Massive win for Barry Wanderers Cricket Club 2nd XI
7:00am Thursday 16th August 2012 in Sport
LAST weekend the eyes of the world were firmly fixed on these shores as the most hotly anticipated sporting event in recent years reached its climactic conclusion. And, what a conclusion it was.
Rarely has any sporting occasion delivered such joy to so many, the mood of the entire country visibly lifting as the action unfolded. Old rivalries were resumed, new stars were born and a generation was undoubtedly inspired as the cream of world talent gave their all for the cause.
At the end of it all, the host team's success surpassed even the most optimistic predictions as the Barry Wanderers Cricket Club 2nd XI ultimately prevailed against Monkswood by 207 runs.
Fresh from his mid-season beasting camp in France, Wanderers' captain Tom Ridgwell won the toss and elected to bat on a dry track at the idyllic Hayes Point ground. The heavyweight opening partnership of Chris Barnes and Matthew Burgin started circumspectly against some tight bowling but, when Burgin chipped to mid on for just one, Monkswood temporarily held the upper hand.
However, this was as good as it got all day for the away team as Barnes and new batsman Ridgwell put on a brisk 49 in just over nine overs. But then, disaster - as Barnes, hallucinating from heat exhaustion despite sporting a dapper cravat, imagined a distant cry of "Taxi!" and simply wandered out of his crease to pick up his next fare, and was promptly run out by 10 yards.
Ridgwell and Renoir Defoe continued to make good progress and took the score to 117 until the captain fell for a spirited 53, clean bowled by the sprightly Smith. Damien Davies came to the crease and, after entertaining the crowd with his full repertoire of calls - amongst them "Waiting for now" and "See what happens" - he proceeded to smash the ball to all corners, putting on 110 with the free-flowing Defoe until the latter was finally out for 51.
A late flurry from Krishna Nandan - 30 off 11 balls - enabled the Wanderers to reach an impressive 263 for five off their allotted 45 overs, Davies remaining unbeaten on 51.
The captain's wife unfurled her latest cake offering at tea, a chocolate affair that kept the Wanderers' openers quiet for all of a minute, and when play resumed Monkswood were soon up against it. The new ball partnership of Krishna and Garth Wagner-Hughes had clearly avoided the tea-time cake and steamed in with such ferocity that openers Pilley and Watkins could barely lay bat on ball; and, by the ninth over, both had fallen, for seven and one respectively.
Hughes then bowled Malson to pick up his second wicket but the real star of the Wanderers' attack was youth-team prodigy Theophilus Richards, who bowled Bagley with his first ball before bamboozling a succession of batsmen with his accurate medium pace, eventually finishing with the impressive figures of 5-0-17-3.
He was ably supported by fellow youth-team star Elwyn Toozer (4-1-9-2) who bowled his usual tight spell, despite insisting on pushing mid-off out to the boundary when the opposition were reeling at 52 for seven.
Monkswood's lower order offered no resistance as the rampant Wanderers' attack tore through the tail, the Gwent side eventually all out for a paltry 56. At the end of such a grand sporting spectacle it was left to the cream of local musical talent to entertain at the closing ceremony, held at the spectacular Glenbrook Inn, a particular highlight being Freddie Burgin's rendition of Queen's back catalogue.
Barry Wanderers: 263