Round 3 – 14 October 2023 (Day 2)
Competition – Round 3 (Day 2)
(Saturday 14th October 2023)
WPHC (Cameron) 123 lost to Kissing Point 135
Match report not available.
WPHC (Campbell) 170 defeated Castle Hill RSL 124 & 4/40
“The return to Glory” – these were the immortal words of golf commentator Jim Nantz as Tiger Woods holed the putt on the 18th to win the 2019 Masters. 12 years after his last major, spending that time battling personal demons and crippling injuries.
“The return to Glenorie” – the dreaded words of a team forced to trek out to the middle of nowhere for the second week in a row. It’s fair to say the arduous journey to this semi-rural hellhole was equally as taxing as Tiger’s 12-year journey.
Resuming at 3/75, we needed only another 50 for first innings victory and our two batsmen at the crease did it with ease.
Sometimes you don’t realise how much you’ve missed something until you see it again. And oh boy, have I missed the glorious batting of Shaan Bakshi.
The flick of the back leg as he deposits another bowler over mid-wicket with a swashbuckling swagger. Then holding the bat by the blade at the non-striker’s end to emphasise his vice-like grip on the opposition.
Shaan made a sumptuous 63. Campbell also made 63. Have I missed Campbell’s collection of squirts, deflections, nudges and glances? Ok.
With first innings victory secured by 2pm, there was an opportunity to leave early with a sense of pride, happy with our performance.
No-one plays cricket to be happy.
So we proceeded to go for an outright, our own ineptitude though getting in our way at every turn.
We took 4 wickets, dropped more catches than that and let a 14 year old bat for 3 hours.
The most egregious drop was from the ever-mouthy J.Edwards. Somehow back in the slip cordon after taking 1 (one) catch all season last year.
A regulation edge straight to first slip. It literally hit him in the stomach. Falling backwards thanks to the weight of the ball hitting him, Jed showed a rare bit of quick thinking, as the ball rolled down his body he managed to flick it up with his feet, several metres in the air.
Keeper Campbell and second slip Harry Hando scurried backwards but just didn’t get there in time. It would have been one of the all-time great and all-time dreadful catches at the same time.
Jed’s future in the cordon is seriously in doubt. However, Birdcage totally squandered his opportunity in the cordon, by sullying the name of Keith Miller, Australia’s greatest ever all-rounder.
And he calls himself an all-rounder. Birdcage was immediately and rightfully banished from the cordon.
WPHC Blue (Todd) 172 lost to Berowra 9/175
Some days things go your way, other days they don’t. Unfortunately for us, we found ourselves consistently drawing the short stick throughout the day as Berowra scraped home against a formidable effort in the field by the skin of their teeth. For a team that in the early stages, appears the team to beat in B1’s, the fact we took them right down to the wire after they were well ahead the entire day is something the boys should be very proud of; at the end of the day, it was our batting group that simply did not put enough runs on the board last week as another thirty more would have completely changed the complexion of the match.
We entered the field with the game wide open for both sides, Berowra 1-15 and looking to knock off the runs in quick time with two of their best bats at the crease. That they did but not without a dozen times their fair share of luck, edges always finding their way into gaps, chances regularly eluded fielders by margins no larger than a matter of inches and any half chances we were given were not quite there for the taking. The game may as well have been over at drinks as the Berowra pair added another 82 to their overnight total for no loss, including about fifty runs from the edge of the bat. Straight after drinks, Ben finally provided the breakthrough with the last delivery of his allocated spell (bloody bowling restrictions) – one well deserved considering that he probably should’ve had a five-for at that stage.
Unfortunately, this only brought Berowra’s skipper aka. Willy’s main contender for the lowest strike rate in B1’s to the crease and look, credit where credit’s due, he actually didn’t give us too many chances compared to the other blokes he batted with (this is really not saying much, however).
But just as the game seemed gone again, it was Willy’s magic touch that again brought us back into the contest, picking up one more wicket than a particular right-arm off-spinner down at Asquith Oval did on the day by snaffling a relatively tame caught and bowled chance that was somehow struck right at him.
With the Berowra opener finally using up the last of his 46 chances and 35 runs still to play with, we felt as though we were in with a slim chance. Seven wickets were a lot to get, but if Kissing Point could take 8-30 against us at Auluba to steal the six points then so could we.
We nearly got there, too. With Ben tearing in for his second spell and Xander continuing the heat from last week, wickets began to fall one by one as the noise from the Berowra lads on the boundary quietened from constant chirp to deafening silence. This little period brought about a couple of highlights, the first being Ben’s knuckleball yorker that got rid of Berowra’s number six that was clearly looking forward to the post-game beers and the second being Xander’s fastest ball of his career that also crept under the bat and splattered the stumps.
