Two last ball finishes this week (fortunately both going in our favour!). So, let’s get on with it…
If you would like to see how SMCC Ladies won their first outdoor league fixture – please visit our Facebook page (SMCricketClub) where there is a video of the final delivery.
If you need any kit, please contact Peter Swann @ Intersport in Herne Hill and he can sort out all the stuff that you need. You can contact Peter by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org), call the store direct on 020 7326 5050 or pop in to store at 134 Herne Hill, SE24 9QL.
Last weekend’s results:
SMCC took on a depleted Maori Oxshott to play a mid-table clash. Having won the toss, SMCC decided to field first on a damp wicket following recent rain. McGill and Patel settled in to a good opening spell, regularly beating the edge, despite a strong wind disrupting Patel’s approach. Despite this, MO went into the drinks break at 68-2. McGill ending his spell with 2 for 17 off 13. Andrew Mortimore and Shareef Hassan bowling very intelligently and tightly to force wickets to fall. Mortimore completed his first 5 wicket haul since 2008. MO bowled out for 131 in 51.1 overs. SMCC knew the chase would be tricky with a pitch that was difficult to score on, but got off to a good start as the second over yielded 10 runs. That was about as good as it got for SMCC for a period which MO absolutely dominated. SMCC had few answers for the opening spin attack and MO took the first 4 wickets in no time. At 35-5, SMCC were staring down the barrel, but Neil Shah was looking increasingly confident at the crease, having fought against Patel spinning the ball across him with some skill and fortune. A near miss refocused Shah and he continued to play intelligent cricket, making sure he cashed in when the poor delivery arrived. Shah found an ally in Warren Little. With rain making the wicket easier to bat on, SMCC sensed their chance and the runs began to flow. Little playing some fine cut shots and Shah continuing to drive with authority. The end came quickly as Little and Shah cleared the infield with Shah able to walk off 80 not out from 79 balls, well assisted by 30 from Little. A top innings, in which he grafted, rode his luck and then capitalised. SMCC completing a 4 wicket victory and showing great fight to recover, but the top order all have the ability to contribute heavily this season and need to start showing what they are capable of. (D Ellis)
1st X1 League position – 4th / 9
A bad toss to lose on a testing pitch saw the 2’s bat first on a blustery day against Warlingham. A quick start ensued thanks to a paucity of fielders present at the start for the oppo, when they had 11 on the field the runs were harder to come by. a gritty 64 from Dan Langan formed the bulk of the runs with a solid partnership with Blob (47 not out). Boundaries proved difficult to come by throughout the innings but a competitive 180 -6 after 52 overs was posted. Early wickets for Sayif led to the oppo being 11-3. A partnership then grew their score to 90 before Blob’s testing airballs tempted one too many aerial shots, Sarwan pouching a difficult skier. Blob bamboozling with figures of 9-4-8-4. Warlingham’s veteran number three played well to leave the 2’s quickly running out of overs. 4 overs to go 3 wickets needed – Corns made the vital breakthrough tempting an edge from the set batsman. Sayif clean bowling the next bat in the next over and the skipper leaving it dramatically late to bowl the final batsman with the last ball of the game. A solid win, albeit one that should of been easier. 13 much needed points sets up a massive clash against an unbeaten Woking his weekend. I can’t wait! (P Corns)
2nd X1 League position – 5th / 10
No game due to Old Emanual withdrawing from the league.
