Paulin Ground, Winchmore Hill Sunday 24 July 2016
The Tigers made it a hat-trick of wins against a depleted Acme side, who had been reduced to nine men after being unable to raise a full team following a hectic week’s touring. They nevertheless still had a strong side and were always in the game before running out of steam in the last few overs.
Normally a high scoring contest, with totals well in excess of 200 the rule rather than the exception, this match saw the batsmen struggle on a bouncy, hard pitch in the centre of the square, making the boundaries longer than usual. Opting to bat first, the Tigers blasted off with the usual Mike Delanian fireworks (34), as a big score looked in prospect at 58-1 from 10 overs. But some excellent bowling from Prest (2-22) and Miles (2-20) saw only 21 runs scored in the next 10 with four wickets going down.
The later batting was not the greatest ever, allowing Marshall to bag 4-33 with his gentle slows. Andy Ward hit a brisk 17 early on, and the lower middle order offered some resistance with Chris Dane making 19, Steve Rennie 18 and Chris Boden 18, held together with a patient 21 in 19 overs from Stewart Taylor. Some more sensible batting for the tenth wicket boosted the final total to 156, but it still looked at least 50 runs short.
The Acme innings took a long time to get going with Dane, Taylor and Steve Bignell taking early wickets to leave them struggling at 44-4, Ian Porton and Andy Ward snaffling good catches. Haris (29) amd Miles (last man out for 41) rallied but the shortage of batsmen probably cost them the result in what could have been another tight finish.
So, three wins in a row for the Tigers after a miserable first half of the summer, despite Porton’s 54 against Haringey Libraries being the only innings of note. Mike Delanian’s 34 was the highest individual score in the last two wins. There has a been a definite improvement in the fielding, with 11 catches taken in the three games and – more significantly – a huge reduction in the number of extras conceded, just 17 in the 3 wins compared to their opponents’ 54, whilst 8 different bowlers have contributed to the 27 wickets taken.