Report by Matt Samson:
Inspirational skipper Jordan (distant relative to Chris, Michael, . . . and Joe) got off the worst possible start by losing the toss and being sent into the scorching mid-summer field. In another masterstroke by UCLES, they opened with a high-end club cricketer and likely squad-member for mid-tier ICC nations such as Denmark and Singapore (if eligible). Together with his stoic (i.e., much slower) opening partner, they saw off the spicy Cox and dished up some restaurant-quality punishment to the often-distinguished trio of Qaiser Ahmed, Paul Jordan and Joe White. The score was 120/0 off 13 (six-ball) overs, and that despite the openers' general reluctance to rotate the strike. Remnants finally broke through in the following two overs as Debasish Das bowled the stoic opener and then Quentin Harmer confounded plausible-ICC-calibre opener (78) with an exceptionally well-flighted off break that near-pitched inside the popping crease and rolled onto leg stump. UCLES uneventfully continued at around eights for the final 5-overs to finish an above-par 170/3; Jordan took the only other wicket in the innings off a characteristically slower slower-ball.
The sun-gilded sight screen at the Golden Wok Chinese takeaway end was an early impediment in Remnants innings, helping bowl Harris Tetlay - on his fourth successive attempt to pull length to the boundary - and trapping the temporarily blinded and extremely unlucky Serby dead in front on a rank full toss. Self-proclaimed middle order batsman Das came out at number 4 with a three-sizes too big helmet, pads strapped velcro-in, and wearing one left-handed glove and one right handed glove. After being told by surviving opener Samson that it was more unsafe to bat with a helmet covering one's eyes than to play in a cap, now becaped Das summarily played and missed three times and was then bowled. Number 5 John Moore came in for a rare tilt up the order and was solid both in defence and in manipulating the ball to the point region. Moore's adeptness at finding singles on the 5th and 6th balls of the over ultimately proved his downfall as Samson, in a vain attempt to wrestle the strike, called through a suicide single after hitting the ball directly to short cover. Moore (12) graciously sprinted to the danger end and was run out by 3 meters. Samson and Ahmed (14) then attempted to accelerate by aggressively, if agriculturally, targeting the cow corner boundary. Mitchell Cox came in for the final three overs and added some respectability to the score with a quick-fire 16*. However, it was too little too late as Remnants finished 145/6, Samson ultimately out for 74 off the final ball of the innings attempting to hit a bouncer into the stratosphere but only managing to lob it to the keeper.