Actonians Cricket Club


Uxbridge 4 v Actonians Cricket Club 4th XI on Sat 26 Aug 2017 at 12.30pm
Actonians Cricket Club Won 10 Points

Match report “I like how all the match reports start with quotes now” Oli West at nets on Tuesday

Two great robberies were prevented on Saturday. Like all detective stories this one involves twists, turns and people who are not quite what they seem. The first case involved a pair of sandals the second ten points but let’s get back to the beginning and start with the ten points.

We started the day knowing that we realistically had to win to remain in the promotion hunt with Wembley disappearing into the distance like eleven bank robbers in a stolen getaway car (yes I’m really committing to the whole detective story theme). We had high hopes given Uxbridge had failed to field a team in their last two fixtures and looked youthful as they warmed up. Billy won the toss, and after conferring with no one he decided to take the field. It was a bold decision but given that even BC took a catch in the fielding warm up it looked like it could be the right one.

We came out with their best batsman from the last match opening and both openers looking like men who had forgotten about attacking shots. An attritional battle commenced which would characterise their whole innings. With just 17 on the board Aneeq got the break through bowling their opener off his pads rounds his legs. The other opener was dealt with a full straight one from Smithy. Smithy went out to bowl as if he had offended lady luck in a deeply personal way, she would instead hand out her favours to everyone else. The first to take advantage was Roheet with a ball that was described as a bouncer or a long hop depending on your perspective. What is not in dispute is that it bounced halfway down and the colt that was batting spooned it up to Owen at a short mid-on position.

The next passage of play put me in mind of a Boxing Day test at the MCG at some point in the mid noughties. Bob Coutts (read Shane Warne) tied their batsman in knots with his flight and guile. Anneq then began a verbal barrage reminiscent as if he was Langer, Ponting and Clarke combined. He told the young batsman (probably about 14) exactly what he thought of him and his defensive prodding. After a series of blocks he then went for the big shot which he chipped straight to the safe hands of your correspondent at mid-on.

We continued to grind through their middle order as they plodded along at 2 per over for the almost the entire innings. Wickets fell to Ali, Roheet and Bob again. Uxbridge were in a real mess at 56-6. The plod carried on as the total headed toward the 100. Their batsman still seemed strangers to attacking shots but crucially they still had 4 wickets in hand for the final onslaught. The partnership between 7 and 8 reached 53, effectively doubling the score, without your correspondent being able to remember much of what exactly happened. A few fours were slogged to the very short leg side boundary and a classic penalty five runs was conceded as a wide was deflected onto a helmet. The rest was blocks, prods and scampered singles.

However the fun was ended by a skier taken off Roheet and Owen steaming into to take two wickets from the penultimate over. Bilal settled under a skier as he combined with the bowling of Roheet to end the innings. Uxbridge were all out 114, so far so routine, only then did the mystery begin.

As I removed my boots outside the dressing rooms, as a good visiting player, I headed in to find my sandals to enjoy my tea. Imagine my surprise when my sandals were nowhere to be found. They must be with the kit on the side of the pitch I thought. An inspection after tea showed they weren’t there either. Like a later day Poirot I began to accuse everyone else of the heinous crime of shoe stealing.

On the pitch after tea another robbery was unfolding. A collection of colts was trying to hustle us out of 10 points. In particular the impressive Quasim who opened the bowling (finishing with 4 wickets). He started his spell with a wide, the wicket of Bilal caught behind, then another wide. He continued in this vein mixing up rising bowls seaming away outside the off stump with the occasional wide and full bunger. The next victim of the heist was Shahid who edged to second slip and was outrageously caught by a full length dive inches from the grass. The catch was reminiscent Dwayne Leverock and so was the celebration.

This is when Aneeq decided he’d had enough and proceeded to smash 22 runs off 10 balls. Despite the early loss this jump started the chase. However he became the next victim of the crime spree as he looped up a top edge into the grateful hands of first slip. We were 32 for 3 and looking like we may have been mugged. Next to the crease came a limping Bobby Uberoi. After telling your correspondent he couldn’t put weight on the back foot or commit fully forward it was basically a mercy killing when he was out chipping to mid-on for 3. The score was 39 for 4 and the robbery was well and truly on.

There followed a relatively calm period where your correspondent (21) and Ali Slaughter (23) calmly pushed the ball around. Safe in the knowledge the required rate was only 2 an over and the young bowlers and would be master criminals could only bowl short spells.

That spell of tranquillity was broken when I got a bowl that pitched on middle and leg and clipped the off stump. The score was now 66 for 5. Our hoped rested firmly on the shoulders of our final pair of recognised batsman. That’s when Roger strode to the wicket. Like the elderly cop whose just one day away from retirement before being plunged into the middle of the case of his life. He was determined to solve the mystery of why so many batsman had given away their wickets when victory was there for the taking.

The next victim was Ali who was perfectly set up by a couple of wider deliveries followed by a dead straight yorker into middle stump. The score was now 97 for 7. Victory seemed a long way off but Roger had other ideas.

To mix my already tenuous metaphors somewhat Roheet batted likely a villain brought in for questioning who smiles serenely and says no comment as Roger blocked nudged and nerdled towards victory. In the end the victory came with a push into the covers, an attempt at a stolen single, a wild throw and two buzzers. We had won seven wickets down and as we await news from Wembley promotion is still just about on.

And the sandals? Turned out they had been in the changing room the whole time. Did the thief return them, was I just an idiot and miss them or did I stage the whole thing to give my match report a cool detective story theme? Dear reader you’ll never know…

Uxbridge 4 Batting
Player name RunsMB4s6sSR
1nb 10w 3b 8lb 
for 10 wickets
114 (44.3 overs)
Qaiss b  A.Malik 6
Hashem b  S.Smith 6
Adam ct  A.Jones bld. B.Coutts 23
Qasim ct  O.Brooks bld. R.Gupta 6
Raheel ct  A.Slaughter bld. B.Coutts 1
Ukenda ct  and bld. A.Slaughter 3
Luke b  O.Brooks 19
Abdi ct  S.Akram bld. R.Gupta 17
Gaz ct  B.Hussain bld. A.Slaughter 5
Shakeel ct  R.Gupta bld. O.Brooks 0
Waqas Not Out  0

Actonians Cricket Club 4th XI Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Aneeq Malik9.0220120.002.22
Steve Smith7.0212112.001.71
Roheet Gupta8.0231215.503.87
Bob Coutts10.031527.501.50
Alistair Slaughter5.32824.001.45
Owen Brooks5.011226.002.40

Actonians Cricket Club 4th XI Batting
Player Name RMB4s6sSRCatchesStumpingsRun outs
2nb 8w 1b 2lb 
for 7 wickets

(34.3 overs)
Bilal Hussain ct  bld. Qasim 0 1 0 1
Aneeq Malik ct  bld. Qasim 22 11 200
Shahid Akram ct  bld. Qasim 6 10 60.0 1
Andrew Jones b  Adam 21 42 50.0 1
Owen Brooks ct  bld. Luke 6 5 120.0 1
Bobby Uberoi ct  bld. Waqas 2 20 10.0
Alistair Slaughter b  Qasim 23 34 67.65 2
Roger Masterton Not Out  19 43 44.19
Roheet Gupta Not Out  3 28 10.71 1
Steve Smith  
Bob Coutts  

Uxbridge 4 Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy