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Drummond Trinity v Murrayfield DAFS

Saturday 30th April 2022
Inverleith Park (Grass + rugby posts)

By Phil Hawkins

Murrayfield DAFS (20) – 137 all out off 41.2 overs
Fergusson 51, Kuchadi 3-12, Billipelli 2-25

Drummond Trinity (6) – 98 all out off 30.2 overs
Bhaskar 25, Tyagi 3-13, Fergusson 2-26,
Yelland 2-23, Grey 2-14

Murrayfield DAFS win by 39 runs

After a glorious sunny morning the cloud began to develop and as we arrived at Inverleith Park for the first game of the season we were greeted with the rather strange site of rugby posts right in the middle of outfield. Not a great start from Edinburgh Leisure.

Vivek was making his debut as 1s captain and in very Barton-esque fashion he strolled out to the middle and preceded to lose the toss on what was unsurprisingly, a very green top. There was little shock when the opposition put us in.

Myself and Lewis were tasked with trying to see off the new ball on what we knew was going to be a very “spicy” pitch. It didn’t disappoint. In Lewis’ first over he was severely tested by variable bounce and the very two paced nature of the pitch but he negotiated this successfully. For my first ball at the start of the second over I was surprised when a ball leapt up off a length and hit me in the ribs. We were definitely in for a battle.

With runs hard to come by and the pitch doing all sorts Lewis nicked off to a decent ball and it wasn’t long before I also departed losing my leg stump to a ball that pitched well outside off (Sam and Vivek can confirm this 😊). This left us 17-2 with Sam and Finlay “Olympic Rings” Ross coming to the crease.

Despite a tough opening period for Sam he soon became pretty fluent and got the score moving along nicely. Fin easily got off the mark to loud cheers from the boundary and also began to look well set. Both players were punishing the bad ball and keeping out the good ones. With the score racing to 42 and after scoring 7 already in the over Fin somehow managed to under edge behind to the keeper when looking in no trouble at all leaving us 42-3.

Sutha joined Sam in the middle and due to some big hitting from the latter who was looking very comfortable the scoreboard was ticking along nicely before Sutha was caught for 4. Roshan was next in and again departed for 4 after getting trapped in front LBW on his 1s debut. Then with the score on 92, Sam after getting to a well made 50 looked to deposit Kuchadi out of the ground. Unfortunately he didn’t quite get hold of it and was caught at long on by a well taken catch. This left us 92-6 and in a little bit of trouble.

Vivek and Tom “I changed my flights back to uni to play in this game” Grey were now in.

A few big hits later and Vivek had raced to 11 but he soon departed caught behind. LV making his 1s debut came and went pretty quickly after being cleaned up by a good ball from Kuchadi. With the score at 105-8 we were still hoping for a few more runs. It was hard to tell what a good score was at this point but it felt like 100 was defendable.

However up stepped the two Toms who both batted sensibly with 13 overs still remaining when they came together. Both players rotated the strike well and really punished the bad ball with a couple of hefty blows from each player, one of which I believe was quite close to hitting the rugby post for a bonus of 3 runs. A nice partnership of 29 came to an end when Grey departed for 14 with the score at 134-9. Only 3 more runs were added before the other Tom (of the biscuit variety) was run out going for a second. An unfortunate slip cost him when he was turning, however some might say he was just eager to get on and bowl the opposition out.

A very good total of 137 on what was a tricky pitch. Special mention has to go to Sam for a truly “Spectangular” innings, he made it look really easy and it really wasn’t. I probably should have also mentioned the weather (I know none of you listen to Met Office employees) but it was pretty persistent rain for the last 30 overs of the innings so we did well to get to the score that we did. Luckily it never became too heavy that we had to go off.

The rain was now very light and after an initial whinge about playing cricket in Scotland in April we were almost ready to start, cue Vivek forgetting to bring the match ball out with him. Off he ran to collect the match ball and then we were ready for Rich Tea Tom to steam in for the first over.

This came and went but you always got the impression you were in the game on this wicket with variable pace and bounce still very apparent. Vivek opened at the coffee truck end and it was not long before he struck. A good length ball that pitched and moved very low off the seam to pin the batsman right in front for an easy LBW call for the umpire. A great start and DT were 0-1. Tom and Vivek continued to bowl tightly, and runs were very hard to come by for the opposition. Tom was unlucky to not make a breakthrough as a couple of inside edges flew agonizingly close to the stumps. It was in the 6th over with the score on 10 that Vivek got the breakthrough again in identical fashion to the first wicket with the batsman trapped plum in front. It was a great start with DT reeling at 10-2.

The next phase of the game was an interesting one with the DT number 3 being very vocal during his innings as he looked to try and seize back the initiative. The innings had some good shots, bad shots, edges past the stump and an accusation of being “stared” at which was all rather strange. After offering some resistant and some great bowling by Tom the pressure told and the number 3 dragged on which was greeted with some very exuberant celebrations and the score was 28-3. Fergusson was brought into the attack and before long the DT’s number 5 had his stumps rearranged and it was 31-4. Vivek was having a dream start as skipper.

Yelly was brought on and both himself and Fergusson really squeezed the batters scoring very little before Yelly cleaned up the number 6 to leave the score at 40-5. This brought the number 7 to the crease and it was over the next 8 overs that they put together a nice partnership with some clean hitting by Uday Kuchadi following on from him good bowling performance. With the score at 71-5 at the half way stage the game was delicately poised.

However after the drinks break Yelly struck, bowling their number 4 for a patient and well made 25. The decision was then made by the skipper to bring Tom Grey into the attack for a change of pace. 2nd ball and Tom flighted up a nice tempter for Kuchadi who attempted to hit him out of the ground but only proceeded to hit it high into the sky towards Midoff. In his loud Kiwi accent Sim bellowed mine and the rest was a formality as the catch was comfortably taken. A massive wicket in the context of the game as he had shown the power to potentially take the game away from us. DT were now 73-7 and we were closing in on the win. Sam then cleaned up their number 8 in the next over and we were perhaps a bit naive to think the game was over with them eight down.

The number 9 took a few balls to get his eye in and took a liking to Tom’s bowling when he dropped short. He then hit 10 off Sam’s next over and we started to look over our shoulders at the scoreboard, DT still had plenty of overs remaining. The first ball of Tom’s next over went for four and I think we were all getting slightly concerned that the number 9 was getting on top but after this Tom bowled 3 balls right on the money and with the 5th ball of the over a cut was looped straight to gully for a simple catch from Vivek. The celebration from him was completely over the top, probably down to relief, as he launched the ball high up into the heavens towards their umpire. Once we were happy it was not going to hit him we celebrated.

In the next over Vivek brought himself back into the attack and bowled the number 10 securing a 39 victory for us and first win for Vivek as skipper.

This was a really good team performance, with an excellent knock from Sam and a key partnership from the 2 Toms (sponsored by Rich Tea biscuits and Earl Grey Tea). The bowling and fielding was generally of a really high standard and we all stuck together to grind out a great win at a tricky place to play.

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