Maybe next year…
Pacific v UCS Old Boys at Highgate CC
Sun 19 Sep 2021 at 12.30pm
Lost by 13 runs
Lindridge-McDougall Memorial Cup

UCS Old Boys retain the Lindridge-McDougall Memorial Cup as the gloom and rain fail to dampen an exciting match  

The clear blue skies of Sunday morning rather contrasted with the Rowans bowling alley-induced hangover that one of the members of the Pacific squad awoke with. Happily, however, pathetic fallacy soon kicked in, as gloomy clouds and rain moved in just as the 11 hardy Pacificos took to the field against the UCS Old Boys. On a day when UCS only had to play for a draw to keep hold of the Cup, Tim, with typically astute captaincy, won the toss and inserted the Old Boys into bat, judging that our best chance of winning the game lay in a second innings run chase.  

UCS’s opening pair of Sher and Guaranathan started with intent, a couple of powerful drives through the covers showing that their power and timing was in good order. Fielding was already becoming challenging – with the rain falling, the outfield became slippery and the ball difficult to keep hold of. With the combination of tricky fielding conditions, a just-behaving track and some ominous-looking shots, the openers looked well set for a big partnership, with 40 on the board by the 7th over. However, Joe Deighan drew a hubristic mistake from Sher and cleaned bowled him for 17, a just reward for his efforts.   

The weather did its best to end things prematurely, with next-door matches being postponed, but the umpires and the groundsman allowed the game to continue. The scorebook attests to its tight nature; none of their top 7 could get to a biggish score, as the Pacific attack playing on the increasingly inconsistent pitch and kept the wickets falling at a regular rate. Sidd took two outstanding wickets, removing Rehman and Guranathan as they looked well set. With Rendell run out in farcical fashion after a terrible call, Pacific felt on top of the game, restricting the run rate well. With Nav causing chaos at one end, cleaning up the tail with excellent figures of 4-32, the Old Boys Captain, Will Vignoles, put on a staunch rearguard action from the no.7 spot, piling on 38 runs from just 36 balls. His freewheeling batsmanship was contrasted with a granite – like forward defensive from their No 11 Croft, with their useful runs towards the end taking them to a competitive total of 184. The innings was wrapped up with sharp work from Rafiq at the bowlers’ end, running out Croft and taking PCC into a well – earned, warming and delicious tea of Thai rice and bacon sarnies (vegan options also available!).   

By this point, the rain had passed, and we were left with the tantalising prospect of PCC needing to chase down 185 off what we estimated to be about 35 overs. The Old Boys opening pair of Vinu and Grabinar bowled exceptionally well, keeping their line tight, and their consistently good pace kept the scoring rate low – although they were ably assisted by the damp outfield, which only rewarded the trademark Chasseaud cuts and drives with singles rather than the boundaries they deserved. However, once Ben had been bowled for a patiently accumulated 20, the shine of the ball had been replaced with a certain dampness, and Harry came to the crease an over from the first change. After drinks, PCC were left with a simple equation – 130 runs off 120 balls to win back the Lindridge-McDougall trophy. With Croft proving (somehow) difficult to get off the square, Harry and Toby set about dispatching Hotak, with Harry clearing the trees with a 6 that surprised him as much as it did the wicket keeper, who kindly chirped ‘Didn’t think you had it in you mate’ as the ball settled into the Highgate CC car park. Having taken 18 off that over, Harry was caught at cow off Croft a few balls later, and when Kaleem came in with the required run rate still at around 1 a ball, his bristling energy and competitiveness continually kept PCC in the game. However, as so often in cricket and in sport, a moment of brilliance married to a tight call began to turn the tide against PCC. Kaleem called Toby for a quick single and the latter was run out by skipper Vignoles at square leg. With only one stump to aim at, his aim was true, and Toby had to make way having comfortably made 38.   

With Siddarth falling to the reliable Croft for 6, the Old Boys sensed victory, and brought back their opener, Grabinar, for a final spell. However, Grabinar’s line was initially a bit off, so Kaleem and Nav helped themselves to a few solid boundaries to keep PCC in the game. But, after being whacked for 14 off an over – including a thumping 6 from Nav over midwicket – Grabinar was quickly in the wickets, clean bowling Nav get into the tail. Fighting resistance from Kaleem took us to within 15 runs of victory, and the game was shaping up to a tense and exciting end. Sadly, however, the weekend’s theme of PCC just missing out at the death continued. Grabinar bowled the Old Boys to victory with an outstanding spell, as Jithin was well caught behind, and Kaleem, Rafiq, Joe and finally Ahmed had their stumps thoroughly examined to see the Old Boys keep hold of the trophy for another year.  Match report by Harry Rogers

UCS Old Boys v Pacific
Toss won by Pacific
UCS Old Boys innings  R  M  B  4  6
D Sher   b Deighan   17  0  21  0  0  
K Gurunathan   b Turaga   36  0  38  0  0  
L Rehman   lbw b Turaga   23  0  29  0  0  
D Rendell   run out Chasseaud    22  0  32  0  0  
J Ahmedarai   lbw b Garrett   13  0  19  0  0  
K Manzoor   b Devesher   9  0  15  0  0  
J Grabinar   b Devesher   13  0  21  0  0  
W Vignoles*   not out    38  0  31  0  0  
G Virk   lbw b Devesher   2  0  3  0  0  
B Hotak   c Luthra b Devesher   0  0  3  0  0  
J Croft   run out Rogers    0  0  10  0  0  
 Extras (b 1, lb 1, w 5, nb 2) 9    
 TOTAL (39.2 Overs) 184    
 Fall of wickets: 
Bowling  O  M  R  W  
 Jithin George   6  0  33  0  
 Joe Deighan   8  0  49  1  
 Siddarth Turaga   8  0  30  2  
 Navyjot Devesher   9  3  32  4  
 Tim Garrett   4  0  16  1  
 Ahmed Hussain   2  0  9  0  
 Rafiq Ratta   2.2  0  14  0  
Pacific innings  R  M  B  4  6
Ben O'Connor   b Grabinar   20  50  33  2  0  
Toby Chasseaud   run out W Vignoles    38  87  59  5  0  
Harry Rogers   c Virk b Croft   22  31  26  2  1  
Kaleem Luthra†   b Grabinar   36  50  36  5  0  
Siddarth Turaga   c Hotas? b Croft   6  17  13  0  0  
Navyjot Devesher   c Rendell b Croft   21  19  19  3  1  
Rafiq Ratta   b Grabinar   1  3  3  0  0  
Jithin George   c Sher b Grabinar   0  4  4  0  0  
Joe Deighan   b Grabinar   0  9  2  0  0  
Tim Garrett*   not out    1  3  1  0  0  
Ahmed Hussain   b Grabinar   0  1  1  0  0  
 Extras (b 10, lb 5, w 6, nb 5) 26    
 TOTAL (32.0 Overs) 171    
 Fall of wickets:  1-44 [O'Connor] , 2-97 [Rogers] , 3-102 [Chasseaud] , 4-126 [Turaga] , 5-154 [Devesher] , 6-156 [Ratta] , 7-163 [George] , 8-170 [Luthra] , 9-171 [Deighan] , 10-171 [Hussain]
Bowling  O  M  R  W  
 G Virk   7  0  27  0  
 J Grabinar   9  0  42  6  
 J Croft   9  0  34  3  
 B Hotak   4  0  32  0  
 W Vignoles   3  0  21  0  

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