First Team Report

by Ian Burrows 0 Comments

After good net sessions during the winter, and strong a performance in the
practice game, Travs 1s were looking forward to the season opener against
Stockbridge. The wicket looked green, but it was evident that the toss
wouldn’t play a big role in the outcome of the game. As there were many
debutants for the Trav’s 1s in this game, after consulting the senior
members of the team, I opted to bowl first after winning the toss to allow
for the new players to gel into the team.

Shiv and Matt opened the bowling and both found appreciable swing. Shiv
quickly removed the opposition’s opening bat, brilliantly caught at first
slip by Ed diving to his left. Matt on the other hand kept creating
chances, but to Trav’s dismay, the edges created were dropping at no man’s
land. Trav’s were keeping a good check on the run rate but wickets were not
coming our way. I then came off and brought on Nasser, who started off well
but a dropped catch at square leg off his bowling meant that the
opposition’s no 3 bat got a life when he was in single figures and made
Trav’s pay by scoring 35 odd runs. Nassar then was taken for 16 runs in his
third over by the second opening bat, but he also removed him with the last
ball of the over, ending with figures of 3-0-26-1. That brought the
opposition’s no 4 to the crease, who did offer a very sharp caught and
bowled chance to Matt, which he was lucky to survive. For Matt, that was a
‘half drop’ but to term it as a drop catch would be harsh – it was one of
those that either go through or stick to your hand. I then brought in Chris
and Jamie to bowl and some very tight bowling followed. This resulted in a
wicket as Jamie got the no 3 batsman top edged and caught at deep cover by
Abhijit. Chris on the other hand kept bowling really tightly, but was
unlucky not to get a wicket as the no 4 bat made sure that the opposition
could get through Chris’ overs without losing any wicket. Chris finished
with figures of 10-2-24-0. Looking for wickets, Shiv brought in Bob from
Jamie’s end. Jamie had finished with figures of 7-0-32-1. Bob took an over
to settle his loop and length and then the wickets started to flow: he
bowled till the end of the innings and claimed 4 wickets ending up with
figures on 6-0-27-4. He was ably supported by Jack behind the wicket, who
apart from being solid behind the wicket, also completed 2 stumpings off
Bob. Shiv came back on at Chris’ end to finish the innings and could keep
it tight till the last 5 balls of the innings, when he was taken for 5
boundaries by the no 4 bat who remained not out at 71. Otherwise, Trav’s
looked good to restrain the opposition to less than 200 instead of 216.
Shiv ended up with figures of 10-0-52-1. The opposition team was helped by
a few dropped catches and misfields, but otherwise there was good ground
fielding on show by Trav’s, especially Matt and Ed who saved quite a few
runs around the square boundary region on either side of the wicket.

Trav’s were confident to chase down 217 and Ed and Jamie started well
making sure any bad ball from the opposition’s opening bowlers were
punished. Ed, after playing a great cut shot for a boundary, got out to a
half tracker that stopped at him, caught at cover for 5. Febin joined Jamie
in the middle, looked fluent to start with, but then got bowled for 7
trying to flick a slower ball of the middle stump. This brought Abhijit to
the crease and both started playing crisp shots all along the floor and the
run rate soon soared high. Abhijit then got caught in the covers for a
stroke filled 27 when he top edged trying to glance a full toss on the leg
stump. At 81/3, Githin joined Jamie in the middle, but failed to trouble
the scorers. This brought Shiv to the crease and along with Jamie, they
quickly took the score from 93/4 to 136/4. The opposition then made a
crucial change bringing their no 4 batsman to bowl. He got rid of Jamie
with his first ball, a loosener, as Jamie mistimed a cut to point. By then
Jamie had made a fluent 64. In the same over, Shiv was bowled for 19 and
Trav’s were losing their grip over the chase which had looked very much
achievable till then. A little ray of hope still emerged as Jack batted
with determination and was scoring freely with the tail end. However, as
wickets were going down at the other end Jack was being deprived of strike.
He was the 10th wicket to fall but not before he scored 28 which involved a
huge six over long on and some crisp drives and cuts. Finally, Trav’s were
all out for 180.

Any defeat is disappointing, but there were some positives to take out of
the game as well. Jack was solid behind the wicket and his batting is a
real bonus. Nassar proved that he can be a tricky customer whenever he
pitches the ball up. Abhijit, Febin and Githin all will strengthen the
middle order and can contribute with the ball as well. Most importantly, we
looked like a team even though many of us were playing together for the
first time. A big thank you to Ed and Bob for their inputs throughout the
match and oversight of the field placements. We all know what we could have
done better and I am confident that this will bring victory in the
following games.

Shiv

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