As the Darjeeling faithful started to arrive at the ICC there was more than a few moans and groans about how long it takes for a Dubai summer to end and an Arab winter to begin! Too long was the conclusion and indeed it was very hot and sticky.

Our opponents for the day included several “ex” Darjeeling” wallahs “ and even our new member Dan was roped in , presumably because of his ability to stop a flaying cricket bat with his eye. Because of this familiarity with the opposition it was  decided that  DCC rule number 1 could not be invoked and instead a proper “Toss” took place out in the middle. Damian Brandy called incorrectly and I duly skipped back to our dressing room with the great news that the opposition had been duly inserted!

This match also marked the return to the fold of Ian P who had been lost in the wilderness for some time on some breeding programme and with his opening  partner Brad Wissink they strode manfully to the crease to face the eclectic mix that made up the Brandy X1. It is fair to say that both of our openers took full advantage of some indifferent bowling but several of the bowlers where also capable of actually pitching one up AND on the stumps so some care was needed. After 5 overs we had reached 52 , with Ian dealing mainly in “thumps” of increasing violence around the park. Extras also contributed to the score with wide’s  and “beamer” no balls aplenty!

After 10 overs drinks where taken and Ian announced that as he would also be keeping wicket it was time for a younger and fitter man to take over the batting duties from him. Well he said part of that anyway and he retired for a well-played  41 and the evergreen Greg Moses took his place.

You may not be aware that there is a lot of “history” and “previous” as the Londoners say between Greg and Brad. They have shared many things , literally apparently and they also love to make the other party run when batting together!! Each claims that he is the leader in all this but regardless an all run 4 , several run 3,s and more than a few 2,s took its toll on Greg and he top edged a catch when looking well set for 31. Oh Brad did chuckle!!!

The reformed Vicar of Dibley , formerly known  as” Big Bad”  Jim Grisdale took over from Greg and in his usual style smashed both bowlers for big 6,s and a disputed number of 4,s ( I was distracted whilst scoring!) before Brad laughed no more as he took a full bunger on his toe and was out LBW for an enterprising 68  and thus entered  Ramesh , making his debut for DCC

Jim meanwhile was being beaten for pace by the returning Damian Brandy for a rapid 27 , Paul Shenk came and went , another victim of a rejuvenated Brandy leaving David and Ramesh to finish off our innings at 192 for 4 with Ram on 8 and David on 2.

As skipper I thought we should have reached 200 but also felt that this would be good enough to secure a comfortable victory. But did I mention a rejuvenated Damien Brandy…. I will shortly in Part 2 of this saga!!