St Albans Cricket Club Sunday 2nd XI v RNVR on Sun 21 Aug 2022 at 13:00
St Albans Cricket Club Won By 35 Runs

Match report On arrival to CP (the skipper late to his own meet time thanks to finding out someone mysteriously spent over £100 pounds on his card in town last night), the Sunday 2nd XI made their thoughts on the toss clear, letting it be known in no uncertain terms that batting first was essential on such a good wicket. There was a bit of green but it seemed true, win toss, bat first. We were playing a declaration game, with no over limit for bowlers and playing 90 overs in the day, with the possibility for a draw if the team batting second weren’t bowled out (much to the delight of Pelham, who boldly declared that he should bowl all the overs from the top end, with the rest of the bowlers rotating around his spell).

Tarrant deemed himself confident enough to open, and joined Manny at the crease. Both opening bowlers found a lot of swing in the early overs, and Manny was dismissed early with an excellent in-swinger. Melling joined Tarrant and both scored fairly fluently, finding gaps nicely with no silly shots played. There were plenty of singles out there, and they found them well. Tarrant was dismissed for a very commendable 23 on quite a low pitch. Rayden scored 10 before a somewhat comical dismissal, hitting a full toss from the medium pace bowler straight up in the air. On realising the ante needed to be upped, Law came in and did not die wondering, hitting the change bowler over his head for four before trying to repeat the shot, outfoxed by a slower ball.

Dulon Ahmed seemed to have decided that he was Liam Livingstone, and came in with some of frankly enormous heaves, connecting with 3 before missing another. Among all the carnage of the wickets that followed, Melling stood tall (yes, I am talking about Peter not Andrew here), sticking in while others attacked around him. He wasn’t at his fluent best, but his knock was incredibly important in the context of the game. After being “bowled” on 49, he was called back in given doubts that it was the ball that knocked the bails off, with the opposition skipper gracefully admitting that it could have been his gloves.
Surely he hits 50 this time. Alas, Melling chipped the next ball straight to mid-off, spectacularly avoiding a jug on two occasions. We ended up somewhat limping to 150 thanks to a flurry of wickets from opposition bowler Walsh, who gave Andy Melling a send-off on dismissal and ended up taking 4/3 (who made the decision to take him out of our team…), and at tea felt like we were around 25 runs short.

On reflection, the fact that we scored just 12 boundaries made it clear that it wasn’t too easy. Other innings highlights were Sud stumped after the ball ricocheted off the keeper’s pads into the stumps, Law trying to recreate his shot from the weekend before only to miss the ball by an incredible distance and the shot of the day from Tarrant, punching it through the off-side.

After some kebab rolls (and some shandies), the Sunday 2s took to the field anticipating a close chase, with opening bat and skipper well touted as a very good bat and the whole team badgering the skipper to bring them on when Ciaran Walsh was batting.

Sud took the new ball, immediately finding shape in his first over, and soon bowled the opening bat, a perfect setup with 5 balls over the wicket, then coming round and beating him with the change of angle. After a wayward first over, Killner found his lengths well, swinging it in to dismiss their gun bat LBW, a very good ball that highlighted a spell of good control. Sud dismissed the number 3, attempting a booming drive off a wide ball, but Law flew in the slips to take it, likely saving some of Andy Melling’s facial features in the process (maybe the slips were a bit too far forward, but one can never make a catch look too difficult..).

After an excellent start, tails were up and Sri Harshith Yendapally was introduced. Despite not taking a wicket, Sri bowled with excellent control, giving almost nothing away and finding some shape, a spell that impressed skipper and opposition alike (as well as showing great maturity in knowing where to put his fielders). At this point, Fergie was at the crease looking ominous, playing some very good drives (including what was definitely the shot of the day over both innings), so the dice was rolled. George Pelham came into the attack, looking to exploit the famous CP dustbowl. He took a wicket with his first ball (a long hop keeping low and hitting the batter’s back pad), and told the skipper to bring all the fielders up (“let them try to hit me over the top if they can”). Effectively, they couldn’t, and Pelham tossed it up well, finding turn and flight, regularly beating the bat, taking an extremely commendable 5 wicket haul. He grew into his spell well, challenging the front foot well on a slow pitch, and had a field set to choke the easy single, and bowled well to it, keeping tight lines.

Andy Melling came on at the other end, admitting that he “doesn’t have a clue where it’s going”. Regardless, he took two wickets, including the dangerous number 10 caught well by Sud. Walsh was given somewhat of a guard of honour when he came into bat (confusing given his obvious attempts to sabotage the Saints in the first innings), and the skipper immediately put 3 square legs in, with a leg gully and two fielders on the off-side (aware that Walsh only has one shot). After missing 4 by a considerable margin, Pelham bowled him, wrapping up his 5fer in the process. An excellent win for the Saints, with skipper and Pelham both getting jugs in.

The second innings was definitely the highlights, and honourable mentions go to Tom Rayden for keeping excellently as usual, Andrew Melling’s feet (which did a surprising amount of fielding, notably one ball popping up on the foot causing him some discomfort…), Pete Melling being gun in the covers and Rayden pestering the skipper to bowl him in every over of the game (apparently, he has the best googly in the club).

Everyone contributed well, and the opposition gifted a jug afterwards as a late tribute to their 75th anniversary. We all sat around the table afterwards and had a beer together, Saints and opposition, and they were a credit to the game. We all look forward to welcoming them back next year.

St Albans Cricket Club Sunday 2nd XI Batting
Player Name RunsMB4s6sSRCtStRo
4nb 9w 9b 5lb 
for 10 wickets
Nauman Nisar b Kumar 1
Zachary Tarrant b Buckland 23 2 1
Peter Melling ct Shipley 49 3
Thomas Rayden ct Kennedy 10
Rory Law ct Buckland 20 4 1
Dulon Ahmed ct Buckland 12 3
Andrew Melling b Walsh 4
Sri Harshith Yendapally b Walsh 1
Sudhanshu Suryavanshi st Walsh 0 1
George Pelham Not Out  0
Finlay Killner b Walsh 1

RNVR Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy

RNVR Batting
Player name RMB4s6sSR
2nb 7w 6b 3lb 
for 10 wickets
115 (30.0 overs)
Maroof lbw Killner 18 4
Hardman b Sud 0
Brian ct Law bowled Sud 1
Chriten lbw Pelham 15 2
Fergie lbw Pelham 23 4
Bertie b A. Melling 9 1
Kumar lbw Pelham 6 1
Gordon ct Tarrant bowled Pelham 0
Buckland ct Sud bowled A.Melling 19 4
Ranu Not Out  5
C. Walsh b Pelham 0

St Albans Cricket Club Sunday 2nd XI Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Sudhanshu Suryavanshi5.0023211.504.60
Finlay Killner6.0128128.004.67
Sri Harshith Yendapally6.021500.002.50
George Pelham9.021853.602.00
Andrew Melling4.0025212.506.25