It is difficult to do justice to the extraordinary game of cricket that occurred on Sunday without resorting to a mountain of cliché or the murky depths of hyperbole. Safe to say though, in all seriousness, it was the most incredible finish I have seen or taken part in. There was little hint of the drama to come in the early stages. The luckless Sam Pole picked out the best fielder on the opposing side to be run out early on which then allowed Steve Thompson and Henry Simpson the chance to build a huge partnership that got the home side well and truly on the way. ‘Tommo’ on his way to a superb unbeaten 132 was easily the more fluent but Henry hung there giving notable support and his contribution should not be overlooked. When Henry fell the pace of scoring was kept up. Kieran Wordsworth, The Bard and Dan Pedley playing entertaining short lived innings that took the home side to the stratospheric territory of 251 at tea. Tea however was not to be the only break in play. 2 overs into the reply the clouds opened, the covers were pulled on, and an hour was lost. This was a considerable disappointment to most, not Sam Pounds though who kept the home side royally entertained with his verbal rain dance so he could have an electronic reunion with the Xbox love of his life. Unfortunately for him the clouds cleared and he would have to rejoin real life rather than the virtual world. A revised total of 156 off 25 overs was given for Braybrooke to chase and although they were 7 for 2 initially the middle order began to give serious resistance. Some catches went down but the outfield was still quick and the required 8 an over was being attained with limited risk. Defending this total would not be the cakewalk it first seemed. 19 were wanted off 3 overs. When a huge six was swatted onto the pavilion steps it became 10 wanted off 2, and then 5 wanted off the last over with two well set batsman at the crease and three more waiting in the hutch.
Surely even the century maker Thommo saving this one was going to prove a step too far & once the target had been reduced to two from three deliveries the fat lady was well and truely warming up. Incredibly three balls later the Kibby boys were walking off with a one run victory and Steve had his first ever hatktrick after knocking back middle stump for the first dismissal, gaining a pretty plumb LBW for the second and inducing a chip up in the air that gobbled by young Kieran the wicketkeeper.
Two last ball finishes in two weeks, Sunday cricket is clearly the place to be for nailbiting endings.