21 August 2001

DODGERS VS TRANSEC/SUPERSTARS

21 AUGUST 2001
35 OVERS PLAYED AT CHISWICK
RESULT – DODGERS LOST BY 62 RUNS

Dodgers' late-season slump continued and again a weakened team started well and then fell away. We fielded only nine players and the withdrawal of Darren hit us severely. Transec/Superstars' captain Phil McBarron (remember him?) generously agreed to allow our lowest scorer to bat twice, probably in the expectation that it would be me. Unfortunately this didn't compensate for our weakened attack.

As usual in 35 or 40 over games, captain John ('call me Nasser') Carr lost the toss and we had to field first on a hot day. Our opening bowlers, Andrew Crawford and Neil Benn, bowled tightly and we generally fielded in the same vein. Steve Carter was particularly becalmed, taking 19 balls to get off the mark. Barry Gigg was also slow to get into his stride and after 6 overs just 12 runs had been scored. The dismissal of Carter in the 8th over prompted the promotion of Tony Whitrod up the order and an increase in the scoring rate.

We tried hard to keep the run rate down. A memorable piece of fielding by Andrew saw him stop a certain boundary with his foot, then run round the sight-screen and come back to pick up the ball. He reminded me of Pele dummying the Uruguayan goalkeeper in the 1970 World Cup. The bowler John Adey was less impressed, so Andrew threw the ball at him as hard as he could.

Mr Adey bowled accurately and took the wicket of ex-Dodger John Doyle, doing a Quisling for the opposition. Unfortunately, after this our attack consisted of Messrs Carr, Priest, Westhead and myself, which didn't trouble the Transec/Superstars middle order of Hyland, McBarron and Smith. They found a number of gaps on the long boundary and the score mounted steadily.

We felt that a total of 205 off 35 overs might be gettable but it would need several batsmen to contribute. It had been agreed that anyone scoring 35 would retire (50 in the case of Messrs Adey and Westhead) but not many of us were in danger of reaching this. The opposition boasted an opening attack of Smith and Patten and after 7 overs we were 20 for 3. Neil Priest was unlucky to be out to a ball that nipped back a long way.

Andrew led a counter-attack with some fine shots but only he and Neil Benn, with a watchful innings, put up much resistance. Neil's effort was particularly creditable, as he was struck in the face and strained a hamstring. John Carr provided a late flourish, masquerading as ANOther as lowest scorer. I lasted longer at the crease than usual (seven overs) but that was largely because Steve Carter and John Doyle were bowling.

On the whole we were well and truly ambushed and it is to be hoped we do better in our last two games against Superstars and Buckhurst Hill.

Man of the Match : Neil Benn.

TRANSEC/SUPERSTARS INNINGS

Gigg retired 35
Carter Hit wicket b Benn 5
Whitrod retired 37
Hyland retired 35
Doyle b Adey 1
Trott b Pope 7
McBarron not out 31
Smith retired 37
Marchant run out 6
Patten b Cooper 0
Extras (b4, lb2, w4, nb1) 11
Total 205 for 4


Bowling

Crawford 6-0-23-0
Benn 6-1-26-1
Cooper 5-0-37-1
Adey 6-0-19-1
Priest 3-0-19-0
Pope 4-0-34-1
Carr 4-0-31-0
Westhead 1-0-8-0


DODGERS INNINGS

Westhead b Patten 6
Adey ct b Patten 3
Priest lbw b Smith 3
Cooper b Marchant 10
Crawford lbw b Carter 33
Carr b Hyland 0
Benn lbw b Patten 42
Pope b McBarron 3
Matthews b McBarron 4
aNOther (Carr) not out 18
Extras b 2, lb 3, w 14, nb 2 21
Total 143 all out


Bowling

Smith 4-0-15-1
Doyle 3-0-10-0
Patten 5.5-0-22-3
McBarron 3-0-4-2
Hyland 3-0-15-1
Whitrod 4-1-13-0
Marchant 4-0-30-1
Gigg 3-0-17-0
Carter 3-0-10-1

14 August 2001

Dodgers v DCMS

Tuesday 14 August
Chiswick

DCMS won by 58 runs

The Dodgers' recent poor run of results continued with a comfortable win for DCMS in our second encounter of the season.

