Poidevin Gray vs Northern District - Round 5 - 2012/13
Firstly, apologies for the lateness of this report. Not many of you can understand the tribulations of unemployment. Much of my days are spent liking Facebook statuses and photos from 2007, and the occasional “who’s this?” comment on Clem Bromwich’s wall, and consequently it is difficult to find time to do a match report.
Scott Heaney leading the PG's attack against the Rangers
However, as we say in first grade, it’s ok to make a mistake, just don’t make the same mistake twice. So for the selectors who have appointed me back-to-back match reports (cheers…), I assure you that the report for this Sunday’s fixture against Campbelltown will be in nice and early (subject to a Sunday night circuit).
Now onto more pressing matters… The enclave rocked up to Stag Park eager to continue with their winning ways and raise the metaphorical performance bar. The covers were done in record time and the top 6 once again dominated “10 Touches”, despite a number of questionable tactics from “Soper’s Swindlers”, who are at $1 to come last in the Spirit of Cricket award.
The toss was lost and the Stags were ordered to make first use of the ball. As the bowlers finished rolling the arm over and headed towards the sheds, our coach finally showed up. For a moment, I thought he was simply employing a “that government is best which governs least” approach to coaching. However, it soon became clear that he was merely fresh off the circuit. Looking forward to Saturday’s court session!
The game plan with the ball was simple; bowl 6 balls on a good line and length, dry up the runs, and watch the Rangers batsmen throw it away. With the advent of Twenty 20 cricket and the recent “leaking” of Cricket Australia’s dossier on the Proteas, such a simple game plan can bemuse the minds of the modern cricketer. But it works…
Corbin Edger, fresh from 92 the day before, knocks the Rangers' side all around the park
Line and length bowling from Smith and Heaney immediately had the Rangers on the back foot at 2/5. However, a number of 5 ball overs let the pressure off, with ND’s Mitch Farag cashing in on any width and, with Green, pushed the total to 80 runs off not many overs.
The introduction of Alex Ieroianni proved to be the turning point of the match. Running into the Fremantle Doctor, Alex was ruthless, producing his best spell for the Stags yet. After stringing together a couple of tight overs, he eventually forced a Loose Pomersbach from Farag, which was well taken by Heaney at mid-off (good captaincy).
The next over, he snicked off Hayward, and the Stags were on a roll. From here, wickets began to fall periodically, and it was simply a case of the Rangers trying to grind out as many runs as they could, eventually reaching 166.
Overall, despite a number of 5 ball overs, this was a very clinical display of bowling, superseded only by the first-class display of fielding. Long story short, we fielded the house down. In fact, there is no house there anymore.
Much of the lunchtime discussion focused on “Stags” and “Highlanders”. This is where Henry’s input into the day was imperative, as he explained that a Highlander is not actually some distant brother to the Stag, but something to do with Scotland or something (I dunno… Yahoo it… said no one ever). So where did Gordon Rugby’s Stag come from? Those are tales for other times.
Alex "too many vowels" Ieroianni turns the match in the favour of the Stags
Kris “Colbut” Colley and Corbin Edgar opened up our innings. Despite missing a straight one off a no-ball, Colley looked assured at the crease, as he has done all season. Corbin started nervously, but soon found his groove when the Rangers bowlers offered him a couple of half trackers that were dispatched of accordingly.
After making a start, Col departed for a well-fought 22 runs. A couple of overs later, Smith was robbed of a century when he padded one down the leg side into the keeper’s gloves. At 2/60, a rising chorus of doubt swept over the enclave, but the partnership between Corbin and Will quickly quashed any uncertainties.
Corbin was now on borrowed time, and began dishing out tickets to the Rangers. With each ball his confidence grew. He produced a number of textbook cover drives, and continued to murder anything short.
Will “I have 6 notifications” Phillips provided good support at the other end. Will looked Confident, Lively, Assured, Reliable, Illustrious, Solid, Sublime and Awe-inspiring. He continued to knock the ball around to take the Stags pass the 100 mark, when he was adjudged to be caught behind… by the square leg umpire. I’m not sure what was said on the field, but I think it went something like this:
When questioned whether he hit the ball or not, Will replied, “I might have”. In the end, the right decision was made (although Will still sought clarification from the umpires after the game).
The PG's side celebrates the wicket of a Rangers' batsman by Scott Heaney
Corbin and Clem continued to work hard at the crease. Clem was particularly dominant against the spinners, hitting the ball to all parts of the square for no run. That said, he also provided good support to Corbin, who continued to dispatch the loose balls. It was at this point that his game clicked into another gear, and he began to punch the good balls into the gaps for 1 or 2 runs – a sign of a player with a promising future ahead.
Corbin brought up his run a ball century with a glorious on drive for four, but was unfortunately dismissed trying to end the game with a bang. Max Newman finished things off with a textbook straight drive through point in the 39th over.
Special mention to Henry Carmichael who got 2 wickets for 1 run off 0 overs. Work that one out…
Overall, the most pleasing thing from a captain’s perspective is that we executed exactly what we talked about. We were ruthless with the ball, ruthless in the field, and for the most part, ruthless with the willow. It was not the performances of one or two individuals that secured victory for us, but the collective efforts of each and every Stag.
This Sunday, we leave the unassuming mien of the North Shore and travel to the psychologically alien and sensorily austere lands of Campbelltown. Though we head in to this fixture as underdogs, we should take a lot of confidence out of our performance against the Rangers and strive to raise the metaphorical performance bar once more.
Kris Colley contributes at the top of the order
Before I go, I would like to thank Jamie Soper for carrying out the scorers duties over the past 3 games, as well as Rob Carruthers for his exceptional efforts as manager. Lastly, I would also like to thank Harry Evans for his honesty in deducting 1 hour from Sunday’s remuneration.