As the storm clouds gathered over the Channel 4 Oval on Friday evening, the visiting team, our old friends from the beautiful Devon village of Tipton St John, arrived in their bright yellow tour T shirts. With twenty five in their squad it looked like they could pose a threat – not sure how, but I’m sure there was a threat somewhere.
We needn’t have worried though as, in the absence of Delia’s Verdant beer truck, Lord Dickon calmed the nerves with a wicker basket full of much needed refreshment. Cake showed a liking for the Cherry brandy whereas others, myself included, chose to down a few slugs of Lord Dickon’s vintage whiskey.
The 20/20 match itself was not what you would call a nailbiter, but it did showcase the talents of former SVOB academy graduate New Dave who, in just 28 balls, struck a very commendable 31 runs before he was retired. He was supported very ably by Russell (11) and between them they got the innings off to a very good start. The first wicket fell on 44 runs before a clutch of players raced the score on superbly.
Damo, 16 in 16 balls, Stuart, an amazing 30 (retired) off just 13 balls, Ed, 26 from 20 deliveries and New Paul, 25 from 14 entertained the large attendance, most of whom were now feeling the effects of Dickon’s wicker basket. I’m not 100% certain, but I’m pretty sure the Seaview made 151 in our 20 with 12 coming in the last over.
In reply Tipton St John found the going very tough, particularly from midway through their innings, when they found it difficult to score due to the Old Boys’ accurate bowling and effective fielding. For Tipton, Harwood top scored with 32 before being stumped and there were two runouts, including Essex who had made 19.
By this stage of the match it was raining quite heavily so it was difficult to see exactly what was happening in the middle and, together with sopping score book, it makes an accurate report of the latter stages of this match almost impossible.
One thing I do remember clearly is Luke’s run out – a direct hit from a very quick throw. I also know that Tipton’s total off 20 overs was 98. That means that we won comfortably. I remember celebrating with one last slug of Dickon’s whiskey and that was that.
We then hosted our visitors back at The Seaview Inn ……………. ?