King’s College versus Sacred Heart College 15 and 22 November
• King’s College 221 all out (75 overs)
• Sacred Heart College 224 for 3 (52 overs)
On a gloomy day with lots of rain forecast, King’s won the toss and chose to bat. The lively wicket and heavy winds, not to mention poor light, made runs difficult to come by. The run-rate was painfully slow and Sacred Heart College bowled intelligently and with discipline. The fact that three of the top six batsmen got out without troubling the scorer showed to a certain extent how lively the pitch was, but also highlighted the disappointing lack of determination shown by two batsmen who only lasted a total of five balls.
King’s managed to stagger through to 125 runs for the loss of 5 wickets by the time rain finally brought play to a halt for the third time in the day with Mitchell Murray looking classy on 78 and Mitchell Nash showing a lot of guts and determination to be standing alongside his captain on 5 runs but more importantly, surviving 17 overs of probing bowling.
A week later Mitchell Murray and Mitchell Nash resumed the fight back and the wicket was now more conducive to strokeplay. It was heart-warming to see Mitchell Nash applying himself bravely and helping the skipper put on a 95 run partnership before the former became the impressive and wily Dale Phillip’s third wicket of the match. Phillips was not done yet and neither was Mitchell Murray. In search of valuable runs whilst losing partners, Mitchell Murray began plundering the bowling and fittingly got to his century with a boundary in the company of his overnight partner. It was a mouth-watering battle between Mitchell Murray and the canny Phillips in which both came out on top.
Although the bowler gave away 64 runs in his 18 overs (mainly to the benefit of Mitchell Murray), he was full of tricks and snared the dashing, guns-a-blazing, chunky batsman, going for another pull shot in the 73rd over to virtually end the King’s innings. Mitchell Murray had grafted and then scorched his way to 140 runs and will hopefully take this form to Lincoln (Gillette Cup Finals) in just over a fortnight from now.
Phillips picked up 5 wickets and his athleticism led to another dismissal – a brilliant run out of Oscar Shepperson. Phillips raced through in his follow-through, scooped up the ball, and in one movement turned 180 degrees and aimed at the stumps to have the batsmen out by a clear two metres or more.
Earlier on in the innings Mitchell Murray, combined with Callum Douglas, raised the second-best partnership of the innings (75 runs) – an impressive rear-guard contribution by the young batsman in trying conditions.
Sacred Heart College set about the chase with very little pressure on a friendly track, knowing that all they needed was just under three runs per over for victory, which turned out to be their first in four encounters against King’s this year. At 12 for 2 in the 6 over, home supporters might have contemplated an early finish with the home team cantering to victory, but with the Phillips duo still at the crease, a huge mountain had to be scaled. A 77 run partnership saw the younger of the two, Dale Phillips depart but the capable Tom Ritchie stood alongside Glen Phillips who was looking in fine touch. The pair put on an unbeaten 135 runs to bring victory with 24 overs to spare. Glen was allowed to settle and was given the freedom to score which he pounced on easily to show his class.
The bowlers needed to maintain tight lines and discipline but did not put enough pressure on the batsmen to keep them in check. There was no panic at any stage in the run-chase and patches of ineffective fielding allowed the visitors to get away. King’s will have to be much better than this when they square off against the best one-day teams in the country for the Gillette Cup (from Monday 8 to the Friday 12 December).
|C Douglas||21||H McLean||0|
|M Murray||140||C Bevin||10|
|F Salmon||0||O Williamson||0|
|M Nash||24||S Johnston||5|
|O Shepperson||2||T Baker||0|
|W St John||6 not out|
|S Johnston||7-2-32-0||T Baker||3-0-24-1|
|W St John||8-2-32-1||C Whiting||3-0-13-0|
|C Bevin||13-3-31-0||H McLean||14-0-68-1|
|O Shepperson||2-0-6-0||M Murray||2-0-13-0|