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Match report vs Blaina 20July 08@ Blaina (Skipper and Report Dan)

The team (bar Tickle) turned up at B&Q carpark in fine mood and in ‘glorious’ sunshine. After a discussion on directions the team set off in convoy, the way led by Winkie Hood who apparently had no directions…after a few phone calls en route the team found the ground easily…apart from Tesh who’s sat nav took him on a journey to Abergavenny extending his trip by 20 miles…

The ground looked lovely, flat wicket and almost as flat outfield, however the sun which we had seen in Cardiff had disappeared behind a large cloud…and the wind picked up. The toss was negotiated and Captain Dan and team went into bat. With so many batting collapses in recent times, the Cazh were instructed to build a firm foundation, take their time, see off better bowlers and bat for the full 40overs. Shakey and Tesh opened the innings and continued to look in good touch. The Blaina skipper and opening bowler looked pretty sharp and liked to swing the ball in, he was to get his reward in the third over, Tesh playing outside the line and was bowled (2 ). 5-1-3overs…was this the start of the collapse…? No, Shandy in at three, played solidly defending often, and allowing Shakey to take the strike, the pair continued building the innings. Shakey played some lovely glances for 4 and the pair took singles were possible. In the 12th over Shandy perished to one that managed to pierce his pad/bat defence (8 ) but a very useful 46 run partnership. 51-2-12overs. Ming joined Shakey and after 5 dot balls crashed one through the on side boundary, followed by another 3 balls later. He carried on where Shandy had left off and built another partnership of 34 before Richie was bowled through the gate for 16. 85-3-19overs.

The new partnership of Dewbs and Shakey began tentatively with Dewbs going aerial early on. Dewbs was also eager to run…but shakey’s turn of pace did not quite match the young spider, turning down some potential 2’s. The return of the oppo skipper into the attack battened down the hatches for a while, but it was Shakey who was eventually bowled for an excellent 39 and the score on the brink of 100. 99-4-26overs. He was replaced by the bouncy-newly-wed Stumpy. He was able to match Spider’s enthusiasm to run and the pair were soon taking on the fielders, and the more they did it the more effective they became in flustering the oppo. The injection of runs also gave the pair the confidence to go for their shots and Goughy hit some lovely drives and pulls, whilst Spider played some excellent deft touch late cuts through third man. Spider nearly went down the plug hole trying to evade a sharp throw in by one of the better fielders - Dewbs leapt in the air and threw his limbs as far from his body as possible the end result the ball hitting him somewhere in the ‘box’ region! It was Dewbs who finally went going for an ‘up and over’ caught at mid-off for a new PB of 31, and a fine partnership of 62. 161-5-36overs.

Goughy was joined by Steve 'Old Man' O'Reilly with 5 overs to slap it. Goughy reached his chanceless 50 soon after. Steveo cracked his first ball for 2 and had to be reigned in after nearly going for what would have been a suicidal 3rd (memories of the first tour game of 2007…). Unfortunately he was soon to be heading back to the pavilion after skying his third delivery (3). 193-6-38overs. Goughy still going well was joined by BA, BA remained solid and gave as much of the strike he could to Stumpy, he was to unfortunately fall on the penultimate delivery caught (5), bringing Winkie to the non-striking end for the last ball – which was run for 2. Goughy finished on an excellent 66 not out, winkie 0 not out, and the total a superb 204-7. The first post 200 score of the season!

This did also bring about the long awaited 100 DNB for Captain Dan who can now stop dreaming about not batting!!

Off to tea and the Cazh were treated to a Foxy style ‘death by food’ tactic as the Cash attacked the marvellous spread of sandwiches and many, many, many cakes (and fruit !!) and felt rather stuffed as a result.