In hot and humid conditions on a typical Chiswick batting track, the toss was always going to be important. Unfortunately JC insisted on calling himself and lost for the umpteenth straight time. Opposition skippers have got wind of his unbending dogmatism in this matter and you can hear the sniggers as the doubled-tail coin goes up while their opening bats are getting their pads on.

Dodgers did not have a potent looking side, especially on the bowling front, and veteran medium-pacers Neil Benn and Phil McBarron opened the attack. The pitch was quite slow, though, and DCMS struggled to make headway against tight bowling. After 6 overs they had struggled to 8-1, with Mitchell (4) bowled by McB. The second wicket pair inevitably found their feet and the scoring rate accelerated slightly, but Dodgers fielded surprisingly well on the whole and kept the lid on the situation up to the drinks break.

Darren Bultitude – another rare bowler for us – performed respectably and picked up opener Cooper for 39 to a sharp catch behind by The Cat just when the danger signs were apparent. When star bat Palao only succeeded in hitting David Pope in the air to mid-wicket our hopes were raised. These hopes went even higher when Benn returned to the attack and picked up two (slightly fortuitous) wickets and Matt Leach bowled the DCMS number 6.

But Barry Fitzgerald has been our bogey man before, though not so often with the bat. Despite being unable to run much faster than Adey, he picked up 44 runs from nowhere, principally in collaboration with Scattergood before the latter was bowled by Cap'n Carr for 21, leading DCMS to a competitive but not unassailable 204-7 after their 40 overs.

Dodgers would need to bat well, but Chamberlain was in his usual vein tying down openers Bultitude and McBarron before having Darren caught low down at first slip for 13. Benn was promoted to three in the order but he and McB predictably failed to make much progress against accurate bowling, particularly from That Man Fitzgerald.

Attempting to break the shackles with a swift two, Benn was run out by a direct hit from short third man for 7 and the scoring rate didn't improve much as Carr (10 overs for 12 before attempting an ugly slog across the line) and Whitrod (5) came and went. McB was finally caught behind off Fitzgerald for a good 55 to leave Dodgers 126 for 5 in the 31st over. He had played with increasing fluency but without finding the exceptional form necessary in the circumstances.

The last rites were more interesting than usual as John Cooper played a very promising knock, hitting two fours in his (career best?) 25 before being beautifully deceived by a slower ball from Chamberlain's return over. Matthews had used up one life when caught off a marginal waist-high full toss no ball, a decision umpire Benn regretted deeply as The Cat bored the pants off everyone in a nine-over stay for 5 not out. Matt Leach played an excellent lofted cover drive off his first ball from Chamberlain – the champagne moment for me – but this was short-lived joy as his stumps were re-arranged from the next ball. David Pope was then dismissed twice and we finished well short.

A comprehensive defeat all-in-all, but there was something for Dodgers fans to take away from this game. We were always going to struggle with a badly weakened side against the class of Chamberlain – 7-3-8-3 – and the unvarying accuracy of Fitzgerald, coupled with Palao's batting among others. But we were in the game for a long time and but for Fitzgerald's knock might have got an awful lot closer. The fielding was good and McB's bowling and John Cooper's batting were both encouraging.

If only JC could learn how to say "tails"...

08 August 2001

Dodgers v Superstars

DODGERS v SUPERSCUM
20 OVERS MATCH, CHISWICK
8 AUGUST 2001

Result: Superscum won by 5 wickets

Dodgers Man of the Match: Richard Godden

This was a match that Dodgers should have won. We were given a great start by new boy Richard Godden and simply tossed the advantage away against our sworn enemy. Of the XI who played, apart from Godden, only Cooper and Captain Carr can escape criticism for the batting collapse that led to our demise.

