Brad Hitchcock Reporting
On a very hot day in Barnet, this CCC fixture began well with the Washington captain Paul Irons winning the toss and correctly opting to bat first. The next decision however was an unusual one as he chose to open with two lower order batsmen Gary Malcom (4) and Russell “First Ball” Pendry (0). These 2 early wickets certainly lifted the opposition’s spirits but then this was to all change very swiftly. In came George Hope (124) who began to batter the bowling and scored 23 runs off only the 5th over of the day. He was ably supported by Aff Naseem (51) who played the steady role in this third wicket partnership of (167) and was able to score his first half century for the club. Opposition heads were beginning to drop fast and sensing this, George Hope went for all out risk and was eventually stumped batting a metre out of his crease and attempting the reverse sweep. However, he was unfortunate to be stumped as the ball rebounded from the keepers pads. Next to bat was Sandeep Kuckreja (20) and Paul Irons (28) and with Washington already in a commanding position and with plenty of batting left, both started with their usual aggressive style and possibly with shot of the day Irons hit a lovely whip off his legs over mid wicket for six. The charge was on, Irons and Kuckreja eventually fell only for more aggressive batting to follow from Rob Tidey (18), Brad Hitchcock (26*) and Matthew Holt (3*). With still 5 overs to go in this 45 over match and with Brad Hitchcock and Matthew Holt continuing to pile on the runs with ease, the Washington skipper decided to call it a day! The Washington innings had finally come to an end taking almost 4 hours to complete thanks to the endless searching for cricket balls from the bat of George Hope. After a brief lunch and the inspiring team speech from Irons, Washington CC hit the field with plenty of confidence flowing. For Rosslyn CC, things just went from bad to worse. Their batsmen were no match for the superb opening bowling partnership of Sandeep Kuckreja (6-25) and Max Murrain (2-22). Both of these bowlers picked up 2 wickets a piece in their first spell and with Rosslyn CC on 4-16 after just 6 overs, things were looking very grim. However, a fine batting display by Patel (50 plus n.o.) started a mini fight back. Irons persevered with his bowling attack of Pendry (1-38), Holt (0-23) and Malcom (1-22) but with the day drawing on it was time for the return of Sandeep to the attack, who had now changed his action to leg spin, wronguns and straight fast ones, Rosslyn CC capitulated to be all out for 129. Sandeep had certainly produced the bowling spell of the year for the Washington CC and in doing so has raced to the top of the bowling averages! Others to bowl were Rob Tidey (0-4) and Terry Tidey (0-0) off his solitary over. Many thanks must go to Terry for helping out as one of our other players failed to arrive. Although there were two very outstanding performances on the day, every player had a vital role to play and all performed extremely well. Rosslyn CC was very unfortunate to come up against a “Wash Machine” in great condition.
Captain Paul Irons said after the game “It was a professional display by the guys and importantly everyone got a go!”
Men of the Match: Too hard to split and so equal honours to Sandeep and George Hope.
Packing the Kit: Russell “First Ball” Pendry for his golden duck and his one wicket off the fist ball of his spell.
Washington: Russell Pendry, Gary Malcolm, George Hope, Aff Naseem, Sandeep Kuckreja, Paul Irons (c), Robert Tidey, Brad Hitchcock (+), Matthew Holt, Max Murrain, Terry Tidey.