For the first time in living memory Remnants put out two completely different teams this week; even weirder was that four of the previous night's vanquished eleven had found their way into the Romsey side today. And for those four it was a bitter couple of days indeed, with both matches given up with lame efforts batting second. But enough of their woes -- the story to be told here is that of the first Remnants win of 2006.
Batting first, we were in trouble early when our father-and-son opening combination of Nick and Ollie Clarke were both back in the pavilion by the end of the second over, courtesy of a dubious LBW and dubious hoik, respectively. Andrew Lea (41) and Dave Williams (34) then mounted a superb rescue mission, being particularly severe on the numerous loose balls and compiling the match's only significant partnership. Despite a minor collapse towards the end of the innings, Joe White (12*) ensured that we finished up with a reasonable early-season total.
Having succeeded where we failed last night (i.e., scoring some runs), we only had to emulate our fielding performance from 24 hours earlier to be pretty sure of victory.
After Bryan Lea (0/15), Mike Jones (2/6, to once again take an early-season lead in the bowling averages) had finished their spells we were winning; by the time John Moore (1/9, and the third Remnants debutante to take a first-over wicket this week) and Joe White (1/4) had taken their turn, the match was won. After 10 eight-ball overs we'd restricted Romsey to just 37/4, slow going even for a Test match these days.
The icing on the cake was Phil Watson (1/5) starting off with a maiden -- the wretched batsman swiped haplessly at all eight balls -- and he might have had two if a couple of simple catches had been taken. And the cherry on top of the cake looked like being a superb outfield catch by Dave Williams -- having already dug the team out of trouble with the bat in his first post-captaincy Remnants appearance, he found himself back-pedalling at square-leg under a big top-edge from his replacement (who'd somehow contrived to be playing for the opposition today). Despite the lack of light, he kept his eye on the ball and grasped it securely as he brought himself up just inside the boundary . . . and then, for reasons that remain unclear, began accelerating again, eventually toppling over the line and conceding a six.
Anyway, cherry or not, Remnants had won its first game of the season, and just about everyone stayed behind to savour the victory (or loss, in the case of the aforementioned turn-coats) as a glorious early summer's evening came to an end.