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Tony emphatically ends his season - though on this occasion he's leaving the ball...
Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks!
TWCCv Brighton Beamers
26th September 2021
Match report Jim Simon
Rage! Blow! you cataracts and hurricanes, spout till you have drench’d our steeples, drown’d the cocks! You sulph’rous and thought-executing fires, vaunt-couriers to oak-cleaving thunderbolts, you can do what you like now that TWCC's season is over! What a joy to wake up, the day after TWCC's final game of the season, to the sound of rain hammering on the window and seeing the iconic Twineham poplar bending to the Autumn gale knowing that we are beyond the weather now. It matters not if Mondays to Saturdays are fine dry days only to be followed by cricket-killer Sunday squalls. What mattered most, as TWCC welcomed the Brighton Beamers, was that on this Sunday the last game of the season could not only go ahead, but do so during a warm, dry, bright and slightly intoxicating last hurrah of Summer.
TWCC always enjoy playing the Beamers, who approach the frolic with intelligence and with the game's integrity to the fore. Rob Nicholls won the toss for the Beamers and he decided to test out the TWCC batting and see where that got him. Renshaw and Smith opened up for the visitors, and Paul and Jim negated the accurate and testing deliveries well, keeping out the many good balls and running some swift runs when they turned up. The first bowling changes, however, brought about Jim's demise as an innocuous leg-side ball glanced off his pads and ran back on to the stumps. Just 12 runs for Jim, though the Gazette has been inundated with requests to highlight a front-foot cover-drive that whistled through point, sadly condemned by the length of the grass (and its un-characteristic proximity to it) to be worth only 2 rather than the 4 it, we're told, so very richly deserved. But here we now have first-change bowlers, Paul set, and Tony with a license to thrill. Hammer Time! Tony's 2021 season has been dogged somewhat by a mixture of a lack of opportunity and some plain bad luck, and though he has contributed, of course he has, in several games, his fan base have been too often denied the spectacle of his free-flowing batting. But the season wasn't to close before he showed what he can do and he and Paul set about hustling and smiting the ball to all parts and generally dominating the game for much of the rest of the TWCC innings. Tony rocketed to his 50, shortly to be followed there and beyond by Paul, and the two of them, benefitting from the left/right challenge of their stances, put on a 153-run second-wicket partnership that defined the game. Tony, in the end, missed a ball that bowled him, but not before he'd plundered 73 runs (12 x 4's, 1 x 6) and he finished his batting season with something to savour over the cold winter months. Paul, still going strong, was joined by Jonathan whose cultured play once again graced the field of play, and he and Paul took the score on to 197 before Paul was eventually out, caught, off the returning opening bowling of Smith, with 76 runs to his name (10 x 4's). A fitting end to Paul's batting season, which has surely been one of his best, and his anchoring of the side through many matches is a vital component of the TWCC machine. Jonathan remained not out on 10 as skipper Edwards waved the innings to an end, declaring on 197 for just 2 wickets, some 19 minutes before the scheduled time.
Tea, taken early, was soon over, and it was time to unleash TWCC's exceptional pace attack - Ed with the wind behind and Tom battling in against the rising gale. On this occasion Tom was wicket-free, though not in the absence of many excellent deliveries and certainly not from want of trying, and it was Ed who first climbed aboard the wicket train by first bowling Beamers' No 2 and then producing an edge that climbed on through to the ever-capable Jonathan with the gloves to remove Rigby, Beamers' other opener. Here at the Gazette we love anything that reminds us of proper cricket, and this was such a moment, a moving ball, a thin edge, a clean catch behind. Lovely!
The Beamers were beginning to rock, and with a large total to chase they never looked as if they'd be able to get cracking, and when Phil provoked an unwise drive from the bat of Moores, and Jim took a solid (but simple) catch at deep-ish mid on, there was very little left in the Beamers tank, even at this relatively early stage of their innings. Tom Firth, unused like so many in the home side's batting line up, was brought on to bowl and his rewards came early as he first took the top of off to bowl Cline, and then had Smith caught by Matt at mid-off in his four over spell. Tom, in the covers, caught Edwards off Phil, and the Beamers were looking very shaky indeed.
Graham replaced the ever-effective Phil, and he immediatley found a great line and length which brought him a wicket in his second over as Tony rocked back at backward point and held on to a looping ball, and Jim's deployment of the slower ball mopped up the final three wickets as Twineham cruised to victory.
Matt's captaincy was on the money, not least in his declaration and thoughtful field-placings, but also with regard to his appreciation of the Sunday game as he spread the play around and by doing so denied himself a spell of bowling. Many batsme..batters didn't get a chance to wield the willow, and though Matt and Edward didn't get a chance to strut their stuff, all enjoyed the glow of the early Autumn afternoon. Paul and Tony, with the bat, offered much for their team to enjoy, and the bowlers, backed up by some excellent fielding (again), though they didn't need the extra time Matt's proactive declaration provided, had the great satisfaction of taking ten wickets. On this occasion TWCC were the easy victors, but we all know that the Beamers are capable of turning the tables next time. It was a shame for us and for Brocky himself that he ended up missing out on the last few games of the season, but even without his contributions the post-game pints at the Oak went down very nicely. Another season gone, and whilst one doesn't want to wish one's life away, many of us here at the Gazette are already counting down the days to the first game in 2022.
Brighton Beamers won the toss and chose to bowl first.
TWCC Innings: P Hunter Ct Rob Beast, Bld S Smith 76; J Simon Bld T Edwards 12; T Pearce Bld Rob Beast 73; J Rowland not out 10. DNB T Firth, E Bunn, M Edwards, T Rydon, E Howes, G Cuthbert, P Steinke. Extras 25 (B11, LB4, W9, NB2) Total 197 for 3 declared (33.5 overs).
Fall: 1-23; 2-153; 3-197.
Brighton Beamers Bowling: M Renshaw 7-1-22-0; S Smith 4.5-0-14-1; T Edwards 8-1-43-1; R Rigby 5-0-36-0; Ron Beast 4-0-31-1; Notton 4-0-31-0; R Nicholls 1-0-6-0.
Brighton Beamers Innings: R Rigby Ct J Roland (Wk) Bld E Howes 14; Chafey Bld E Howes 6; Moores Ct J Simon Bld P Steinke 20; Cline Bld T Firth 6; S Smith Ct M Edwards Bld T Firth 1; Edwards Ct T Rydon Bld P Steinke 8; R Nicholls Bld J Simon 16; R Beast Ct T Pearce Bld G Cuthbert 3; Notton Bld J Simon 1; Renshaw not out 0; Richards Bld J SImon 1. Extras 13 (B4,LB1, W8) Total 89 all out (31.5 overs).
Fall: 1-12; 2-31; 3-54; 4-55; 5-56; 6-74; 7-83; 8-87; 9-87; 10-89.
TWCC Bowling: E Howes 6-2-11-2; T Rydon 5-0-19-0; T Firth 4-0-23-2; P Steinke 6-1-12-2; J Simon 6.5-1-9-3; G Cuthbert 4-1-4-1.
TWCC win by 108 runs.
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Because we could, we took a team photo. Obviously many key players are not here, but here are those that were:
Top row, L-R; Tom Firth, Phil Steinke, Tom Rydon, Jim Simon, Graham Cuthbert, Ed Howes
Front row, L-R; Edward Bunn, Tony Pearce, Matt Edwards, Jonathan Rowland, Paul Hunter
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