2015 Match reports
Sutton Vs Fen Ditton
Saturday 11th June
Sutton Vs Fen Ditton
Round 6, and a trip to the league leaders Sutton.
Ditton without Rob, AB and Skip, our numbers 1,3,4, all of which offer a variation of bowling options too. To perform as well as we did given those circumstances was off great credit to all involved. Gilo, Mick A and George C moved up from the 2nds to fill the spaces, Marc W stepping up to skipper, Paul Colwell back behind the stumps.
Sutton had a green-tinged pitch but a scorching outfield with tempting short boundaries, aside from the ‘two-tier putting green’, a description provided by H. Marc W won the toss and bowled, and despite having only 3 first-team bowlers available it provided the right decision.
Jacko and Long built pressure, both creating catching opportunities to dismiss opener Vincent.
Unfortunately Fez couldn’t cling on to either, the first a very difficult chance running back off Jacko, the second a more regulation slip catch after Long found the edge.
At that point Vincent hadn’t passed 20. He then batted through for an excellent unbeaten 136 out of a total of 211-9. Painful memories of a similar scenario with Cherry Hinton come to mind.
Cricket can be a really cruel game.
A breakthrough came when Jacko dismissed the other opener for 3, a tempter/long hop outside off leading to a neat low catch from George.
It made Jacko the clubs leading all-time wicket taker, outstanding. It also brought to the wicket Laurens Hershelman, who announced himself with successive sixes off Jacko, the first of which prompted a long search for a relatively new ball. The big–hitting South African then took Fez’s first over for 17. Long provided the crucial breakthrough, some lovely swing finding the inside edge, Colwell pouching the catch. Sutton 65-2 off 9. Thereafter the hosts scoring rate was almost entirely reliant on Vincent, who carried the Sutton innings superbly but lacked support thanks to good bowling. Long had a deserved second when bowling the number 4 for a duck, and at the other end Fez was showing admirable mental resolve to recover his figures with full, quick bowling. Sutton reached drinks on 102-4 having significantly slowed down, Jacko bowled through for a creditable 1-52 from his ten.
Not long afterwards Fez had M Grady for 8, a proper wicket, inducing the edge and Butler with an excellent low grab at second slip. Fez had a deserved second when bowling Barnard for just two, finishing with figures of 10-3-47-2 that don’t tell the full story. By now we had our fourth bowler dilemma to contend with. Mick A had the unenviable task of not only jumping from the 2nd to 1st team, but also having to bowl at a well-set Vincent, who dispatched three straight sixes from the bowlers 3rd over. Sutton still weren’t getting away though, as despite hitting 12 (I make it!) sixes, accounting for over a third of their total, there were plenty of dots too. Block it or smash it cricket. Marc W then stepped up and produced a good spell of 3-35 from 6 to help prevent a late pillage of runs, two wickets bowled and one caught by George as Vincent began to run out of partners. Meanwhile Long returned to finish off, bowling the dangerous hitter Nuttall for a four-ball duck that notably included using a mongoose for the first two deliveries before changing his mind. Long finished with excellent figures of 10-3-29-3, Sutton 211-9, Vincent an admirable 136 not out, 64% of the entire total.
Sutton are a strong batting side and that score reflected an excellent effort from a patched-up Ditton side, particularly the bowlers. That both sides scored comfortably above that in the corresponding fixture last year provides some appropriate context.
Even with that though given the holes in our batting card it was going to be a difficult chase.
Fez replaced Rob to open with MM, and the pair built promisingly initially, until MM ran out Fez.
MM was playing some nice shots, but his running had unfortunately reverted to the 2013 vintage.
H had been promoted to 3, but was bowled by the opening left-armer for a duck.
Butler also fell without scoring, lbw to the same bowler. He’d have reviewed it, but the facilities weren’t available.
Giles was next in and hung around to reach double figures, the highlight being a Chinese cut all along the ground through a vacant fine leg, prompting a tongue-in-cheek shout of ‘good placement’ from his companion. Gilo was bowled around his legs to Emms leaving Ditton 4 down without passing the fifty mark,a fter 15 overs. Long again showed his sold defensive technique, occupying the crease until drinks with MM, who just after the interval stupidly ran himself out for 34. He’s young. He’ll learn. Marc fell to Grady for 5, and in the same over a third Ditton batsmen was gone for a duck when Mick A was caught off the same bowler. Grady dismissed George for 1, and his dad fell for 6, leaving us 86-9, but Jacko combined with Longy to bring us up to 100 exactly. The highlight was a flourishing cover-drive for 4 from Jackson, who then was bowled by Nuttall for 6. Long a gritty 12 not out from 20 overs at the cricket. Dig in and plod on. Of course he’s from Yorkshire. Sutton the deserved winners by 111 runs.
This was not a defeat to be too down-hearted by though. Given the personal out to compete as we did was a really good effort. Sutton are a good side (who play in the right spirit too, which is always appreciated), and it’s clear they’ll be right up there come the end of this season. We will face them again in two weeks, hopefully with a stronger side out.
Milton at home next week, where we’ll seek a win to get are ensure we have more wins than losses so far this season.