What Difference a Day Makes
Ramsbottom 1st Team v Lowerhouse 1st Team – (A) 4 September 2021
LCC 231 for 5 (50 overs) RCC 118 all out (38.1 overs)
After the Lord Mayor’s Show comes the shit cart is a northern interpretation of a well known saying. This weekend the shit cart arrived first. “Say what you see” was the advice Roy Walker gave on Catchphrase and what I saw on Saturday was a pretty inept performance by the Rams.
Lowerhouse elected to bat on what looked a good deck but in miserable conditions which in theory should have assisted swing bowling. However this was not the case as runs came relatively freely until home skipper Heap hit a full toss and was well caught by Denty. Scoring continued at a good pace and despite the loss of Joe Martin with the score on 51, Whitehead and the home pro Parry (not known for his batting prowess in his Lancashire days) looked in no trouble taking the score to 99 before Whitehead fell LBW to what appeared a very dubious decision. When Owen Collinge produced the best ball of the innings to have Haasbroek caught behind with the score on 104 we thought we had dismissed the key batsmen and hopes of going through the opposition line up looked high. This unfortunately did not happen and both Parry and Paddy Martin were gifted half centuries with some poor bowling. Although Parry fell with the score on 190 Lowerhouse were able to post a final total of 231 for 5.
As previously stated this looked a good batting wicket so it was going to be a tough but not impossible chase. What we needed was a good start. What we got was the all too familiar batting collapse which in this case was worse than ever as we were reduced to 33 for 5 and all 5 victims amazingly being bowled. Game over. Fortunately Daryn was still at the wicket and with the help of Michael Howarth he was able to take the score to 79 before Michael fell LBW. Daryn more or less then took it on himself to score all the runs until he was caught on the boundary for 61 with the score on 118. That turned out to be our final score and so ended a very depressing performance.
I was not inclined to award an Amateur Man of the Match but on reflection Michael Howarth did show some application in is partnership with Daryn.
Ramsbottom 1st Team v Rochdale 1st team – (H) 5 September 2021
RamCC 261 for 6 (50 overs) RochCC 110 all out (26.3 overs)
Defeat is good (a quote attributed to Idi Amin’s chiropodist) if you can learn from it and so Sunday dawned with brighter skies and hope in our hearts of a much improved performance.
Having struggled with opening partnerships this year and in facing Steven Oddy, one of the league’s best bowlers, confidence amongst our supporters was not high when we took the first knock. What a surprise we had in store when Brad & Alex came out and took the attack to the opposition from the word go. Brad was the dominant partner in a fast 67 run partnership before being stumped for 43. Alex was next to go for the same score (43) on 99 and from then on all the amateurs chipped in with valuable runs backing up Daryn who carried on in his normal inimitable fashion as we were able to post a formidable total of 261 for 6 at the end of our innings. When Daryn fell in the penultimate over of the innings for 77 he got a great reception from a crowd who have appreciated his performances for us at RCC.
Skipper Grimmy sprung a surprise by handing the new ball to the Bird and was immediately rewarded when Harry Caton took a good catch behind in the first over. Birdy struck again on 27 when he bowled Dawson. On the same score Harry pulled off a magnificent stumping off Clarkey’s bowling and Rochdale were really up against it. A partnership of 40 then took place before a mix up in running led to the dangerous Muzaffar being run out by a direct throw from the Bird. When Clarkey had the Rochdale sub pro Rajapaksha caught behind on 85 it was game over. Daryn came into the attack and finished the innings off with the ridiculous figures of 4 wickets for 1 run but it would be amiss not to mention the excellent catch by Birdy at gully to dismiss Hussain off Clarkey. So overjoyed at catching the ball he threw it up but only succeeded in hitting his face and bursting his nose; much to the enjoyment of everybody bar himself.
When the game ended those of us who had witnessed both weekend matches were left to ponder on how a side can perform so differently in the space of two days on similar styles of wicket. It was best summed by Nigel French who said “that’s cricket for you”.
Amateur man of the match was shared between the Bird for his 2 wickets, run out and brilliant catch and Harry Caton for an outstanding performance behind the stumps.