Seconds top 200 for second week running
Plymouth IV 198 for 8, Dartington & Totnes IIs 200 for 5
With five wickets down for 92, the twos were staring defeat in the face before a tremendous match-winning partnership of 108 by Tom Petherick (93 not out) and Dave Binmore (21 not out) powered us home with 10 overs to spare.
The contrast between the two teams couldn’t have been greater with Plymouth fielding a mainly youthful side whilst we were more akin to ‘Dad’s Army’. Indeed at least eight out of our eleven were known to be fathers. If anyone felt that if we got a few early wickets we could roll Plymouth over they were in the ‘realms of fantasy’. Jono Colegate, the youngest D&T player by about twenty years, bowled a fine opening spell and struck early with a beautiful swinging yorker to bowl Barnes. Rothwell and Cummings dug in and played with increasing confidence against accurate bowling. It didn’t help that D&T’s Old Brigade were creaking in the field as Plymouth slowly accumulated runs. Pete Glen bowled well without success.
Some of us wonder why DC doesn’t open the attack and you may not be surprised to learn that he has a complicated theory about this. Plymouth had reached 85 before DC trapped Rothwell lbw for 53. DC provided our attack with the ‘cold steel’ it had been lacking and his pace was too much for Hope who scored 6 before losing his middle stump. DC inadvertently hit Hughes in the ribs with a beamer. Fortunately the batsmen was able to continue after a pause. DC bowled Cummings for 23 shortly afterwards, as the game swung in D&T’s favour.
My fans will be wondering “what about you Mick?” Nothing to report I’m afraid- wicketless for the second week running (conceding about 2 runs per over, if you’re interested). One of my deliveries lifted and smacked our keeper, PT, in the mouth which led to another break in proceedings. The innings seemed interminably long as the old lads took about 5 minutes changing ends after each over. Fortunately they only had one left hander or we would still be out there. DC didn’t seem to notice and had poor old Angry marching from mid-on to mid-on each over.
Tom was unlucky not to take a wicket in his first over after bamboozling the batsmen several times. Widwell took a liking to Tom’s spin and, using his feet beautifully, hit him for several lusty blows. Carter (4 for 58) bowled Hughes for 14 but then also came on the receiving end of some ‘long handle’ himself, as the score advanced far too rapidly for comfort.
Plymouth had 169 on the board before Jono (2 for 41) bowled Knapman for 18. Tom (2 for 33 in 4 overs) bowled Widwell for 33 and had Bell caught byRog, leaving Plymouth with a very competitive 198. Some of those were undoubtedly due to aged fielders but the feeling was that we should have restricted them to about fifty runs less.
One thing was certain about our reply- we weren’t going to be running many quick singles.
Plymouth’s opening bowlers struggled for accuracy and out of our first 20 runs, 18 were wides. Darren Colegate (1), frustrated by the bowling, lost patience and was caught behind chasing a wide delivery (or so he said). Darren said that if the umpire had given every wide the game would never have ended. Roger was surprised by a straight ball and fell lbw for 2. When the bowlers managed to get the ball closer to the stumps Cliff Lowe began to find the boundary with some regularity. Cliff’s dismissal was quite peculiar he was bowled by a tame long hop after his back locked whilst playing the shot and he couldn’t move to the ball- still he’d made a valuable 28. Paul Taylor hit a couple of fours but was lbw to Bell soon afterwards. Jono Colegate was bowled without scoring by Rothwell (3 for 30), who was easily the pick of Plymouth’s bowlers, and D&T were 92 for 5- with extras a big contributor, as the wides kept coming.
Dave Binmore joined Tom Petherick who was in good touch, playing some delicate late cuts. Dave had a pressing social engagement and an early dismissal would have suited him. However, the wily old campaigner, heeding Corporal Jones’ advice, refused to panic. Initially content to let Tom do the scoring he began to find the boundary with several square cuts.
Tom played an innings of consummate skill, which broke the hearts of the Plymouth boys, who had scented victory. He showed his full repertoire of shots from fine wristy strokes to full blooded drives and pulls. He particularly enjoyed hitting the young spinner Bell out of the ground and he was soon removed from the attack. Plymouth shuffled their bowlers to no avail as the dynamic duo steered D&T to victory- their stand of 108 wasn’t far away from their combined ages.
We’d won with ten overs to spare but Plymouth bowled the equivalent of over 42 overs as there were about 40 wides. There’s a lesson there for you youngsters who like to spray it around all over the place! Mick