So, it happened again! For the second week in a row, we batted superbly, scoring over 140 for the loss of only 3 wickets, only to see Fettes chase them down, albeit in a nail biting finish with 4 runs needed off the final over. It was, let’s face it, an excellent game of cricket and although we had more strength in depth which was apparent when the Fettes openers were dismissed their other batsmen found it hard to hit it off the square, credit to the opposition for batting so well and managing to chase down such a mammoth score.
We batted first on a glorious afternoon for cricket with picture postcard blue skies and warm sunshine – a day for which prep school sport was made! After Todd and Harry D’s dismissals, Marcus joined the skipper and together they put on 110 runs batting with great maturity, playing each ball on its merit and running well between the wickets; they accelerated the scoring rate considerably and when Harry departed in the 24th over for a very well made 53, Marcus found himself unable to get the strike in the final over and so finished unbeaten on 49. Another excellent knock and together they showed a really good understanding, supporting each other and only gave one hard chance. It was almost faultless and was lovely to watch. 142 – 3 in 25 overs would take some getting……or so we thought!
We changed the bowling attack round to allow others in to the game and perhaps this allowed the Fettes openers a chance to get runs on the board quickly and create a really good platform from which to build as they had to chase at almost 6 an over throughout the innings.
We had one opportunity to dismiss each of them which we did not take and it took a run out with just 20 odd required to get their premier player out, and suddenly dot balls replaced runs, the balls remaining receded, more wickets fell as the finishing line came tantalisingly closer. Finally, it was just 4 needed off the final over of the match, bowled by Findlay who had bowled beautifully with his accurate and well flighted leg spinners flummoxing the opposition batsmen. Dot. Dot, then a swipe and the ball raced towards the boundary to give Fettes the win. So exciting and a very different game to last week’s at Loretto. I was proud of the way the boys kept going, even though wickets would not fall, and in the end, we almost pulled off a dramatic victory.
Lessons learned? Well, the fielding was better, but there were a couple of misfields on the boundary when a single became four – these are crucial when the game is so tight. Also, we must pitch the ball up when bowling to batsmen who like to pull – early on, we gifted them too many easy runs which meant they got off to a flier.
However, a hugely enjoyable game of cricket and I was delighted to see us bat with such maturity, and also not give up when the odds seemed stacked against us. My nerves were shredded by the end, and both sides can take an awful lot from the game.
Sport teaches us great life lessons! Always.