Sunday 12 June 2022

SCCC 257 – 3 (40 overs)
Wood Street 71 – all out (20.1 overs)
Won by 186 runs
40 over match
SCCC negotiated the toss on Wednesday via email

With last game’s writer demoted for talking about himself too much, somewhat ironically Ed Grindrod was chosen to write:

A glorious summer’s day welcomed the Cryptics to June and to Wood Street. Seeckts Snr appeared for his 350th game, Pippa for his 349th, and Scottie for his own personal start time. The toss and Cryptic opening partnership had been agreed days in advance, although technophobe Pippa wouldn’t have known, but which green top they would bat upon clearly hadn’t. 

Stu and Ed G strode out on a potential AUDI and pair a piece. Stu’s golden duck earlier in the season was offered a potential platinum friend, but Stu offered a resolute forward defence instead. An entertaining career best 33 followed, overtaking the 28* of his last scoring innings in 2019, and included four 4s, two 6s and one lost ball all hit off the same bowler into the same leg side shrubbery, whilst bringing up 300 career runs in 45 innings (or 35 non-zero innings). Toby briefly came to the crease at three, before slashing at a wide one to be sent back, to look after Ricky, by the afternoon’s third best catch, although you would have got good odds at the time. Pippa entered at four, surviving his first ball unlike last year, and soon scored his first runs of the season (when was the last time that took until June?). In doing so West’s opening spell of five overs 2-40 from the NN-West End (that’s quite enough geography thanks – ED) came to an end, without Ed offered the chance to face his bowling.  

The middle overs saw Ed and Pippa develop an impressive partnership as the score passed 100 in the 15th over and 200 in the 32nd. By then both batsmen had reached 50 and Pippa scored his 7500th run for the Pink and Black. After 35 overs Ed caved in to having a drink that Scottie kindly delivered (his single positive contribution all day – no you didn’t make the cupcakes) before telling Pippa to give up some strike as Ed was close to a century, I can confirm Ed did not hear quite how close. By now the wicketkeeper, who’d had a rather poor day with the gloves on, was bowling and the opening bowler keeping. Ed decided to hit the first two legal balls for four each, bringing up 500 Cryptic runs. The next full toss was smoked straight back above the bowler’s left shoulder only for him to take the day’s second most unexpected catch and leave Ed one short. The only Cryptic 99 since his birth (and in digitised history) and one off of his old man’s top score, the writer clings onto his 1* on Saturday to claim a weekend century. Hugs and Pippa batted through the remaining overs to finish on 8* and 77* respectively with the total approximately 90 more than Wood Street had scored on a Sunday in about three years.

BYOT was consumed at double speed to allow the Wood Street top order a few overs before retiring to go and play football. Sam Gibb made sure one of the openers had a little longer to swap spikes for studs, bowling a lovely line and length to draw an outside edge. What followed was the most unexpected catch of the day (and as we know by now that’s saying something) as Seeckts Snr bent down and effortlessly scooped it off his bootlaces. Gibby now has half his Cryptic wickets caught Seeckts, a pattern that seems somewhat unlikely to continue. The younger Seeckts, given the gloves and forced to stand next to his father all afternoon, almost lost patience with the umpire for giving byes for one that landed on the long grass and scuttled away past slip. 

The Cryptics bowled well, sharing the wickets around. Highlights included Grinders Snr taking us back a year to burgle another wicket with the “googly”, Gossy impersonating and taking a wicket with the actions of both PAJA and Scottie, and Scottie retaliating by throwing four buzzers over Toby’s head to end the day on -4. Stu the Allrounder could have had three wickets if Seeckts Snr had been given more time to eat his lunch, the ball cannoning off the undernourished lower apex of his “catching triangle”, with many Cryptics thinking, rather hoping actually, the impact had been about five inches lower. Instead Seeckts took the last wicket with his first ball, before agreeing to let the batsmen play on, given the earlier retirements. Three overs later, much to PAJA’s relief, the lack of a scorer was noted so those runs and potential for a batsman being dismissed twice, are lost forever. 

A 186 run victory was the third largest in the modern era, beaten only by thrashings of EKTA (1997) and FZY (1992). We ate Mrs Scottie’s delightful cupcakes, enjoyed the sun, uncovered four and a half more players for next week, drank them out of Doom Bar, and Hugs effortlessly showed the bar staff how to pour pints. Put me down for next year skip and thanks for coming Keith.

Jingle Bells.

Editor’s footnote: Modesty prevents young Ed from describing his own concentration and fine strokeplay for well over two hours. Fully deserving a ton, there can be no quibbles with the book as his dad was scoring. Though the game lacked intensity due to the weakness of our opponents, decent players often fail in such circumstances (see FZY and EKTA links above) and if this sort of innings comes as a result of scarce opportunity with that bat, a few more weeks in a redundant tail should see him go one better before long. Three cheers!