AGSFP’s 3rd XI finally played their first game of the 2017 season when they travelled to the Allan Park to play 2nd Cults in the Johnston Rose Bowl on Saturday 3rd June.
The carefully selected team of 9 consisted of Ian Johnston (captain), Bejoy Joseph, Aly McDonald, Doug Russell (wkt), Amir Ali, Gary Stuart, Matthew McCaughtrie, Jason Alexander, Faraj Monnapillai. Cults also had problems fielding a team, playing with only 8 players.
The weather was sunny and the Allan Park looked in great condition, the wicket well grassed, with the boundary short on one side.
FP’s won the toss and batted first. Johnston and Bejoy opened the batting with Lawson and Bashir the bowlers. Lawson bowled very accurate off breaks and Bashir not so accurate left arm over. But Bashir struck first when Johnston edged behind and was caught by the wicketkeeper for 5 (1 x 4).
Joseph was next out LBW to Lawson for 4 (1 x 4), score 28 – 2.
McDonald and Russell batted steadily and after 10 overs FP’s were 40 – 2, the accurate Lawson ( 5 – 2 – 7 – 1) keeping one end quiet.
J. Horn, a 13 year old leg break bowler with a great action, beat both batsmen but any full tosses were dispatched by the FP’s batsmen. P. Linus, a 12 year old seam bowler, also bowled well not giving many runs away.
The 3rd wicket partnership had raised 78 when Russell was out LBW for 29 (1 x 6, 3 x 4). Schoolboy Ali batted well for 9 runs and Stuart hit a couple of good boundaries in his 10 runs before Lawson had him LBW.
McCaughtrie batted correctly scoring 9 then a good last wicket stand by Alexander 14 n.o.( 2 x 4) and Monnapillai 7 n.o. added 13 useful runs to give FP’s a total of 177 off 40 overs. McDonald continued his good batting form with an excellent 61 (9 x 4).
Top bowling for Cults Lawson 8 – 4 – 8 – 3, P. Linus 10 – 0 – 41 – 3, Bashir 10 – 1 – 43 – 2. FP’s Alexander fielded well for Cults as an extra fielder.
Cults batsmen Lawson and Modie began their innings aggressively adding 69 in the first 10 overs, but Stuart finally made the breakthrough when Modie was given LBW for 9 (1 x 4).
Lawson had edged a few through slips and survived an LBW decision where the umpire gave him 50% out, raising his finger half way, then changing his mind. B. Lynas was out for 8 (1 x 4) caught by Stuart off McCaughtrie.
J. Horn batted well for 17 (2 x 4) but wicketkeeper Russell was too quick for him and Horn was stumped off McDonald. Lawson was batting very well, hitting boundaries all round the wicket. P. Lynas was smartly caught by Joseph off McDonald for 17.
FP’s finally dismissed opener Lawson for 106 (3 x 6, 17 x 4) in bizarre circumstances. The batsman had blocked a ball from bowler Alexander, but in attempting to farm the bowling, started off to take a suicide single. As Alexander reached the ball in his follow through, the players clashed and Lawson scrambled back with Alexander claiming he was prevented throwing the ball at the stumps by the batsman. The batsman admitted he had done it and walked off, out obstructing the field for 106 with 15 runs required.
FP’s suddenly had a chance to win, but Bashir hit a couple of boundaries in his 12 n.o. to see Cults home with 1 wicket remaining.
The unusual incident apart, the game was played in good spirit with FP’s giving 5 LBW’s, very forgiving with the wides and supplying an extra fielder. For FP’s McDonald batted and bowled well, and all 4 schoolboys contributing with the bat. Ali, McCaughtrie and Alexander also bowled well. Cults have a couple of good bowling prospects in Horn and Linus.
Due to player unavailability and the weather this was the first game for the 3rds this season with both teams under strength but keen to play some cricket. Both teams enjoyed the game which could have gone either way.
Champagne Moment – Russell recovering from dropping a sitter to completing a stumping very next ball
Man of the Match – Despite his unorthodox dismissal, Lawson hitting a hundred and taking 3 – 8 was the match winner for Cults