South Bank Cricket Club won the toss and elected to bat
Hot, surprisingly sunny and then Satan himself rained on a boozy Village
DJ EddieTron laid down the the beats as Village go from Britney '07 to Britney '17.
The game was off...Advice for any London-based aspiring friendly cricket team...never deal with Raynes Park Former Pupils. With less than 24 hrs notice RPFP pulled out citing issues with the cost of tea and then issues raising a team because it was a late notice (1 month) game. When asked if they thought this was acceptable, they proceeded to ignore all contact and leave the Village facing a £200+ bill...But then...
23.02 the night before the game Skipper Cressey gets a text from Southbank CC skipper Mike Dollin who had been cancelled on himself just hours earlier.
The game was on...And so 11 Villagers rocked up at Turney Road, Duiwich, to be told we were playing on the 'far pitch' and not to go into the building over there as it is a 'rat-infested, condemed death trap' and any attempt to change in the great outdoors would be met with a swfit cancellation of the game. A short changing session later and the skipper lost the toss to be told that the Village would be fielding first.
Steve (mate of Pitcher) strapped them on (pads that is not black princes) and the Village took the the field and a slow low track. Tupper and Cressey opened up with a tight spell which left Southbank CC 20-2 off 10. After this Southbank rebuilt through the quirky Gant and the middle order of Janos Slynt and Skipper Dollin. Eddy secured a direct hit run out (only the highest Lord Jesus Christ could have nailed a 1 and 1/2 stumper in that situation), and also bowled Dollin with the worst ball of his spell (cricket in a nutshell).
Gant carried on to secure 86* as Southbank finished on 207 following a reasonable al round bolwing display with wickets spread around and runs coming from all parts.
Tea was paid for and enjoyed. Mystery meat in hovis white bread and lots of squash for the thirst Village fielder contigent.
On a dead track with a weakened lineup, the Village batting needed to be slick, focused and to the point. Eddy put some reggae on the speaker and the Village prompted collapsed to 17-4, lulled by the false sense of security offered by Monsieur Marley and friends. Abrar was given LBW, Bosh missed a straight one, Pitcher did likewise and Pitcher completed the triple bolwed bonanza. But then the Village changed it's tune (literally) and went all power ballard, electonic disco and front foot punches. As Yazoo, Prince and Flock of Seagulls floated across the outfield, Troja and TdM rebuilt the Village innings. With both starting slowly, the track seemed to ease up as Troja got off the mark with a six and TdM nudged his way into the innings on a tricky track. By drinks Village had reached 80-4 and Southbank needed wickets.
Gripped by suspicion, the watching players refused to budged from their diet of '80s pop as Bonnie Tyler, Fleetwood Mac and Stevie Wonder kept spirits high and the intensity on the sidelines dropped to approx 0.00001% of the intensity being applied by Troja and TdM in the middle. Southbanks's change bowlers struggled to contain the right hand-left hand combination and Village accelerated to a 6 wicket victory from 36.5 overs with Troja finishing with an impressive return of form 79* and TdM continuing his hot streak (av. 285 now) with 76*.
Very good beers were had with the Champions League Final on (Bale's overhead kick = ;-) and Karius can field at fine-leg next week) befoe the Village decamped to Canopy Brewery under the arches at Herne Hill. After 2 beers the heavens opened and Villagers rrange for the hills (tube stations and bus stops) one by one at south London got slowly drenched in a tropical storm described by Pilot Tupper as "the worst type of shit I try and avoid whilst working". Bosh took this the wrong way and decided he was not going on a plane ever again, even for a VCC tour. By the time the Village reached Victoria Station there was a small river flowing through the terminus and alternative routes may have been required.
All in all a good day in the sun. Debut for Swoffer (golden duck on debut - has anyone done this before). And plenty of beers to celebrate a top partnership between Troja and TdM.