Great Missenden Pelicans 237 for 7 (Clive Nicholls 77, Josh Bailey 36*) Golden Age 104 all out (Josh Bailey 3-7, Hasan Arif 3-25)
WON by 133 runs
Man of the Match: Mrs Duck
Another Sunday, another W in the results column as the Pelicans proved much too good for Golden Age.
A 1pm start on the back of a barrage of rain the previous day had the Meadow looking like a bowling track. That was the view of the Golden Age skipper who had no hesitation in putting the Pelicans into bat.
With Asad firmly of the opinion that sleep was more important than turning up on time, it was left to Kunaal and Clive to open up for the Pelis. On the back of his brilliant century seven days previous, hope was high that Kunaal would carry on his merry way.
Sadly, he fell victim to an inside edge that cannoned into leg stump and prompted some serious Golden Age celebrations.
Those celebrations were stifled as Asad walked out and began belting the ball all round the Meadow. It was lucky he was belting the ball around, as witnessing Clive and Asad running together is a truly awful sight. There are few better at turning threes into ones.
Asad’s hopes of a big score were ended when he feathered one behind to the keeper. Asad stood his ground and VDP pulled out the finger of fate. Asad wasn’t sure if he’d hit it, but the punters in the Nags Head beer garden confirmed they heard it 150 yards away.
Greg strode in at No. 4 and the scorebook shifted into full-on binary mode as he and Clive dug in. 63 for 1 after 10 overs morphed into 102 for 2 after 23.
The Pelis were not in dire straits, but an injection of pace was needed following Greg’s departure. Jalil swatted a couple of boundaries and it appeared to imbue him with confidence as he set off for a single that Usain Bolt may not have made. Let’s just say Jal was short of his ground when the stumps were broken.
It was Rag up next to step on the gas and he looked like doing just that with a few lusty blows. But he too was victim of a run out. This was more walk out that run out, if truth be told.
An ever-smiling Rags trudged back to the pavilion and said something along the lines of it’s the first time in 25 overs that Clive had decided to run. True that.
Skip hit a quick-fire 20 to up the rate, but the fireworks followed after he and Clive departed the scene. Josh and Hasan put on a masterclass in finishing. Superb running and big hitting (including one very big hit into the tennis courts) saw them put on 60 in the final six overs to take the Pelis to a commanding 237 for 7 at tea.
With Josh sensing a chance to bowl downhill with Toobes away on his bike, it was left to Rags to open things up from the bottom end.
Golden Age’s genial West Indian Gaz came to have first hit. He has a style all of his own and despite the keeper standing up, he elected to bat a foot and a half outside his crease. With this firmly in mind, Rags sent one down the legside and Skip whipped off the bails with Gaz still a foot and a half outside his crease.
Sadly, the umpire at square leg decided not to raise his finger. When Gaz turns to the Skip and utters “I was that far out I thought about walking” you know the umpire has got that one wrong.
Hasan took the umpire out of the equation by removing the other opener with a beauty that clattered into off stump.
A couple of lbw shouts were turned down, before the finger was finally raised for one that hit Gaz on the toe in front of middle.
The Golden Age No. 3 was making a decent fist of things when the game took a turn for the farcical.
Mrs Duck and her tribe of children pulled up, and she demonstrated a lack of cricketing knowledge on a par with Duck by parking adjacent to the sightscreen. Having to extricate a tribe of children from a car does take a bit of time, which the Golden Age No. 3 did not like in the slightest.
Leaning on his bat and refusing to take guard, the Skip asked him if we should just call the game off now and go to the pub or play some cricket. He was not for moving and took great offence when the Skip said we’re not exactly playing Test standard with a bowler touching roughly 40 mph on the speed gun.
That was the final straw for the batsman who went into full tantrum mode by throwing bat and gloves on the floor and setting off for the pavilion. The funny (and it was very funny) thing was that he got about five yards and realised he’d thrown his gear on the ground and had to turn round and get them before storming off to the pavilion.
After an age (Mrs Duck was still getting kids out of the car at this point) another Golden Age batsman came out. He sort of apologised and said 90% of the time the No. 3 would never act like that. So 10 times out of a hundred he elects to throw his bat and gloves on the floor and storms off when someone is stood near the sightscreen. Interesting, very interesting.
To be fair, the No. 3 should not have been there to have his tantrum as he was run out by about two feet in the previous over but the umpire at square leg did not give it. We learned after the game that that umpire has a lazy eye. It was all starting to become clear, apart from for the umpire with the lazy eye.
Lazy-eyeitis was catching, as we should have had a stumping off Josh but the other umpire kept his hands in his pockets to cut down Pelican celebrations in their stride.
Josh felt the best option was to hit the stumps and he did so on a couple of occasions to cut through the Golden Age middle order.
It was a blend of pace of spin, as Adam found some prodigious turn which helped him claim a couple more victims.
The Pelis were closing in on an easy victory against an overmatched opponent, but it would not be a Pelicans display without some comedy fielding.
We don’t expect dropped catches from Kunaal, but we got one on Sunday. Asad put one down in the slips, but to be fair to him he was still scarred from his assault by Toobes the previous week. But the cream was taken by Greg who played out a drop and missed run out all in one movement. With both batsmen stood in the middle of the wicket, Greg unleashed his cannon of an arm – and sent the ball flying towards third man. That was a pretty tough thing to achieve given he was stood at point.
It did not delay victory for long, as JG took out off stump of the final man to wrap up a 133-run victory.
Drinks were taken in the Cross Keys, where we were informed of the story of the umpire with a lazy eye.
Reports are intended to convey an entertaining picture of the day’s play. No disrespect is meant, but if on occasion we misjudge matters, please take it in the friendly and humorous spirit in which it is intended.