We like playing Chadlington. Not just because we usually beat them, but because we derive amusement from their high Duester/left-handed content. Lower than usual on both counts yesterday - only three Duester's and five left-handers. Faith was restored when all three Duester's, having batted left-handed, bowled right-handed.
I lost the toss and let them bat. We got off to a good start, mainly thanks to three sharp catches by Rich, Mike (on debut) and Tony Mc. Stanton was the lucky recipient of the un-Manny Road fielding efforts, and will undoubtedly bowl really well for no reward next time round, much as Sam did yesterday. Three even sharper chances went down as the batsmen, including Duester Senior, started to get on top. Mike bowled quickly, but perhaps too straight to get wickets at this level (see Stanton's performance). Quentin disappeared for a few overs, just long enough for me to take a catch from a skied top edge off Mike. At the other end, Tony Mc bought a couple more wickets by letting them score off his first five overs. Stanton took a good catch on the boundary to remove their primary scorer. Rich finished off ay one end, and is probably not happy (is he ever?) with a couple of wickets. Jules had a go and seemed to bowl pretty straight from my vantage point at deep cover. 8 for 133 from 35.
Chalky acclaimed the tea as the best of the year so far, probably because he made some of the sandwiches. Very considerate to make left-handed ones for the Duesters, but difficult for the rest of us.
Quentin and Lawrence started off well, facing a Duester who thought he was quite good. He wasn't happy with Quentin, claiming he only had one shot - ignoring the fact that if he continued to bowl in the same spot, it was only sensible to continually play off drives. Lawrence was bowled by Duester Senior, bringing Chalky out to take over the supporting role. He was bowled by Duester Junior. Rich was frustrated by bowling which is best described as being a good line to bowl to a Duester. Jules fired him. Mike completed his impressive allround debut performance, not being fazed by the decreasing circle of fielders around him, but was also bowled by Duester Junior. Mark played a non-scoring supporting role, witnessing Quentin being bowled by a 12-year old (non-Duester!), then became Duester Junior's third victim. With six wickets down, 15 runs required and five overs left, the oppo thought they were a chance, unaware that Sam and I can actually bat. They bought the opening Duester back on with us needing eight from four overs. Sam listened when I said we didn't need to take any risks, but apparently I didn't tell him that hitting a six over the bowler's head was allowed. The Duester wasn't happy. Game over.
King's Arms for post-match Emily analysis. No curry.