Match report – 03/07/21Arjun Sandhu
Saturday July 3rd 2021
What a game out at Plumtree for the 1st XI. Winning the toss and electing to bat first in a game reduced to 38 overs per side due to rain, they got off to a good start as Ben Shaw and Savin Perera put together an opening stand of 57 from the first 11 overs, hitting some exquisitely timed boundaries all round the wicket interspersed with a few plays and misses. Ben was out for 29 which saw him pass 1,000 runs for the 1s and this brought in Paldip Sidhu to join Savin and they consolidated on the good start with a stand of 79 before Paldip was out for 31. There was then some acceleration in the run rate as Zak Tribe (29) and Burhan Alam (17) mad some quick runs and big hits supporting Savin as he moved to an unbeaten 93 off 107 balls with 11 4s and 1 6. A score of 211 for 4 from the 38 overs perhaps seemed 20 runs short of a really good score but would certainly put pressure on the home side in their reply.
A couple of crucial early wickets for James Tilbury and some economical bowling from Savin Perera added to the pressure before thunder raised the prospect of rain and the dreaded Duckworth Lewis Stern. Plumtree’s focus seemed to be entirely on DLS rather than on simply winning the game in the normal way and, whilst they were mostly ahead of the par score, they were never so far ahead that a routine non-DLS win was guaranteed and the loss of a wicket or two would make a significant difference. A brief interruption for rain didn’t affect the target and the game came down to a final over to be bowled by Arjun Sandhu with the home side needing 8 runs to win. This became 4 to win off 3 balls and then 2 to win off the final ball with two rapid runners at the crease. A drive to long on was fielded by Zak Tribe whose rapid, accurate throw to the keeper’s end was seemingly calmly collected by Lucas Stentiford who removed the bails with the batsman just short of his ground.
A tied game – the very least that the Squirrels deserved. And a wonderful, nerve-racking game to boot.
There was no game for the 2nd XI so the 3rd XI had the pleasure of playing at The Strand, taking on Whatton & Aslockton 1st XI in an early start game of 32 overs each. The visitors were restricted to just over 3 an over with 106 for 6 in their overs with Owen Crofts continuing his excellent recent form with 4 wickets for 21. The Squirrels glided past their target for the loss of only 4 wickets with almost 10 overs to spare. Tom Benton was top scorer with 24 and Pete Bateman took his runs for the 3rd XI past 1,000 for a win that takes them up to second place in division F of the SNCL.
The 4th XI took on Oxton 1st XI at the university and sadly didn’t fare so well. They could only muster 82 for 7 wickets from their 36 overs with Brendan Ryan making 20 which the visitors cruised past for the loss of just 2 wickets and with 18 overs to spare. Zero points from the game leaves the team towards the bottom of division H.