Knowing that we had done the hard part, the Cazh now had to limit the runs. Winkie opened from the pavilion end (with wind behind) and BA came from the rugby pitch end. The oppo realised very quickly on that they should look to only defend against winkie, as he was blisteringly quick (as Steveo found out behind the stumps), unplayable at times. However, it was BA who took the first wicket, after chucking in a half tracker that was clubbed to the mid wicket boundary, delivered a beautifully flighted delivery drawing the batsman into the stroke, a bit of seam that took the off stump. 7-1-2overs. The pair bowled brilliantly, Winkie with speed, bounce and movement off the pitch, and Paul with variation and flight – there were a number of deliveries which baffled the skipper and bowler alike as to how a wicket wasn’t taken, one of which was the infamous ‘flipper’ which for the first time since BA’s 6for a couple of years ago, actually worked (!) and bamboozled the batsman – it was more luck than judgement that the ball didn’t hit the stumps! Steveo put down a difficult catch off Paul, but Winkie got his just deserts in the fifth taking out the off stump with a fiery delivery. 12-2-5.

Shag and Tesh took over after 12. Shag started with two maidens, Tesh struggled with his line early on but then had the batsmen guessing as to what would come next. The pair continued to ask questions of the batsmen, and they never really upped to tempo until shag’s 6th over which took a bit of punishment. After 24 overs the score was 99-2, but the batsmen were still there and looking dangerous with 16 overs to go, a lightening fast outfield, the wind dropped and sun came out.

Given the balance of the game, Porno declined the chance to bowl at this time, so Shandy and Goughy were next to bowl. Both started tentatively against the in-form batsmen, but it was Goughy who took first blood getting the oppo skipper out lbw (an honest decision by the umpire) who went for 55. We felt we had got the big wicket and relaxed slightly, however the game still could go either way. 125-3-28overs. The next man in clubbed a couple of 4’s before Goughy again got the breakthrough bowling the opener (41 ) first ball of his fourth over. 139-4-31. With 65 required off 9 overs what we didn’t want to see was a broad shouldered big hitter, but that is what we saw coming to the wicket…However, the cow-banger didn’t bang any cows for the rest of Goughy’s over so maybe we had read him wrong…Goughy picked up another wicket, bowled, next over (not CB), Shandy had a chance put down on the boundary off Paul as CB showed what he could do – carting one to cow corner very hard! Shandy did pick up a deserved wicket spectacularly stumped by Steveo!!!163-6-35. 42 required of 5 overs with CB still in…Shag came back looking to stem the flow or get the wicket….second ball to CB, a delivery short of a length dispatched with a mighty blow out of the park towards the road below…Dan shouted ‘FORE’ to which the batsman exclaimed ‘no, that was six wasn’t it..?’! Two balls later CB smacked one straight at Dewbs who somehow managed to stop it (with a sound of breaking bones), the non-striker pushed for a single, but Dewbs was able to fling the ball in the vicinity of Dan who run out the non-striker. Fortunately Shag managed to get his man (CB) last ball of the over, bowled. 173-8-37.

The two batsman at the crease were of the younger variety, Porno came on to bowl his two overs and Shakey bowled one from the pavilion end. Shakey picked up a wicket bowled, and final delivery of the match AF took a diving caught and bowled to get them all out. 181ao.

A tremendous long awaited victory for the Cazh, which everyone played a part in this very enjoyable match. Well played all, a lovely day out against good opposition, played in excellent spirit throughout. We batted as we know we can, we bowled very well once again, and apart from the odd lapse, fielded excellently also - Dewbs, AF and Shandy chucking themselves around to save singles and fours.

Afterwards a pint in the clubhouse and then a swift one in the Tredegar Arms on the way home. Marvellous!

A Hood – 6 overs 2maidens 7runs 1wicket
P Stephens – 6-0-23-1
D Lewis – 7-2-32-1
T Hirani – 6-0-36-0
S Gough – 6-0-25-3
S Hand – 6-0-39-1
A Furnham – 2-0-5-1
M Stephens – 1-0-2-1

M Stephens - 39 (8x4)
T Hirani - 2
S Hand - 8 (1x4)
R Holliday - 16 (3x4)
D Dewberry - 31 (1x4)
S Gough - 66no (10x4)
S OReilly - 3
P Stephens - 5
A Hood - 0no
D Lewis DNB
A Furnham DNB


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