Ealing U11A vs Shepherd's Bush (h)
Wednesday, 10th June
Ealing U11A won by 9 wickets.
School trips, exams and school matches forced a new look side to face the Bush. We were joined by five of our U10 colleagues in the League for the first time this season - many thanks go to Isaac, Ludo, Rian, Shivan and Shyam who helped us out tonight. No wonder the U10s are winning all their games so comfortably if that lot's involved.
Harjot had the chance to win the toss and keep my pound coin.............and he blew it. So we found ourselves in the field, which was probably no bad thing after last week's exploits. Not sure what it was - I'm sure the stiff breeze had something to do with it - but we seemed off key in the field. True, the outfield was fast and, dispiritingly, they found a few gaps early on but neither the bowling nor the fielding had the usual zip that we've come to expect. Not to say that either was bad, they've simply been a lot better on several occasions. All part of the learning process - the art of reading the conditions and adapting your lines and lengths to suit. 44 extras was a high price to pay for a performance that lacked that little extra that we've brought to the table all season. Wickets for Ayaan (2), Harjot and Jilal (1).
Harjot clearly wanted another ton, which would have been no mean feat given we needed 100 to win. He certainly gave it a good go but was castled perhaps not going far enough forward to one that kept low. 10-1 after four balls. No further alarms as Ayaan and Jared stroked their way to our target in rapid time, combining some pretty lusty blows with some aggressive calling and hard running. Application levels were high with a number of balls reaching them on the second bounce - we've seen often enough how easy it is to get out to those - but they were negotiated easily enough with straighter bats than we've shown on occasion this year. Target acquired in the 12th over, Ayaan (31 not out) and Jared (38 not out).
Seven out of ten will seem like a harsh mark for what appears on paper to be a comfortable nine wicket win but it's a reflection of the high standards that these boys have set for themselves. We know there are things we can do better, but we also know that those things WILL come good with a bit of effort.
In the field - walk in, back up, work in pairs, be aware of your position and role.
With the ball - develop the ability to vary your length on demand (this is something we can work on in training), take ownership (alongside your captain) of your field, and bowl to it. Goes back to what we've been talking about all season - have a plan, visualise it, run in, execute.
With the bat - run that first run hard. If there are one and a half runs on offer, you're not going to turn that half into an extra run if you trot through for a single. At no stage should you take this to mean that one and a half ALWAYS means two, but understand that you maximise your chances of getting two by running that first run hard and executing a quick turn to at least look at whether that second run is possible. The pressure that is placed on the fielder as a result is priceless.
Thanks again to our U10 colleagues for their contributions - it couldn't have happened without them. I know they didn't get as involved with the bat as they'd have liked - blame Ayaan and Jared for that. I hope to see you all in U11 fixtures between now and the end of the season. But it leaves us having won six from six and in a very good position.
Next league game is vs Perivale next Wednesday. Team sheet will be out shortly.