Muddies Bs claim win in tough conditions
Tuesday January 7th 2014
Game 1 Vs United
Underdone in player availability and overdone in festive season cheer, Muddies B Grade returned on Sunday, January 5, for the first fixtures of 2014.
The team headed to Griffith Park Cairns, where back to back T20 matches were scheduled over the two available fields. Muddies had the very first game of the day in absolutely exhaustive conditions and came out triumphant despite one of the worst starts to a match on record.
Playing T20’s in the tropics is tandem amount to being “Troppo”, as C Grade Skipper Steve Doble stepped up to replace a holidaying Ben Vikionkorpi. Doble managed to lose the toss, sending Muddies into bat when they wanted to field (thinking the early conditions may be more favourable to stand in the field).
Young United A grade and Representative selected bowler Tom Edwards tore through with serious heat to match the humidity and claimed two wickets in the first over; Darlington and Butters managing just 5 balls between them and twin ducks.
Returning from injury, the pace and movement was also too much for Logan Marsh who starred last season as he returned to the change rooms without troubling scorer Dave Driver. “Buckets” – Gary Postans (4) managed a couple of well-timed edges past second slip for two twos, before being stumped and Miglioranza was out 5th ball for one also to Edwards. Muddies, feeling a little shattered, texted usual captain Benny V to let him know the plight of a 5/10 scorecard after 5 overs; the response was not hard to guess: "WTF?"
Another returning injured 2012/13 player, Mitchell Driver (25), set about to form a partnership with the unflustered youth of Ethan McCullough (top scorer on 31). The two arrested the embarrassing rot in a nine over spell, returning 61 at which point both players lost their wicket, leaving Doble (17) and Lucas (10) to attempt a worthy finish which, in part, they did. Both players managed a run a ball 27 run partnership including excellent sixes before the pair also went in succession – 8/98, Johnson (4) and Sorensen (2 n.o.) finished off well striving for every run they could, Johnson run out off the last ball with a semi-respectable total of 105 and something worthy of defending.
The conditions were very oppressive as Johnson took the new ball, ten taken from his first over while the ever accurate Sorensen bowled within himself and the conditions for consecutive maidens and the first scalp in his second over – United 1/14 off 3.
Lucas, wearing all the wounds of a big night out and the whole festive season of nights out showed his true quality and worth, beating the bat regularly as he replaced Johnson, although it was first the excellent in field efforts of Butters that cut off a certain boundary then throwing the ball from a horizontal ground position for Miglioranza to assist a run out.
Lucas then followed with a cutting delivery to knock the off stump bail of Edwards – 3/26. Sorensen (2/5) followed suit in his last over when he clean bowled incoming batsmen Eaton for a duck with a slower ball – 4/26. Short spells were the call of the day Miglioranza (0/11) and Butters (2/16) kept the pressure up as another run out (Miglioranza to Butters this time) placed the United side well behind the run rate, eventually closing at 8/83 off their allotted overs.
Muddies won, but at what cost? Everyone was crippled in the conditions as the next match was scheduled to start immediately on the alternate field!
A fortunate win of the toss gave most Muddies players a reprieve from the draining weather as the team chose to bat, placing opposition Rovers immediately back on to the field they had just left having themselves successfully defended their innings total to win their first game as well.
Luca passed out adjacent team members in the shade under large strangler figs as Darlington and Miglioranza opened the team account, the former waiting twice as long as he does in his normal C grade to successfully attempt a six 4th ball of the first over!
This set a very positive tone as the pair put on 52 by the 7th over in complete contrast to 5/10 in the first game. Darlington raced to 30 off 25 balls before holing out to a boundary rider. Miglioranza managed 16 off the same number of deliveries as he was joined by Marsh as the pair put on another 52 run stand before Marsh was dubiously given out LBW for 18, Muddies with 6 overs to spare 2/104.
Like those before him, Butters was keen to put the first game batting demise behind him. Although he admitted to an error in judgement in stroke choice, to be bowled around his legs for 10, but the damage was done and remaining strike was given to an unstoppable Miglioranza, who finished the allotted twenty overs unbeaten on 57 off 55 balls to leave the Muddies in a strong position 6/150; Driver (1) and McCullough (0) the ones to miss out after the first game rescue.
The team were dreading fielding in the heat and humidity despite a reasonable breeze and looked to the opening bowlers to create team spirit and energy.
Unfortunately Johnson opened with a shocker including 5 wides, United 0/15 off one over! Sorensen did not disappoint though, Miglioranza receiving a catch early on but at 2/46 in the 5th over Muddies energy was waning rather than growing.
Lucas, red-faced but refreshed from his rest in the shade, dug deep and showed again his worth even in the toughest conditions and circumstances breaking through with Rovers’ opener clean bowled, 3/57 and again in his third over to return 2/19 off 4.
At the 10 over drinks break Rovers were travelling soundly, with over half the runs and over half their wickets in tact at 4/79. Johnson returned to the attack have shaken his first over demon to become the demon himself – 3 wickets for just 6 runs off his last 3 overs, breaking the backs of Rovers as Butters and Postans tidied the tail in a great second portion of the innings, all out 108 and completing a Muddies white wash!
These conditions were the toughest of the season as this long hot, humid yet dry period of weather continues and although there were fielding errors they respectfully stuck to the task, focussing on positives rather than negatives, two games where virtually everyone contributed toward the wins – well done lads, your usual Captain’s pulse has returned to normal!
The B grade team have a repeat of this two T20 match comp this coming Sunday with a fully replenished side and the C grade Muddies have the toughest fixture of the season due to an 8.30am start at Mission Beach – WTF!