Third team one wicket from victory

Kibworth 3rd XI welcomed Burton Latimer to Fleckney rd on Saturday the 1st of June 2013. Keen to recover quickly from the catastrophe of Weldon KCC made a number of key changes. Skipper Greeno, Hard hitting LJ and the canny Rob “The Rocket” Ellwood were all brought in to strengthen the batting order and Dunc Jones was called up to add maturity and guile to a young bowling attack. Monik was unlucky to miss out on a second team spot but for the balance of all teams skipper Greeno had bartered for his inclusion in the threes to give strength in all departments.

 

After a lengthy team talk Greeno lost the toss and was put in to bat on a slightly soft looking KCC deck. Due to the weather of the previous few days he was expecting to be batting in his wellies but again credit must go out to Abbo and the grounds team who had yet again done us proud to get anything like a decent wicket out.

 

Tom Bale partnered Greeno at the top of the innings and some early tight bowling by Burtonsaw us fall to 6 for 1 in the first five overs as Bale played around a straight one. LJ strode out to the crease with a look of steely determination set upon his face and together LJ and Greeno began to accumulate runs, pushing quick singles to frustrated fielders and scoring boundaries from the occasional bad ball. It was clear that Burtonrelied heavily on their two opening bowlers and as they finished their spells the two well set batsmen began to make hay in the sun. LJ cruised past 50 hitting some beautiful cover drives and Greeno joined him as he smeared anything short and occasional hit one down the ground to make it appear he knew what he was doing. 160 was put on for the second wicket with Burton’s Michael Wright not getting any luck as his 15 overs finished for a very respectable 48 runs. As the dog’s dinners came on the run rate climbed steadily but a big turning delivery was the undoing of LJ and he was cruelly given out LBW on 82 staring down the barrel of a maiden 3rd team century. Boosh joined Greeno who broke a golden rule hitting boundaries from the first two balls of the over to be caught a point for a decent 71. Two relatively fresh batsmen at the crease needed to steady the ship but sadly steady is not a word Monik understands and having hit a 6 from his second delivery followed by a coupe of fours he was dismissed caught behind wafting angrily at a full wide one. Rocket then joined Boosh and the two of them showed maturity as they pushed and nurdled their way towards 200. Boosh again suffered from the quick draw LBW but Windy, Jon and Dunc all helped out Rocket to take KCC up to 242 for 7 in their 50 0vers with Rob finishing on a selfless and well made 33.

 

A relatively quick turn around at tea saw KCC take the field in what was to be a very exciting run chase. Burtonmade it clear early that they wouldn’t be playing for the draw and all credit must go to them for making a great game of it. Monik and Jon Butler took the new ball with Jon striking early as he dismissed the opener Laura Tonks for a duck. Monik toiled away for no reward but it was Jon who took the early plaudits as he bowled with both pace and decent precision to put the genuine fear up Burton’s top order batsmen. Jon was unlucky not to have a second wicket as Alan Sewell was dropped by LJ whilst still in single figures. This drop would prove costly as Alan formed the back bone of the Burtoninnings. With Monik’s spell finishing Ben Lodge came to the party but appeared to have forgotten his dancing shoes. Whether his mind was focused on exams or girls we will never know but sadly two full tosses per over saw the Burtonrun rate begin to climb. Dunc Jones and Harry Miller were brought into the attack and did exactly what was needed of them bowling good areas to a well set field. Both bowled with great control and patience to a batsman who had clearly played before. As Sewell went past 50 then past 100 we all knew he was the key to the game and worked to starve him of the strike and exploit the weaker batsmen. Sharp chances were taken by Rocket and Greeno and Butlerproved too hot to handle for the middle order but still Sewell remained elusive. Into the last 5 overs with Burton needing 30 runs the game was poised but a great run out throw from Windy Miller put the brakes on and when Dunc Jones’ nagging persistent line eventually saw Alan Sewell bowled for 132 the fielders closed in and Burton held out 228 for 9 in the 50th over. Dunc Jones was the pick of the bowlers with 11.2.32.2 but everyone can take credit for a great team performance that showed 11 good men are the key to success and not one outstanding player.

 

19 points taken with an on-paper weaker side was just the tonic for the third team. Again catches win matches and dropping a bloke who gets 132 on singles figures then again in the 80’s is not going to be a recipe for repeat success but to see everyone rally and move on was the mentality we have been promoting. Those called up to the threes performed brilliantly and as players begin to return to the fold it will soon be time to really fight for that place in the team. A big thank you must go out to 10 of the 11Burtonteam who played the game with gusto giving us a great Saturday afternoon. The one man who refused to shake hands at the conclusion of the game and launched abuse at junior cricketers during it was the biggest disappointment of the day and it was a shame that his attitude marred a game played in otherwise excellent spirits of competition and sportsmanship.

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