However, in the end, village cricket was the winner as the Berowra number nine came out in his dusty black boxers and finished off the job with a pair of boundaries – the collapse came just a little too late. Best performances of the day were Ben’s 3-40 from fourteen overs and Xander’s 3-37 from eight, as was Sam’s efforts as keeper yet again.
WPHC Red (Shomik) 280 defeated Kissing Point 256
One may believe that 280 runs at Dural Oval would be enough to ensure victory, but how do the turntables turn in club cricket.
It was an optimistic start for Mohsin and his opening bowling partner, Niel, as they clearly showed new ball dominance. We had yet to learn how their wicket-keeper opening batsman managed to last as long as he did. It was most certainly due to his terrible Marnus Labuschagne impression and how he got off hearing his voice after every ball. Mohsin was flabbergasted as he beat the ball multiple times and only received a measly change that Alex had dropped behind the stumps. But Shomik swooped in and took a wicket with his second delivery. Mohsin was not too pleased, having toiled away for many overs just to have his skip come on and take a wicket.
With his glorious return to the side after missing the one-dayer and last week, Amit confirmed that up until today, he had not picked up a ball or bat, so…not a great deal of confidence here. However, we must recognize the lack of confidence that any batter below an A-grade level has against any spinner with an iota of flight and dip. With a catch to rival even Alex Carey on a good day, Alex took a ripper of a catch to record the second wicket of the day, moving his hands up and away for a well-deserved caught behind.
Before the dry spell, I picked up the final wicket (Alec). From my experience, it is bloody easier on the pace bowlers when one does not have to run up a HILL every time they have to come into bowl. It tasted much sweeter to dismiss the captain of the Kissing Points side after being spanked for 16 runs in the previous over.
But 3/96 was where the party ended. Similar to our big run stand with Shomik and Alex the previous week, the wickets and momentum dried up completely. The sun was taking its toll; Shomik was wilting and struggled to stay upright during his enormous spell. The speed of the outfield makes scoring runs a breeze for the fourth-wicket partnership.
The boys were not dropping chances, but with pretty meandering shots, the ball shot to the boundary. At 3/200, the fourth wicket had put on 100 runs in 16 overs. West Penno had been looking down the barrel of a sure-fire victory, with the only issues being how to take the wickets, but were now facing a pretty imminent loss and struggling to find a bowler who takes any kind of wicket to stem the bleeding.
In the most spectacular collapses, the Kissing Point side went from 3/208 to all-out 10/256. Shomik, a man who could barely walk, claimed the wicket of the wicket-keeper opener with a self-described “worst ball of his spell”, after which Shomik had to lie down. We all gathered around him to show our support. There it was, one-half of the ‘in’ batsman.
But I’m sure the most avid readers on this page would not be a stranger to a well-orchestrated middle-order collapse. Shomik made a massive point that everyone contributed to this victory. Still, I’m sure no team member could evade any kind of praise from Mohsin. He was pretty vocal after the game that he did not receive any mention of his 45-odd in the one-dayer against Glenorie, so there, happy Mos. Clearly bowling to a wilted batsman who had run so many 1s 3s not only off of his own bat, Mohsin cleaned up the wicket of the other aggressive batsman, which had us firmly in the driver’s seat 5/227.
With a win for Kissing Point looking increasingly unlikely, there was a clear opportunity for us to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. Bowling on the stumps was Mohsin’s greatest weapon. To be coming onto bowl to somehow find a way to manufacture victory, I thought it would be fitting for those to understand how heroic this effort was for our team. For context, this was after his 14.5th over @ 0/29:
To bring an entire team back from despair to victory was a sight to behold. A simple hard test match line and length set Mohsin apart today. Beating the edge to beginning his spell, then thinking that bowling with respect was enough and started bowling with such disrespect towards the pegs, I honestly thought he deserved all 10, but I digress; it was a win to bring great confidence to all of us, and I am so proud of our effort.
PS: We have started introducing fines to ensure that we are drilled in our discipline and work ethic in the field. I believe that these fines motivated Neil to take the only outfield catching chance of the whole innings, and he did not have to move a muscle. Standing on the boundary with what I believe is each team member’s heart in their mouth as he gobbled up such a pivotal catch to put the final nail in the coffin.
Great win, boys, bloody well deserved.
