggested some rain, and the thinking was that a disjointed first innings would make a run chase easier, but the weather held and a light shower only passed over at the innings break. Bryan and Dnes opened up and faced some aggression from the big hitting left hander, Luke. Despite his clear intent backed up by his fellow opener, our opening pair along with some solid fielding had managed to mostly contain them and Smithfield were 0/41 after 8 overs. Captain Smokey brought himself on for a quick spell to switch Bryan to the other end, and nabbed a wicket in his first over – a skied catch to Bryan at slip, and then bowled his opposite number in a wicket maiden for his second over. Smithfield 2/49.

With the big hitting lefty retiring, Ajeet and Chinmay were brought on to put some pressure on the middle order and try to stymie the runs. Once again Chinmay made scoring difficult, which meant they had to go after Ajeet. Despite taking a bit of stick he maintained his composure and took an important wicket courtesy of another catch by Bryan, before Chinmay removed the other set batter beating the bat to light up the Zings. Smithfield 4/95 at the break.

On arguably the smallest field in the competition, and against an obviously solid line up (undefeated during the season, posting an average score of 160+, and only being bowled out once) this didn’t seem to be an unreasonably large total. With thoughts to the lefthander still cooling his heels on the sideline, Vipul replaced Chinmay, and the match resumed.

The batters continued their aggression and we couldn’t keep them to less than 5 an over, every good over saw them swing harder and catch up the run-rate. Vipul brilliantly took a “catch it or die” aimed at his head at shortish mid-wicket to give Ajeet his second, and another of the Smithfield gun batters, this one slumming it in the tail, came to the crease. Ajeet finished his spell with a useful but expensive 2/41, before club legend (myth?) GG was handed the ball to use his experience to turn things around.

Sadly his first over going for ten wasn’t quite what was needed, although it did see the game’s first and only 3. Smokey replaced Vipul, and G managed to trap one in front lbw, bringing the big swinging lefty back to the crease. Which brought “The Weapon” back into the attack at his preferred end, replacing his Captain.

Again he was mostly unplayable, so G bore the brunt of the hitting and was crashed out of the attack. Chinmay bowled a maiden, Smokey replaced G, and had the lefty out caught on the boundary by an unflappable Gazi, who never looked in any doubt of taking the catch. Chinmay backed up his previous maiden with two straight wickets – a good stumping by Mal, and then beating the other gun batter the next ball taking the top of off stump. Smithfield all out for 183. Not ideal, but on a small ground, against a team who all could clearly hit the ball pretty cleanly, it was a respectable effort.

Chinmaya 3/11, Smokey 3/15, Ajeet 2/41

The innings didn’t start well when John W got an edge to the keeper, but Mal and the promoted-up-the-order Chinmay put together a useful 30-run partnership, to get us going.

Chinmay played a textbook classic hook shot for six before being bowled (16), and Mal flat-batted a few boundaries along the ground despite the dodgy grass, as well as one six that probably never went higher than ten feet. After 11 overs we were 2/49, exactly the same as Smithfield had been.

After another six, Mal was next out caught behind – and no-one, not even Mal, is sure what kind of shot it was or was supposed to be, which left us 3/55. Then, and for you long time readers who have been wondering who these Kingsford imposters are, came the familiar collapse. Gazi, Bryan, Ajeet, and Dinesh, all lost in the space of ten runs, leaving us 7/65 at the halfway mark, and with quite a mountain for Vipul and Smoke to climb.

The bowling was proving difficult to play. Smokey waved at a number of deliveries as they went by either side of him, but kept out the ones on the stumps, and wore a couple in the process. There was even a moment when the ball clipped off stump enough for the Zing bail to light up the gloom like a distress beacon, but there was no rescue party coming, and the bail remained firmly on top of the stump.

At the other end, Vipul was having trouble finding a gap in the field, so decided to go over them, absolutely launching one straight down the ground for six, and following up not long after with a booming six over the midwicket boundary. By this stage Smokey had remembered how to use the wooden thing in his hands, and chipped in with a couple of boundaries from ugly swipes through mid-wicket / cow corner. Their handy 37-run partnership came to an end when Vipul misjudged one and was bowled for 22.

Six overs at around 14, is not an equation suited to Smoke’s batting having grown up watching Swampy and Tubby scratch around for hours doing very little, but he went on a mini run-spree taking nearly 30 from the next four overs (including a top edged six behind square), before edging one to the keeper. All out 134 in the 35th over.

Smoke 41, Malcolm 30, Vipul 22.

A really disappointing batting effort overall, although a good recovery early on, and some dogged resistance towards the end, but the soft middle order collapse was not something that we were going to be able to recover from. We cannot afford to lose wickets like that, we have not done so all season, and we had better not do it again if we want to win the grade. Some serious thought needs to go into shot selection, and a bit more energy in the field and running between wickets is probably needed.

The Nazgul will return!

Semi Final vs Harris Park E

6th August 2022, Johnstone Reserve, Revesby

By El Presidente

“I don’t think i’ve ever seen this many Apaches at the ground this early before a game”. – A slightly surprised Isaac.

Clearly, we were keen for the game. After sitting through another wide ranging, rambling, Gazi TEDx on the way to Revesby, both Dinesh and I tumbled out of the car and surveyed the pitch. “Small” was the consensus.

