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Venturers Vs Star, Wednesday May 31st

Star 101-8, Venturers 102-6

We arrived at the game with no real expectations of a victory given that Star had given us a fairly emphatic thumping twice last year, but a typically bright start to the game gave us hope for victory which this time did not fade so dramatically as on other occasions this season.

Despite a change of captaincy in Simon’s absence, there was no change in outcome of the toss and, having lost, we were sent out to field first as we have become accustomed to over the past few games (years).

Ian Corrick was characteristically on the money, largely reducing Star’s opening batsmen to dots and singles. At the other end Hashair, who was known to Star having played a couple of times for them already this season, contributed some impressive spin which found genuine turn on the pitch.

With continuing frustration against Ian at one end, the batsmen fell into the Venturers trap by deciding to try to go after spin at the other and, whilst Ian remained wicketless in his first spell, Hashair picked up a couple of important early victims.

Ejaz and Jamie then bowled extremely well during the middle of the Star innings whilst Venturers fielding was unusually sharp. Alistair in particular deserves a mention for his nimbleness around the square.

Spells from Sunny and Imran demonstrated the wealth of bowling quality at our disposal throughout the innings and a restriction of Star to 101 paid tribute to the great work by both bowlers and fielders.

Sunny opened the batting like a man who had an 8 o clock bus to catch and took the game to the Star openers, notching seemingly effortless fours on a pitch where boundaries weren’t the easiest to hit.

He was complimented by Matt who steadily ploughed on and by the time the pair were out by the ninth over, a foundation had been laid for the rest of us to finish the job.

Of course in typical Venturers style we did our best to make a hard work of doing so, however, and bursts of good quality cricket weren’t sustained by the middle order. Eventually Hashair, batting at 7 and justifying his man-of-the-match award, joined Jack in the middle and made a stand by firstly trying to stay in, but secondly to take an approach of quick singles and doubles to keep pressure on the Star field.

This approach, complimented nicely by the occasional boundary, eventually nudged us over the line, though not without the attempted hindrance of an umpire who staggeringly called a run short when we needed three runs to win off the final two balls… I won’t name names but he opened our batting and wasn’t called Sunny.

Cricket bat and ball