Whittington Cricket Club 1st XI v Arkley on Sat 28 May 2011 at 1pm
Whittington Cricket Club Won by four wickdets

Match report Veteran Whittington stalwart, Vinod “Toppy” Toppiwalla rolled back the years at Alice Owen’s on Saturday with a superb all round performance that brought the home team its first victory against Arkley since 2003.

Back in 2003 Toppy’s unbeaten 85 took Whittington to an easy win but since then the long suffering fans have had to endure two defeats and five draws at the hands of Arkley’s spritely veterans.

Whittington bowled a good line and fielded like (ageing) tigers to skittle Arkley for just 111. Barraclough and Tailor kept things tight early on. Then newcomer Firoz (on loan from Golden CC) looked hostile at first change and picked up two wickets. With JT unable to bowl due to man-flu, Ray Sebastian scoured the outfield looking for the next change. Now,Toppy isn’t the most accurate bowler these days and hasn’t been getting as much action as he think he deserves. This time, he changed the angle of attack. Eschewing the conventional left arm over method, he came round the wicket like Phil Tufnell. Only less so.

Toppy’s first ball was wide down the leg side. The batsman swung to dispatch this rank long hop to the boundary but succeeded only in stopping its flight with his thigh pad. Then, in a moment of such embarrassment that we feel we cannot name the guilty party, the batsman continued his pivot with one leg rooted to the floor while the other gently swept the ball onto his leg stump.

There was no stopping Toppy now and he picked up three further wickets before Ray called time. 4 -27. Respect. Talking of respect, the home fans were out of their seats with excitement as Jazz Williams returned to the line up after a year out with a serious injury to his right forearm. As if nothing had changed, Jazz trundled in off four paces, sent Arkley’s ten and jack back to the hutch and declared that his three overs had been such hard work that he would have eat very large team and couldn’t possibly bat higher than 11.

The tea was indeed fit for someone of Jazz’s epic stature. Our complements to Mahesh and family for the BLT’s and home made scones.

With just 112 to chase, Whittington made a breezy start. Geoff “Savage” Barraclough opened with Toppy and the two put on 35 in even time before Savage was caught at deep mid on having hit three more fours than the crowd had bargained for. Meanwhile, Toppy was playing like his former self; punishing anything short with vicious pulls and cuts on both sides of the wicket. After Toppy departed for 22, Mahesh and JT kept up the pace but both departed in short order; JT caught behind off of the glove and Mahesh (limping with a broken toe) bowled by on of Arkley’s youger members.

From a comfortable position, Whittington began to wobble. Firoz didn’t last long. Nor did Jod who was bowled by a slow long hop that was on its way down by the time it hit the wicket. So unhurried was the delivery, that Jod had already played his pull shot and was facing square leg (whence the ball should have been dispatched) when he heard the death rattle as the stumps were broken. He looked imploringly at the umpire. “Surely the keeper knocked off the bails? “ Nope.

Fortunately, Ray Sebastian was prospering at the other end. Playing the proper captain’s innings that the commentariat has long felt him capable, he top scored with 34 and brought the team home safely. With eight to win off three overs and two wickets remaining, Arkley’s tails were up. Ray, ever dominant, smashed a very large six. Arkley’s tails drooped like beaten dogs and it was all over bar the shouting in the Griffin later that evening. “ Hooray for Barcelona!”

Whittington Cricket Club 1st XI Batting
Player Name RunsMB4s6sSRCtStRo
for 6 wickets

(0.0 overs)
Vinod Topiwala Caught  22
Geoffrey Barraclough Caught  16
John Turner Caught  15
Ray Sebastian Not Out  34
Mahesh Tailor Bowled  15
David Jordan Bowled  1
A.N. Other Bowled  1
Gary Gatward Not Out  0
Juha Williams  
A.N. Other  
A.N. Other  

Arkley Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
No records to display.

Arkley Batting
Player name RMB4s6sSR
for 10 wickets
111 (0.0 overs)

Whittington Cricket Club 1st XI Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Geoffrey Barraclough7.0022122.003.14
Mahesh Tailor5.03900.001.80
A.N. Other5.33924.501.64
Gary Gatward7.0026126.003.71
Vinod Topiwala6.002746.754.50
Juha Williams3.001427.004.67