Vague recollections of previous matches, and amusing anecdotes of the same venue were discussed and shared by the older heads, and there was much puzzling and scratching of beards and stubble at what seemed to be a pitch that was not quite the same orientation as the last time any of us had played there. The umpire eventually confirmed that we weren’t suffering a group delusion, because he’d looked at the pitch on google maps, and it had definitely been rotated by about 20 degrees. This was presumably to stop people from hitting straight drives into my boss’s house, and those of his neighbours. One of the previous games there had seen a ball smashed over the first house and into the yard of the next one along. I seem to recall that the small collection of children’s play equipment had also come under fire from some agricultural slogs to cow corner, but now required a front foot pull through mid-wicket. At the other end it was now a dead straight lofted drive that would be required to make it to the road, to watch the ball head off merrily rolling away down the street away from the park.

The Harris Park team arrived and set up under the trees not far from where we had claimed the bench, and the umpire tossed, and their captain called correctly, and asked us to bat. My attendance at this ceremony seemed entirely unnecessary. Daneesh, the opposition skipper, looked slightly worried at my apparent disinterest “You wanted to bat first anyway, didn’t you.” In all my years playing for this club, batting first has been little more than the fastest way to the pub. Given that we currently don’t have a home pub, and if we did it would be about an hour away, and we had a junior in the side, going to the pub was never a consideration, but bat we did, well, everybody else did.

After a desperate ploy last game to actually get some time in the middle after avoiding batting for almost the entire season thus far, this week i failed to get bat on the first ball that slid down leg, and then flicked at the second delivery that was outside off stump, looking to run it through the mostly empty cordon – my “zone”. Instead i got a faint, but clearly audible underedge straight into the keeper’s glove. I was walking off in disgust before the umpire had even taken his hands out of his pocket. Celebrations from Harris Park. Little did they know that i was only a decoy! 1/1.

Gazi joined Isaac (1) at the crease, and they immediately went to work, taking sixteen of the next two overs, then had a break letting two overs go by for four, before getting back to work with 23 from the next two. Gazi was delighting in the small ground, and was in full stand and deliver mode, which ended up being a bit unfortunate, because standing in front of your stumps means the umpire gets to give you out lbw. Gazi rejoined us on the sidelines after a fairly spectacular 23. The score 2/53 after eight overs.

While the opening bowlers changed after five overs each, the score continued to tick along, Vipul contributing to a 20 run partnership with Isaac, before also being trapped in front of his stumps by another lbw decision. Isaac crawled his way to forty, finishing with eight singles, while Dinesh came and went fairly quickly, without troubling the scorers too much. Which was nice because Gazi was scoring with me, and i get easily distracted.

Chinmaya and Bryan brought us to the drinks break with the total 4/87. A few people were asking what a reasonable total was, and i thought 160 was defendable given our bowling line up, but i thought we’d end up around the 200 mark, because their change bowlers didn’t look all that dangerous, and we can bat pretty deep. I’m not sure what kind of “tail” Bryan, Mal, and Arjun would be, a scorpion perhaps? Plus we still had the thrice-dropped (?) Isaac cooling his heels awaiting a second go at the bowling. There was derision from some quarters at my bold prediction.

We resumed the innings, and kept up a fairly healthy five runs an over despite Bryan losing a stump, and Mal falling for the Harris Park skipper’s wily bowling. The Dad-mobile had arrived not long before, and Arjun had hastily padded up before having to scurry out to replace Mal. Chinmaya continued his good form with the bat, following up on his last two 40s with a handy 23 before becoming another victim of the lbw, this one probably too high to hit the stumps but the umpire was on a roll. Isaac returned to the crease with ten overs to go, Arjun still settling in, and the score 121.

Some had suggested, and Isaac later agreed, that the first forty wasn’t his best and he hadn’t really middled anything (despite the 4 boundaries and the 6). With Arjun patiently working the ball around, Isaac seemed to find his groove. There was a 14 run over, two 11 run overs, and the second last over went for 17! When Isaac was caught on the boundary on the last ball of the innings, his last six scoring shots were 6,1,6,1,6, and 6. Arjun finished 24 not out, and Isaac’s innings was the perfect 100. The total 205. Captain Nostrodamus quietly gloated.

When i handed over the scorebooks, Harris Park seemed pretty resigned. The steady flow of wickets after the break had probably filled them with hope, but facing the Williams onslaught, and the inpenetrable wall of Arjun for the last ten overs had clearly brought them down to earth. They came out to bat with clear intent, and targeted Dnes who was struggling to get his length right after having to ascend a small hill from his end. He did catch the edge in his second over, deftly taken by Mal, claiming our first wicket of the day, but still gave away 12, and after 3 overs HP were 1/29. At the other end, Ajeet recovered from a wild full toss on his first ball which was put over the fence, and bowled out the rest of his spell with great control frustrating the batters. Wunderkind opener Arsh was looking for every opportunity and savaged Dinesh, but there was very little he could do against Ajeet, who drew a poor shot from the first drop that skied to Mal for 10. He was a little unlucky not to pick up more wickets, finishing his 6 overs 1/22. Meanwhile, Chinmaya had come on from the hill-side, to take some of the pace off the ball to try to stifle the young opener, but wasn’t able to entirely keep him out of the runs. Harris Park were well in the game at 1/68 after ten overs. Their young gun retired, bringing the opposition captain to the crease, who was met by the “dangerous bowler” (their words according to Mal, not mine) Captain Smokey.