3rd X1 League position – 4th / 18
On a cold and blustery day, the 4s travelled past the wonderful sights of Wandsworth Common to Spencer, and a tough challenge from one of the league’s better teams. Losing the toss, S&M were inserted and quickly struggled to either score runs or stay in for any particular time as accurate bowling in testing conditions with an outfield ready for the rugby season saw the top 3 fall for few runs. Some quite beautiful batting, running and standing from Hayward was ended pulling to square leg, sumptuously executed though it was, for 28. Adamson played aggressively for 24, the Chairman pushed along with 20, Bell scowled through the wind and occasional drizzle for 12 and Andrew ‘Two-Hands’ Jones decided to run out the skipper first ball without even facing. (Is that a diamond duck?) S&M all out for 116 in 46.2 overs, proving how difficult scoring was. Drama in the tea break with the much reported tree fall meant a longer than usual time until a resumption, when with the old ball Gladstone and Sheik did well to restrict the openers, bowling economically but with little threat as there was no run pressure. Jones brought on to bowl by an incredibly magnanimous skipper, bowled aggressively with little luck and Hayward, with a silky approach and rippling quads, floated up some leg spin but with only Gladstone and Hayward taking a wicket each Spencer reached the target for 2 down in 35.4 overs. The 4s are struggling this season post promotion with a much improved level of opposition coupled with some unsatisfactory pitch conditions. Always performing well in the field, the batting needs attention as we are letting bowlers dominate from the start and ending behind any reasonable rate quite quickly, but this is a good team that will recover and win enough games to survive the season and push on up next year. Henderson returns this week to reclaim the skipper duties from Gladstone and Bell, and a home track should suit well. (D Gladstone)
4th X1 League Position – 9th / 10
Skipper arrives for the meet and everyone is there on time. We set off for OW’s and we get there in 20 minutes, an hour early. What is going on? OW’s are a fine bunch of gentlemen and make us very welcome. Adrian Beckett, their genial skipper, dashes off to rescue one of his team who has run out of petrol (he is a driving instructor) and we still get started quarter of an hour early. I lose the toss and we have to bat. Tejus and Curtis open up for us an make a steady start. We don’t lose a wicket in the first ten overs with both players looking secure against tight bowling. And then the collapse. Tejus (14) smacked one to point after a few delightful shots and Lewis Knapp (6) perished to a fine catch at short cover. Jim Roebuck (0) was bowled through the gate. Curtis (9) ran himself out calling Stan through with the ball in the fielder’s hand. Paul Henley (1) cut powerfully to point and was caught. Thankfully Stan Barrett-Johnston (44 not out) batted for two hours and 30 odd overs to hold us together. The young man was not in his best form and did scratch around a little but he also played some fine shots and did not give a chance. Barrington Wilks (14) played some lusty shots before being bowled and then Stan’s Old Man hung around for a while before being trapped LBW. Kavit Rughani (1) and Elliott Charles (3) had to swing and we finished on 107 off our 46 overs. Jamie Davorn (7-0-21-0) and Barrington Wilks (8-1-33-1) bowled well but the OW’s batting was far more dominant and secure than ours and they were rattling the runs up at a rate of knots. Stan Barrett-Johnston clung on to a good catch at cover to remove one opener off Barrington and then Elliott Charles (3-0-11-1) removed the powerful Hazzard for 34, trapped LBW by a full delivery. Lewis Knapp (5.3-0-24-3)and Paul Henley (4-1-8-1) then gave us real hope and control for 5 or 6 overs as they bowled really well and took wickets on a helpful track. Lewis turned the ball sharply and had Forbes caught well at cover by Stan and a fine flipper bowled Fernandes only for Lewis to claim he did not have a flipper or know what it was and that it had hit a rock and rolled along the ground. Paul Henley bowled really tightly and with skill and guile and was unlucky not to take more wickets. A fine caught and bowled his only reward. Kavit Rughani kept well to both spinners. A fine run out by Elliott Charles had OW’s 7 down but we were always 30/40 runs short and we went down by three wickets in the end. Nevermind – the team is showing some signs of grit and skill in batting, fielding and bowling. We are not far away and we will keep trying. OW’s looked after us very well all day and in the bar afterwards – a fine day out. (L Johnston)
5th X1 League position – 9th / 10