Priest stood in at the toss for the late arriving Carr and duly won (Carr invariably loses). On a slightly damp pitch, which looked as thought it might cut up later, Neil elected to bat. Mr Godden’s reputation had preceded him and having impressed greatly in the warm up, the now arrived Carr had no hesitation in inviting him to open the batting. McBarron was sent out as his runner! Godden proceeded to strike a series of high-class boundaries and the score rattled along to 58-0 off 7 overs, McBarron’s share being a mighty 9. The popular Yorkshireman was dismissed in the next over and replaced by Priest. Godden continued to prosper, completing a rapid 50, and when he was dropped by Steve Carter to great amusement, we were certain it was our night. How wrong we were!

Priest spooned a long hop from Marchant to Taylor and Block held a great return catch to get rid of the impressive Godden. The innings promptly went into freefall. Carr tried to rally things but got little support. Cooper was unluckily run out, Adey hit a 4 and Leach played one good sweep shot, but there were no other highlights worth recording. The innings came to a stuttering halt at 103 all out off 18.5 overs, only the 2nd time we have ever been dismissed in a 20 overs game. It would be churlish not to acknowledge some fine bowling and fielding by the Superscum players. They bowled very straight on a generally helpful pitch and only conceded 3 extras.

With such a small total to defend, it was vital that the Dodgers bowling and fielding were right on the mark. Sadly this was not the case. To nobody’s great surprise Godden bowled a fine and quick opening spell and was unlucky not to take at least one wicket.

Unfortunately, Crawford his opening partner fared less well. Andrew has turned in many good bowling performances for us but this was not one of them. Apart from dismissing the dangerous Conway, he bowled a mixture of leg-side wides and short balls outside off stump that Gigg simply climbed into and the score sped to 50-1 off 8 overs.

The change bowlers Hawton and Adey met with instant success and 3 quick wickets left Superscum vulnerable on 60-4 (Crawford assisting with a good catch to see off Gigg). Unfortunately, having each bowled 2 accurate overs Terry and John turned their radar off and runs began to flow again. Surprisingly, Adey’s cunning plan of setting an offside field and then bowling lollipops down the leg-side did not fool Smith and Whitrod! The game was up by the time Cooper dismissed Smith and Superscum got home with wickets and overs in hand.

Overall, a very disappointing performance that leaves us 2-1 down in our annual series against Superscum. On the positive side, Richard is clearly quite a find and with him in our side we should win more than we lose. Welcome aboard Richard.

Quote of the week – Ken Block putting a paternalistic arm round Steve Carter after his dropped catch and exclaiming "c.....t".

MATCH STATS

DODGERS

Godden c&b Block 60
McBarron b Taylor 9
Priest c Taylor b Marchant 1
Carr not out 17
Cooper run out 1
Crawford c Gigg b Block 3
Matthews c&b Block 0
Sandamas c Marchant b Block 0
Adey b Shitrod 5
Leach st Carter b Conway 4
Hawton b Conway 0
Extras 3
TOTAL (18.5 overs) 103 all out


Superscum Bowling

Smith 4 overs 0-33 (ouch!)
Taylor 4 overs 1-24
Block 4 overs 4-14 (c....t!)
Marchant 4 overs 1-14
Conway 1.5 overs 2-7
Shitrod 1 over 1-8 (SHAME ON YOU JOHN ADEY)


SUPERSCUM

Gigg ct Crawford b Adey 32
Conway ct Godden b Crawford 3
Abigail b Hawton 9
Carter S b Hawton 4
Whitrod not out 19 (well done Tony)
Smith ct Leach b Cooper 21
Carter T not out 0
Extras 14
TOTAL (17.4 overs) 106 for 5


Dodgers bowling

Crawford 4 overs 1-35 (wan....r!)
Godden 4 overs 0-12
Hawton 4 overs 2-23
Adey 4 overs 1-24
Cooper 1 over 1-5
Leach 0.4 overs 0-4