It was lucky over number 14 that saw the game shift. Smokey kept them to just one, and then Chinmaya delivered in his next over claiming two wickets, and in response Smoke took two of his own, including his “bunny” the ‘keeper who got the extra life last game (costing me my first 5/ since 2014), to leave Harris park wondering what had happened.

In the space of two overs, they’d gone from 2/78 to 6/86, and their run-chase was in disarray. Vipul replaced his captain, who despite suggestions that he was protecting his figures of 2/8 after 3, was actually saving himself for the yet-to-return big hitting teen, who was still a chance of taking the game away from us. The dogged HP skipper who had seen his side crumble from the non-strikers end also remained at the crease.

Vipul, like Ajeet, bowled with superb control, and a desperate attempt to change the momentum was lofted back over his head. Smokey raced across from mid-off, at full pace (relative) to intercept the ball and take it at full stretch, ending his five dropped-catch streak. Isaac replaced Chinmaya to try to counter the young gun, who had returned to the crease to join his captain in what would have to be a heroic recovery. Isaac’s pace seemed to be just what this kid was looking for, and he was dispatched a couple of times, although there were plenty hit in the air, just not near enough to the fielders. Chinmaya was brought back on, and produced an absolute ripper of a delivery, that jagged back in at almost 90 degrees leaving the big hitting kid, Arsh (60) foundering as his middle and leg stump were knocked back. Captain Daneesh was prepared to go down fighting with just over a dozen overs to go and about 70 runs to get. He took a four off the next ball before launching one into the air to find the safe hands of Isaac. A fourth wicket for Chinmaya, and Harris Park all out 128 in the 25th over.

Overall, i thought it was a really good effort in the field, both Isaac and Mal taking two catches each, meaning i think we stuck all our catches (although i couldn’t quite get to an almost carbon copy of my earlier catch). The line and length from both Vipul (1/6 from 3) and Ajeet (1/22 from 6) put HP under huge pressure when they really needed to be getting on with it, and meant that they really had to take their chances when a change of bowler was brought on. A really good effort from all, especially a well deserved hundred for Isaac, and another bag for that absolute weapon with the ball, Chinmaya.

Special thanks to Rohit for the assistance in the field as well as with the photos, they are greatly appreciated. Let’s do it again this weekend, and next weekend, and the weekend after, and the week after that!

Epilogue: For those wondering, after another attempt to jump start Ajeet’s car, a call to a dodgy mechanic charging and arm and a leg just for a call out, calling my boss who seriously lives in the house next to the ground – who said he didn’t know anything about cars, but did see my two wickets from his lounge room, we settled on the far more reputable NRMA. They sent out one of their “patrols” who was genuinely one of the nicest blokes i’ve met in a while. A near-dead battery was the verdict, and after a quick replacement Ajeet was on his way. Again, thanks to Rohit for helping out, and sticking around to wait.

Post-script. If you make me do match reports, you will get these epic long tales. Without all the literary allusions (Sorry, Kal )
Post-post script: Still waiting on match reports from Vipul, Chinmaya, and Gazi 😛 (They don’t have to be rambling epics btw)

Selected comments:
Gazi: Wow wow theses group of Apaches are very fortunate to have a president like you this match report tells how passionate you are about cricket club and us. Thank you
Govind: Awesome Match report. Better than espncrinfo commentry

vs Harris Park F, 18th June 2022 @ Moore Park 8

Long awaited match report by Ajeet & Gazi [Delay was my fault -El Pres].

Before the start of the game we made up our minds to enjoy the day whether it’s a win or loss, where everyone will get to bat and bowl while still maintaining a competitive spirit. Unfortunately, we lost the toss and were asked to bowl first. Will, our previous secretary, came in to help us for early overs as few players showed up late, he bowled really tight lines and got an early breakthrough.

Through a bit too short bowling, and good number 3,4, and 5 batters from Harris park, they scored quickly. Bowling changes from both ends slowed down the run rate. Dinesh (2/18) bowled some really good out-swingers, but still at end of first break Harris Park made 123 runs. Captain Ajeet (2-17) bowled reasonably well [ this is way too humbly put. It should read, “…bowled with ruthless precision, consistently in a ten centimetre channel, stemming the flow of boundaries -El Pres] and got two wickets, but they ended up scoring a huge total of 223 runs. Harris Park number 3 and 4 both scored fifties. Dinesh, Gazi, and Ajeet got two wickets each.

We lost our first wicket on first ball of our chase, the opening bowler of Harris Park was seriously quick. Captain Ajeet had requested our young talented batsman Arjun (34) to open the innings. He was really solid in defence once again, and hit a few great shots taking advantage of some no-ball free hits. Batting at 3, Gazi Hosain was in sublime form, and he hit some great shots. We looked like we were in the chase as we maintained the run rate of 6+ an over, but Gazi fished at one and was caught behind on 36. We lost some quick wickets, and the run out of Dinesh especially set us back. Young Abhijeet came to bat at number 9, and batted out the entire overs. He was solid in defence and showed some good shots, ending up with 31*

We ended up around 45 runs short.

Considering the unavailability of our regular openers, Isaac and John, it was tough to chase that huge total, but we were never out of game, as we planned everybody got to bowl, bat, and field and still maintained competitive spirit. Hopefully we will bounce back next week and regain our winning streak.- From first time Captain Ajeet. Thanks to President Al and senior members of the club for giving me this opportunity.

