- Match Report
ARE TIGERS AFRAID OF WATER?
by Jarrad Shearer
I had always assumed that it was an urban legend. However, I discovered on Sunday that Tigers are indeed afraid of water. At least the Indian kind that wears blue! With 5 overs to go to make Sunday’s first round Pacific Cup game against the Indian Tigers official, 3 drops of rain and the fearsome pace of Kyle Hill sent the Tigers running for cover at 5-105 chasing 295. Alas the rain didn’t abate and with the PC committee ruling it a no result, the game needs to be replayed.
My day began with Jesse giving me an 8:15am morning call, although to be fair it was I who emailed him from the pong at 5am suggesting it might be a good idea to do so. My day wasn’t any better when I found out that Mumtaz wasn’t coming to the station to meet us. We ended up driving around like spastics until Mumtaz finally met us and showed us the way. Having had less than 2 hours sleep I was running on adrenaline, which is the reason why when Burkey won the toss and decided to bat – although in hindsight, with the weather forecast being for rain at 3pm, perhaps we should have bowled; but then when have the Japanese weather forecasters ever got a forecast right? – he sent Jesse and I into bat. Jesse played a typical Jesse innings and spanked anything with even a margin of width to the boundary and even played a one-handed pull, a la the great Vivian Richards, to send the ball into the fence. Jesse was playing with such freedom that at about the 6th over, when we were going at about 8 an over, he suggested we should try to push it above 10 an over.
It wasn’t long later that Jesse departed well-caught down the legside by the keeper for a quick fire 42. Chuck, promoted to his normal spot at 3, started cautiously but didn’t take him long before he continued on from where Jesse left off, particularly harsh on anything full. After drinks we upped the tempo but not long after surviving a very close bat before wicket appeal and also a loud caught behind bat hitting the ground appeal (apparently these are legitimate forms of dismissal in India), I charged the dart chucker, missed it, and was bowled for 62. Ross came in and immediately hit the first 6 of the game, almost hitting a parked car.
Chuck found scoring so easy he was calling “no” and sill running. At 260, Chuck’s luck finally ran out and he was caught for 84, although one Wombat in the shed bears part responsibility as he asked for Chuck’s score to be counted the ball before. Rosco kept purring along – in fact in his 28 ball 48 he only had 6 dot balls – until he was bowled by a full toss. So sudden and unexpected was his dismissal that Chuck, sitting next to me on the boundary, inquired as to what Ross was doing coming back to the shed! It was at this point that the scoring slowed and we only scored another 35 runs off the last 6 overs, the highlight of which was Shaxy’s frst dig in over 3 years, and even though he didn’t face a ball, he almost got run out, twice!
So with that the slowest 35-over inning in world history came to an end. If there were fines imposed on slow over rates in the Pac Cup, the Tiger’s skipper would be singing for his supper.
After a short changeover, Kyle and Ian were handed the new rock, er, cherry and in his first over, Kyle had Praveen caught behind for 2 with a beauty that just left the batsman, which incidentally was Adam’s first catch for the club! Ian also joined in a few overs later and got Ranodas, also caught behind. When Abhisher pushed gently to yours truly at point, his mate, Gijo, thought there must be an easy single to the slowest bloke on the field. His mate disagreed and when I gathered the ball and looked up, ready to rocket it in, I saw them standing next to each other at the strikers end having a leisurely chat. I duly lobbed the ball to Curly, who did the rest, and Gijo was run out for 9.
Kyle continued his fine spell, first having Abhisher well caught by Burkey at mid-off – while it was hit straight to him, it was travelling at tracer bullet-like speed – and then bowling Sakthi for a second ball googy egg. Curly, on the other hand, was being spanked to all four corners, with his 7-over spell costing 52 runs.
It was at this point, that is 2:59:59, as per forecast, that a few drops of rain came from the heavens. Balu decided that he was allergic to water and wanted to flee the ground. After a long chat in the middle with their batsmen, the umpires, and 3 of their blokes from the sidelines, he was convinced the rain wouldn’t kill him and proceeded to spank Kyle’s next ball for 6. A few balls and more whinging later, even though he had spanked a few more boundaries, the batsman was getting rather upset with the possibility of drowning so Burkey brought on the spinners. 2 overs and again more boundaries later, the batsmen were positive that they were going to drown in the light rain so they sprinted from the field. Nothing could convince them to return, and when Mumtaz returned and saw us off the field, he made an executive decision to bring in the pitch.
Although to be fair, by that stage the rain had grown heavy enough to call the game off. Although its arguable we could have gotten through the 5 remaining overs to make it a game. The way the Tigers were batting, they had every chance to win the game on run-rate and/or the Duckworth-Lewis system. Alas that’s not how it panned out and we have to play the game again, much to Burkey’s delight seeing as he didn’t get a crack at them with the bat.
The day finished in a disappointing fashion as we stood in the rain for over half an hour trying to get cabs to come to the ground. It dampened our spirits so we decided to give the izakaya the Freo treatment and had a Maccas dinner before jumping onto the train back to the big smoke. Very uneventful and subdued trip back on the train…