On a bitterly cold April day, OWCC headed to the HAC in the City of London for quite possibly the first ever match between the 2 sides. Having won the toss, the decision to field first was not universally welcomed, but the fear of missing a straight one early on in the day meant it was into the field we went - writes Charlie McCall.
Matt Truell and Freddie Blackett took the new ball and despite most fielders wishing they had added handwarmers to their pre-season cricket purchases, the OWs started well against a strong HAC batting line up. After Truell struck first with a jaffa to send the stumps flying, HAC batsmen began to score the majority of their runs through midwicket, even when the bowlers were sticking to a nagging offside line. After plugging the onside with 3 midwickets, the opening bowlers gave way to the spin attack of Elliot Bath and Dave Pugh. It was the latter who reaped dividends with 4 quick wickets and a run out as the middle order collapsed. Bath Snr can count himself unlucky as the dangerous HAC batsmen Sean Parry played on without a bail being dislodged and was dropped several times (including one by Bath Jnr!). Parry went on to make an unbeaten 139, which allowed HAC to finish on 232 -6, which was a good effort having been 100-6.
Tim Moore and Alex Walters opened the reply from the OWs and put on a glorious 100 partnership. Walters played a couple of exquisite straight drives in his 33. Moore wore a nasty short ball on the wrist but it didn't stop him from crunching the ball (mainly over point) for a well deserved 50. With the introduction of the first change bowlers, we lost 3 quick wickets and found ourselves needing to regroup. McCall joined Byng-Nelson (last seen batting together in Toye Pot in 1993) and put on 50 but the run rate climbed. Needing 100 off the last 13 overs, boundaries were the order of the day. After B-N was harshly adjudged LBW, McCall took on the bowling with the help of Duncan Bath and with a few big blows a win was possible. With 24 required off the final over, thoughts of emulating Carlos Braithwaite were quickly dashed as McCall and Blackett were unable to locate the boundaries and we finished 20 short with McCall on 70.
It was a great match and we look forward to returning when the sun shines!