WPHC (Warren) 117 lost to Hornsby 6/118
5 wickets to get and 57 runs to defend. We went in somewhat optimistic of a result, although Hornsby batted smartly and ground out the runs. Dan picked up his 4th of the game early on to give a glimmer of up, but not many chances came round after that. Game over by 3, looking to bounce back next week.
WPHC (Indranil) 9/207 (dec) defeated Hornsby Gold 83& 1/82
After a dominant week one, we looked to continue our winning streak as we arrived for day 1 of our first two-day match of the season. The weather gods had blessed us again with a warm, sunny, cloudless sky, perfect for a great day of cricket. We started the day, 2 wickets down and 13 runs behind Hornsby’s first innings total. While getting past Hornsby’s first innings total was first on the to-do list, we looked to take advantage of our week one performance and go for the full 10 points.
Our not-out batsman, Ansh and Vishnu, looked to move the match forward, playing an attacking brand of cricket, aiming to score quickly and allow us enough overs for our second go at Hornsby’s batting lineup.
With our main batters to come, Ansh and Vishu showed no fear and made their intent clear from the beginning. Vishu clipped one of his pads to the boundary to open our account for the day and Ansh slashed confidently at anything outside the off stump. However, Ansh’s innings were cut short by a thick edge and a straight-forward catch at gully. Not long after, Vishnu found himself back in the sheds after skying a juicy full-toss taken one-handed by mid-on.
These early wickets allowed our in-form batsmen, Cam and Vedant, to be back in the middle after missing out on week one’s action. While they looked to bring the attack to the Hornsby bowling attack, Cam’s stay at the crease was short-lived after being struck on the pad while trapped in front stumps. The umpire raised his finger quickly however, the massive cherry on Cam’s bat seemed like enough evidence for the decision to be reversed, but it was not to be. Wickets continued to tumble from one end as we tried to move the score along as quickly as possible.
Ved, after not playing with us for a couple of weeks, did not miss a beat as he smashed a half-century in quick time, moving the score to 8/177, before gifting Hornsby a wicket with some catching practice. Some tail-end hitting from Ben and Akith, who does not find himself at number 11 very often, allowed us to cross 200 before declaring at 9/207 with a 124-run lead.
Feeling good about the lead, our team opened with Ben W, who set the tone starting with 2 maidens, and Inam. The Hornsby batters were certainly less aggressive than their first innings. However, that did not affect their score as this innings, our bowling wavered after our tight start, allowing them to score. Our opening partnership went wicketless, and our captain, Indranil, turned towards spin, but not in the way you think. Bringing in Vishnu to bowl some right-arm offices from one end and Cam from the other. Surprisingly, chances were created with this ingenious change. However, we failed to take them for reasons that are still unclear. After more spin experimentation in the form of some questionable leg spin from Akith,
Our round 2 centurion, Oliver, was given the ball to see if he could produce some magic. In just his third ball he managed to trap Hornsby’s opening batter in front of the stumps, leaving him figures of 1/0 after 0.3 overs. It was at this moment when Indranil finally decided to call off the pursuit of the 10 points giving everyone some early leave.
After not quite our best efforts with the ball and in the field, we decided to call the match off early so everyone could get home and get ready for the India-Pakistan match. We ended the day without our desired 10 points, nevertheless, we will take the 6 as it puts us in the top half of the table. Next week we are at our home ground, Greenway Park, bring it on!.
WPHC Blue (Rob) 158 Vs Sydney Lions 2/55
Report not received
WPHC Red (Arun) 9/373 drew with Berowra 8/261
After an impressive first-day performance, where WPHCC scored a staggering 373 runs, the team was brimming with high spirits and a burning desire to clinch victory. Berowra, however, had different plans and aimed to stand their ground.
Arun made the decision by declaring the innings even before the start of the day’s play, choosing to send Berowra into bat. Despite facing WPHCCC’s amazing pace attack, Berowra’s opening batsmen showcased exceptional skills and a great passion for batting. Impressively, one of them notched up an impressive 115 runs, while the other contributed a valuable 58.
In a pivotal moment, one of Berowra’s openers seemed to have given an edge, heard by the bowlers and substitute keeper Vikas, who had recently discovered his talent behind the stumps. Amitava was the bowler at that moment, and despite the clear sound of a nick, the umpire decided not to give the batsman out, leaving WPHCC players shocked.
Notably, Harry was absent from this match, and this presented an opportunity to explore the team’s depth. Vikas, Brij, and, later in the day, Vinod took on the wicketkeeping responsibilities with enthusiasm and skill. Their performance was so impressive that some even joked about Harry’s job security.
