Sunday September 17th 2017 North Middlesex CC
The Tigers gained their first double of the season with a second victory over the Taverners in a month, thanks to an unbroken 5th wicket stand of 125 between skipper Richard Burgess (47) and Chris Wright (72), a welcome return to form for both batsmen, who had been struggling in recent weeks.
The home side were inserted as they are a better chasing team, and the gamble paid off on a damp field which slowly dried out during the day. A lively opening spell from Ali Sikandar gained him two wickets, including the Tavs’ dangerous skipper Reilly for 19, a batsman who had scored 166 in his previous two innings against the Tigers without being dismissed.
Most of the rest were Webstered out, with 4-28 to Daddy Matt’s leg spin, including a family combination to out the durable Ewer, who had anchored the innings to good effect with 47 in 28 overs. Son Joe recorded the only catch of the day before bagging two wickets for himself as the Taverners’ innings rather dribbled away from 139-4 to 164 all out.
The Tigers’ reply limped to 42-4 by the 13th over, with another collapse – three wickets going for two runs as another pair of blobs appeared in the top order, all four victims going to a superb spell by Geensen (4-17). Chris Wright has been going through a poor run of scores (only 81 in his last 8 innings) and Richard Burgess had been batting well without getting past the teens, but both came good on this day, Richard battling through the innings for a club best 47 (8 fours). The 22nd over proved the turning point as Wrighty took advantage of the shortish leg boundary to club three consecutive sixes, two over the netting into Park Road back gardens and one into the car park, hitting a vehicle amidships – 22 altogether from Spee’s over. From then on it was downhill all the way as the weakness in the home team’s bowling was cruelly exposed once the openers had been seen off, Chris finishing with 72 (8 fours and 4 sixes in 18 overs).
The matter of damage to cars and houses by stray cricket balls is a thorny subject, particularly the back road at Winchmore Hill, with nothing more than a four-foot fence to protect passing cars and nearby houses. This is a common problem at a lot of cricket fields, where the game has been played long before the houses were built, and doubtless will continue to be so.