The 1’s and 3’s are still on the promotion push this weekend – let’s hope for a few wins!
4th X1 Captaincy
In a season which has been fraught with selection difficulties, another captain has had to step down. Hendo has down a wonderful job with the 4th X1 and will endeavour to continue playing when his work commitments allow. To aid selection – can members make sure they inform captains of availability as soon as possible and avoid dropping out at the last minute if at all possible – the knock on effects are very disruptive and captains have better things to be doing with their time than phoning around for players on a Friday evening! If anyone is interested in taking on the role, please contact a member of the Executive Committee.
Dinka BBQ and Game
On the 27th of August (Bank Holiday Monday) there is the annual BBQ from the Indian community group who regularly hires our clubhouse. Dinka has kindly extended the invite to all club members and there will also be cricket played on the day in some format or another. If you are interested in playing, please contact either Dag on 07710693914 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Last weekend’s results:
The decision to bat first against Maori Oxshott looked a terrible decision at 1-2 with both openers back in the hutch, but a better one come the close of the innings. Shareef Hassan and Thomas showed the wicket to be true and played their shots to regain parity. They both lost their wickets soon after reaching 50. At 128-5, SMCC were looking to score another 100 to stay competitive, but with the MO bowling attack wilting, Fuller (50) and Dias (90) took the opportunity to run them ragged. Both scored quickly and regularly found the boundary in a great finish to the innings, with the last 10 overs costing MO 100 runs. SMCC closing on 305-7. MO started at a rapid rate as McGill struggled to find his lines. Sarwar took a couple of wickets to peg back the rate. Hassan was next to strike. MO’s number 5 fell next in comical fashion – he was struck on the pad first ball and we appealed – Mollan took exception to this and asked how we could appeal for that! A stand off ensued and upon the resumption, the one thing you don’t want to do (as a batsmen) is swing across the line next ball and get bowled… I was going to offer this advice, but he left the ground well before the end of play. The rest of the game was rather uneventful with MO not really chasing the target. Sarwar ended 4-28 from his 10 overs. With the news that Alleyn & Honor Oak had tied with Old Hamptonians, SMCC need to win the final 3 games to guarantee promotion! (D Ellis)
1st X1 League position – 3rd / 9
Won – no report
2nd X1 League position – 6th / 10
Lost – no report
3rd X1 League position – 5th / 18
A hot day, a team shorn of some of the most experienced players and a tough match-up against one of the league’s high-flying teams was an ominous prospect for the 4s, but an excellent display by an enthusiastic team ended with the narrowest of defeats, and what could prove a vital bonus point. Put in the field by the oppo captain, Knutson and Wilmott opened with ‘pace’ and control, and quickly made inroads into Spencer’s batting. 1 wicket each but both deserved more. Then spin took over as it became clear that the Spencer batting became stronger lower down. Knapp and Gladstone took the middle overs, Gladstone taking 2 and Knapp, in 2 spells, an excellent 4 for 46. New find for the 4s Reg/Paul/Mystery Henley bowled with intelligence and control in the closing overs to take 2 for 14 in 6 tight overs, and Spencer were dismissed for 189 in 41.3 overs. Tea was based around choc-ices and then the Olivias led the way for the S+M reply. 1st over, dull, 2nd over: dropped catch/single. Near stumping. Dropped catch/single. 4 off head high beamer. Dot. Catch. An interesting start as the Chairman was dismissed for 5. Church and Wilmott both contributed, Gladstone less so, and then Reg/Paul/Mystery Henley continued to get over his distress of being dropped from the 5s by joining Moss in a fantastic partnership. Moss fell, after clubbing blows into the churchyard, for a season best of 51, and as the run rate rose Henley finally for 27, Knapp and the KavSTAR for 16 gave it their all, with Knutson not out for 9, as S+M fell 15 short of victory with 175 off 45. Disappointment yes, but a bonus point pulls S+M out of the relegation zone and could be critical come the end of a very tight season. Thanks to all for an excellent and committed display, with the younger players really showing their metal and Moss winding back the years to show everyone how to truly dismiss the ball from his presence.