The breakthrough finally came when Happy, the first bowler for WPHCC, managed to dismiss the opener, who had been saved by the umpire earlier. However, the rest of Berowra’s batsmen struggled to find their rhythm and displayed a lack of commitment and skill.
Vikas, who had excelled behind the stumps, decided to try his hand at bowling and delivered some remarkable overs. In one memorable over, he secured two wickets in quick succession, setting the stage for a potential hat-trick. However, the Berowra umpire had different ideas and declined to give the batsman out on the third ball despite a plumb LBW appeal. Despite the worst umpiring decision, Vikas deserved recognition for creating a hat-trick opportunity and disrupting Berowra’s momentum.
As wickets began to fall, victory seemed within reach for WPHCC. However, one of Berowra’s tailenders exhibited tremendous composure and refused to be lured into playing risky shots. Captain Arun rotated the bowlers, employing short spells, but the Berowra tailenders’ temperament proved resilient.
Facing a shortage of players, Arun was resourceful in bringing in substitute players with assistance from other club captains. Prathamesh, affectionately known as “Prat,” showcased unwavering commitment on the field and claimed two important wickets with his bowling. In the final hour, Agni, the captain of the D1 team, lent a helping hand after his team’s victory against Berowra. He exhibited excellent fielding skills and even took a catch for WPHCC.
In the end, the match concluded in a draw. The contributions from various players were remarkable:
WPHCC Bowling Performance:
Vikas: 2 wickets
Prat: 2 wickets
Saurabh: 2 wickets
Amitava: 1 wicket
Happy: 1 wicket
A special mention goes to Vikas, Brij, and Vinod for their exceptional work behind the stumps and to all the players who stepped up to help the team in challenging situations. The match showcased the spirit and depth of talent within the WPHCC squad.
WPHC Red (Fieds) 7/148 defeated WPHC Blue (Mat) 145
The lads were fired up after a week ready to chase 145.
he Red team were short so we gave them a subfielder for the whole innings. We resumed the innings from last week at 1 for 16 with Rizul and Brent getting off to a slow start. Unfortunately, Rizul’s net session before the game did not help him because he must have played all his good shots in the nets and not out in the middle. Rizul departed for 9 with Marty getting off to a good start but whacked one straight down the throat of mid-on. Brent was powering pouncing on anything short and sending it to the ropes.
Rob and Bronson went for not many runs. With the big Hurst coming in creating a good partnership with Brent to bring him to a terrific 50 keeping the blue in front. Brent was causing trouble for the bowlers as everything was being smashed to the ropes. William went for 4 with a specky in the slips from the Reds skipper. Nathan Lyon (Dave Collins) came into bat after bowling earlier at Asquith Oval working the ball around while Brent did the hitting. Brent went for a wonderful innings of 71.
The skipper then came in with about 30 runs to win and was pushing Dave to run 2s. Dave was on the dance floor moving his feet around and getting into good positions to launch the bowlers to the boundary with beautiful backfoot punches and slog sweeps. Mat’s nephew wanted to have a crack and try to get his uncle out but couldn’t because his uncle said ‘that you could find more heat in the Arctic’.
The Blue team was too good in the end with Dave finishing on 30* not out and Mat on 8* not out. West Penno Blue was successful in the chase for 145.
WPHC Blue (Hiresh) 126 lost to WPHC Red (Ross S) 5/132
So, back to sunny Northholm Grammar for week 2 of our Sheep station cup game…Reds needing 50 runs and the Blues needing 8 wickets…to claim first innings points.
With the Reds batting, Ross was very happy to see the ground had been mown during the week and was looking lightening fast. This did not seem to phase the Blues as they ran through their fielding drills. Oh to be young again as I’m afraid half of the Reds team would have been struggling to take to the field with so much practice before hand….
As the Red’s Gihan and Mohan walked to the middle the Blues were up beat talking up their chances. Gihan and Mohan looking to take a steady approach with plenty of overs left in the day….Blues wanting quick wickets.
Sparsh and Eamon bowling in tandem, a very tight first 4 overs, very difficult to score, a few edges through to the boundary, never the less Gihan and Mohan set about the chase confidently taking singles where they could, Gihan in particular had a great day sending anything slightly lose to the boundary…first 7 overs of the day the guys put on 34…really good progress.
The breakthrough finally came with a slower Sparsh delivery taking the edge of Mohan’s bat through to the keeper….A 52 run partnership finally broken, Reds 3/111….Mohan with a solid 20….and Sparsh with a well deserved wicket….Blues still enthusiastic in the field and talking up their chances.