Gazi added: Apache Nazgul assembled a team without a wicket keeper. Club president did not realise that he is only wicketkeeper for the match given Issac and Mal were not available. For the first time in many years Ajeet Kumar was given captaincy and as part of that role he decided he will keep, as he lost the toss and we were forced to bowl. Initially we were 7 playing against nine, until Will showed up and wanted to bowl few overs. It was one of the worst bowling performances by the Apaches with such a strong bowling lineup. Bowling either too short and full tosses helped the opposite side to pile on boundaries after boundaries. Only Ajeet bowled beautifully, probably from the added responsibility as Captain. He bowled beautiful line and length. He was so calm and cool with the help of late arrival our regular keeper club president Smokey. Anyway we finished the innings, the opposition all out for 223, [with a couple of good catches by the reliable hands of Chinmay, and a batters nightmare from Dinesh, which swung out from the hand, with both the batter and keeper moving across outside off stump, only for the ball to sharply swerve back in, and through the gap at ankle height to remove middle stump. Just unplayable. -Smokey] Every one was in the wickets but new captain Ajeet by far the best bowler.

Chasing 225 in 36 overs given the outfield was so fast, we may able to to win. We started the innings with Bryan and young gun Arjun. Bryan was bowled for a golden duck [very unlucky to get the only ball on the stumps for the first eight overs, judging by the extras conceded – Smokey]. Gazi was next. He started hitting the way he always does. Some boundaries and quick singles saw Apaches settling on run chase but one wide delivery which he never had to play, edged it behind and got out for 36. GG went to bat next. Hit his classy cut shot through point. A few balls after he hit one straight to the point fielder, which brought his downfall. Arjun, on the other hand, kept his calm and kept on batting. This guy always impress me with his passion of being at the wicket, looking for definite loose delivery and to cash in. He continued to bat well. Then he got one half tracker pulled straight up in the sky, and fell for 34. New captain Ajeet hammered one over the bowlers head. However, he could not stay around, as he tried to whack one low full toss, missed it, and lost his castle. Vipul, Chinmay, and Balaji, all tried their best but in the end it was not to be. We lost the game. If we bowled the way we bowled in other games, the opposition would not score that many. It is cricket the way it is. Hope to play next time better and back in the winning fold. Cheers.

“The self-robbery”

vs Harris Park E, Saturday 4th June 2022 @Vale of Ah Reserve

by El Presidente

Round 4
A shortened game, 28 overs a side and a 0900h start, and because of a shortage of grounds, at Vale Of Ah Reserve. It was ridiculously early and bloody cold, and one of those days where the first team to take their hands out of their pockets should have been declared the winner so everyone could go back to a warm bed. Ignoring the cold the Harris Park captain correctly called HEADS and asked us to bat first. Isaac and Bryan opened, and immediately took on the bowling, although Bryan ( 8 ) was bowled in the third over with the score 1/19. Isaac, Gazi, and Arjun sent the ball to all corners of the park, with a number of 10 run overs, and more than a few minutes lost while the opposition searched the long grass for the ball. Arjun hit one of the most remarkable shots of the day with a flick over fine leg for six from a full toss. Isaac and Gazi both retired, and Arjun was unlucky not to join them, caught on 38. We lost a couple of quick wickets on 124 and Dinesh survived the hat-trick ball with ease, but a good partnership between Arjun and Dinesh (14) got us to 160 after 20 overs. Vipul added 13, Gazi was unable to add much to his score and was given out LBW for 43, and Isaac took 17 from the last 4 balls of the innings, ending on 70 not out, with a total of 210. (7.5 runs / over)

Dinesh’s (1/15) first ball of the innings would have smashed into the stumps, but the batter cleverly put his pad in the way, which didn’t save him as the umpire raised the finger of doom. With one wicket down and scoreboard pressure already an issue, the Harris Park batters attacked our openers and made it to 31 after the first six overs. A change of bowling brought the experience of Bryan (2/22) and Smokey (4/24) to weave their magic. Despite a couple of shocking drag downs, Smokey was 2-8 (also missing the hat trick) after getting one right and trapping another Harris Park batter using his pads instead of his bat, and Vipul took an excellent catch at mid-on from another smashed drag-down.

The attacking batting continued, and while Bryan tangled them up at one end, Smoke claimed a third with an edge to Isaac behind the stumps. In their 4th overs, both Smoke and Bryan claimed two wickets each. Smokey’s wickets thanks to Bryan taking a sharp catch at slip after a deflection off the keepers glove, and a wild crossbat swipe hit straight up for Isaac to pouch, while Bryan’s accuracy brought about an LBW, and the following batter saw his stumps scattered after he’d chosen to keep his pads out of the way. Unfortunately, Bryan missed what would have been his 12th(?) hat-trick.

However, there was some controversy. Of course. At the end of Bryan’s over the Harris Park captain ambled out to the pitch with the score at 8/92, to discuss Smoke’s 5th wicket as the batter had returned to his team mates presumably complaining about his “unfair” dismissal. His claim was that he heard a call of “no ball” which he said was the reason for his terrible crossbat swipe. There was some discussion among the players and umpire, with varying recollections of exactly what had happened and when. It turned out that one of the fielders had complimented the delivery, around the time the poor shot was played. Despite it being his first 5/ since 2014, and because he *never* learns that doing the right and sporting thing is very rarely reciprocated, Captain Smokey relinquished his long awaited 5/ and called the batter back.

