Nomadic Norsemen 5 June

Who turned the Sun off?  An overcast scene greeted us at Parliament Hill as a star-studded Gardeners XI sought to gain a victory against the swashbuckling unit that comprises the Norsemen.  Skipper Richard lost the toss and Norse captain Bruno put us into bat.  As the Norse typically bat right down to number 11 Richard caught the distinct whiff off a large rodent wearing a horned helmet ….

Into battle and … why is the Norse keeper standing half way to the boundary???  Whizz – one flies past Malcolm’s nose, then another one clips our Cambridge Alumnus on his spectacles (careful how you read this), removing them – and prompting one of the most bizarre appeals I’ve seen.  Malcolm put his glasses back on and donned his helmet, gritted his teeth and his normally benign expression changed to one saying THEY SHALL NOT PASS.  Meanwhile at the other end Roger (yes, that’s our Roger – he’s got more clubs than Luke Donald) was getting prodigious swing, controlling one just well enough to trap 2-Bats in his first over.  The second wicket followed soon after, Dave Stead getting castled by a blinding yorker from the eyewear-removing paceman Chris.   Tom Monahan looked very calm amidst the storm but then got a rib-tickler from Roger that he fended off, the Norse keeper Holdsworth taking a stunning catch.  23-3 and it’s wobbly knees time.  Toby steadied the ship superbly, adding 60 with Malcolm to see off Chris and Roger, but then falling lbw to Keld’s inswinger.  83-4 and it’s too close to call.  Jim Campbell then played an innings of powerful elegance, relieving significant pressure from Malcolm.  This featured some superb cuts, a technically perfect lofted on drive for four and a help-it-on-its-way six over square leg.  Jim then tryed to cut a wide over point and just failed to do so – 41 runs scored in no time.  Mick Campbell, a.k.a. Super-7 kept up the tempo with a rumbustious 24 whilst Malcolm accelarated smoothly.  Lord Fakenham pulled one into square leg’s hands for “oh no not another bl**dy duck”.  Richard glided a couple of 4s then scrambled a single to allow Malcolm to demonstrate How To Drive – two 4s and a huge straight six against Chris.  That’ll teach him to try to break his glasses!  An unbeaten 90 of the highest calibre.

Gardeners 228-7
Malcolm Birks†   not out   90
David Hollingsworth   lbw McCann   0
David Stead   b Chris  1
Tom Monahan   c Holdsworth b McCann   4
Toby Frow   lbw Keld   17
Jim Campbell   c Dhanda b Shashi   41
Mick Campbell   c McCann b Holdsworth   24
Lord Fakenham   c Dhanda b Holdsworth   0
Richard Higginbottom*   not out   9
Paul Brasted and Peter Lee did not bat

Norsemen Bowling
Chris   6 overs – 0 maidens – 31 runs – 1 wicket
Roger McCann   5 – 0 – 15 – 2
Lloyd   4 – 0 – 24 – 0
Keld   5 – 0 – 33 – 1
Brewin   6 – 0 – 37 – 0
Shashi   4 – 0 – 29 – 1
Holdsworth   3 – 0 – 18 – 2
Verkuelen   2 – 0 – 19 – 0

Tea … and it started to rain.  Sensibly Nick took the scorebook to the shelter of a tree (thanks for the book-keeping Mr R’n’B) as we proceeded to take to the field in a light drizzle.  Peter had been running up steps and punching beef carcases during the interval and came steaming in, causing Llloyd to drag one on to his stumps with his third ball and then trapping Paterson lbw with his sixth – 2 runs for 2 wickets.  At the other end Toby was roaring in and proving almost impossible to lay a bat on.  Remarkably, Norse number 3 Holdsworth was charging down the track at both of our opening bowlers (he must be nuts) and missing mostly until he hammered a six off Toby.  Bad move … Toby produced a beautiful leg cutter that caught the outside edge, Richard gratefully taking a simple catch at Gully.  Peter was now pumped up, extending his run up and fizzing one down to bowl Dhanda (who’d scored a classy 60 against us last season) for a duck.  And Peter made it four wickets as he took a return catch to dismiss Shashi for 12.  Great effort by the South Seas Strongman.  Time for the mercurial Mr Brasted … who belied this tag with bowling of consistent quality, bowling Roger with a perfect length ball and then having a very good shout for lbw against Bruno turned down.  At the other end Fakenham had joined the fray, sliding about in his delivery stride more than a drunken skater – but amazingly bowling a great length and line, inducing a false shot to square leg by Verkuelen where Tom picked up a stunning diving catch.  Bruno then decided it was hammer time – belting some fine shots including an amazing straight six off Gardeners talisman David Stead.  Meantime Mick had come on, and true to form was giving all sorts of problems to the batsmen, inducing a gloved catch at the wicket … no wait a minute not given out … Mick responded in the manner of a champion, rearranging the stumps of Chris for 16 two balls later.  Shortly after, Mr Stead also showed he was not to be trifled with, bowling Bruno with a typical laser-accurate projectile to finish the match.  Salmagundi the victors.

Nomadic Norsemen   133 all out
S Paterson   lbw Lee   1
T Llloyd   b Lee   0
J Holdsworth   c Higginbottom b Frow   17
Shashi   c&b Lee   12
Dhanda   b Lee   0
Van Schreden   c T Monahan b Fakenham   19
L Verkuelen   ret hurt   12
R McCann   b Brasted   0
M Brewin   b Stead   37
Chris   b M Campbell   16
Gogi   not out   2

SGCC Bowling
Peter Lee   7 – 0 – 32 – 4
Toby Frow   5 – 2 – 18 – 1
Paul Brasted   4 – 0 – 19 – 1
Lord Fakenham   4 – 0 – 20 – 1
David Stead   3.2 – 0 – 26 – 1
Mick Campbell   2 – 0 – 7 – 1

Gardeners won by 95 runs

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