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Fixtures and Results | Match Reports

Date Against H/A Link Result Captain/Score
Sun 5 / 6 / 2011 The Sportsmen Away Won by 9 wickets. Oppo 153 Old Mo 155-1.

SCORECARD

Sportsman 153 all out; Old Mo 155-1
Old Mo win by 9 wickets

A tale of 3 balls……………and ‘Gentlemen’s avoidance’


Overcast and hints of rain in the desert of the West Midlands couldn’t dent the prospect of going ‘dormi 2’ in the 4 match series. The portents were dented by the call of ’heads’ and then justified by mutterings of ‘I’d have inserted them anyway’……..presumably a reference to the toss as opposed to the close encounter that was to follow at The Green Man post match.

The victory was duly achieved and put down to a controlled bowling performance and thoughtful field positioning. Largely the out fielding was good on the postage stamp that turns errors in to boundaries………………as Guy found out with his hat trick of fumbles.

The opening attack of Jonny H Jnr (noticeably more aggressive than of late – presumably showing off to his new recruits) and Guy (now back on song as a challenging and quick opener) getting the Sportsmen top order in trouble early on. They both know the Richmond Hill pitch well, and get it in the right areas and you’ll pick up the benefits.

Jonny H struck first with an excellent demonstration of controlled quick bowling. In the right areas and get the batsman worried, then chuck in a quick leg stump yorker……………..easy!

Wicket two fell in dramatic fashion as the striker ambled through for a single tucked round to short square leg………………..should have had eyes in the back of his head as Captain Keeper pounced and hurled from a good 40 yards to run him out.

An early finish looked in store as the hosts reeled on 1 for 2……………….but seldom do the Sportsmen capitulate and, as you would expect, they dug in and started dragging themselves out of trouble.

The dogged opener who always sells his wicket for a price teamed up with the number 4 to play the pitch and punish anything short or wayward to good effect. Sunny kept up the pressure at first change and was joined by the home made leggie legend Strickers. Not the friendliest venue for a season debut for a leg spinner with short boundaries just where Strickers would expect a deep field snare.

Shock at getting an LBW of any description turned to joy as a total of 3 were awarded in the innings – all of course plum according to the bowlers. Strangely no catches went to hand at innings as the FitBowlers relied on rattling the bails.

A relatively good recover from the early set back saw the hosts starting to look a little more comfortable on 90 for 3 before the brakes were applied including a miserly 5 overs for 13 runs and 3 wickets from the evergreen Chairman ably supported by tight stuff from Jon, Guy and Sunny.

The batting response from the FitMen was probably one of the best we’ve seen. Whilst 150 odd would seem to most as being a modest target, the veterans amongst the side (i.e. most of them) were aware of the changing nature of the track as well as the effect that some light drizzle can have.

See the shine off the ball, in fact see the back of the ball on at least two occasions. Howarth and Butch pretty much looked like they knew what they were doing and (almost) serenely glided untroubled through a first wicket stand of 84 - above the required rate. But we all know what a wicket can bring……………namely another one or 8. Perfect time then for entry from stage left of a ‘new boy’ having not swung a bat in anger for 5 plus years.

The panic usually enduced by the announcement of a FitMan that he’s bringing his mate who used to play etc was suitably allayed. FitVirgin Hylton scratched around for a ball or two, suddenly re-connected the muscle-memory tissues and pressed Butch’s panic button as opposed to the spectators. Now, as mentioned earlier, you get full value for your shots at this small ground, but some of the blows (all orthodox you understand) would have had Chris Gayle purring as the cherry sailed over the biggest Oak tree heading towards the band stand in the distant botanical garden. The band stuck up the theme to The Dam Busters and suitably inspired, Butch did all he could to keep James away from the strike. The run rate suddenly exploded as both fought to press for an early win.

The coup de grace was Butch’s reverse sweep of middle for a match winning boundary. Exit stage right, up the Green Man and cue skippers display of care in the community (pub).

In reference to the FitPerformance – do say: ‘Surgical’
In reference to the post match encounter, don’t say: ‘After you skip’.