Off the rails

After the sensational finish at Regents in June, Dodgers were looking forward to a less nervy encounter against ATOC at Chiswick on Wednesday with a nice early finish: and so it proved.

Having lost the toss – again – and been inserted, Priest and Jacobs made a respectable start on a bouncy track before Chris missed the type of delivery that has given him so much trouble over the years, the straight one. A few moments later Neil gloved an attempted pull into his face to sustain a cut above his eye and the easy game we were expecting was not really materialising.

The Priest / McBarron partnership made sedate headway against rather better bowling than the last encounter but Neil was just starting to find his feet when a very indifferent piece of running by McB left him hopelessly stranded. [I use the word “indifferent” on legal advice – you’ll have to use your imagination as to how bad it really was].

The innings was becoming stalled as neither Phil nor the incoming Carr could manage a-run-a-ball against consistent bowling. When both were out in the 20s desperately trying to make progress the youngsters Luke and Qureshi added some urgency but neither could really break the shackles as we closed on 101-5.

Our score looked hopelessly inadequate – perhaps 50 runs short - on a really good track and the early overs didn’t change anyone’s opinion. Cousins bowled with his customary control but Benn and Cooper were distinctly lacklustre at the other end against some very solid looking batting. A brief mid-innings flurry gave us hope as a voluntary retirement was followed by a dubious run out and a rare stumping for the Cat off Luke, but we never had a serious prospect of victory, even when their premier batsman was bowled attempting to hit Pope into the Thames. The match was eventually wrapped up in the seventeenth over to give ATOC a very cosy victory.

Was this really the same side we played at Regents? Re-nationalise the railways!