Optimists Cricket Club News story

2nd X1 last Belgium trip this season to Gent

18 Jul 2020

Back by popular demand, a Marcus Cope report on Saturdays eventful 2nd team events:
As dawn broke in Glacis, the 2nds (aka The Entertainers) gathered and drove up to Gent after waiting for the late vice capt.
New pitch report: Apparently ICC commissioned, expensive sports park, big boundaries, but must have run out of budget leaving a minefield outfield. Not fun for the ankles.
After Skip lost the toss again, we were forced to bowl. Soon we were on top with a run out in the first over but Maz became the wide culprit of this trip. His fifth stump line proving to be too wide for the Gent umpire. After the looseners, he tightened up to bowl 3 overs 1 for just 9. Fielding was on point with 3 run outs and only 1 drop. Spin Twins came on and kept it tight as we restricted them to 127 and walked off pretty confident.
Joost and James began steadily as we cruised at 6 an over before the collapse began. Joost finished with 45 and that’s all that needs to be said. We lost by 2 runs when we all knew we should have not.
Scott’s curry report (Scott who?): Too big for his boots now in the 1st team. Didn’t miss anything cause no food provided due to new BCF rules but Raju kept a sandwich for you don’t worry big lad.
This time Skip won the toss and put them back in the field which was correct on paper but 5 overs in and we were 25-4. Marcus then came in to occupy the crease and salvage the score. Good running and traditional batting was the obvious answer as a simple 25 can make a big difference. As batting partners came and went like Henry the XVIIIth wives, the score crept up to a healthy 110 with Hari mashing a last-ball six over deep square into the baseball field. It’s a proper sport we play in.
Back in the field with a defendable score, we were ‘optimistic’ which soon was dampened as Mohit got hit for 15 off the first over. Thankfully their “go big or go home” opener chipped out and now the quickfire 18 is insignificant as the squeeze was on. Wicket taker maestro Raju and miserly Pankaj bowled superbly as the top order so the opponent couldn’t get the ball of the square and then were caught out quickly. Hari’s debut wicket proved to be vital as one batsman was trying to hit the ball back to Lux. Must have wanted to get home for the football. Spin Twins came on again and bowled superbly. Vishi taking 3 wickets as the run rate climbed and climbed. No dropped catches and a one-handed effort from Advyth kept piling on the pressure. Pankaj doing the final damage in the last over and we won pretty comfortably by the above mentioned 25 runs.
1 game we should have won and lost, and the other where we should have lost and won. Belgium cricket really is its own breed but somehow we are crazy enough to do it again each weekend.