Friendly Match vs Ashtead CC, Sun 4th August 2019, Ashtead

London Fields (230-8) beat Ashtead (229 for 6)

by Paul "PA" Alexander

One of the highlights on the fixtures list is a very pleasant trip out to leafy Surrey for our regular match against our old friends, Ashtead CC. Always a lovely day out with the full cricketing experience, of tea, a well stocked bar, and a welcoming club who are great hosts.

Ashtead had a good mixture of youth and experience, and were sent in to bat first on a true wicket. A young top order started strongly with a mixture of good technique, and hard hitting. A fast outfield contributed to a rapid scoring rate - with a run or two conceded in the third man area. There was some quality bowling - and a lack of reward for our bowlers initially. Canny field changes from skipper Vijay, along with the pace taken off the ball kept the Ashtead juggernaut in check. The end of innings score was 229-6 from 40 overs - wickets for Chris, Turley and Vijay and 3 for Rupert.

Then in the chase Ferny produced an opening batters' masterclass with some classic Ferny shots - until reaching 57 where the Fernster was most magnanimous to walk on an LBW shout (outstanding spirit of the gamesmanship!). In strolled an imperious Paul Holden who continued his wonderful batting form where the author, (as a completely impartial umpire) roundly applauded a litany of leg side flicks that raced along the perfectly manicured forest-green carpet.

LFCC were able to keep close to the required run rate with this valuable 46.

After a brief period of the wobbles - things looked a bit grim - but Vijay steered the ship through a cricketing tempest with aplomb (rhymes with Ekblom for club tour songwriters). Vijay’s innings of calm selective shots, punctuated with sudden and extreme smashings under real pressure was one of the best half centuries I’ve seen. His sudden departure on 51 by Ashtead’s gun bowler near the end swung the match in Ashtead’s favour. However, the tail did wag and an invaluable Muffi (16*) who played with real freedom, and Laurie (4*) (with a classy snick to the fine leg boundary) forged a men of steel partnership to stroke home the runs and an LFCC win with 7 balls to spare.

LFCC club legend Stephen Donelan, and his brother Pete (who often plays against us and troubles our batsmen with quality spin bowling) were unable to make this fixture this year. However, the team was delighted to meet their sister Mary - who did a great job making us all feel welcome - and provided excellent hospitality. Mary asked me to convey her thanks to the team ‘for their journey down and for their immaculate manners’ which was great to hear.

The team travelled to and from Ashtead together on the train which was very enjoyable; certainly travelling back to London together regaling heroic cricketing deeds, and singing old tour club songs was a lovely way to finish an excellent club day.

Ashtead CC Batting

229 for 6 in 40 overs

London Fields Bowling

1Chris Murphy6039139.00
2Muffi 70290-
3Rupert Ekblom8062320.67
4Laurie Sayer70390-
5Paul Turley6026126.00
6Vidal Bharath30160-
7Vijay Shah3013113.00

London Fields Batting

 NameScoringHow OutBowlerRuns
1Steve Fernbank LBWJake Martin57
2Paul Alexander RunOut4
3Paul Holden BowledWill Culhane46
4Vijay Shah BowledJake Martin51
5Jason Lord CaughtOliver Timpson12
6Vidal Bharath BowledOliver Timpson1
7Chris Murphy BowledPatrick Murray0
8Paul Turley BowledPatrick Murray0
9Muffi  NotOut16
10Laurie Sayer NotOut4
11Rupert EkblomDidNotBat-
    Total 230 for 8

Ashtead CC Bowling

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