London Premier League: Oz the Great and Powerful, But Road shown the ‘Dor in thriller

Full Scorecard:

King’s Road succumbed to an agonising one-wicket defeat with just three balls to spare as the Dors creaked to victory to shred KRCSC’s league ambitions.

On a green pitch that was sticky underfoot, The Road were put in to bat. Adam Paterson signalled his intentions early, taking the game to the opening bowlers as he timed a glorious straight drive off the lady’s tee for a six. He would fall for a brisk 17 having got The Road off to a quick start, caught off a leading edge.

Chris MacNicol set about accumulating runs at the other end, looking positive in defence and pouncing on any width to drive through the covers. Raju Mazumder was the new man, and following some confusion he was given out nicked off to the keeper for 3, unfortunate as he looked in good nick. Peter JE was next in, he ran himself out.

Road had failed to capitalise on a strong start and were teetering at 53-3. With CMac occupying the crease and ticking along, Jamie “Grizzly Bear” Keating took matters into his own hands. He’d had quite enough of this accumulation nonsense. and with a cry of ‘Bowler bad. Keats good’ he wielded his great club of decimation to strike blow after lusty blow through the on side for four.

He then hit the shot of the match, falling to one knee in a deceptively propositional pose, before obliterating the ball onto the train tracks for a stupendous maximum. They say if you listen closely at night, you can still hear the ghost of the train driver shrieking as an imaginary red ball hurtles towards his train.

CMac eventually perished for an excellent career-best 36. Keats didn’t last much longer, bowled as The Road slumped to 113-5. Laxman Pillai was next out, nicking off to be caught by a one-handed blinder by the keeper.

Captain Dan Sherman and Mo Shaboodien looked to rebuild steadily. Sherman deserved credit, jet lagged and with PEJ in attendance, he still mustered 15 before being caught looking to accelerate the rate. Mo was bowled and Osman Khan was too as The Road threatened to be all out before their allotted over.

Matt Small and Michael Rossi rallied and a couple of sweetly struck Small shots meant that KRCSC finished on 158-9 from their 35.

Tea was delicious. But now it was time for action.

Mo and Oz opened up and bowled what will surely go down as one of the great opening spells, conceding a ludicrous 10 runs from the first 7 overs.

Mo picked up the first wicket, clean bowling a ringer for 1. Next ball he looked to have his second, but the LBW was inexplicably not given. It was a super mOver, a wicket Moden in fact, quite Mognificent stuff.

At the other end, the Wizard of Os was casting a spell that was, well, magical. He summoned all of his power, using the elements and years of learned sorcery to weave a web of deception from which the batsman could not escape. Time and again he whispered ‘Wingardium Levi-off-stump’ and it was all the hapless batsman could do to keep the mighty wizard at bay.

Smally was next into the attack, a man in wicket-taking form. After a couple of looseners, he bowled what experts are already calling the Small of the Century, a delivery that pitched on middle and cut away, just missing the edge. Soon after he had his reward the ball chipped to the reliable Cmac who pouched it like a matriarchal Kangaroo. Soon after, the ball was chipped to Patz at point, who took a sharp catch. Suddenly, Road were in the hunt.

Michael Rosy, always posy, served up some puddings and some pies as he came into the attack, and was quickly left with egg on his face: having spent the ENTIRE train journey digging PEJ’s fielding out, he watched in awe as the ball was walloped into the deep at the mighty tree, who caught it, screamed, and almost threw the ball straight into the umpire’s head in his euphoria. Pipe. Down. Rossi.

The next pair started to accelerate, and Sherman needed a wicket. He turned to his star man, and Solid Oz a Rock, he provided the goods, Mo taking a smart catch off a nick.

All this time, Lightning Lax had been fielding like a shadow cat in the deep, and two thrilling catches had Road thinking they might pull off the win. The second was particularly brilliant, as he dismissed danger man Tony Campbell for 13. Rossi had the oppo captained stumped for 0, and thanks to 3 each for Smallz and Rossi, The Road needed just one wicket to win…

But they couldn’t get it, and despite stellar resistance in the field, the Dors snuck home with three balls to go. It was testament to The Road they carried it so far, they looked 30 runs light but relentless energy in the field took them close. But through the Moon Dor they fell, onwards and upwards…

Final thought:
Do not meddle in the affairs of Wizards, for they are subtle and quick to anger. J.R.R.Tolkein on Oz ‘Wizard of’ Khan, 1937.

Author: P-e-t-e-r-J-a-c-k-s-o-n-E-a-s-t-w-o-o-d

Author: Matt Small

Fast Bowler Extraordinaire & Media Secretary 2017

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