Twickenham v Hursley Park 1st XI
Played at Broom Rd, Twickenham
Southern League Championship
Won by 4 wickets
Twickenham 164-6 (50) Hursley Pk 1st XI 165-6 (41.5)
Usually games are won by the team that has a combination of the greater batting, bowling and fielding skills on any given day. Sometimes tactical decisions are the key element, and this was the case at Twickenham in 2012.
The match was played at Twickenham’s second ground at Broom Road, a venue that we were familiar with, and against opposition that we were familiar with, which turned out to be a vital factor. Twickenham won the toss and the first innings was fairly uneventful. Rach Carrick bowled a typically economic spell, returning figures of 1-15 from ten overs, and the home-side never really gathered any momentum but build a solid total of 164-6 on a wicket offering help to the bowlers.
It was during the tea interval, planning the second innings, that Jem and the senior players recognised that Twickenham only had four regular bowlers (as stated above we knew their team well) and that therefore ten overs would have to be bowled by non-regular bowlers – so the plan was to take full advantage of those overs. We lost Tayz and Mistry early in our reply and despite an aggressive half-century from Ellie Penketh we found ourselves at 93-6 in the 27th over. We were waiting for the ‘weaker’ overs, but they had not come yet, as Twickenham decided to bowl their four main bowlers through and effectively win the game by the 40th over. Absolutely the right tactics, but master tactician Jem was at the crease when number 8 Baz arrived, and informed her new partner that it was probably a case of batting through to forty overs, and then it would probably become easier.
They dug in, and accumulated runs along the way as Twickenham did their best to break the partnership. But they could not – and at the end of 40 overs the pair were still together. As anticipated, there were no regular bowling options for the home side to turn to, and Jem and Baz took advantage with a flurry of boundaries that saw us home, taking their unbeaten partnership to 72. Jem finished unbeaten on 50 and Baz on 30. We went on to win the Championship that season.