On his return the young batter assured us he “was shit” then proceeded to slog three boundaries, before a fielding change brought zero change in his plan (or shot selection), and he was well caught by Abhijeet on the mid-wicket boundary for Chinmaya’s (2-10) first wicket. A beautifully timed catch by Arjun moving forward at mid-on ended the innings on 104 in the 19th over, with Chinmays second wicket.

An excellent batting performance in the chilly morning, backed up by some good bowling and some excellent catching. No game this weekend. Next match Saturday 18th June v Harris Park F, venue TBA. Someone else can have the joy of writing the match report. Any volunteers?

Some comments:
Govind: Match report can’t be better than this!
Declan: Outstanding match report and bad luck on the Fivefor
– Smokey: story of my life…. never been called back to the crease in 30+ years of cricket. Maybe the A-team captain will now finally recognise the strike power hidden in this right arm
Ed: So it seems that contrary to his own claims of it being and I quote “f*cking ridiculous”, Smokey really is a morning cricket specialist looking at his performance from this game !

Nazgul v Chatswood Gypsies 29th May 2022 @ Moore Park 8

By El Presidente

I think we lost the toss and were sent into the field, which lines up with our usual plan. Really good bowling all-round, the fielding was excellent as well, especially from the young guys (who have clearly been trained well). Unfortunately, the catching wasn’t great – the skyball our nemesis once again.

Gazi (3 overs 1/13) claimed the first wicket with an LBW leaving the Gypsies 1/1. Lewis Beard claimed the next wicket with a lethal throw, moving to his right with one stump to aim at, leaving the batter well short of the crease, and wondering where that thunderbolt had come from given the bright blue sky overhead. It was a run out worthy of appearing in highlights packages. Abhijeet Balaji rattled the stumps with his third ball, and bowled full and in the channel consistently, ending the day with 4 overs 1/6. Bryan and Will both bowled out their six overs in miserly spells going for 0/11 and 1/11 respectively.

The bowling honours clearly went to Chinmaya Madan who tore through the Gypsies with precision – hitting the top of off stump, then the top of leg stump, then an LBW that was taking the top of middle, and ended with a startling 5/12 from five and a half overs. Stiff resistance from opposition number six “Fifty” with 29 helped the Gypsies to 94 all out.

With a small target often being hard to chase down, we opted to open with the steady and guiding hand of John Wright (27), paired with the dashing flair of Lewis (3), who was given out caught behind in the second over 🙁
Gazi (10) made his presence felt (in more ways than one) with a couple of nice shots but was also caught behind, leaving us 2/18 after 8 overs. Enter Arjun (28), watched on by very proud dad, Govind, who put on a 20-over 50-run partnership with John, before both were run out in consecutive overs. Ajeet (14*) opened his scoring with a glorious slog sweep for 6 followed by a boundary, this 12 run over breaking open the game, leaving 6 overs to get the remaining 11 runs for the win. Boundaries from Will (4) and Bryan (4*) saw us home with three overs and wickets to spare. Well done everyone, especially to debutants Arjun with a patient and controlled innings of 28, and the star of the day Chinmaya with the first five wicket haul of the season.

Kingsford Nazgul v Summer Hill

Sunday 1st May, Moore Park 7

By Isaac

With some of the nicest weather Sydney had offered in the better part of 3 months, Kingsford got their Winter Cricket campaign off to a start on Sunday. El Presidente managed to wrangle together just enough players to qualify as a viable team. Five familiar faces and one debutant took to the field to play a slightly lopsided game of 6 v 9 against Summer Hill. Losing the toss and being sent in to bat, Dinesh and John Wright got off to a steady start. They scored steadily for the first 9 overs before Dinesh decided he’s seen enough. He hit 20 runs off the 10th over, including three 6s, quickly seeing him to his 40*. Isaac was in next, and inspired by Dinesh’s batting, kept the score ticking over. He reached his 40* with a towering 6 over the toilet blocks in the last over before drinks to see Kingsford 0-115 at the break. Solid batting from John Wright (25), McCredie (9 & 14), and debutant Pushkar (16) saw the runs continue to flow. The retired batsmen came back in at the end but didn’t manage to add too many runs in the final few overs. Isaac (48) was eventually caught on the boundary, and Dinesh (58) made his half-century, but was out shortly after. All out for 188. A good total, but with only 6 fielders defending it might prove tricky. Managing the bowlers was going to be tough, as each of the 6 players had to bowl exactly 6 overs each. Dinesh opened the bowling and got the team off to a sold start. Taking the wickets of both openers and finished with 2-17 from his spell. Gazi took over and kept the opposition on the back foot. He beat the stumps and bat by centimetres on at least a dozen occasions and was unlucky not to have more wickets. He did take the wicket of their most dangerous batsman who attempted one too many big shots and was caught on the mid-off boundary, and also took three catches himself. Mal took two catches behind the stumps, as well as a sharp stumping off John’s, bowling, and then swapped out the keeping gloves to have a bowl. He rolled through the lower order with his darting off-spin, taking the final wicket to finish with figures of 3-8 and restricting Summer Hill to just 92 in their chase. A very good start to the season. Because everyone played so well it was easy to forget that we were 3 players short the entire game. Thank you to Pushkar for filling in for us. Hopefully, we can get more players for the rest of the season and keep the winning streak going.

