Match Report – 7 January 2016
The dark evenings of January were enlivened by an eagerly awaited sporting fixture: the inaugural Gordon Dadds v Berkeley NW London indoor cricket fixture at Lord’s.
Resplendent in their bespoke Gordon Dadds branded shirts, the Agar Street Aces arrived in good time for the start, and immediately undertook some essential pre-match preparation in the upstairs bar. Suitably warmed up, introductions were effected with the Berkeley squad, the rules clarified by the umpire and the game commenced.
The team that took the field was packed with outstanding performers, masterly in its tactics, tight in its bowling, lithe in its fielding, and completely outgunned the opposition. The astute reader will realise from this that Gordon Dadds won the toss and put Berkeley in to bowl. Speculation remains, however, that the result would have been quite different had Gordon Dadds not generously loaned their all-stars, John “Total Commitment” Burrell and Jan “International Signing” Hoppe to the Berkeley squad to balance out team numbers.
Will “Zingari One” Spencer and Will “Zingari Two” Gubbins opened the batting for Gordon Dadds and soon had the score ticking over nicely with a series of well-executed cuts and drives. After their batting slot concluded, in came Vikash “Channelling Nick Compton” Savani and Adrian “Flat Foot” Bingham, who were immediately confronted with the mystery bowling of on-loan Burrell, who showed his mastery of the 20 mph bouncer to perfection. Following them came Ian “Rottweiler” Chappell and Max “Gloveman” Robinson, both of whom struck out manfully but ended up with their score line fairly evenly balanced between scoring shots and run-outs, redeemed by a massive six from Robinson in the last over. In came Jake “Cool as a Cucumber” Cassidy and Jeremy “Dark Horse” Davy, who attempted with some success to improve the score line, until Davy regrettably tweaked a hamstring and had to be helped off the field of play. This brought in Richard “Evergreen” Kelsey who rolled back the years in fine style. Gordon Dadds squeaked over the three figure mark at one point, but the end score, allowing for deductions due to the numerous lost wickets, was a sporting 99.
Eschewing the concept of defence, Berkeley began as they meant to go on, and never looked back. The Gordon Dadds bowling attack was opened respectably by Spencer, who rapidly hit the opponent’s stumps, a feat rarely repeated that evening. Bingham followed up with some improvised yorkers and leg-spinners, none of which remotely fazed the Berkeley openers, who were already opening their shoulders. Gubbins and Cassidy gleaned respite for the team with some dot balls and skipper Bingham rang the changes with the bowling, including the use of all squad members including keeper Robinson, and reserve keepers Kelsey and Chappell, but to no avail. The unstoppable Berkeley ploughed on, peppering all corners of the playing area, including roof and walls. Soon, the umpire-scorer judiciously set them a challenge of 250 in 16 overs. Berkeley in fact attained this on the penultimate ball but were pegged back to 246 by a run-out on the last ball (courtesy of the international loan player).
Honour being satisfied all round, the teams returned to the bar to analyse the evening and mingle. Berkeley were delighted by the event and expressed enthusiasm for a further encounter soon, generously offering GD the opportunity for a net session beforehand.