Report by Dave Williams:
With Dave Norman taking some well-deserved family time and R&R, the Remnants roadshow travelled the length and breadth of the globe to arrive at . . . the spacious Gonville & Caius ground in leafy Newnham.
Heavy cloud to start with didn't seem to make any difference to an ARM opening stand moving crisply through the gears to cane Julius Rix (0/29 off 3 overs) and James McNamara (0/26 off 3 overs) for 71 off the first 7 (eight-ball overs). A change of pace in the shape of John Moore, however, mesmerically induced a succession of swings and misses from the erstwhile ebullient "Dave", although Naveen Chouksey's single over resumed normal service in going for 16. The ARM "retire at 25" rule had by this time despatched the mighty Dave, but one of John's loopy turkey twizzlers (1/24 in 3 overs) induced (in simultaneous real time and slo-mo) red mist, huge heave, miss and a stumping from the ever-sharp and Remnants legend Ev Fox on his annual cricket-themed English summer sojourn. From the Summerfield Walk end Captain Andy Owen was tidy as always for his 0/17 (off 3 overs). His first over was the occasion for a bathetic classic double-whammy Remnants cameo: a strongly biffed drive along the ground back to the bowler was smartly taken by Andy, who whipped off the bails and howled "Howzat?" in Geoff's ear; the only trouble was that the batsman had not even backed up and was anchored with both legs and bat on the ground behind the popping crease. The very next ball the batter was well out of his ground to one going down the legside; Ev bellowed his appeal for what would have been a brilliant stumping had he actually removed the bails. At this point, as part of his one-man "Help The Aged" week, Andy gave me a spell. His second act of generosity was a very fine catch at short extra cover off a Robin Smith-style slash to a wide (I mean wide) one; another sharp stumping from outside the left-hander's off stump by Ev was more than enough for my second two balls later (for figures of 2/11 off my 2 overs). We had, though, managed to haul ARM back to 126 off their 120 balls; even on the wide expanses of the Caius ground, surely this was gettable . . .
"I want four of you back in the pavilion retired", said Captain Andy to the Remnants top order, drawing on his advanced Obi-Wan Kenobi Jedi mind-influencing techniques. Perhaps the word "retired" was a bit too late in the sentence for the team's collective attention span . . . Messrs Law (0 off 2 balls), Khursheed (3 off 8 balls), Crozier (4 off 3 balls) were soon back in the hutch after chipping straightish. Tim Cannings ran brilliantly and looked stylish for his 20 (off 19 balls); James McNamara convincingly followed Andy's instructions for his part in the closing stages . . . Ev Fox (14 off 19 balls) looked strong through the on, but at the other end we didn't put up much resistance: Julius Rix (6 off 6 balls), me (4 off 5 balls), Naveen (3 off 7 balls) and Andy Owen (2 off 7 balls, nursing a hamstring injury at the end) all did our Marlon Brando "I could have been a contender" impressions. John Moore (8 off 11 balls) gave it a very good go, though, and impressively kept the ultimately re-activated James (30 off 25 balls) company in the dying stages, as the wonkily run-upped Adnan's final over whirled and whipped his way past the flailing of James's would-be boundary-questing blade.