Another gloriously warm and sunny day saw the U12s making the trip over to Goring. The timings had been put out on Spond and a reminder sent via WhatsApp that 9.30am was the START time, so when it got to 9.20am and despite Goring having a full team and champing at the bit to make the toss, we still only had 5 players I admit I was beginning to sweat somewhat. We only had 10 players as it was, we definitely weren’t going to be able to play with 5. Fortunately by 9.28 we had a full team and today‘s captain, Rufus, was able to head out to the strip. Rufus won the toss and elected to field, in the hopes that the slightly damp grass would slow the ball down on the outfield.
Jamie and Will opened the bowling, each conceding just 1 run and 1 bye in each of their opening overs. Jamie then set the tone for the game by gaining his first wicket on the first ball of over 3, sending the bails flying, with the benchmark set high, the following bowlers Harry Bl and Thijs followed suit, holding Goring to a low score by keeping the fielding tight and the bowling neat. Thijs took the second wicket in over 7 with a neat bowl that was hit straight into the secure hands of Jamie. Not to be outdone, Harry C took over 8 and bowled a double wicket maiden. With 4 wickets now under their belt Eastergate’s spirits were soaring, Harry Bo continued the run bowling one out in his first over and bowling a lovely ball in his second that was hit into the hands of Will who held firmly on for a catch. Nick took the next wicket, another clean bowl, followed by 2 wickets for Rufus, each straight down the line and taking out middle stump. With the last 2 batsmen at the crease and 4 overs left, Thijs took the final wicket on 17.5, bowling straight and low the balls crashed into leg side stump.
Jugs of squash, kitkats, biscuits and orange quarters were rapidly devoured in the short break between innings before Will and Harry C set out to opening the batting innings.
Goring bowled as cleanly, and fielded as efficiently as we had, keeping the score low. Will and Harry C played patiently, blocking the balls and keeping cool. Unfortunately in over 4 Will hit a ball skywards and Marley managed to raise his hands and snatch it from the air, dismissing Will for 3 runs. Jamie joined Harry C on the field and both batted cleanly and well, the score creeping slowly up. There came a point around the 15th over when the runs were only creeping up at a rate of 1 per over that I did wonder if their coolness and patience would lose them the match, but they knew what they were doing, despite the next 2 in the batting order sat waiting and ready Harry C and Jamie got the winning runs on 18.1, meaning Eastergate won by 8 wickets.
The whole game was superb to watch, the lads worked incredibly well as a team, each one of them playing their part. They were positive and encouraging of each other and represented Eastergate CC in a way that made everyone proud. Goring were, as always, brilliant hosts, and the parting message was that we must get together for a friendly soon. What a superb morning of cricket!!