On a personal note, my sincerest thanks to Andrew Henderson for his captaincy over the last few years. Hendo has had to relinquish the captaincy he has been so proud to hold, and I can honestly say that he has made my 4 years at the club, and with the 4s, truly memorable. The end of an era for the team. (D Gladstone)
4th X1 League Position – joint 8th / 10
Blisteringly hot at parched Mayow Park. Where now the waterlands of May and June? The tent is up for shade not shelter. A patched up V’s side entertain OW’s who beat us by 3 wickets at their place. I lose the toss and so have to bat. With Mark Eldridge’s blistering upbraids ringing in my ears I open the batting with young Adam Bailey. The bowling is tight, particularly from Adrian Beckett (10-1-10-1)and hard to get away on a Mayow track that is hard and dry but very variable in its bounce. A track you must get forward on. Bailey (20) and Johnston (36) give us a slow but steady start with the aim of batting all our overs and putting a total on the board. Young Adam bats pleasantly with one powerful shot through midwicket giving a real indication of things to come from this young man. With twenty to his name, the colt perishes LBW to one that stayed low. After losing Armani Sharif to a wide one nicked behind (good catch) Kirk Smith strides to the wicket only to stride back upon realising that the new gloves he has purchased are two left-handed ones. Some might say that it would make little difference to his game. Kirk departs bowled after his third attempt to wallop the same delivery from Anthonisz out of the park. The slow bowler will perplex all of us throughout his spell until Shiraz comes in. Stan Barrett-Johnston has time to hit one lovely boundary before his Father ran him out. Quite the most traumatic moment of my cricketing life. We lost Andy Taylor for none and then Brett Lynch batted well (12). All this time Johnston ground on in mind-numbing fashion. Once he had mistimed to mid-off it was time for Shiraz to play a magnificent innings of 33 off 12 balls faced (18.104.22.1681). We close on 138 for 9 off our 40 overs which I felt was 30 or so short of par but thanks to Shiraz we have a total. Never mind we are a good fielding unit. Armani Sharif (10-1-22-1) and Shiraz Sheikh (10-1-36-5) gave us a devastating first twenty. How Armani finished with only 1 magnificently yorked wicket is beyond everyone including the batsmen. Bowling a lovely full length the powerful seamer beat the bat and the stumps time after time. A dropped catch didn’t help. Shiraz was not quite at his miserly best but still managed to be devastating to the top order. Both bowlers exploited the helpful pitch well and were ably backed by some fine fielding. The best example being the fine catch at second slip by Andy Taylor off Shiraz to remove the dangerous H. Cornish. When these two artists of length and line were finished they were backed up brilliantly by Barrington Wilks (4-1-6-2) bowling with hostility just short of a length and Elliott Charles (5.5-2-12-2) bowling a fuller length and showing us again what a good player he is and how often he can get the prize wickets – this time removing the OW’s skipper just as he was threatening to get them home. The fielding was good with Dagmara Selwyn-Kuczera, Brett Lynch, Stan Barrett-Johnston and Elliott particularly impressive. Dagmara, in the first of her three games this weekend, saved at least 5 runs in the field and that is what wins tight games like this. There was no doubt that OW’s were in this game right until we got the prize wicket of Adrian Beckett. A good day for us. Hard lines for OW’s who had, perhaps, the worst of the wicket. Home again next week. (L Johnston)
5th X1 League position – 8th / 10
A youthful 5As travelled to the splendid surroundings of the Bank of England sports grounds on the hottest day of the year so far. As expected, the track offered little for bowlers and our hosts made us toil in the field by putting on 133 before the breakthrough: a peach of a catch from Chowdury off the bowling of Mario Viggor. His bowling has really come on in the last few games, all the hard work in the nets now being rewarded with wickets. It’s probably fair to say that the majority of our work with the ball and in the field wasn’t quite this good, 34 extras and some decidedly ropey fielding. That said, a superb run out from Ellie Johnston (direct hit from mid-on) added another wicket before Viggor’s second and a brace from Chowdury. A declaration came after 36 overs with 190 on the board. The response from our players was excellent; Kumar (51) and Knott (32) with some terrific strokeplay, making the most of the batting track and taking the game to our hosts. The