Another quick wicket to Parin removing the new batsman, a well judged catch to the Blues skipper at mid on, followed by an unplayable delivery from Sparsh next over. Reds 5/114 losing 3/2. In the space of 3 overs.
A few nervous moments with 13 runs still needed, but Gihan had other ideas taking 18 off the next 2 overs, making a well made 51no with 11 boundaries. the Reds to 5/132….. first innings points and a third straight win.
A really good spell of bowling from Sparsh 2/20 (12)…wickets to Ratul 1/16, Mukund 1/33 and Parin 1/13.
A solid batting effort from the top order of the Reds, Ray 15, Mridal 28, Mohan 20 and Gihan 51 no.
Although there were plenty of overs left in the day, skippers decided to call time…as it would have been tough to generate any other result given the position of the game. Reds players off to various domestic duties…..enthusiastic Blues off to the middle for practice…..well done lads…a win is coming very soon I’m sure.
The game played in great spirit……looking forward to our next meeting in the new year.
WPHC Blue (Agniva) 0/3 Vs Berowra 110
WPHC Blue (Agniva) 8/186 defeated Berowra 110
After a glorious Day 1 with the ball, the team was set to wrap day 2 early before the mother of all battles was due to commence in the evening in the World Cup – India vs Pakistan!!! No wonder it was a real struggle trying to find someone to write this report by the time Ross was hoping for it ! Trust us Ross, I couldn’t bother a team of 13 Indians to leave their seats to write this.
Siby and Rohan commenced the day with some solid watchful shots and kept the scoreboard ticking before Siby fell to a delivery which somehow managed to do everything right. Rohan on the other hand played some glorious shots to keep the scoreboard ticking, looks like another decent batting option for the skipper if needed. Anubhav joined the squad back from his month long stint with butter chicken, gulab jamuns and shopping for the upcoming festive season back in India. Anubhav and Rohan built a solid partnership before Rohan decided to go for glory and missed the line and fell for a well made 20.
After a few quick dismissals Praneel Singh came to the crease in what proved to be the final nail in the coffin for Berowra. Having seen Praneel for the last 6 odd years, it was genuinely humbling to see the level of maturity he baked in to his innings of 88 albeit a few dropped chances. Nevertheless what eventuated over the next session was a treat to the eyes and seeing him play such a knock definitely has kept the teams hopes high for the remainder of the season. No pressure Praneel. Lakshya on the other hand provided able support and it was good to see him get the momentum back before falling to an in swinging ball. Sahil then went in and helped Praneel inch closer to his first ton before the big fella decided it was enough!!
Three in three and this has been a dream start which none of us preempted.
Time to keep grounded and take on Thornleigh next week !!!
WPHC Red (Diggers) 7/170 defeated ARL 167
After a great bowling performance on day one we headed back out to Arcadia hopeful of finishing the job against ARL to get our first win for the season on the board.
Diggers and Cliff started well and we had 47 on the board before Diggers lost his wicket. Adi fell soon after before Harry joined Cliff to to put on 46 for the 3rd wicket, Cliff fulfilling his aim of batting through to tea. He did but unfortunately he was out on the ball before tea.
So we lost 4 for 0 at that stage. A b-grade ring-in for ARL taking 3/10 off his 4 overs that he was allowed to bowl.
This brought Nandit to the crease and he and Tim then stabilised the innings and got us through to 135 before he was out.
So, at that stage, we needed another 33 to win and with 17 overs to go and 3 wickets in hand.
Fortunately for us, we had the Club’s leading not-out specialist, Quan, batting at 9 so with some good stroke play, a bit of wayward bowling and Tim’s solid defence, we passed to required score.
A great win brought about by 4 solid partnerships. We’ll continue to learn from that and hopefully keep the form going into our next home game at Campbell Park.
Best scores were Cliff with 47, Tim 20no, Nandit and Diggers 19, Harry 15 and Quan’s 13no.
WPHC (Roger) 154 lost to Hornsby 165
Lost to Hornsby BY 11 runs Hornsby 165 WPHCCC 154. In many ways this was a remarkable result considering we were 6 down for 47 after bowling Hornsby out for 165 at the end of Day 1. With only 4 wickets left and 44 runs still needed to avoid a follow-on. Things were not looking great for us to avoid an outright loss, however thanks to some determined and cautious batting particularly from Shankar Ravi (20no). Manraj Singh (20) and Tushar Bambharoliya (28). We managed to worry Hornsby and make a very close finish, in fact the lads managed to take the score from 47 to 154 in 57.4 overs ensuring us of not loosing outright. A great fightback and a lot of positives to take from the game.