Astonishingly, given the dire weather warnings issued by the Met Office throughout the day, Dodgers managed a full game of T20 against the Treasury on what turned out to be a very pleasant Chiswick evening, with just the one rain shower towards the end of the first innings. Unlike last year's fixture, however, which saw over 300 runs scored on a dry wicket, the pitch was boggy from the outset and became even more so as the game wore on.
Dodgers won the toss and went in to bat first, with Matt S and Charlie opening our account against some penetrating swing bowling from HMT. The smart removal of Matt's leg stump brought Dave H to the crease, and before long he and Charlie were scoring freely, both eventually retiring on 25* (though not without Charlie being dropped twice en route). Jatinder, Jack and debutant Harry were all unlucky to lose their wickets cheaply, while Simon managed to steady the ship before being run out in a valiant effort to raise the run rate. Mike Mc and Christian delivered some exquisite scoring shots until the latter was winkled out by a good 'un, bringing Captain Ralph to the crease for the shortest of cameos. Mike's boundary off the final ball was glorious, but a total of 107 off 20 overs felt distinctly light, even in the damp conditions.
Christian launched our bowling attack with admirable accuracy and economy, but the Treasury openers soon found their groove against the slower bowlers and began scoring at a startling rate. By this time the area around the pitch had become so wet as to be treacherous, so our pace bowlers were forced to come in off considerably shortened run-ups. Suffice it to say that the game was lost by the time all three top order batsmen had retired unscathed, even though Charlie and Jack bowled tightly enough to keep our hopes alive into the 16th over. There was a flurry of excitement towards the end when Matt took a brilliant overhead catch at long-off, followed by a rather more surreal (though equally successful) one-handed effort by Chairman John at mid-wicket, but Charlie was denied a hat-trick when his next ball was blocked. Any fantasies we might have had of pulling off a miracle were snuffed out when the new HMT batsman delivered the coup de grâce with a dramatic six over long-on, but we retired to the bar with gratitude for having cheated the rain and enjoyed a full game of it.
Man of the Match votes: Charlie 7, Dave 4
Before the rain...