Yes, that's right, another failed attempt to chase down a target. The difference was this time we actually made a game of it, having The Woozlers worried for most of our innings and fighting all the way to the final ball, defiantly pulled to the boundary by Dave Green. In any other match this season our eventual total of 143/8 would have been enough to win; for the reason it wasn't one only need look back a few hours earlier to when the Remnants bowling ``attack'' was being hammered to all corners of the ground by The Woozlers' top-order.
Early on we were just about hanging on: after ex-Remnant Robin Woolley was bowled by Joe White (1/10, and the only bowler to go for less than a run a ball) and the score was 75/1 after 10 eight-ball overs, it seemed we might be presented with a manageable target. The problem, for us at least, was not the ``75'' but the ``1'': in a tribute to England's first Test efforts against Sri Lanka we dropped a handful of catches early-on, and had given two very classy batsmen a chance to get their eyes in. And once in, they went on the rampage, smacking huge boundaries at will and more than doubling the total in the last third of the innings. We did at least get one more wicket, courtesy of an excellent boundary line catch by Dave Williams, but, like his name-sake's last-ball four, the victory was phyrric only.
Faced with the task of scoring at more than 10 runs an over, we got off to the ideal start when John Gull broke his new bat (``pre-knocked in'', apparently) off the first ball of the innings and then got out off the third. But from there things did, finally, start to go right, with Dave Williams (9), Daniel Mortlock (41) and Phil Hastings (38) all tucking into a Woozlers attack that was, mercifully, not of the same standard as their batting. With Daniel and Phil motoring along and the score at a healthy 93/2 after 9 overs we might even have been winning.
And then things started to go wrong again, starting with John's re-emergence (with broken bat) to act as Phil's runner. The smart money was on a run out with all three batsmen stranded mid-pitch, but instead Phil was dead unlucky to have an awesomely powerful pull well caught a few inches inside the square boundary. Not long afterwards Daniel and Faruk Kara (6) were both punished for the cardinal sin of playing across the line to a Watson-paced lobber (who ended up with 2/3 in what was otherwise very much a batsmen's match), and suddenly we were all but lost.
Even then, Joe White (22) almost pulled off the inconceiveable, smashing the bowling to all parts and pushing his partners for virtually (or, in one case, actually) impossible runs. It was only when he holed out, with a dozen balls remaining, that the win really was gone.
And it was at this point that Dave Green (7*) came in and . . . well, you know the rest.