It was an away game today but we were only playing Farndon so it was an easy enough bike ride, or at least it would have been if I wasn't weighed down by a cricket bag containing my kit and 300 bottles of sanitiser. But I made it there without mishap.
Our young captain lost the toss, and immediately I felt we were on for a shellacking and a half as Farndon's Sunday side normally play at a higher level than ours, and they had a few first team players to boot.
Certainly, on a ground with a belting true wicket, and an outfield that proved to be like glass, I thought we were looking down the barrel of a very high score. Both myself and my young opening partner - I got to open the bowling for the first time this season - were going for runs without bowling badly, well in his case anyway.
Apart from the usual deluge of wides caused by wind, uncontrolled swing and being rubbish, I bowled good deliveries here and there, and had the Farndon opener caught at point of a thick outside edge before nearly yorking their number 3 first ball, before seeing him dropped at mid off.
Ouch. But I took it well, as I always feel much happier playing on Sundays.
Trouble was, this batsman then started monstering the ball all over the place, and after getting thwacked for two boundaries, I was taken off. However 1-28 wasn't too bad in the circumstances, especially as my replacement was smashed over the rope and into someone's hedge for 6.
What didn't help was my terrible fielding. I made some absolute howlers, fielding with a "long barrier" technique that was neither long or barrier-like, and then having an utter nightmare with a ball that bounced towards me and went through my legs while I got my ankles twisted causing me to nearly fall over in a heap.
We then got a massive telling off from our teenage captain, much deserved in my case, and for a 17 year old he was really rather scary when angry. In my defence I do not want to be rubbish at fielding, it's just that I'm so clumsy my body just won't do what I want too. That's what happens if you are inherently dyspraxic.
I didn't get much better after the telling off either.
Meanwhile, the number 3 sailed on to a ton full of crashing shots. But the captain maintained a degree of control so that we didn't go for 340 like we once did when I was captain of the Sunday side. Our very young left arm bowler was particularly impressive in this regard.
This meant we kept them to 235 for 3 off 40 overs, which normally is a match-winning score.
Farndon had not reckoned on our number 3 however. After losing a couple of early wickets, he and the captain started scoring so quickly that we actually got ahead of the run rate, which continued even after the captain fell to a leg spinner as the 3rd team skipper was able to score good runs against adult bowlers for a change.
However after he and another batsman fell in the same over, I thought we were in trouble. But a previously unheralded player who was only playing for the first time came in and played superbly to keep out the bowling and score a few runs himself, while our number 3 stepped through the gears to start massacring the Farndon bowlers to all parts.
Unbelievably, we reached the target with 5 overs to spare, the greatest Sunday performance I've been involved in despite my rather small contribution.
I wish I had the talent to score 127 not out.
All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 02.08.20