At last, the arrival of a bright and sunny Sunday allowed SMCC Ladies to begin their league campaign with a home game against Reigate Priory. First time skipper Johnston Jr (female) managed to lose the toss which inevitably meant we were sent in to bat first, much to our annoyance. However, opening batsmen Rabiena Hassan and Sally Keith began the game well, picking up some nifty runs until Keith (1) missed a straight one and was sent, untimely, back to the pavilion. Leia Mazur came to the crease and also looked set to score some runs until she was unluckily bowled for 3. 3 wickets then fell in fairly quick succession with Karen Klomp (0) Chantal Pierre-Packer (0) and Marta Merjava (1) all losing their wickets to the bowlers of Reigate. However, the score continued to climb thanks to Hassan’s class batting and a fair amount of extras (74). With Natalie Hill due in at the crease at no.7, we looked unstoppable. True to expectations, Hassan (25 no) and Hill (9 no) managed to bat out what remained of the 20 overs with superb class and skill which allowed us to post an impressive total of 119 off 20 overs. So we went out to field feeling confident and extremely chuffed with the score we had to defend. The game looked to be well within our grasp. However, in our first 10 overs we probably conceded more than we should have, due to the skipper’s expensive and not at all accurate couple of overs. Apart from that the bowling looked threatening, with Katie Stephens (4-0-17-1) and Leia Mazur (4-0-12-2) picking up a wicket each in the first 10 overs, with Megan Little (4-0-24-0), Sarah Hallows (1-0-8-0) and Rabiena Hassan (3-0-20-1) unlucky not to get one as well. Still, as a result of all the runs we had conceded earlier, the pressure was now on for the next 10 overs. Reigate would win if they continued on batting like they had started, and with their captain/no.3 batsman V Howard at the crease, it looked to be entirely possible. This news resulted in several near nervous breakdowns from the skipper but as ever the team’s support kept the game running so we put our heads down and gave it everything. Some tidy bowling from Mazur in particular helped keep the run rate down until, much to our delight, she got their captain to smack it straight to our captain at midwicket, who somehow managed to catch it without even screaming. A great load off our shoulders, and we began to believe the game was ours again. The next few overs were bowled with few runs conceded, until we came to the last ball of the game, when Reigate needed just two to match our 119. It was tense, but tight bowling from Hassan meant their batsman could only push it to midwicket, where it was fielded and the batsman was run out. Great fielding performances overall from Pierre-Packer, Klomp and Hill in particular, with the keeper Merjava reliable as ever. Woman of the match definitely either Hassan for her top batting or Mazur for keeping us in the game with her impressive 2-12 off 4 overs. A great victory, let’s hope this is the first of many. (E Johnston)
Ladies 1st X1 League position – 1st / 6
The Development team played their first league game of the season away to Ripley CC. Ripley won the crucial toss and elected to bat on a dusty track. Mohammad Safi and Shareef Hassan bowled a very tight opening spell but Ripley battled hard to get the score up to 70 for 1. Rory Thomas broke the partnership and wickets began to tumble frequently. Sagar Mehta and Kasheef Hassan worked hard at the back end of the innings collectively bowling 7.2 overs picking up 5 wickets for just 5 runs! In what was an exceptional bowling and fielding display Ripley were bowled out for 120. S&M began the run chase with Neil Shah and Lewis Knapp opening up against an all spin bowling attack on a crumbling track. In form Shah was the first wicket to fall but encouragingly Knapp carried on to show some real grit determined to not give his wicket away. Unfortunately Knapp watched hopelessly from the other end all of his partners give their wicket away and S&M were struggling at 45 for 4. This brought skipper Kasheef Hassan to the crease but Lewis fell without the two managing to form a partnership. Knapp went for 24 but proved he has the perfect temperament to bat at the top of the innings – watch out for this talented youngster! Hassan continued to chip away at the target but a serious lack of application at the other end saw regular wickets fall. S&M were bowled out for 97 with the skipper top scoring with 30. A disappointing result considering the brilliant display in the field but there were many positives to take from this game in to the following weeks. If the batting comes together in the remaining games S&M are starting to look like a real menacing outfit. (K Hassan)
Development X1 League position – 4th / 7
This weekend’s games:
1st X1 home to Old Hamptonians
2nd X1 away to Woking & Horsell
3rd X1 away to Kingstonian
4th X1 home to Dulwich
5th X1 TBC Sunday
1st X1 away to Nasir
2nd X1 TBC
Best of luck to all the sides.