Pacific couldn't replicate last week's dramatic photo finish on this second successive Super Saturday. Pacific's ten put in a sterling effort but they were always in the chasing pack, glancing agonisingly ahead at the race leaders; rather like Mo Farah's race opponents must have felt as the soon to be double Olympic* champion strode gloriously to the 5000m finish line last night. After winning the toss and electing to bat first Pacific reached 178, but some loose bowling, the fact we were a fielder short and some capable batting enabled Fulmer to jog to victory with wickets and overs to spare.
Opening duo Chasseaud and Richards got out of the blocks at a steady pace on a hard but even paced track. Having seen off an accurate opening spell of seam up, Richards perished to the gentle out swinger Whelan, holing out unluckily to short mid-on. He departed in disgust, throwing his bat to the ground. The passions of a deep run-scoring thirst and care for the Pacific cause were finally cooled by a shower and a mini milk, the emotionally levelling popsicle of the ages. Mr Nair promptly picked up the pace, hitting a clean, muscular maximum before taking the aerial route again, clubbing the ball straight into the hands off deep mid on. There's more to come from Sandeep, one feels. Boorman's chanceless third 50* of the season provided backbone, especially after Chasseaud, so often the vertebrate of Pacific's batting skeleton this season, had departed for 28. With a steely determination, the number four harnessed his considerable power and executed his shots judiciously to encourage Pacific towards a competitive total. Mullens, borrowing Tamby's GM Hero, entered the fray following Ireland's dismissal to a slick googly and carved out the most fluid innings of his Pacific career (25). A couple of lusty Satish hits left Fulmer chasing 179.
After a delicious tea *, we took to the field with concentrated minds. The cherry was entrusted to Giac / Sat, a pairing of considerable talent and contrasts. The former approaching the wicket bustling, bristling, Italo fires burning; the latter with the easy going chill of a beach cricketer with a dark rum and coke waiting for him barside. On arrival at Fulmer Giaco, seeing the hard, pristine square and lush outfield, said he felt like he was in Australia. G certainly soaked up the Antipodean flavours, enjoying plenty of tete a tetes with Fulmer's openers during his spell. Him and Satch in particular bowled some good stuff, but with one short boundary and a fielder down, Fulmer's capable openers were able to find a risk-free boundary per over, often off their legs. Giac made the first inroads, coaxing Prash into thrashing a skier into the safe hands of Richards on the run. All rounder Ali continued the free scoring before Tom Ireland's quick arm and fast hands accounted for him, the wordsmith holding on to a well struck return catch. Searching for a further wicket, Boorman introduced Sandeep and Hussain into the fold, but the solidity of Fulmer's green capped opener Field and Earnest allowed them to close in on their target without anxiety. Tambyrajah picked up two wickets and Mullens one before Fulmer got over the line, exposing a flimsy late middle order and offering Pacific a glimpse of what might have been.
A quality tea is a relief, a proper pleasure a gift. When John Candy's character Dell Griffith takes off his socks on a plane http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rd5dYQHoZS0 home for Thanksgiving in the 1987 flick Planes Trains and Automobiles and revels in foot relief, much to the irritation of Neil Page (Steve Martin), you get a sense of how a spread can lighten a cricketer's mood. This was the real deal, with proper salads, Caesar and nicoise and the like, prepared with attention and craft. Brownies, berries, clementines, fairy cakes, mini scotch eggs and sponge cakes, all could have featured on a Pacificist's plate yesterday.
Tambyrajah's Toyota folk spotted a listless young man slumped over a Mc Donald's sign as he advertised the official restaurant of the Olympic Games at an A Road roundabout between Rickmansworth/Amersham and Fulmer. Tom and Kieran sympathised with the young fella, tasked by his Mc employers of doing a job a pole could just have easily have done. It was sobering to imagine the young man doing a work experience internship, with the marketing component of the job not exactly living up to its billing.
Skipper Ben Boorman became the first Pacific batsman to score a 50 at this ground since 2007