Twickenham v Hursley Park 1st XI
Played at Twickenham
Southern League Division 1
Won by 2 wickets
There was a larger watching crowd than usual for our league game at Twickenham in 2010. This was partly due to the fact that the (Football) World Cup was on the TV in the clubhouse and England were playing, but probably also because of the edge that had been given to the fixture by a rather feisty game between the two in the Regents Park sixes on the previous day.
It was a scorching hot Sunday on Twickenham Green and after the home side had won the toss and not surprisingly decided to bat, our bowlers and fielders needed several hydration breaks (both official and unofficial) as we sweated for 45 overs in the hottest part of the day. When we had reduced Twickenham to 76-6 in the 24th over it seemed that our ordeal would be shortened, but the seventh wicket added 88 and we were kept out there for the full quota as they reached 176-8. Helen Borrett with 3-19 from nine was the pick of the bowlers.
We had taken longer than our allotted time to bowl the overs and the home side and their now animated supporters (England had lost in the football) spent the tea interval trying to convince the umpires that we should have overs reduced in our innings as per the regulations of the competition. In response we pointed out that there had been the need for regular breaks due to the heat, and also that one of the umpires retired from the field to have a cigarette at the scheduled breaks, delaying the innings further!. We had also had a delay when our coach was removed for allegedly sending out instructions from the boundary edge.
After much debate, and to much displeasure from the home team and supporters, the umpires decided that we were entitled to the full 45 overs. That was good news for us, but the injury situation wasn’t. Wicket-keeper Hannah Clark, due to open the batting, had broken her thumb near the end of the first innings and her opening partner Jenny Wilson was suffering with a back injury. So it was a makeshift pair that opened for us – Carrie-Ann White and Helen Borrett, who had earlier shared five wickets. And they did a good job, posting 49 before being parted. By the time that Helen was dismissed for 37 we were 92-5 with two injured batters, but Jenny gave it a go with the help of a runner before being the seventh batter dismissed with the score at 110. The home supporters were now becoming very vociferous, largely alcohol fuelled, and even started football style chants. It created a good, if somewhat hostile atmosphere for our batters. When Dani Ransley was the eighth wicket to fall at 115 Hannah put her pads on and said she would bat if necessary despite her broken thumb.
Sixteen-year old Charlotte Taylor came in at number ten to join the experienced Emma Bane, and they gradually wrestled the initiative back. Emma was happy to let Tayz do the bulk of the scoring, and the home side became unnerved and bowled a few wides. The pair gained in confidence and Tayz scored a couple of leg-side fours. The crowd became quiet and in the 41st over Tayz struck another boundary to see us home to a memorable 2 wicket victory. Hanlar was not required to bat, and as it turned out we did not need the overs that Twickenham had insisted we shouldn’t be allowed. Emma and Tay’s unbeaten stand of 64 remains the highest for the ninth wicket.
Victories like this can prove influential, and the 1s remained unbeaten for the rest of the season and were eventually crowned Division 1 Champions.