30 June 2019 at Giggleswick

Rathmell won the toss and elected to bat

After a difficult run of fixtures against formidable opposition and a losing streak of eight games the tide had been turned with a win at Wyre. This was followed by a win at Eskdale in a close fought encounter. Was the running win to continue? The portents were not good. Last season we suffered a ten wicket drubbing at their Giggleswick home and on the Wednesday night only had eight players.

El Presidente, baritone foghorn, raconteur and Dr Who impersonator Mark Reynolds had to unearth his whites. John ‘The Volcano’ Hughes made a guest appearance and Matt Sutton was extracted from the extensive cleaning of his bathroom tiles to make an eleven up.

The day was set fair but bracing with a strong wind making a jumper de riguer. After the toss Rathmell batted first and with Skip extolling the virtues of line and length the bowlers actually responded. Richard ‘he’s got a lovely action don’t ya know’ Pye and John Hughes were wicketless after their opening salvoes but the batsmen were finding it difficult to get the ball away. Hughes bowled his eight overs right through and although wicketless only went for 17 runs.

Spin was then brought on in the form of Murphy and reaped almost instant rewards. T. Shepherd who had scored 20 tried to up the scoring rate but was stumped handily by Macca. T. Harris was caught at mid- wicket by Wain for 2 and drove straight to the reliable Sumsion at mid off for 6. Murphy was having a field day. Moulsdale was brought on to replace Hughes and his 8 overs  although wicketless only conceded 17 runs. The wickets were tumbling at the other end.

Murphy induced a top edge off B. Harris and the ball ballooned gently into the grateful hands of Moulsdale at slip. Murphy ended his eight overs with 4 for 17. He was replaced by the leg spin of Martin Wain, the thinking girl’s totty, who continued the mayhem. The opener A. Shepherd had been viewing the carnage at the other end but remained vigilant in his defensive bubble. A. Walton was given out lbw rather dubiously for a duck and Rathmell were collapsing. Wain bowled D. Way with a beauty for 2 and then induced A. Shepherd into a drive in the covers to the magnet that is Sumsion.

Wain was replaced by Metcalfe and ended with 3 for 13 off his 5 overs. Pye was brought back to replace Moulsdale and managed to take the only wicket of the day from the ‘shack’ end with a grubber to take B. Shepherd for an enterprising 19. The experienced heads of Handy and Cole managed to get past the 100 mark and push the total on until Metcalfe tempted Handy into an error and bowled him for 12 with Coles stranded at the other end undefeated on 16. So a chase of 113 with help for the bowlers on a slow outfield… Mmmmm!

G. Metcalfe and D. Hughes opened the batting and early on  were finding it just as difficult to get the ball away as Rathmell. Handy was getting prodigious swing from ‘that’ end and got Hughes with a good delivery for a duck. Metcalfe after seeing off the opening bowlers was able to find scoring a little easier. Sumsion built his innings confidently and assuredly and it was a bit of a surprise when Metcalfe was bowled by Way for a splendid 22 which had built the platform for the others to follow.

Sumsion was joined by M. Sutton who was greeted like a foreign prince who had deigned to offer his demi-god presence to an enraptured audience. Before a bowl had been bowled to him the field had been spread to all boundary parts in his honour. With five fours and a six he didn’t disappoint. Our deity even decided to make the sun shine. With Sumsion stylishly contributing 34 not out and Sutton bludgeoning 41 not out victory was achieved with an eight wicket win.

So… Three away wins on the trot, Skip and Coach back in form, the bowlers finding the right lengths, all at the moment is hunky dory in the Greggy camp.

Ra Ra.

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