21/11/2003 10:48:59 a.m.
I will be brief (no Katene not the type of brief you got from Mermaids)
Well boys it was a tough one we had to graft for every run and we faced immense pressure in the field from a team that had passion and a will to win beyond anything I have seen before.
There team was full of players that have represented New Zealand and also had members that trained the current Australia side, but even though they all had Institute of Sport matching track suites and were sponsored by Adidas we stood up as a unit as one and said yes we will win.
Some poor fielding bowling let us down and we failed to get them out for under 15 runs, which has been the maximum score achieved by any of our previous opposition in all previous seasons.
However a prep talk at half time by our inspiring Captain ( who incase you didnít know used to be Bill Clintons Speech writer) motivated us into a fury and madness to reach new heights, to try and get the massive score accumulated by the team of full time cricketers we had just faced in the field.
After a horribly bad start from Greg and myself of a paltry 61 runs thing's were looking grim and we vowed to bat again at the end to right or wrongs.
Our best batters went in next and they did not disappoint. Calum with froth still hanging off his chin from his inspiring half time rant batted as he never had before, teaming well with Katene who after spending all night and Mermaids looked like a fish out of water and was doing it hard as the 12 hr hang over came back with a vengeance.
But even this amazing batting display was below par and at least 3 time less the score this dynamic duo usually accumulate.
An amazing batting display was going to have to occur if we had any chance to redeem ourselves. Si and JR proved that beyond a doubt they are the most valued members of the team literally taking apart the bowling side with apparent ease and forcing 2 members of the bowling side to break down and blubber like babies.
We now had one last chance to redeem ourselves and seal the score line beyond a doubt. Unfortunately once again Greg and OMG failed to lift the bar as expected and as this letter goes to press they are receiving intensive therapy.
In summary we need to lift the bar and step up to the mark as a win by such a narrow margin is just not good enough. Better luck next week lads and try not to be so hard on yourselves its only a game
21/11/2003 11:19:20 a.m.
They won the toss, and elected to bat first.
I thought we fielded quite well - taking opportunities offered. They really didn't strike the backnet very often given we had only 6 in the field.
Their first partnership got run out four times, and bowled on the last ball. They were not too shabby, so I was happy to see them go for just 16.
Their second partnership weren't too bad either, and got out less and thus set a further 30 runs to take the toal through to 46.
The third partnership were pretty sub-standard, and we didn't let them get away with anything. Seven wickets fell, and they reduced the total to 40.
The final partnership started with JR looking like he needed a runner - while bowling! They chose their batsmen, and we chose our bowlers. In hindsight, I probably should have chosen Katene to bowl instead of Paul. Nonetheless, we kept their last two to 26 for a team total of 66.
Conceding just 66 is good anytime, but doing it with 6 in the field is particularly impressive.
Shoutout to Si for his 5 wicket bag, conceding just 4 runs from 3 overs.
Honourable mention to Katene who conceded 7 from two overs, taking three wickets along the way.
Honourable mention to Paul for his fielding at the back.
Chasing 66, Paul and Greg got us off to an abyssmal start of just 61 from their four overs. Greg looked particularly shaky, scoring just four backnets from his 14 balls and the way to a paltry 33.
In all seriousness, these guys completely knocked the wind out of them. They didn't get out once, stole quite a few extras and dispatched the ball with extreme prejudice.
Katene and I batted second, and were doing quite comfortably. However, someone hit Katene's self-destruct button and he was bowled three times in the last 8 deliveries to hobble what had been such a solid performance from him. Interesting to note that they kept two people on the backnet after the pasting delivered by Messieurs Blanchard et Gatchell.
Simon and JR batted third and ended with a highly credible 37 with just one wicket. There were quite a few dot balls, but the lack of wickets more than made up for it.
Paul and Greg had earned their second bat, and produced again with a two-wicket 41. They couldn't quite seem to latch on to the ball with quite the same vigour as their first partnership.
Shoutout to Greg for his innings of 33 and 25. Nice.
Honourable mention to Simon who played a nice range of shots with good timing. That timing was crucial in finding the backnet.
Great to see Paul fielding so well on the backsticks. Given Bart is likely to be out for some time, I'll be holding onto the gloves. Paul showed he can fill the role at the back admirably. Couple of tips: You don't have to field my throws at the stumps off dot balls, you can just let it bounce back off the backnet; be aware that rushing forward can produce catches, but it also puts you in an awkward position when you can't reach the ball and it bounces in front of you.
Katene's vision is such that he can see fine over the short distances, but has trouble over longer range. This poses a reshuffle of the frontcourt - which is a shame in the sense that our frontcourt of Chan-Greg-Damo are all quite used to their positions. Any suggestions for how to manage the reshuffle are welcome. I'm thinking either try Katene in Simon's position just in the backcourt on the legside, and if that's too far away, moving one of the other 3.
Felt alot more comfortable keeping stumps last night. Still not too hot, but definitely improving and I'm confident I'll be back in touch shortly.
With my batting, I was probably more happy with some of the delicate shots I played. Trying to smash every ball only works when the bowler helps out - so it was nice to work a couple of yorkers and bouncers for twos.
I had more luck with my bowling when I slowed it down a wee bit, and made the batsmen work for it abit more. Probably a matter of picking the batsmen's style.