We arrived at Newark’s Kelham Road ground to glorious sunshine and a perfect day for cricket. Unfortunately the ground did not match the weather!! On a ground still affected by the floods that so badly affected this area, we found a pitch that was missing grass in areas and was still very soft underfoot. The wicket looked variable to say the least and on several occasions players likened the game to playing in Sarajevo!!
We set about our task with much more enthusiasm than had been shown on the day before with the warm-up in high spirits and the team seemingly to have forgotten the performance only 24hrs prior. This was a positive sign and even when Jimmy lost the toss and we were put into the field, there was a belief that this would Fiskertons day. This feeling was soon enhanced with Spits finding a rhythm, line and length from the very start and continuing this throughout his 8 overs unfortunately only missing the wickets that he deserved. Spits finishing with 8-3-13-0. This was the very bowling that Saturday skipper Dave Hedge had longed for against Whatton, a bowler who you can give the ball to and not worry about where he’s going to bowl it and this meant that the captain could concentrate on where he needs his field!! Our Saturday bowlers can learn a lot from this type of consistency.
Spits was backed up with his bowling by some good performances from the other bowlers. Andy Polkey unlucky not to take a hard caught and bowled chance and the colour of his fingers proved the force this came back at him (even causing our new umpire Paul to fall flat on his back). Andy Laughton chipped in with a good 8 overs finishing 8-0-31-2, and more importantly got the rather fortunate wicket of his best mate who was looking quite well set for Newark. Jimmy struggled to find his usual line and length and turned to Tom Massey, Dan Jones and Max Danby who all bowled reasonably tight overs toward the end of the innings and each picked up a wicket, Dan Jones with 2 to reward and excellent spell of bowling at the death.
This meant that Newark posted 198-6 from their 40 overs, a score we all felt over tea was achievable even on this wicket which had played exactly as it had looked at the start.
Our innings got off to a steady start with Dave Newby and Dave Hedge knocking the ball around and Hedgie even managing to run a four!! This unfortunately didn’t last as Hedgie was then rather dubiously given LBW when it struck him high on his knee roll. This brought in form Dan Jones to the crease, where he soon looked comfortable, unfortunately this did not last due to some suicidal running. The fault of whom was to blame divided the team and spectators opinions. None the less a pointless wicket lost. Max came to the crease and a few overs passed before the very same thing happens again – Pointless wicket number 2!! Newby was still there and unfortunately for Fiskerton, batsman came and went until eventually Newby was stumped himself for 57. Spits tried to up the run rate but unfortunately fell for 20, but not before creating Pointless wicket number 3 by running Polkey out. This sparked a Fiskerton collapse following some questionable fielding from Newark at Long –on (we all know what happened), and we were bowled out for 134 when at one point looking very well set.
MOTM goes to Chris Spittlehouse for wonderful bowling figures, although this decision was a close one perhaps swayed his way by Dave Newby possibly being to blame for 2 run – outs including the clubs in form batsman, which he gets Captain Calamity for.
A lot to build on batting wise here lads but in the field I feel we really set a mark that we need to show on both days of the weekend.
(Long) Report by Robert Turner on behalf of Jimmy