Some comments from the fb site:

Smokey: Sorry, did i read that correctly – Gazi TOOK three catches?
Dereck: Great write-up Isaac. I came here to post the same thing as Smokey !?!
Gazi: Dereck it was completely fluke for me hold on to 3 catches and not dropping one. It was one of the day we were happy playing cricket with 6 against 9. Isaac with his masterful batting bowling and captaincy took us over the line. Should not forget I took 3 catches.
Declan: Great match report Isaac and brilliant win with only 6 players

vs Botany United 4th Grade

19th February 2022 @ Booralee 3

by Isaac

Despite both the weather forecast and the BOM radar promising little chance of rain, the skies above Booralee 3 told a different story. A ubiquitous blanket of heavy grey rainclouds covered the sky, threatening to unleash their payload of cricket ruining precipitation at any moment. The meteorological auspices might have been dire, but the fortune of the coin toss was, for the first time this season, favourable for the captain. With a team as heavily laden with bowlers as the clouds above were with rain, Kingsford decided to take the field and test the top of the table Botany’s batting line up.

Foley and Seymour opened up the bowling, and it wasn’t long before they struck. Seymour captured the first wicket as the opposition captain tried to pull him to the short square-leg boundary, but only succeeded in chopping the ball onto his middle peg. Two feather edges to the keeper and a thick edge that was gobbled up by Malcolm at 2nd slip saw Botany 4 for Not Many after just 6 overs with Foley and Bryan sharing the spoils with two wickets apiece.

The Botany middle order dug in after their mini-collapse and picked off the occasional boundary without giving away any chances. They managed to see it to the drinks break without losing another wicket. Their score, 4-60. It was at the drinks break that the skies decided that they couldn’t hold it anymore, and the rain finally arrived.

A thirty-minute shower came and went, reducing the game to 31 overs each, and adding a layer of water to the field that promptly turned the ball into a bar of soap. Credit must go to Dinesh, Vipul, Henry, Blake, and Jono who were thrown the ball in difficult conditions and managed to keep the run rate down. Jono made the long-awaited breakthrough, rattling the stumps of Botany’s top scorer, and followed it up the very next ball with an edge to the keeper. Foley took the only other wicket of the innings with Al “Best Slips Fielder in the Club” Yap diving to his left at a wide second slip to claim a great catch.

The Botany tail hung around to add a few more runs to the score but ended up finishing with a slightly below par 7-140 off their 31 overs. Foley was the pick of the bowlers with 3-18. With Jono finishing 2-25 and Seymour 2-26.

In a shake up to normal proceedings, Al Yap and Blake Milligan opened up the batting. The idea being to hit the ball along the ground (a concept completely foreign to Malcolm McCredie) and allow the wet ground to soften up the seam and take the shine off the ball. The pair batted well, building a partnership of 58 from 14 overs before Milligan (😎 and Yap (38) were dismissed in quick succession by a pair of sharp outfield catches. Rohit and Chinmay came in next with the goal of lifting the run rate, but Rohit skied one which was caught at mid-on and Chinmay was trapped in front not long after.

Having the openers build such a strong platform meant that losing four wickets in quick succession still left us in a strong position. Malcolm hit a quickfire 14 before somehow chipping a leading edge over the head of the keeper and down first slip’s throat. Williams and Seymour then put on a better than a run a ball 40 run partnership to take the pressure off. A towering 6 over mid-on from Williams put a nice new dent in a grey ute, while Seymour hit their returning opening bowler for an equally clean six just a few balls later. Williams eventually fell on 19 to another sharp catch (a diving one-handed caught and bowled), and Seymour followed the next over trying to hit one over the fence that he didn’t quite time. Jono and Dinesh came to the crease with Kingsford needing less than a run a ball from the last 6 overs, and they didn’t hold back. Some quick running between wickets and a massive six into the play area in cow corner saw Jono (20*) and Dinesh (8*) chase down the remaining runs with two overs to spare.

Great contributions all around with the bat. Al Yap’s 38 is the best inning I’ve seen him play in recent memory, while McCredie, Williams, Seymour and Carey all found boundaries when we needed to lift the run rate. It was a great team performance to beat the top of the table Botany and puts us in a really good position to try and snatch second spot on the table just before finals.

Selected Comments:
Gazi: That’s how you write match report ! Read and learn ! Well done skip.
Kal: Meteorological auspices… Nice
Salty: Now that’s a report
Declan: Great win Guys and outstanding match report Isaac
Smokey: Credit must go to Isaac and his T20 inspired captaincy to drop himself a la Aaron Finch to 5, and elevate Blake Milligan (same initials as Ben McDerrmott), and Al (the hirsute version of Ashton Agar) to the top of the order. A certain former opener and excellent match reporter, who chose to take the field for another club on Saturday might find it hard to get his spot back 🙂

vs ICC (6th grade)

By Declan

6th Grade win last over thriller with 1 wicket to spare-John Wright hitting a 6 to win the game.

ICC posted 8/126 with wickets shared around- Salty with a wicket off his first ball and Evo with a very sharp caught & bowled.

