So Rioteers again graced the cradle of cricket. Walking in the steps of the founders of the modern game and Victorian greats such as WG Grace, Gilbert Jessop and Richard “9fer” Brazier.
Unusually the Brigands were down to 9 players and Damian honourably offered to play for them to even matters up as 10 a side. I think he just fancied facing our bowlers!
In the absence of the skip and vice, Hawthorne took on role of captain. He went out for the toss with the very clear instructions to win the toss and bat on another sweltering day. As per usual he lost the toss, however the Brigands helpfully decided to bowl first.
The Rioteers innings was opened by the skipper in partnership with Simon Brazier. The innings progressed nicely with an open partnership of circa 70 until Hawthorne went for an expansive drive against the spinner and failed dismally and was bowled for 27.
He was replaced by deputant Josh Hasdell who contributed a brisk and entertaining 14 before being replaced by our South African ringer Neil Winspear. He set about the Brigands bowling with some glee including two huge sixes. In the meantime Simon had secured yet another 50. Unfortunately he soon departed for a very tidy 60. He was replaced by Williams, who had been keen to point out that he was averaging 79 with the bat this season. Suffice to say he kept to the 9 part of the average!
Winspear also fell soon after for a brisk and high quality 35. However, at this point we some 35 runs shy of the desired 200 mark. But no fear an excellent partnership between Harrison Hill and our own baseball convert Rinaldo who both scored excellent 15s in rapid time saw the Rioteers to a challenging 201 for 6.
The team then repaired to the marquee for the usual high quality tea with the strawberry meringues being a particular highlight
The West Indies had the 3 Ws, but they didn’t have the 2 Hs! The bowling was opened by the might of the two Hs with the small matter of some 56 years between their respective ages. Hall gracefully agreed to bowl up the hill (and over!) to allow Hill to bowl down Hill! With both bowlers keeping it tight Brigands struggled to build momentum. Hill then got two quick wickets including one courtesy of a spectacular full length diving catch by Hasdell at first slip.
Both were then replaced by the might of Williams medium pace and the guile and flight of Hasdell. The Brigands opener was still in and was starting to look really threatening. However, he was fooled by Williams complete mastery of the slower bowl and knock one back to the bowler who gleefully celebrated the caught and bowled of their star bat.
Williams continued to make in roads to the Brigands batting including a good catch by Hill in the covers getting rid of our very own Stafford.
Hawthorne then turned to the partnership breaking talents of Rinaldo who dutifully obliged with an excellent first ever LBW in his first over.
Winspear replaced the unlucky Hasdell and outlined his all rounder credentials with an excellent spell including two wickets on his Rioteers debut.
The skipper was then able to turn again to Hill to mop up the tail and he dutifully obliged by getting their last man to pop up a catch to Hawthorne.
Rioteers VICTORY for the first time this year! An excellent team performance with solid batting, bowling and fielding from the whole team.
The victorious team then decanted across the road to The Bat and Ball to celebrate their win inn the usual manner.