Nuxley CCv Exiles CC, Footscray Rugby Ground, Eltham, June 13 2004


A fabulously close game, packed with incident and bathed in sunshine saw the nine Exiles lose very narrowly to Nuxley, a dropped catch in the last over would have won it but it wasn't to be. Had Tariq and his friend Irfan made it to the ground it must have made the crucial difference, as we had about three overs left when the eighth wicket fell (where were you T?) Nuxley loaned a fielder and all was good humoured as usual. Short handed at the start Robin and Edie were thrown into the breach. Robin surfed his luck and got The Exiles off to a flier with lots of thick edges to third man for a quick 22. Steve Du Preez wolfed down a hangover-cure hamburger before essaying some beefy shots but lack of footwork caused him to drag on when he was beginning to look dangerous. Roric didn't trouble the scorers. Fawad top scored with 48 and built an innings saving partnership worth 46 with Paul when things were looking pear-shaped at 46-4. Dallas flailed like King Viv for some crucial late order runs. Guy stuck around well again . Ali didn't. Exiles all out for 133.

Paul and Ali opened the bowling, the latter after demonstrating his run-up once and impressing more than Dallas's gentler action. Paul was gifted a wicket by the capricious pitch, a short and wide one jagged back and squatted but after that Jones and Hahn looked like taking the game away from The Exiles. A couple of generous lbw decisions to Robin and Steve Du Preez opened up the game. Steve threw off his hangover to bowl with real control and made the crucial breakthroughs as the pressure began to tell. A direct hit run out by Roric from point lifted hopes, then Paul came back with three quick wickets in his second spell and the game was suddenly hanging by a thread. Eddie was also hungover and a six off his penultimate over brought Nuxley almost level and capped a day for the Kiwi who had just learnt that the Black Caps had lost the third test. Some clerical error almost robbed Paul of his seventh over but the last wicket pair held on. A top edged sweep off Eddie flew high to Ali at short fine leg but the drama was too much and he made a hash of it. The next ball was swept to the boundary, all over.

Next week a road trip to darkest Bedfordshire to meet Caddington CC.

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