A cold wet Harlaw greeted the two teams, well the opposition and the six home players who were there by 12.50. It was a much changed side with Rutwig Hegde & Kingshuk Ghosh being promoted to the 2nd XI, Sandeep on paternity duty and captain Ian Johnston away on a well deserved break. Team was Lee, James Lord, Agar Haidar, Sara R, Naresh, Tamus Whyte, Paul Norwood, Chaitu N, Shri B, A Thanga & Arun K.
Stand in skipper lost the toss to old Grammarian Rob Fryer and was asked to bat. With regular opener Norwood suffering a bad back and demoting himself down the order, Jim Lee and James Lord opened the batting against youngster Rob Kennedy. 1st ball was wayward for a wide but next ball was on a good line & length that came back in on Lee who played a rather expansive shot first up and was cleaned bowled; 1-1. Agar Haidar came in and looked determined to play shots but also to run himself out, comically ending up on his butt on more than one occasion. By the sixth over the two had added 16 before Lord was bowled by Day with an absolute peach of a ball that pitched on middle & straightened to take the off stump; 17-2. Sara Rathinam in next looked uncomfortable but determined not to give his wicket away. The partnership was developing well with some decent shots on a wet outfield before Agar was plum lbw for 21 in over 15 to Chowdry; 39-3. Naresh came and went easily run out without scoring. High hopes for Tamus Whyte given his brother’s fine batting record but presented an easy catch at short extra cover off Cordiner without scoring; 42-5. Norwood finally emerged and quickly started knocking the ball around for singles. Sara finally presented a smart catch to 1st slip for 10 shortly followed by Norwood trying to use the vacant 3rd man area but missing the ball & bowled off the disciplined Cordiner for 8; 60-7. Chaitu added a couple before missing a fairly straight on as did Akil shortly after; 73-9. Shri had come in looking aggressive and trying to play shots and grab as much of the strike which led to Arun’s run out for 1. Shri not out on 7; 74ao.
With an unfamiliar bowling attack, the stand in skipper turned to young Akil to open and was lucky in his 2nd over to have Chowdry stretching for a widish delivery, slapping a well taken chance to Norwood at short mid-on; 11-1. Naresh was struggling with his rhythm and was punished with a 21-run 2nd over enforcing a change with Arun coming in and rewarded by an excellent catch behind by Jim Lee off the faintest of edges after an over aggressive shot; 42-2. Norwood went all out attack to try to build some pressure with closer fielding against dad & son team of the Scotts. No love lost between the two as Dad crashed into son on a single which got Alan rattled & experienced Shri took full advantage by bowling the younger Scott for 5; 55-3. Chalmers went next for 3 runs on the 2nd of two good appeals for lbw off the disciplined bowling of Haidar after a brilliant combined spell of bowling in tandom with Whyte of 4 consecutive maidens. Agar had his bowling partner to thank for a very good catch at wide slip to get Gordon for a duck. The dream was on! 64-5. Rob Fryer, a very fine bat, was made to look uneasy against this bowling and when Scott senior was forced to retire despite having his son as a runner, a couple of wickets here could have forced an unlikely win for Grammar. But Rob and P Cox were patient and it paid off by seeing Methlick over the line in the 26th over. Read these stats: Tamus and Agar bowled 10 overs for 10 runs against good batsmen! Great effort and well backed up by great fielding all round.
The batting let us down and with thirty more runs to defend we may have pulled off a win but the spirit of the team was excellent and the stand in skipper learned an awful lot about this team, and liked it!
Man of the match: Agar with 21 runs and bowling figures of 4-1-4-2.
Champagne moment: Those ten overs!