- Match Report
Early-season Tears as Negi Slices and Dices
by Joe “Spider” Lewis
Well where do I bloody start???
The first day of a fresh new season for the Wombats, a season that looks to be the first in this decade to finally shake off the shackles of everyone’s favourite pandemic.
It was a cool and breezy morning with a visible sky, although the rain of the previous day had left a damp and slow pitch in its wake. Getting boundaries along the ground would not be easy. With a drying breeze under sunlight set for the rest of the day the outfield promised to get quicker for the afternoon session. Both team skippers had an eye on bowling in the first innings. MIB won the toss and the Wombats were set for their first bat outing in 6 months.
It didn’t get off to the best of starts as the Wommies lost Richie for in the third delivery of the innings, losing his middle stump to a very good straight delivery that went under his bat. The bowler Negi, proved it was no fluke, getting an edge behind on talismanic Wommie batsmen Alex Patmore for 12. This left our new skipper Ali with a middle order of mostly debutants, (most of whom hadn’t held a bat competitively for a very long time!).
Ali showed his commitment to his team by digging in with some lovely shots, including a massive six to the leg side that seemed to be gaining height as it cleared the rope! He looked assured at the crease and it was unfortunate that his one mistake cost him his wicket, misjudging a short one that saw him out caught in the inner circle for 33.
The rest of the ‘Class of 22’ Wommies did their very best out there, with some stubborn resistance shown by Satyam in particular. Robb played intelligently until attempting to go big and was caught out on the boundary by a certain Negi of the MIB with the catch of the match. Despite this, with the Wommies lacking any more anchor able batters, the Wommies succumbed to 105 all out in 29 overs.
In the next innings it was a question whether the MIB wanted to play smart and casual or come out blasting at the small deficit. They opted for the latter and quickly discovered that the Wommies had also not had ample opportunity for fielding practice! This encouraged them to whack with impunity and it was all over before the 15 over break.
During that time Rasika bowled determinedly but gained nought but 3 dropped catches for his troubles. Ashfaq had the best luck gaining 2 scalps with his 2 overs and never stopped smiling. Debutant Robb had quite the first over as a Wommie. It reads 6 (keels over with leg cramp), WICKET. 6 MATCH OVER. What an emotional rollercoaster! Skipper Ali led by example with 2 catches and Bilal with 1.
During the match there was earnest frustration among members of the squad who clearly desperately wanted Ali’s skipper debut to be more fortunious, but in the great scheme of things Ali would have learned more on this day about both himself and the squad he has inherited than he ever would have with a win. All credit to the MIB who were able to find a way to take full advantage of our frailties, on this day they were the better side. This was a heavy defeat and I know some lads will feel down about the result but there’s nothing better than a steep learning curve to take us out of it!
On a final optimistic note it needs pointing out the new Wommie players acquitted themselves excellently. Satyam and Ashfaq played the game with great positivity with bat and ball (Ashfaq maybe too much so with the bat! Reverse sweep second ball to square leg when we are 5 down off 17 overs!), Robb stepping up to no.5 and almost taking a blinder in the field, Corey with his enthusiasm to help the squad in any way he can both on and off, Bilal showing that he can swing the willow when required, Sujan who didn’t get much of a game but played the day with a smile and finally ex-Wommie Pramod who generously dropped a catch on the boundary when fielding for MIB (he still holds a candle for us guys!)
The road to redemption begins on April 16th!
Come on the Wommies!
|Tokyo Wombats CC vs Men in Blue CC|
|Japan Cricket League 2022 (Div. 1), Fuji 2, Shizuoka, April 2, 2022|
|Result||Men in Blue CC won by 7
|TWCC MoM||A Muhammad|
|Tokyo Wombats CC Innings: 105 (29.4 overs)|
|A Patmore||c R Koul† b N Negi||12||23||1||0||52.17|
|R Bracefield||b Negi||0||1||0||0||0.00|
|M Ali*||c Sub b P Manvi||33||42||4||1||78.57|
|R Ethugala||b P Manvi||4||13||0||0||30.77|
|R Zloc||c N Negi b V Ranjan||8||23||1||0||34.78|
|S Singh||lbw b S Bhowmik||17||41||2||0||41.46|
|A Muhammad||c Sub b V Ranjan||0||2||0||0||0.00|
|B Bhinder||st R Koul† b S Bhowmik||15||21||0||1||71.43|
|S Sandamal||not out||3||7||0||0||42.86|
|J Lewis||b S Bhowmik||1||4||0||0||25.00|
|C Hunter-Park||c H Akabari b S Bhowmik||0||2||0||0||0.00|
|Extras||(b 0, lb 0, w 11, nb 1)||12|
|Fall of wickets|
|1-1 R Bracefield, 2-31 A Patmore, 3-47 R Ethugala, 4-56 M Ali,
5-70 R Zloc, 6-71 A Muhammad, 7-100 S Singh, 8-101 B Bhinder,
9-105 J Lewis, 10-105 C Hunter-Park|
|Men in Blue CC Innings: 110/3 (10.4 overs)|
|N Negi||c M Ali b A Muhammad||35||17||2||4||205.88|
|S Bhowmik||c R Ethugala b A Muhammad||29||32||4||1||90.62|
|R Koul||not out||23||11||2||2||209.09|
|A Panwar||c M Ali b R Zloc||6||4||0||1||150.00|
|G Dua||not out||0||0||0||0||0.00|
|Extras||(b 1, lb 7, w 9, nb 0)||17|
|Fall of wickets|
|1-64 S Bhowmik, 2-93 N Negi, 3-104 A Panwar|
- Ali – high one, running back, over his head
- Corey – jumping under one at fine leg
- Robb – in and out
- Bilal – slow to get to one that could’ve been taken
- Ashfaq – “Yes” – says Ash after being told to “hang on around mate, nothing stupid – 5 down now, need a partnership” – who then sends a reverse sweep switch hit straight to square leg second ball!
- Ali – Ali switched fielding positions, to a catch, switched back to where he was, “I just moved to get that catch” he said.
- Alex – “I once pissed on someone’s face as it was windy and the splashes were going here and there”
Great Moments in Sport
- 2 wombats on debut – Robb and Ashfaq
- Ashfaq 2 wickets on debut in a good short spell
- Lazarus Robb – first ball gets hit for 6, cramps up – second ball, wicket! Don’t need to talk about the 3rd ball….
- Alex – walking off in a huff and blowing off steam after an ill-timed switch hit leads to another wicket leaving some of the wommies in stitches.
Golden Thong Nominations
- Can’t win the award – but the dickhead from MIB who tried to mankad our #11 when it was 9/105!!
- Robb – first ball for the wombats – hit for 6 and pulls up with a calf cramp! A true Wombat!
- Ash – registering for the wrong team and signing up for Tokyo Rangers!!!