We finish on 9/130- Will top score with 56,John with 35 Not Out and Gazi with 20

Selected comments:
Gazi: 4 in a row boys. Great done. Will, thank you. It was master blaster ! John Wright you are a legend. Well Captained by Chris Day
Will: This game stands without peer as the most tenacious, unlikely victory I’ve ever seen for this club.
Jim W: What’s going on with your auto-correct? John Wright doesn’t hit 6s.
Snacks: Well done guys excellent work!!!!

vs Captain Cook (4th Grade)

Match Report by Kal Yanic


Eaditorial Note: In the preavious match reaport, one of our teammates’ names was speallead incorreactly. A non-eaxisteant “a” was mistakeanly insearted into their surname. As the author of this pieace, I would like to sincearealy apologise for this grieavous error. In reacompeanse, I will heanceforth be adding an eaxtraneaous “a” wheare I deaeam it suitable.

It was a bad day to be a cold one, or a crickeat ball for that mattear, as Kingsford arrivead at Jeallicoe Park. Almost immeadiatealy, complaints about the heat beagan bleaating from the weakear meambears of the group (Richie Beanaud would not have bean impreassead). Unaffeactead by the heat was Bryan, who’s iceman eaxtearior reajeactead the heat with cold indiffeareance. However, my psychic abilitieas deateactead that he, usurpead of the pleasure of giving yours truly a lift, was feaealing rathear creastfallean and forlorn – he had to carry his own picnic chairs.

[Ok this gag is getting pretty tired so I’m going to stop now]

FOLEY, taking the reins as captain (probably since President Damage’s neck has been getting sore from all the hats he’s been wearing), lost the toss. This turned out to be a rather silly move, given that our team had been infected with the affliction of our previous opponents – we were short-staffed. But the show had to go on, and so nine Apaches took the field.

Having taken two wickets in a row to bowl our previous opponents out, SEYMOUR kicked things off on a hat-trick. However, despite him swearing the team to secrecy on this state of being, the batter was on his best behaviour, playing the silently preeminent delivery safely into the ground. Nevertheless, our openers put the pressure on early, with VAIDHYA’s blistering heat complementing the sharp consistency from the other end. The opponents were struggling to find the gaping cavities in the field, while the left-hander of the pair, whose number we were unlucky not to have, looked very uncomfortable. In stark contrast, his white-helmeted partner looked much more at ease, even going so far as to acknowledge the on-field banter spewing from cover. We were locked in a stalemate. Something had to change.

As though the fifth dawn had risen on Helm’s Deep, I looked to the sideline to see a dark knight, leather clad and surrounded by scarves of billowing smoke, ride to our rescue. “Where the hell have you been mate?!?” was the obvious question on everyone’s minds and through my lips. “Traffic”, the president nonchalantly replied. In any case, any begrudging resentment of President Damage’s tardiness was quickly overshadowed by the sheer relief of having an extra player — the scales were still tipped away from our favour, but things were bound to get a little easier for us. A few overs later, El Presidente was tossed the ball. It only took a few deliveries for him to knock the lefty over (1/19). Game on.

With El Presidente bowling good areas from the other end, Foley strode in with his usual banana-curved run-up. However, bowling conditions seemed to be unfavourable, and as such the ball didn’t feel like moving. El Pres also felt some bad luck, with a catch being put down off his bowling. MATHUR likewise chanced his respective arm, but was also not able to get the critical breakthrough. The opponents were starting to build a solid partnership, with very few chances coming from either batter. Coming into the halfway point of the innings, the score was 1/58. While the Captain Cooks were not scoring swiftly, they had built a solid platform, and thus threatened to launch a massive total.

Coming out of the break, the opponents set about realising our fears of a huge run chase. The batters profited off some loose bowling, which saw Mr. White Helmet bring up his fifty. With the game hanging in the balance, a change of tact was needed. Captain Foley’s response was to bring on some more spin — perhaps some well-placed cannonballs could sink the Cook ship! This new strategy almost worked immediately, with FROMM tempting out some big shots from batters who were previously committed to playing it safe. Although he was not able to take any wickets directly, the shift in the batter’s mindset that followed would ultimately lead to their downfall. El Pres would be the one to profit from the opponents’ newfound aggression, as Mr. White Helmet, who had otherwise played a chanceless innings, skied one in the direction of mid-on. Wanting something done right, he put himself under the aerial ball and secured a regulation catch off his own bowling (2/109). Not long afterwards, the new batter tried to smash El Pres over Cow Corner, only for the ball to drop into MUNDUL’s waiting hands — President Damage now had 3 (3/127).

Enter MASON, the third weapon in the Apaches spin arsenal. While he had opened up with some nice deliveries the over prior, Mason had made the mistake of taking his sunnies off. Now the sunnies were staying on, and he was delivering nothing short of pure filth. It only took a few balls for Mason to strike, coercing the batter to sky one up into the midwicket region. El Pres quickly got under it, bellowing to stake his claim on the catch, and to thus ward off any nearby hungry poachers who could potentially make up the distance (4/127). The very next ball, Mason had another, drawing the batter down the pitch, producing a regulation stumping for CARVEATH, who took the bails off faster than you can say, “Help! I’m stuck outside my crease!” (5/127). 

