The Gladdies put up a solid enough display in week one, but we still need to bowl pretty well to lock us a spot in the Grand Final.
In rainy conditions we were sent in. Brendan and Lach did a great job of keeping the ball on the ground and taking care of the openers. But with the rain really tumbling, the large outfield was not quick, and with the spinners sending down darts, it was not easy to up the scoring rate. We tried to launch from an excellent platform around the 30 over mark, the bowling stayed tight, and we just couldn’t quite get enough bat to ball. Brendan ended up making an excellent 74, but we ended up with just 164 from 50 overs, with only 4 wickets down. Hopefully conditions will be similar week two and we can return the bowling and fielding favours.
So, after almost certainly the longest midweek break in semi final history, we played out season 19-20 in September 2020. No sh.t.
Week 2 was at Waterworth Park, Tempe on Saturday 5 September. Yes, it’s a different ground to week 1, but, to be honest, I can’t even remember what happened, so the fact that this fantasy took place at a different location doesn’t bother me that much.
The Gladdies just clearly love cricket so much they couldn’t bear to have the next week, so we chivalrously allowed the Spartans to book their saloon passage straight through to the Grand Final. The day started pretty well with an early run out, but Spartans then set about consolidating for a good 10 overs or so. Jamie and Simon kept it tight, before Jimbo’s introduction really took things up a notch. Unfortunately that roughly equated to when our fielding went down a notch, and we proceeded to drop 4 catches off about 10 balls. Ouch. The batsmen, funnily enough, took confidence from that and started scoring a little more freely. Things were still finely balanced until a flurry of wickets, courtesy of Jimmy D and Hirak, put us well back into the contest, setting up an interesting final session with Spartans needing 64 for victory off 16 overs with 4 wickets in hand.
Fortune ended up favouring the brave, and Spartans took advantage of the occasional loose ball and ran hard to slowly whittle down the required runs, and despite us jagging a late LBW, they ended up hitting the winning runs with more than an over to spare. Disappointing.