For the last match of the 2018 season Wimbledon United sauntered over to New Malden to take on a Malden Wanderers team at their spacious Cambridge Road ground on a fine sunny late summer Sunday afternoon, fair weather clouds passing overhead and a light breeze anticipating the imminent onset of autumn. With the days beginning to draw in it was decided to go for 35 overs and it was Malden Wanderers who batted first.
Wimbledon started in standard fashion, Pete and Andy taking the opening overs and Pete struck early, bowling D Bateman in the third over for 5. That the other opener, J Hammond, had by this time made 17 tells one that he for one was in no mood to hang about and had the skill and shots to make a mark. N Bateman stuck around for a bit but was next out caught by Jonathan Williams off Andy for 1. D Hammond then helped J Hammond (quite a family team this) put on 63 for the third wicket before falling to a catch by Andy off Rowan, but by now twenty overs had been bowled and the score was 101 for 3. The score would be more than doubled in the next fifteen overs however. Another partnership, this time featuring D Shepherd with the aforesaid Hammond, added 44 before something of a tragedy befell the young Hammond. Having played his way to 99 with a wonderful display of classy hitting and needing just a single to get his century he played a tame prod in the air back to the bowler, one Mitesh Patel, to be caught and bowled frustratingly short of the magic mark.
Malden carried on though; 30 were added by Shepherd and M Bateman until Shepherd was caught by Jono off Greg for 29. With M Bateman at the early stages of a patiently crafted innings of 27, next man Murphy was then bowled by Andy for 4, the Wanderers sitting comfortably on 179 for 6. An aggressive burst from next man Campbell took the score on to 204 in the final over before he was caught by a Malden Wanderers sub (Shepherd) off Greg again for 14 and four balls later the patient Bateman was run out (not quite so patient then) by Greg, fielding off his own bowling, for his 27. The final ball went for a leg bye and Wanderers finished on 207 for 8.
Wimbledon would need their own version of a Hammond innings if they were to stand a chance of a win to cap the season, but right from the off things began to fall apart. Andy and Rowan opened the batting against the lively pace of Kuhrt and Patel, but as soon as the fifth ball Rowan was unfortunately dismissed, misreading the pace and bounce and caught by a close catcher (D Hammond) for a duck. Andy was bowled in Kuhrt’s second over for 10 and four overs later Anand was caught in the gulley by M Bateman off Kuhrt again for 5. After just seven overs Wimbledon had declined to 20 for 3. Disaster struck in the eighth, bowled by Patel, when first James was bowled for 1 and next ball Gary was also bowled for a golden, the double wicket maiden taking Wimbledon down to 20 for 5. Mitesh, next man in, managed to negotiate the hat-trick ball without unnecessary drama.
Little progress had been made before the next wicket fell, that of Jonathan, who’d managed only one four before being bowled by Hawken. It was clearly not going to be Wimbledon’s day. However, with Mitesh and Curtis at the wicket a partnership of sorts did materialise as in the space of eleven overs 56 runs were added, both players exhibiting the right level of concentration and controlled aggression against a mix of Malden bowlers not to get themselves in trouble. Mitesh was first to be undone however, caught at slip by J Hammond off Shepherd for 16, Curtis having contributed 36 to the stand. He unfortunately was next out, caught and bowled by D Bateman for 34, leaving the visitors on 82 for 8. It was possible at this stage to discern a slight lessening of immediacy, urgency and control in the Wanderers’ bowling, (surprise surprise) and although Steve Murphy proved unable to take advantage, failing to trouble the scorer unduly, dismissed for nought, a lively last wicket partnership then developed between Greg and Pete which added an eventful 44 run finale to the day‘s proceedings. Greg blasted consecutive sixes to add to the general sense of demob merriment, as well as six fours and he was perhaps somewhat implausibly looking to a half century when any ambitions in that direction were unkindly thwarted by the dismissal of Pete, bowled by M Bateman for 19.
So Wimbledon finished well short on 144 all out, all of 63 runs light of the Wanderers total, but an enjoyable day had been had and it was a pleasant enough way to finish a memorable season, with just the Cottenham Shield competition to wrap things up the following Sunday. For the final accolade of the season and with the bowling generally having been beaten about the park, the Man of the Match award goes to Greg, for his fun and games innings of 42, two wickets and a smart run out.
|Innings of Malden Wanderers C. C.||Innings of Wimbledon United C. C.|
|Batsmen||How Out||Total||Batsmen||How Out||Total|
|1||J Hammond||c. & b. Patel||99||1||A Cripps||b. Kuhrt||10|
|2||D Bateman (c)||b. Brown||5||2||R Wije’dena||c. Hammond, b. Kuhrt||0|
|3||N Bateman||c. Williams, b. Cripps||1||3||J Flannery||b. Patel||1|
|4||D Hammond||c. Cripps, b. Wije’dena||20||4||A Nayak||c. M Bateman, b. Kuhrt||5|
|5||D Shepherd||c. Williams, b. Dean||29||5||J Williams||b. Hawken||4|
|6||M Bateman||Run out (Dean)||27||6||G Saxby (c)(w)||b. Patel||0|
|7||J Murphy||b. Cripps||4||7||M Patel||c. Hammond, b. Shepherd||16|
|8||A Campbell||c. Sub (Shepherd), b. Dean||14||8||C Phillip||c. & b. D Bateman||34|
|9||R Hawken||Not out||1||9||S Murphy||c. M Bateman, b. Shepherd||0|
|10||J Kuhrt||Not out||0||10||G Dean||Not out||42|
|11||A Patel||dnb||11||P Brown||b. M Bateman||19|
|Extras W3 NB0 B2 LB2||7||Extras W0 NB1 B12 LB0||13|
|Total (for 8 wickets) (35 overs)||207||Total (for 10 wickets) (32.1 overs)||144|
|Fall of wkts: 1-22(2); 2-35(3); 3-98(4); 4-142(1); 5-172(5); 6-179(7); 7-204(8); 8-206(6)||Fall of wkts: 1-1(2); 2-10(1); 3-20(4); 4-20(3); 5-20(6); 6-26(5); 7-82(7); 8-82(8); 9-100(9)|
|Bowling Figures: Cripps – 7/0/44/2; Brown – 7/0/25/1;
Dean – 7/0/41/2; Wije’dena – 6/0/44/1; Patel – 6/0/29/1; Williams – 2/0/20/0
|Bowling Figures: Kuhrt – 6/1/8/3; Patel – 5/2/23/2; Hawken – 5/0/28/1; N Bateman – 3/0/15/0; Campbell – 3/1/12/0; M Bateman – 3.1/0/12/1; D Bateman – 3/0/21/1; Shepherd – 3/0/6/2; J Hammond – 1/0/7/0|
Result ~ Win for Malden Wanderers C. C. by 63 runs
~~ Wimbledon United ‘Man of the Match’ – Greg Dean ~~