Did the temporary lapse in the weather cloud your special correspondent’s judgement, or was there a Grecian 2000 salesman taking a great interest in the game? Perhaps WD40 would have been a better bet for some of the creaking joints in the field, as even BP would have been scornful at times of the attempts to stop the flow of runs through cover.
There were healthy contributions with the bat all round from Phil Jackson’s team, with Alex Green, Nigel Sabin, Richard Sabin, Simon Rivers, James Chapman and Ian Jackson all scoring quick runs to reach a total of 182 off their 20 overs. Simon Nobes team of bowlers shared the pain, with only the captain, John Orr and Alastair Gloak following the Chancellor’s lead and tightening their economy – the rest seemed more in favour of quantitative easing.
In reply, Simon Nobes team got off to a flying start, particularly through Ned Taylor and Alastair Gloak. However, they were unable to keep up the run rate, with the turning point of the game probably being Phil Jackson defying all the odds to dismiss Andy McAllister with a catch that nobody on the ground thought he would get a hand on. John Orr nurdled some late runs, but the bowling of Simon Rivers and Nigel Sabin who took five wickets between them meant that Team Nobes fell 18 runs short.
The game as always was controlled with a sensitive touch by the officials. As recommended above, the third and fourth umpires had indeed made use of WD40 (or something similar) during the first innings, to ensure that they were suitably lubricated before starting the second.
As the nation tightens its collective belt, and in keeping with the event, it’s good to know that there is still room for the kind of charitable giving that our captains displayed in the covers. It is less comfort that their footwork made our lads in South Africa look positively skilful by comparison.