Report by Jono Beagle:
On a glorious sunny evening, skipper Rix gave two absolutely correct answers to two often "baffling" questions for any cricket captain: firstly, by calling the toss correctly; and then by telling the opposition skipper that the Remnants would indeed be having a bat, to the delight of all the batsmen in the team's ranks. There is no evidence as of yet (at least not peer-reviewed) as to how well the subliminal messages of Samson swinging his bat around helped with this regard.
Beagle and McCann strode out to bat in glorious sunshine. A combination of tight swing bowling and shots finding the fielders more often than not, eight deliveries were dotted out before McCann edged a ball onto his pads which ricoched onto the stumps. Young then came to the crease to provide able running as Beagle then played a few lusty blows as he put on 25 with himself: 15 off the bat; and 10 in extras. Beagle then got a jaffer that took his off bail (an inswinging length ball that seamed away off what must have been the very tiniest of dents in the track after two weeks on the same strip!), and Young departed for a shine-destroying 10-ball duck, leaving the Remnants on 33/3 off 7 (6-ball) overs with Samson at the crease on not very many! The stodge had clearly removed the shine on the ball, which allowed swash to be buckled and buckles to be swashed as Khan tucked into the medium pace that was provided by a tiring attack, hitting 74 from 35 deliveries (including 13 fours and what was recorded as one, but should have been two, sixes but for the setting sun blinding the umpires and fielders) in a partnership of 131 with Samson, of which extras (23 wides, 34 extras in total) almost pipped Samson for second in command. With Khan holing out in the deep it was left to Rix to come in an continue the momentum hitting some sweeps and bottom hand punches to finish 20* (off 11 balls), and to ably guide Samson around on his way to a swift 59* (off 40 balls). The result was a large Remnants total of 200+ [our third highest ever - ed.] in their twenty overs.
And so it was into the field as an IPL-style opening spell of seam from one end and spin from the other ensued! Granville (0/33 from 4 overs) received some tap from Hafiz (34), but still kept the rate below ten an over, and White (4 overs, 1 maiden, 2/11) from the other end bowling four very tight overs of searing pace including a double-wicket maiden with one batsman bowled, and one batsmen out twice to the same delivery as a thin outside edge to the very next ball, hitting the bails and being caught by Beagle behind the stumps. Discussion ensued as to how the batsman was actually out, but the scorebook says "caught behind" so this reporter is giving the catch to Beagle, although the ICC have told us that they will be reviewing the video-tape! Next came the spin twins with Khan buoyed by his stunning innings and Kara eager to get in on the action combining to bowl 6 overs that ripped the heart and soul from batting, first with Kara taking a wicket in each of his first two, and Khan (5/17 from 3 overs) with one in his second over, before ending up with two (YES TWO) failed hat-tricks in his third over, bringing him his five-for [And, statistically, the greatest all-round performance in club history - ed.], and leaving the opposition on 74/9 off 13 overs [This was at the end of a collapse of 7/13 - ed.]. Another economical over from Kara (2/10 from 3 overs) saw skipper Rix take pitty on the batsmen allowing some pies to be swished at and missed by tail-enders from Samson (2 overs, 1 maiden, 0/10) as his first over was somehow a maiden (all believe that the batsmen were too busy laughing to hit the ball, as over two went for ten including some #sorrycricket moments! Moore came on and the accuracy meant the batsmen had something to go at as Kharam (26) tucked in, hitting a huge six in Dave "the A1 crurator" Norman's back garden. One hit too many saw the last wicket caught in the deep giving Moore figures of 1.3 overs, 0 maidens, 1/27, to bring the opposing innings to a close for a commanding sun-drenched victory.