partnership yielded 82 before Kumar’s knock was ended leg before. Knott soon followed and the balance of play swung to the hosts. Shukla (16) and Viggor (12) put on a brief stand and tried to reignite prospects of a run chase before the hosts made headway and set their sights on the tail. What a contest it turned out to be. BoE’s spin pair bowling superbly but could not find their way past the sheer determination of an inexperienced lower order who, despite only adding 7 runs in ten overs, managed to bat the game out with 2 wickets to spare. Hunsley in particular playing an extremely regimented game, thwarting the bowlers at every opportunity in the pressure cooker atmosphere (a dozen or so inebriated South African rugby players joining the home side’s every appeal). The culmination of this tussle was a score of 124 for 7 and drawn game which the hosts admitted felt more like a defeat which we will happily take following our recent, barren run. Excellent spirit and resilience on a difficult day, well done all. (M Shukla)
A warm and muggy Sunday morning saw the Ladies XI (or IX to be exact) travel out to Surrey for the return match against Reigate Priory. Spirit and determination had seen us narrowly win the home fixture against this experienced side, but we would be looking to step up our game to make sure of an away victory. This week saw the baton of the women’s captaincy handed to D Selwyn-Kuczera. Unfortunately the hosts won the toss and we were sent in to bat. A situation we have been in far too many times this season once again began to unfold. Tight overs from the opening bowlers put our run rate right down, with only singles being scored by both openers. Having said this, T Mattinson (6) and R Hassan (3) did well to defend so much of the accurate bowling being dealt by the Reigate skipper and co. When Hassan perished, our top run scorer for the game F Zaidi (11) came to the crease and batted well, hitting our only boundary of the game until she too became a victim of the Reigate bowling attack. Again, as has happened in our previous games this season, it became the case that losing one wicket meant losing at least two in the following ten minutes. This logic meant that only one of our players hit double figures and we ended the 20 over innings with a slightly diminished 74 runs. However, it is well known now that our team flourishes on the field and not at the crease, so we went out to the field knowing this game was within our grasp if we bowled straight and took early wickets. This, in part, we did. Unfortunately, due to a lack of communication from Reigate, our exact bowling figures are unknown, so I’ll just put it bluntly. F Zaidi and R Selby took 2 each, with M Little and C Pierre-Packer picking up one apiece. D Selwyn-Kuczera and R Hassan both troubled the batsmen and were unlucky not to pick up wickets. Overall, the bowling was impressively consistent and many of the Reigate batsmen found it difficult to play, but it was not enough to make up for the fact that we had simply failed to put enough runs on the board…again. Reigate won by 3, 4 or 5 wickets. I can’t quite remember (a copy of the scorebook would really have helped make this match report a bit more informative). We lack the confidence and power to hit the boundaries and this is what is costing us these matches. We must look to make more of an impact with the bat if we hope to advance to the next level. Similar to most games we have played, over half of the runs we scored were extras and we know we cannot count on poor bowling to get us the victories. Though this being said, we gave it our all and D Selwyn-Kuczera captained admirably with a well thought out game plan. At times we showed skill and we always showed team spirit. There is hope yet. Later in the day, T Mattinson, M Little, D Selwyn-Kuczera and E Johnston helped out the enemy, Dulwich, by making up the numbers for their 35 over game. The first three aforementioned players all made an impression with the bat, scoring 16, 12 and 16* respectively. E Johnston even managed to hit a four in her short time at the crease. After tea, Little and Selwyn-Kuczera both picked up two wickets, making it a close game but unfortunately (or fortunately-depends which way you look at it) Dulwich lost by 4 wickets. A good match for the S&M girls who all contributed positively (most of the time), and an educational experience from which we can conclude our team is not yet ready to even think about approaching the national league. (E Johnston)
This weekend’s games:
1st X1 home to Egham
2nd X1 away to Egham
3rd X1 home to Farnham
4th X1 away to Sunbury
5th X1 home to Mottingham
6th X1 away to Wimbledon Corinthians
Best of luck to all the sides.