Playing on the open spaces of Xavier No. 2 oval, we won the toss and decided to bat so as to get the best pitch conditions.  With the skipper’s instructions ringing in their ears (no wickets, worry about runs after 15 overs) Pig and Colby went out to face the music.  Although Pig was somewhat unluckily caught one-handed on the fine leg fence after looking good early, Colby and Tad were able to set up our innings up beautifully, keeping the runs ticking over while ensuring we didn’t lose any wickets.  With Colby once again getting us off to a good start, Kinga was able to come in and bash the ball around while Tad was rock-solid at the other end.  After Kinga perished for brutal 71 in an attempt to elevate the run rate, the remaining batsmen took the team approach and came in and out quickly in an attempt to score as many runs as possible.  After 40 overs we had knocked up 207, with Tad remaining unbeaten on 85 not out, showing us the importance of having someone there for the majority of the innings.

With 207 on the board, we were confident of a good result, but we knew we had to bowl and field well, as the outfield was really quick, and the day had started to heat up.  Pig came on and picked up an early wicket, and with a catch being dropped 2 balls later, it looked as though we were in for our first win of the season.  However, Xavier started to dispatch our occasional loose balls to the boundary, and it was game on.  With Banger and Tad bowling into a stiff breeze from the far end, we rotated our medium pacers from the School end, but just couldn’t pick up wickets when we needed them.  When Kinga and Banger picked up their in-form batsmen, we still looked a chance, but somehow Xavier was able to keep up with the run rate (although it was hard to work out exactly what that run rate was, given the absence of a scoreboard).  Tad picked up two wickets, and Dom then ran out one of their batsmen from long off, and it was tight, but we were probably just a couple of overs short.  In the end, the winning runs came off the first ball of the 38th over, which was a very disappointing result.

Thanks go to Tad, Banger and Dizzy (aka Liam Halverson) for backing up on a hot Sunday afternoon, and to Pig for helping us out.  Hopefully, we have taken a number of important lessons away from this loss, which should set us up for close games in the future.

Peter Weymouth (Dino)

3rd XI Captain