Beds on fire!

Bedouins v Pedmore – Wednesday 27 July

Bedouins won by 10 wickets

It’s been a funny season for the Bedouins. So many times they have snatched defeat from the jaws of victory, getting into match-winning positions only to fail in driving home their advantage. So would you believe me if I said Bedouins won this game by 10 wickets, and with 11 overs to spare against a strong Pedmore side, meaning they had achieved a ‘double’.

Pedmore batted first with skipper Bywater opening the bowling. His first over was a maiden. During his second over he picked up an injury (a lot of those in the Beds side these days) and he had to take himself off to be replaced by Susman (1-17-4). At the other end Gregory had set about slowly dismantling the Pedmore innings with an incredible spell of bowling that deceived and bamboozled.

He finished with 4 for 11 from his four overs. Three of those were clean bowled and one was another sharp stumping from Howells behind the stumps (there have also been a lot of those this season). As a result, Pedmore’s innings never got going. The fielding side were even holding their catches, one for new boy Trevor Spears and another for Gregory (you couldn’t keep him out of the game).

Even a change of bowling didn’t give Pedmore any respite. Stanier (3-16-4) replaced Gregory and straight away was in the wickets. In the 14th over Pedmore were 55 for 9. It was only a late rally that saw them make it to their final total of 72 for 9.

So having got into this strong position, how would Bedouins react with the bat? Skipper said it was as good as won before the batsmen made it to the crease (wow, brave man). But we have seen it many times this season where our batting has lacked conviction and the game has been lost.

Not this time. Smith N and Lippitt were not hanging around. The ball was dispatched to the boundary in quick succession. There was no playing safe here and as a result Lippitt quickly retired on 31 and Smith N (22 not out) and Hill J (16 not out) finished things off at the end of the ninth over.

Let’s hope this form continues on Sunday with our next game being against an unknown quantity in Belmont CC.



Sport hurts

Bedouins v Amblecote and Wollaston – Wednesday 13 July

Bedouins lost by 21 runs

This was another defeat for Bedouins in a dismal season, but at least the weather was actually summery for a change. With Amblecote batting first, the ball was thrown to George to start the Bedouins attack. He lasted three balls. His first ball almost bounced off his toes as his shoulder gave way. Two more balls proved painful so he called it a day. Then we witnessed something not seen in a Bedouins game for many a year –  Branch came on to bowl. And very good he was too. So good in fact, he was kept on to finish the spell and ended up with just 8 being taken off his 3.5 overs.

Lippitt provided some comedy gold with his fielding. Chasing the ball down, he got a foot to it and nonchalantly flicked it up into one hand. He used to play football you know. However on turning through 360 degrees to throw the ball back in (all this was in one movement), he ruined it by throwing the ball in completely the wrong direction. Priceless. Lippitt did redeem himself shortly after, taking a good catch off the skipper’s bowling.

It was a fairly even contest, Bywater took a couple of wickets (2-23-4) and only Gregory really got going for Amblecote and Wollaston, retiring on 33 after finding the boundary at regular intervals. Hill J (1-24-4) was the only other bowler to take a wicket. Towards the end of the innings, Hancock, who had been haring around the field like a Whippet, pulled up lame having done his hamstring. Another casualty for the Bedouins to contend with.

Ambelcote and Wollaston finished on 117 for 4.

Branch and Lippitt opened the Bedouins reply. Amblecote’s opening bowler was quick but erratic. His first over at Branch saw the ball pitching halfway down the wicket much to the batsman’s amusement. I know, I was square leg umpire.

Lippitt played some beautiful cover drives using the bowler’s pace to caress the ball to the boundary. Both batsmen contributed to a good start and things looked promising for the Bedouins. Smith N missed a straight and went LBW and the Hill J arrived at the crease. He is in fine form and again he made the retirement figure of 30.

It was great to see Aston get a knock and he was delighted to get some runs on the board with his new bat, as where his team mates. This is what Bedouins cricket is all about, encouraging players to improve. Not only did Aston get runs but his fielding is coming on leaps and bounds too.

However, the closing stages of the Bedouins innings saw them get bogged down and fall behind the run rate. In the end they fell 21 runs short of the Amblecote total.


Revenge is a dish best served cold

Bedouins v Enville O40s – Wednesday 29th June

Bedouins lost by 47 runs

Last season Bedouins beat Enville twice. It didn’t seem to go down well that the landlords couldn’t beat the tenants on their own patch. This season, Enville made sure there would be no repeat by putting out a strong side.

But to give respect to Enville, they sure did bat well with five reaching the retirement figure of 30. They were aggressive at the crease from the start  and George (0-45-4) and Susman (0-44-4) particularly bore the brunt of onslaught and were dispatched to the boundary at regular intervals. The Skipper, who opened the bowling, was slightly more economical with 0-25-4.

Things weren’t helped by a couple of dropped catches with Susman dropping a straightforward effort on the boundary that probably he would have held in his younger days. When will his poor run of form in the field end?

Robertson was the only bowler who really looked to be causing the batsmen any real concern as he finished with a wicket in his 1-26-4. The upshot of all this was Enville posted one of the highest, if not the highest total Bedouins have ever had to chase down – 179 for 2. But not before on the very last ball of the innings, Susman finally managed to cling on to a catch from Stanier’s bowling, much to the delight of both players.

Bedouins actually put up a good fight in chasing down such a huge total. Branch lost his opening partner Smith N pretty quickly for one, but went on to make his 30 which included six fours. Hill J, in at number three also retired on 31 which included his customary huge six.

The skipper was unlucky to get out to a one-handed catch at long off. Even more unlucky as the fielder looked decidedly under 40. Hancock gave it his all before departing for 5 and Susman, well, enough said…

The Bedouins innings finally drifted into a coma at 129 for 4, a total which in most other games may have been a match winner. But not on this occasion, Enville were too strong and too determined to have their revenge for last season. Rumour has it, there may be a return fixture this season. That could be interesting.