The Strange Affair of the Dog in the Car Park
Oxford Emeriti 193-5 (37 overs)
WCC 173 all out (35 overs)
Emeriti won by 20 runs
Balliol may be 749 years old but it's at the cutting edge of spectator cushion technology. For this year's fixture a row of bean bags in college colours was arranged beyond the long-on boundary. From this vantage point reclined some of the leading intellects of our age, a dame and a knight among them, all with their knees in the air. To the literary cast of mind, failure is always more interesting than success and the Weekenders didn't disappoint their distinguished audience, offering up a twenty-run defeat with panic-stricken choke included. But the Emeriti thoroughly deserved their win, and their gamble of bringing the spinner back against the tail was cannily judged.
The day had started badly for the hosts when a dog in the car park sank its teeth into skipper Adam Swift's arm. The Weekenders' President Tony Smee helpfully suggested to Adam that he 'Stick a finger up its arse to release its jaws'. For whatever reason - good breeding possibly, or maybe because he was wearing wicket-keeping gloves - Adam opted to wait for the dog's owner to arrive. After a trip to A&E he was patched up and an email two days later confirmed his recovery.
After a delayed start the Emeriti faced a testing Weekenders opening attack that included newcomers Dutch Dave and his mate Ash. Both moved the ball in the air and Dutch Dave did so at a sharp pace but the home batsmen were eventually able to break the stranglehold - you might say they stuck a metaphorical finger up the bowlers' arses - and soon the Emeriti had 100 on the board for the loss of only one wicket.
The total of 193 was challenging but gettable on a flat track and with the brawny Johnners paying a flying visit to the WCC middle order. Needless to say, we didn't get them but thanks to another thunderous innings from Cooper we very nearly did.
Head 44, Adcock 58,
Geensen 11-1-49-0; Darhoma 5-0-28-1; Cooper 9-0-55-1; Douglas 12-0-46-3
Lee 1, Cooper 90, Johnstone 12, Darhoma 5, McCallum 4, Geensen 7, Douglas 25, Smee 3, d'Inverno 0*.
Men of the Match: Mark Cooper and Mark McCallum for finding Dutch Dave and his mate Ash.Lost Again