On a day where only 10 games across all three tiers of each XI league were played, Ealing hosted Highgate at Corfton Road.
Following a week of sweltering heat and office fan use galore, it rained heavily and steadily from Friday afternoon through to Saturday morning - and with a forecast predicting continued rain, it was expected that we wouldn’t get a game in.
However, excellent ground preparation from Oli and Gareth enabled to boys to get a game in, somehow.
A delayed start meant the game was reduced to 90 overs, with Ealing batting first.
O’Malley departed early, bringing Tattersall to the crease to join Shaw. Although no more wickets fell in the first 10, scoring was limited in bowler friendly conditions.
With Shaw (20) passing one to gully, it brought the ever in-form A. Dewhurst to the crease. Having managed to get a leading edge second ball straight up and survive, before nicking his first 10 runs through 2nd slip, Ali began to settle into his rhythm. Accompanied by Tatts, runs became plentiful.
Achieving the first 100 partnership of the season, Dewhurst and Tatts began to push on, regularly scoring at 8/9/10 an over for a 10 over period.
However, with a declaration imminent, they had to push further. Dewhurst departed for a very composed 80-odd, which brought promoted Arjun to the crease; his job, see ball, hit ball. A quick fire 20 from Arj and continued deft batting from Tatts (88*) took the lads to 206 from 41 before the heavens once again opened.
The covers were rapidly assembled, and tea came, with the loss of just two overs.
Glasper and Rowley opened up after the interval and were both immediately effective, reducing the visitors to 30-3 in the first 10, although Glasper could have had more, if he were capable of keeping his front foot behind the line.
Arjun replaced Glasper down the hill and with Trent Growler continuing to be threatening up the hill, there was just a hint of an amazing victory.
After 17 overs and at 60-5, the boys could see the impending Armageddon in the clouds overhead, thus it was time to rush through three overs, to make a game of it.
Fairs through the ball to Fell who decided to bowl some serious part time off-breaks in an attempt to bowl the quickest possible over.
However, an absolute beauty of an off break first nut bowled the batsman through the gate, allowing the incoming replacement to take as much time as he liked. Probably not the best delivery in those circumstances - sorry Fairs!
With the rain beginning to fall, it was all hands on decks to make sure we got to 20. And so we did. From there on, it was a case of trying to find 4 more wickets, on a deck doing little, and a ball made of soap.
With only one further scalp gained, Highgate saw themselves home for a point. A disappointing end to a VERY long day; although, 4 points keeps the boys in the hunt, especially on a day where only two other teams played.
The E-men will be sad to see the departure of beloved Kiwi Trent Growler, who ended up with a hero-esq Michelle. We wish you all the best back home, and look forward to seeing you again next year.