The opponents were only able to put a few more runs on the board before Mason was knocking on the door again, this time gobbling up a dollied catch off his own bowling (6/138). The tail had been exposed, and Seymour, called back into the attack, was rubbing his hands together. It didn’t take him long to get some digits in front of the forward-slash, with the batter feathering one (absolutely smashing it) to the keeper (7/141). A couple of balls later, Seymour had his second, with Fromm taking a handy catch (8/141). The game now entered into another critical moment, with only a few overs left in the innings. In this time the opponents put up a brief stand, until Mason struck again with an absolute mandarin of a delivery: drift, bounce and a touch of nip to clip the top of off (9/155). He would be unlucky not to have a fifth, with the innings promptly coming to a close, 159 the target. 

During the innings break, I did my best to motivate McCREDIE, who had learned the hard way that there are far worse places to field than point. After some success, both McCredie and Mundul took the field. The first few overs seemed promising: both of them were seeing it well, and the bowlers didn’t seem too threatening. Unfortunately, first appearances are often deceiving. Although he was leaving well on fourth stump, Mundul was lucky to be put down in the slips. McCredie was not so lucky, slicing one right down mid-on’s throat (1/15). Mason, arriving in next at the crease, looked to continue his heroics with the ball. Some quick twos between the batters looked to be the makings of a handy partnership. This was despite Mundul’s best efforts, who was again lucky not to be out after an absolute sitter of a top edge was put down at square leg. However, Mason was not so lucky, caught out driving by third slip with an absolute screamer of a catch, one-handed and diving to his left (2/25). The team now turned to Seymour to stabilise, who relayed a similar message to Mundul: stay in and build a partnership. This didn’t hamper his aggression, however, as he went on to hit a four and a six off his first few balls. Trying to show similar intent against some poor bowling, Mundul managed to recreate the exact same top edge as a few overs prior, and this time was sent packing. The Apaches were in the throes of a verifiable top-order collapse (3/36). 

While the state of the game would typically call for some defensive play, the fallen wickets did not deter either Seymour or Vaidhya, the incoming batter, from going after the bowlers. Aggressive shots from both batters (mostly slogging over Cow Corner), interspersed with some good running between the wickets, meant that Kingsford were able to put together a much-needed partnership. The ship had been steadied, and by drinks we were pretty much on par, with a score of 3/55.

The run rate kept ticking over after play resumed, with Vaidhya and Seymour delivering more of the same. However, in similar fashion to McCredie, a miscued shot of Vaidhya’s found himself caught out down the ground (4/70). With only half of the team left to bat, and less than half of the innings remaining, Kingsford desperately needed an even bigger partnership. Fortunately, that would be exactly what Carveath would deliver. Some lovely shots meant that not only did a fairly safe partnership begin to emerge, but it burgeoned quickly. Together, they brought up the team’s hundred, while the required run rate began to dwindle. This was particularly aided by some not-so-sharp bowling by the opposition’s middle order (a team which was quite happy to stick to two bowlers in the two-day format). 

The required run-rate dropped to 7. Then 6.5. Then it fell to just above a run a ball, as Seymour and Carveath hit boundary after boundary. In this time, Seymour brought up his fifty. However, due to an error in the scorebooks creating some confusion as to what his total score was, no adulation came from the sideline (much to Seymour’s dismay when he eventually found out!). By the time he definitely had more than fifty, the moment had passed. In any case, the Seymour-Carveath steam train kept rolling towards what looked like a game that was well in the bag.

But then , in the 33rd over, disaster struck! Advancing down the pitch against the left-handed pace, Carveath suddenly found himself missing the ball and in no-man’s land — an easy stumping for the opposition keeper (5/149). A great knock nevertheless, deserving of a half-century and unlucky to fall short. 

With 11 runs to get off the last 13 deliveries, all the pressure was on El Presidente, the incoming batter. He blocks, giving the strike back to Seymour for the second to last over.

11 off 12, Seymour hits one through for a quick single, throwing El Pres back into the crucible. Unfortunately for El Pres, he just can’t get it away, with four dots precipitating. Then off the last bowl of the over, El Pres manages to work the ball into space for a single. 

10 off 6, El Presidente on strike. A single to put the in-form Seymour on strike! The next ball, a four! Blasted back down the ground (probably). 5 off 4, and Seymour manages to find a single. 4 off 3, El Presidente gets bowled! Tragedy for the Apaches! However, far be it from over, Captain Foley, a man who has been known to swing a bat, steps up to the plate. Could this be the short and sweet captain’s knock to win the game?

4 off 2, dot ball! A boundary needed to win it, and all the pressure on Foley. 4 off 1, Foley connects! The ball floats through the air, it keeps floating, right to mid-on. Game over, Kingsford lose by 3 runs.  

A thrilling fixture that came down to the wire, with the game hanging in the balance all the way through. There were several shoulda woulda couldas that may have seen us win this game, (especially some headless chook behaviour from yours truly), but hey, that’s park cricket! We’ll get ‘em in the finals, just as long as we make it first.  

Selected comments:
Will: Your ability to weave a metanarrative into a cricket write up is incredible
Kal: Darn I fully forgot to include my joke about Hawaii

4ths & 6ths – Quick update

23rd january 2020

by Declan

Two Good wins today-4th Grade claim the Outright with 8 wickets in hand and 6th Grade succesfully defend 181 by about 30 runs. Both teams sitting in the Top 4 with 4 Rounds remaining-let’s keep it going guys

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