The eidolon of victory
Sometimes after a game we Ives sit down and say ‘if only’, or ‘it was so close’, or ‘one more wicket would have changed everything’. There are other instances when the result was never in doubt, as a new ball burst knocked the stuffing out of one team or other…or a total that looked just a little short is chased down well inside the overs as wickets failed to fall, catches dropped or balls fall between fielders…
The game against N2 was lost long, long, long before the denouement was finally applied and the final wicket fell. But that was not the story, or at least the full story of the second half of the game….but before speaking of the titan that bestrode all, 197 runs were plundered by N2 in their 35 overs…Saquib bowled 7 economical overs with the reward of two wickets, a feat matched by Rich who conceded fewer runs, but that, sadly was the end of the economical performance. All other bowlers conceded at least a run a ball, with Andrew and Hansi being the only others that had a positive entry in their final column.
First ball of the game from Saquib reared off a length, calling for helmets all round – perhaps this was a reason some bowlers went for a few as the back of a length bowling played into the hands and meat of the bat of the opposition…
One catch went down on the field, but a few pop-ups landed between fielders, but all in all a much better performance, despite a lot of leather-chasing.
Will had an excellent day behind the stumps letting very few past him, as well as nonchalantly ambling back and taking a skier with Rich bearing down on him apace.
Was 197 too many for Ives to chase? Some fast scoring on an outfield that gave value for shots – all that was needed was a start that didn’t leave Ivanhoe behind the eight-ball.
Sadly, calamity befell the openers, and high scores were not forthcoming, the pitch that had not kept low when it misbehaved in the first half of the game turned Jekyll and Hyde, balls on a length kept low, short balls occasionally shot along the ground doing the odd batter in and grins all around from the opposition. Phil received an excellent delivery that angled in then moved away, possible contender for ball of the season…it set the tone really. Decent balls and pitch misbehaviour did for Bob, Earle, Steve and Hansi to knock the stuffing out of the top and middle order.
Astride, and untroubled by the mayhem, stood Rich. Swatting both bad and good balls to the boundary, running hard between the wickets and utterly serene at the crease whilst he was at the wicket, the possibility of victory, even the vaguest and most unlikely, was on the cards.
Wickets fell, Rich scored more. More wickets fell, once again runs were plundered all around the wicket. Calamity almost striking when John tried a single off the last ball of an over to steal the strike…but somehow in a moment of comedy he managed to regain his ground.
Perhaps victory was only just a dream, phantasma or an eidolon…which proved to be the case when Rich fell for (scorebook says 83 but I was certain it was 89), and that was that.
Well played N2, and Rich…sorry mate, next time we’ll offer more support (promise) as the all-round performance deserved a century and a win. Player of the match will have to console Rich till next time!
Author: Hansi B