Finally, at last – some decent cricketing weather on Saturday, with no interruptions for rain, hail, snow or thunder and lightning! It has to be said that this didn’t look too promising when the temperature had undertaken the usual drop of about ten degrees in between leaving work on Friday and arriving at junior coaching an hour later!
Despite the excellent weather, Saturday saw mixed fortunes for the four Penkridge teams in action, with two victorious and two defeated.
The 1st team recorded their maiden league win of the season with a 26 run success against Coventry & North Warwick. Batting first, Penkridge made 248/9 from their 50 overs, with useful contributions from Andy Jones (45), Ishaq Mohammed (49), skipper Laeq Chishti (35), Mohammed Ishtiaq (31) and Paul Szewczyk, (limping like Gordon Greenidge, but unfortunately not batting like him) with 29. The Coventry reply never really threatened the home total, and finished on 222 all out, with Attiq Chishti (3-33), Rizwan Gulzar (3-33) and Matt Jenkinson (2-33 and spoiling the symmetry!!) amongst the wickets.
Gary Pope’s 2nd team travelled to Fordhouses and also ran out victors, with a 23 run win. Batting first the Pillaton men reached 230/5, with Richard James (37) and Mo Hassan (86) contributing well at the top of the order, before the experienced Ian Brown (47no) and Club Chairman Jon Price (39no) shared an unbeaten partnership of 66 for the 6th wicket. Chris Henderson with 3-32, well supported by Vickas Maher (2-49) and Ian Brown (2-33) kept the Fordhouses reply under control to ensure victory.
The 3rd team entertained high flying Rugeley 1st team and were subjected to a heavy defeat after being dismissed for 61, only Ollie Deakin offering any real resistance with the bat. Junaid Caan with 5-29 and Mo Sultan (4-11 including a hat trick) doing the damage for the visitors, who reached their target very comfortably despite the best efforts of Faisal Nadeem who took 3-29. It appears our plan to bat first as we tend to set targets better than chase them (agreed by all the team) may have backfired slightly….
Finally, the 4th team were also defeated, this time at the hands of Tamworth who ran out victors by five wickets. Batting first, Penkridge were bowled out for 110 despite the efforts of 14-year-old Will Hinder top scoring with 32. Benji Lawrence with two wickets, supported by Tom Porter, Will Hinder and Richard Birch with a wicket apiece tried to check the Tamworth reply without success.
As for my own weekend – I was part of the batting collapse in the 3rd team, dismissed for a duck against my old club Rugeley. Whilst it was great to catch up with some good old friends, it would be fair to say the day didn’t quite work out as planned! After two games in the 3rd team, my average now stands at a Bradmanesque 0.5! Fortunately the unbeaten 50 from the first week of the season in the 4th team is helping the batting figures slightly. On the plus side, the tea lady finally put some beetroot with the 3rd team tea having taken on board my suggestion from last week (thanks Mum!).
The power of the internet is a wonderful thing! I wonder if the same will happen this week if I suggest she sends chocolate cake? Or maybe £10 notes…..worth a try! Either way, hopefully I’ll have a few runs of my own to write about!