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Fixtures and Results | Match Reports

Date Against H/A Link Result Captain/Score
Sun 15 / 7 / 2018 Walsall Heath Away Tied Old Mo 246-7. Oppo 246.

SCORECARD

Tommy and Tuppence Trumped by Uncle Mo
Old Mo 246-7 v The Elf 246 all out (Claiming the win?)

On a wild weekend of sport (World Cup Final, Wimbledon, le Tour, England v India, Drumpf golfing in Scotterland), it was always going to be a tough exercise to find 11 people willing to stand around in the Walsall sun. Following an afternoon of Bastille Day celebratory champagne sipping, a few match day drop outs and a few injury-laden Fitmen joining in, a 12-man 11 arrived at Aldridge CC for a 2:30pm start, guaranteeing a sunset finish.

Skipper TC Jnr smartly called heads given the location and elected to bat in the sun, opening with himself (obviously) and Ashfield visitor Jawad. The scoring moved consistently with some classic shots and inside edges from both batters, leading to a 50 partnership after 10 before Jawad passed the ball to the bowler for 30. Fresh from a T20 ton the week before, Mo carried on where he left off, waiting for the bad ball before dispatching it to the boundary, until the increasingly scratchy skipper was caught out from an uppish cover drive for 32 off the Chucker before the same happened not long after for Simeone at point.

In came the Gifted Tuppence having taken in the rays with a spot of topless umpiring, riding a high in his new Up, playing some brutal shots alongside Mo to put on a partnership of 93 off 75 balls before being bowled through the gate for 46. Uncle Mo took advantage of a couple of drops by passing his half century and then finding the boundary regularly on his way to an excellent 87.

Having successfully decided he was going on his jollies to Western or Skegness or Hull with Ade’s self-erecting tent and inflatable mattress, Sharif was in a world of his own before being bowled by the nagging line of Hall. The strike was stolen from Mo, allowing Shaz to launch a few balls skyward on his way to a 9-ball 18 before Mo was caught off the penultimate ball, leading to a faultless 0-ball 0 from Vik. 246-7 at tea was considered a fair score but probably tough to defend on a very rapid outfield.

Continuing the Bastille Day celebrations at tea was Mme Stella Artois and a 4-2 lead, alongside the standard spread of oeuf, fromage, jambon, le mini sausage rolls and les flapjack bites. The Chairman decided this was as good a time as any to leave, using Cortana to find three rare Sunday bus services back to sunny St. Irchley, arriving 3 hours later.

The Elf started off well with some wayward deliveries from the openers before a wicket for Shaz, bowled off the foot of batsman #1. The decided tactic of the captain in the heat was to regularly change bowlers but ideally not the ball. Unfortunately the batsmen began to take advantage of this, regularly finding both the boundary (holly bush) and the quick single (sun drenched fielders) from the first change bowlers until Strictly Come Alan and his adjustable under garments brought a 70 run partnership to an end with the batsmen aggressively pirouetting his way to being bowled round his legs.

A range of further bowlers came and went without success with the scoreboard ticking over; The Chuckster making his way to 89 and rotating the strike well. Despite the opening bowler trying his hardest to ice skate his way to the ball, having discarded his bowling slippers on numerous occasions (washing machine appears to have enlarged his shoes…?), and the occasional World Cup-themed stepover, the boundary was still being found with alarming regularity. As the overs drew on and the loss looked all but certain, TCJnr’s captaincy effort diminished and the sun took over everyone’s brains. “It is clear that the books owned the shop rather than the other way about. Everywhere they had run wild and taken possession of their habitat, breeding and multiplying, and clearly lacking any strong hand to keep them down.”

“Time is the best killer” as another ball found the holly bush and George Dawes was certainly feeling this as he stood at fly slip, interest in the game slowly ebbing away as the traditional Sunday finishing time came and went. With 190-2 on the board and the oppo needing just 57 off 96, there can’t have been many players who thought a close match could happen. “Everything must be taken into account. If the fact will not fit the theory - let the theory go.” Letting go of the theory, Uncle Mo was brought into the attack and the game reignited. With gentle away swing, the batsmen were flummoxed (partly the bowling, partly Mo’s nonsense) and the required rate increased.

Tuppence and his 7-2 off side field received excellent support from his fine leg fielder (“don’t bowl a leg side half volley”) but bowled well, finding plenty of lateral movement, a first for the day, restricting the score and putting the pressure back onto the batsmen. With Harris picking up the set Chuckmeister to get the Fitmen interested, the Elf batsmen began to suffer minor brain freeze during the drinks break, trying to finish the game with uppish shots despite the tried and tested singles working well.

Sharif decided to make up his own tactics by dropping a no-ball off Mo, conceding a single followed by a wicket. Then a further Sharif drop at long-off and a subsequent single allowed Sharif to snaffle an exceptional catch the next ball to remove the set batsman and completely turn the game…again (“One must make one's own mistakes”). Mo just couldn’t stop the wickets coming finishing with outstanding figures of 4-17 off 8 overs.

However after Mo and Umberto ran out of overs, it was left to rrrrr-Kid and G. Dawes to feel the pressure. 11 off 2 overs surely wasn’t possible to defend?

Sharif picked up a wicket (8 down) and gave away 5 runs (6 to win). Ade’s final over first ball cleaned up #8’s leg stump…dot and a scampered single meant 5 to win off 3. A whipped 4 and a dot meant scores were level and 1 to win but that final single wasn’t quick enough as TC Jnr picked up the ball at short leg for a run out and a tie! In celebration of the final run out, Tuppence decided to throw his car keys into the non-existent bowl before sharply realising that no-one was interested in that kind of foul play.

So it was what turned out to be another thrilling match in Aldridge played in good spirit against an ever reliable quality team.

And if Agatha Christie taught us anything: “The impossible could not have happened, therefore the impossible must be possible in spite of appearances.”


Non-Agatha Christie quote of the day:

- LBW not out decision. Batsmen said it was too high. Harris pipes up to say “you’re not umpiring mate”.
- next ball 4 runs through cover…“he’s not umpiring but he is batting” says square leg umpire.
- Next ball out. “Now he ain’t umpiring or batting” says Strickers.