The fourths opened their season with a winning draw against Sapcote. Openers John Pounds and Steve Parker (aka The Kibworth Gower), adopted a tortoise emerging from hibernation like approach, which allowed the scorers to ease into the season with many a dot ball. Steve’s first run, after the season was forty minutes old, roused the snoozing crowd. It also awoke the partnership, which stormed onto a century before Steve fell on 45. Pounds pilfered 67 as the main event started.
Despite advice on stretching and preparation from the durable Pounds, Aaron Mauger , elite international athlete, pulled a calf muscle on arrival at the wicket. This meant that he had to score in boundaries….local wildlife ran for cover, and fielders developed cricked necks as the Kiwi smashed an unbeaten 90. Captain ‘Statto’ Munden joining him for a cheeky few at the end to see the fourths reach 244/4 off 45 overs. This was 44 more than the skipper had sought during his statistically rich pre match team talk.
Opening the bowling Ben Cole and Chris Long made early inroads, with Sapcote teetering at 20 odd for 3. Cole jnr was somewhat unlucky not to take two more wickets after the umpire declined appeals that were, in the unbiased opinion of your correspondent, plumb, and miles out respectively! Their opener, who appeared to have had a briefing on how to save a game on day 5 of a dust bowl Test on the subcontinent, dug in and carried his bat. The period of play which saw the ‘Penrith poacher’, our beloved chairman, bowling to him was memorable for being even slower than the early part of the KCC innings; at one point the ball left the square, although only just to be fair.
As Sapcote dogged it out young Mister Ramji was brought on, and almost immediately struck. When our glorious leader took his second catch from a pile driver straight drive there seemed to be hope that KCC could pull it out of the bag. However, it was not to be as our visitors made 201/5. As the draw became inevitable there was still time for some notable sporting feats;
Steve Matthews took the pads from Seb, thus completing the batted, bowled and kept wicket slam.
Chris Long, at full stretch, demonstrated the definitive Long barrier .
Cole snr came on to bowl, thus marking his KCC League debut (at 50 no less) by bowling out the end of the innings in harness with Cole jnr; sage observers noted that one of them has a future in the game.
Without prompting the team put the covers on the wicket at the end. This spontaneous act of teamwork was greeted with wonder, both at how long it took, and because, apparently, there is no rain forecast anytime soon!
Cricket was the winner! Match drawn.