After a COVID cancellation two weeks ago, the Sunday XI returned hastily to winning ways against the Grannies, largely thanks to the lusty blows of Finn Karsten and Henry Campbell and a destructive spell from Jack Rusted.
The Grannies won the toss and inserted the Philanderers on a drying wicket at the adopted home venue of Exning Park. Ben Marshall (debut) and Jack Dillon made a steady start with the bat, before Jack perished attempting to hit the pavilion roof, only to look behind and find his wicket re-arranged. Ben struggled to find a willing partner as wickets fell around him before he too departed and the Philanderers found themselves 4 down with two fresh batsmen at the crease, Finn and Sam Serby (debut). Unfortunately, Serby did not hang around on this occasion, with Rutt making a rare failure to contribute, leaving a harmless-looking off break only for it to strike the off stump.
Sam striding out for his maiden Philanderers innings
This brought together two of the club's premier cricketers (as per Phil’s very own Dream XI), with Campbell joining Finn, as the score teetered around 100-6. While some may see such a position as a time to consolidate, Finn decided to up the ante and lead a counter-attack. While taking particular liking to their off-spinner, Finn threatened to exact revenge on Pimblett for an earlier lbw call against Ed with a missile narrowly missing his head. Meanwhile, Campbell ably played a supporting role to keep the scoreboard ticking with a wide array of shots. Once Finn had departed for 63, Henry took on the role of the aggressor, striking a couple of sixes on his way to 50*, taking the team to 208-7 declared after 32 overs.
Finn succeeding where Jack had earlier failed
Ed practising an addition to his pitch sweeping repertoire
Not content with his runs, Campbell set his sights on the Grannies top order, claiming two quick wickets. The opposing batsmen were just beginning to settle when Sir George called on Jack Rusted to break the partnership. He set upon the batsmen with his inswing with a mix of good balls and gifts. Needless to say, the good balls proved ineffective, beating the inside edge time and time again. However, his gifts proved more destructive, enabling him to rip out the middle order with a spell of 5-1-23-5. Meanwhile, at the other end, Ed plugged away with his leggies, regularly beating the bat to little avail until Sam pulled off a sharp stumping. At 8 down, the match began to meander towards a conclusion until Rutt intervened with a vintage second spell to finish the innings off, with the Philanderers 81 runs to the good and a couple of overs to spare.
George’s view from short fine leg