A time game in the shadow of Alexandra Palace, Ives completed the double against a team we have lost to in the past. Bravely choosing to bat first, skipper Collins sent in Abramson Snr (after a long Commonwealth Games enforced absence) and Mabs (who rarely gets to bat these days!). One of those choices paid off with Earle receiving the direst of shooters early on. Mabs went from strength to strength with useful partnerships with the Parnell boys (P and S). Runs came at a good pace, around 5 per over but the boundaries were short and 200 seemed the minimum required, so when Mabs departed for an invaluable 72, the score of 121- 5 left the game on a knife edge and the tail enders with work to do. At this point Abrahamson Jr, playing his first innings for Ives, settled in and despatched the first of many boundaries to come. As he departed in came a new budding all-rounder, called John Loveday (the bowler of the same name is no more). He showed application and aggression and was determined to record another not out, but fell in the last over before the declaration, for 27, leaving Collins marooned on 49 NOT OUT!
With 208-7 after 41 overs, Ives had the overs they needed to complete the job, and in the end completed a win in 37 overs (with 4 left to bowl). However victory was only achieved through excellent all round fielding (especially Abramhamson Jr and Parnell T Jr on the boundaries, and Will behind the stumps) and teamwork and some outstanding individual performances. It was clear that Octopus had 2 danger men. Their opener, John, was targeted successfully by the rapid Oakley who bowled a mean and penetrating spell, and was unlucky to only take the 1 (but key) wicket. The second danger man, played fluently and effortlessly until a misjudged shot spiralled over and beyond Loveday who managed to pull off an amazing and possibly match winning catch. With Parnell T Jr bowling a most useful opening spell including a wicket, Saqib bowling 11 controlled overs and picking up 2 wickets in one over, Loveday taking another and Earle keeping things tight, Octopus looked I trouble , but well placed to access a draw… until Mabs appeared .. and took 5 for 8 – a superb spell to ensure Ives enjoyed a great game and a win to boot.
And not to forget – a superb tea provided by Octopus – a rare and much appreciated delight.
Author: R Collins