Paulin Ground, Winchmore Hill Sunday 14 June 2015
Lost souls swimming in a fish bowl, year after year
Despite the unseasonably cool weather it has not been a good week for bowlers. England and New Zealand shared 600-700 runs in each of their ODIs, Middlesex 2nd XI scored 605 in a day against Glamorgan in Radlett, and 480 were plundered in 80 overs at Winchmore Hill by Acme and the Tigers, a fixture in which traditionally both sides have scored in excess of 200.
The Tiger cause was not helped by a number of high profile absentees. Struggling for a team all week, they were downsized to ten on Sunday morning by Jimmy Carter’s football-related injury. Nevertheless, fielding first on a used track, the visitors were reduced to 58-4 thanks to a trio of wickets from Ian Daffern (including a spectacular overhead catch at mid-off by Steve Rennie). Ian is almost regarded as a front line bowler these days. He sends down a few wayward deliveries, but has the vital knack of taking wickets.
Acme recovered to 83-4 at the 20-over break, whereafter the Tigers failed to take another wicket as Haris (126*) and Koch (68*) pillaged a further 183 runs in the last 20 overs, bringing their unbeaten partnership to 208 by the end of the innings. Sadly, the reintroduction of the leg-side full toss tactic did not pay dividends on this occasion, as the fifth bowler amalgam inevitably went for more than 80 runs in its 8 overs, with only Matt Webster and Simon Warren exerting a modicum of control for the home side. The fielding held up remarkably well in the circumstances, but it was a Sisyphean task attempting to plug all the gaps with a body short.
Running over the same old ground
Lacking their entire batting middle order (Pinfield, Dane, Allerton and Wright, not to mention Ian Porton and Andy Ward) the Tiger’s mission of overhauling 266 looked near impossible, though a typically solid base of 55 was laid by Mike Herlihy. Chris Boden (24) and Simon Warren (27) were unconvincing against some friendly bowling and there never seemed any danger of reaching the target, though Webster (28) and Daffern (18*) struck some good blows late on.
Nevertheless, it was an enjoyable contest played in a good spirit, re-establishing better relations between the two clubs after last season’s somewhat acrimonious fixture.