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Murrayfield DAFS v Kelso

Saturday 25th June 2022
Roseburn Park (Grass)

By Neil Yelland (aka Dylan)

Murrayfield DAFS (20) – 38-1 off 6.5 overs
T Grey 18*

Kelso (1) – 34 all out off 26 overs
T Ritch 4-15, V Tyagi 2-4, N Yelland 2-7
Yelland 2-23, Grey 2-14

Murrayfield DAFS win by 9 wickets

After a tough defeat to Livingston in week 8, week 9 saw us round off the first half of the season against Kelso in a game hitting all the clichés of “Must win” Bingo. Thankfully, we were able to get the sheet down on the pitch on Friday night avoiding the worst of the weather, leaving us with a track that looked suspiciously like a passable wicket, spattered with sandy brown amidst some very dry green.

Honestly, I don’t know if we won or lost the toss as I missed it as I dropped an earbud in the car park and was trying to find it. What I can confirm is that we bowled first after another terrific bout of the Garuda Yoga Extravaganza, and our sprightly youthful team – buoyed with the additions of Mikey and Jared – bounded out onto the pitch ready for action as Viv took the first over.

The young Kelso opener showed some good shapes and resilience as Viv bowled almost exclusively to him and Tommy Biscuits to the elder opener, his run up starting somewhere near the brewery and hitting a classical 4th stump line. Eventually in the sixth over, the strike finally rotated and the young opener got a filthy shin high full toss from Tom, who barely celebrated the anti-climactic nature of the dull thud of leather on wood as the ball hit middle halfway up. Honestly, without bails it looked awful – much like the ball that he had just delivered. 6-1.

Vivek got in on the act in the next over, attacking leg stump and hitting the batsman in front, bringing the Kelso pro to the crease. After melting his first delivery straight along the ground to Jared at mid-wicket, he got a ball angled across him which snaked past his outside edge and hit the off-stump at logo height, causing Viv to break into his now common celebratory whoop of delight. 6-3 after 7.

Tom then cleaned up another to make it 6-4 before the next ball was hit out into the covers to Vivek. He moved forwards and bent down to pick it up, only to collapse forwards like a panto dame with a loud yelp as the ball hit his hands. As funny as this was, we quite swiftly realised he was in a bad way when he continued to lie face-down on the Roseburn square, which fans of dog excretion will tell you probably isn’t advisable.

It quickly become apparent that he had all the mobility of a young Professor X, and he was gingerly carried off and dumped on the ground. Luckily as we were going to restart, Tom Clarke was spotted wandering across the park and agreed to field in place of our fallen leader (big thanks to Kelso for agreeing to this) – pushing us to a strong Tom Ratio of 3:11 and causing the narrative structure of this report to somewhat fall apart between nicknames.

Tommy Biscuits continued and was joined by Tom Grey, whose second delivery turned sharply as if on a 5th day burner in Colombo. He was soon in on the act with a leading edge brilliantly grabbed running in by Jared at short mid-wicket while Tom ‘Squashie’ Ritch cleaned up another. After his mid-spell break due to the injury to Viv, he bowled with venom, picking up a 4th wicket to finish with 9-1-15-4. Tom Grey continued to baffle and bamboozle, turning deliveries square as he finished with 5-2-9-1.

Stand-in skipper Carl then brought Jared on for his first bowl for the club, and he immediately learned how cruel life is as delivery after delivery turned over, around or past the stumps, including an audacious over the head sweep attempt which deflected off head, glove, thigh and foot before resting next to off stump without hitting. A delivery outside leg went through Lewis and as the batsman took on an ambitious run, Roshan fired the ball in for a simple run-out. This was as close as he got to a wicket as he got increasingly anguished with the succession of near misses as I stood at short-extra finding it increasingly funny.

I took the other end after the end of Squashie’s spell and proceeded to bowl some utter rubbish down leg, before finding a line and length  and knocking the last two Kelso batsmen after some stern defence, a couple of lovely shots, and a threat from Carl that he would hook me for someone else. This brought the innings to a close with Kelso 34 all out – Jared with 4-4-0-0 and me with 4-2-7-2. A brilliantly disciplined bowling performance backed up in the field – with last week’s 5fer star Garuda not required!

We did attempt to remobilise Viv via some ice and heat spray and painkillers with no luck. We propped him up in a chair instead so he could watch the chase, musing on whether or not he would go out to bat before me at 10. With the weather turning it was over to Tom and Garuda underneath a cold grey sky and second ball of the innings Tom stuck a size 10 down the pitch and hoicked beautifully over midwicket for 4. Garuda looked to take the attack to them as well and guided his second ball from Chisoro for 4 through cover.

They rotated the strike well with boundaries and extras thrown in and it was a tad unfortunate that Garuda perished with just 6 to win when he was clean bowled by the pro – though given the fact the rain was on no one blamed him. Mikey joined Tom to get his first runs for the club before Tom provided the Coup de Gras with a slog sweep over mid-wicket in some heavy drizzle to win us the game.

With the game wrapped up, the final act of the day was to pack up, and load Viv into a car to go to A&E – which he exited at 00:30 having been diagnosed with back spasms. Get well soon pal! Big thanks to Kelso for making the trip up and playing the game in good spirits.

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