After a quick intake of H2O we took the field as a unit. No need for Churchillian urgings I thought , a good total on the board and a team packed with experienced bowlers so no worries. Of course Greg Moses then says that due to a chronic fractured Eye lash he would rather not bowl! Did you know that Greg is part Saffer and part British? His eye lashes obviously come from North Wales! Then up pops the other demon mix of Sunderland and Cape Town, Jim the Vicar Grisdale. His injuries involved at least something visible in terms of a Rugby fall whilst training. However the bruising had reached a part of his anatomy that led to me declining any further inspection , “I believe you Jim, I am sure it is all black and blue as well” I retorted , backing away rapidly. Still no worries , I have the Dad and Son team of the Mariadason;s to be my demon strike bowlers and what a fantastic job they did! Dave  opened up from the top end and had the ball swinging in like a boomerang , whilst young Rohan bowled a great line and length running in from the Academy end.

Dave struck twice in his second over and then Rohan bowled a peach that swung and moved off the pitch with his first ball of his second over. In walked the aforementioned  Damien Brandy with his celebrity side teetering at 12 for 3. At this point in proceedings we are very fortunate in having several “specialist” slip fielders in our club. Apparently Ram , our new recruit is also one. However when Damien Brandy flashed at Rohan’s  5th delivery of his second over it was only  me who was at first slip and although the ball thudded into my outstretched right palm , it also thudded out again!! Never mind I thought , it won’t  be long before he has gone! Doh!

Dave bowled superbly for his 4-0-2-18 and was well backed up by young Rohan who finished with figures of 4-0-18-1. Take a bow that family!!

Debutant Ram was given the chance to show off his all-rounders  skills and soon learned that bowling at the ICC is not always so easy. Especially when the reprieved Mr. Brandy decides he quite likes the length! Damian just basically tried to hit virtually every ball into space , and very nearly succeeded! Ross came on and bowled a tidy first over before Damien took a fancy to him as well , supported by Dan , the Darjeeling man who was also playing some shots. Ram came off slightly bruised with figures of 2-0-29-0 and Ross finished with 3-0-24-0

So the match entered what can in “clicheville”  be called “the Crucial Phase” . Paul Shenks was brought into the firing line and 6 balls later the Brandy X1 where 12 runs nearer our total!  I decided I could not hide anymore and brought myself on from the top end  , 6 balls later and another 13 had been plundered including a massive 6 that cleared the gardens behind me! Paul  gamefully   continued,  and all playing saw Damian go into overdrive and score a further 18 runs and all of a sudden we were  deep in the Mulligatawny as my Indian friends often say!!

At the start of my second over I was in 3 or 4 minds in terms of what sort of ball to bowl to Damien who loomed very large at the other end of the wicket. So I bowled a wide. Obviously I had a bit of chat with their umpire , words like “harsh” and “really” where uttered! So next ball I lobbed one up and fully expected it to be dispatched for 6…… he missed it and it hit his back leg in front of middle and leg , everyone screamed  and my mate the umpire triggered Mr. Golden Bollocks Brandy back to the pavilion!! Relief and high 5,s all around in the DCC camp!

Jim bravely hobbled in off a couple of paces for the next over going for only 5 and Dave M took a great catch in the deep to get rid of Dan before the next batsman was bowled by a specialty  skuttle ball that never got above 2 inches  after pitching, you know the sort of ball Stuie used to bowl all the time!

Jim then completed proceedings by being smashed for 19 off the last over by Posh Toms  brother! He did not enjoy that at all but DCC had won by 25 runs or so. Jim finished with 2 overs for 26 and for me a flattering 3 overs 3 for 25.

The match was played in a great spirit , no dissent to the umpire (well just a little) and everyone in the DCC team played a part and contributed. It is why we are the greatest cricket club in the world , but then I may be biased!!!