Today's match began in a rather disorganised fashion: at the time of the toss the Local Exams Syndicate out-numbered us nine to seven, so it seemed only sensible that they should field first. Within five minutes, however, we had a full team and thus supplied two substitute fielders for most of our innings, ensuring sundry administrative difficulties with every Remnant fielding, batting, umpiring, scoring, padded up or, in Mike Jones's case, injured.
The action on the field was similarly anarchic, the scoreboard ticking over at a diabolical rate due to a combination of our big hitting and some, er, sub-optimal UCLES fielding efforts . . . the most significant of which came courtesy of a certain Faruk Kara, who made an almost convincing attempt to catch Remnants debutante Chris Martin. This was so significant because Chris was in the process of starting his Remnants career with a violent and stylish 79*, highlighted by several impeccible pull shots, not all of which put the scorers' lives at risk. He was ably assisted by Andy Owen (70*), who almost matched his partner in the "brutal pulls" department and might well have top-scored if our innings had been an over or two longer. As it was, Chris and Andy combined for an unbroken 157 run partnership - the highest for Remnants this millenium - and saw us to 190/1, our fourth highest 20-over total.
Heading out into the field it didn't seem too likely that today's UCLES side would threaten our total, and we took the liberty of setting agressive fields from the outset. This almost paid instant dividends when Martin Parry induced an outside edge off the first ball of the innings, but the chance went begging. Undeterred, he produced a superb spell of bowling which induced at least five more outside edges and netted him deserved figures of 3/10 in his first outing for Remnants. Daniel Mortlock snaffled two spinning balls at point, but the most spectacular effort was an all Girton affair, Steve Tyrrell at first slip parrying the ball in the air, only to see it falling to ground just out of his reach . . . before second slip Phil Watson dived full length to complete the catch just inches above the turf.
With the whole team fabulously sharp in the field (as exemplified by Ev Fox's silky smooth leg-side takes), and Mike Jones (1/16), Faruk Kara (1/5) and John Young (1/5) all getting amongst the wickets, we ended up winning by the ridiculous margin of 129 runs (third on the list of highest Remnants runs victories).
Certainly a very successful week for Remnants, with two of the more comfortable victories for some time, although there's only so much pleasure that can derived from such one-sided matches. Moreover, the fact that our total score for the week was 321/3 means that about fifteen players didn't get a bat over the two nights - not quite the plan. Hopefully our next few matches are a bit closer (provided, of course, that we still win).