This was the second leg of the 2021 Edition of the Durnford-Philbrook Challenge Cup and played on a bright, not so breezy day at Pattana Sports Resort. PCC was one down from yesterday’s loss and hoping to square the series.
Wesley Masterton was the captain for this match and a few new faces were making their debuts; Pete Reeh (batsman, with a brand-new mustache) from Rugby School and Habby Singh (leg-spin bowler) and Luke Stokes had returned to the club having been abroad. There were notable batsmen in both teams but it turned out to be a bowler’s day with Pramodh, Tom Fogden, and Andy Emery all taking three wickets.
PCC won the toss and decided to bat. Wez and Pete opened against Denzel Allwright and Dilip. As usual, Wes, who doesn’t like running, went into smash-the-ball mode and the score rocketed to 28 in three overs before Pete, on 1, was caught and bowled by Denzyl. Wes had a lucky break on 35 when he was dropped by James Moss (Mossy) on the boundary, which allowed Wes to reach 50 and retire off 22 balls faced. Luke was dropped at the backward square before he was bowled via an inside edge from Pramodh for 1. Ryan Driver took the crease and stabilized the innings with Colin Clark who made a brief 7, bowled by Dilip, which brought out Tom.
Both Ryan and Tom pushed the pace with PCC passing 100 in the 15th over. After drinks, Rahul struck in quick succession with both batsmen being caught, Ryan on a sterling 33 and Tom on 17. With PCC on 125 for 5 after 19 overs, a score of 175 looked on the cards and Wes was still available if required. Bernie Lamprecht and Simon Philbrook came in at 8 and 9 respectively and pushed the score along before Pramodh bowled Bernie for 15 and had Simon caught by Dale for 17 in the last over. The last few runs went to Habib and PCC finished their innings on a respectable 166 for 8.
BCB would have to bat well to make 167 and they did not have a good start. Ryan’s first over only yielded one run to John and Tom stuck with his first ball, a hat-trick as the last two balls of his previous match had been wickets. Four balls later, Tom bowled Rahul for a Duck and BCB were 2 for 2 off 2 overs. It got worse. In the next over, Tom’s quick left-arm in-swingers shattered Dale’s stumps for 6 having been dropped by Jainish.
Denzel made a few runs off wayward bowling from Jainish Parikh, but there was luck involved as Simon dropped him twice at 2nd slip. Ok, one was a free hit from a No Ball, but it was a drop. Tidy bowling from Andy removed Denzel for 14, caught by Wes which brought Ben Eastwell to the crease. He and Mossy offered some resistance to PCC bowlers as Bernie was finding it difficult to get his line and length. It was Andy who made the breakthrough when Pete took a good catch on the boundary to dismiss Ben for 12. Mossy soldiered on but his colleagues fell quickly to Habby and his leg-spin. Some front-foot No Balls and wides marred good figures but Pramodh was bowled for 4 and Mak bowled for a Duck in the same over. BCB was reeling at 83 for 8 in the 13th over. Andy removed BCB’s last line of resistance, Mossy, for 28, stumped by Colin and Bernie found his line and length which took care of Chan, caught and bowled for 3, and Dilip LBW for 6. BCB were all out for 101, a loss by 65 runs, and PCC managed to draw the series.
There was no nomination for MotM, but BCB’s notable players were Mossy and Pramodh with 3 for 26 off 5 overs. PCC’s significant contributions came from Wes and Ryan with their bats and Tom with 3 for 9 off 2 overs and Andy with 3 for 16 off 4 overs.