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Carib Beer XI vs Delta Rail - July 10th 2008

By Guest Match Reporter Gordon Berry

Following the previous week's rainout, the Carib Beer XI returned to action looking to preserve their 100% record against old foes Delta Rail (formerly known as AEAT).

The hosts were without Messrs Cordey, Harris and Weaver - all of whose terms of dismissal from AEAT presumably included a clause forbidding them to play against their former employers - and Military Medium Bowler Carib Rogerson, who was celebrating a landmark birthday someplace else.

As a category two game, a relaxed drinking code was in force and the lager was soon flowing on the boundary edge as the Carib Beer XI went in to bat. After a bright start by Ringer Worthy, Delta opening bowler Gilbert soon had him and fellow opener Carib Bowen back in the hutch, bringing Carib captain Mr Haigh to the crease to face the hat-trick ball.

Although coming into the match on the back of a Collingwoodesque run of form and no doubt subjected to 'a bit of banter' from his former colleagues, Mr Haigh fended off the hat-trick delivery and thereafter made good progress in tandem with an unusually subdued Carib Turner.

However Captain Haigh's hopes of leading from the front (i.e. padding his averages with a not-out score) ended with a skied shot that Delta Bell, running in from a starting position just north of Baker St tube, clung onto well.

Despite the dismissal of their captain and Carib Turner - adjudged by the square leg fielder to have been stumped - the Carib middle order avoided its usual collapse. Ringer Uttam - whose refusal to play any innings of greater than 10 balls surely makes him the spiritual heir to absent club secretary Philipp von Kordey - smashed a succession of boundaries, doubtless aware that he would be run out by umpiring nemesis and batting partner Carib Willis should any shot fail to cross the rope.

Following Uttam's enforced retirement, Caribs Willis and Rayner continued to keep the HMS Runrate on a steady course, making the most of some erratic fare from the Delta attack including a rare spell of 'right arm under' bowling.

However Carib Rayner's hopes of claiming a second successive man of the match award against the opposition were dented by his controversial dismissal in the final over of the innings. With the bails removed due to the strong wind gusting through Regent's Park, Mr Gooch saw an innocuous delivery cannon off his pads and gently roll against the off stump. Although the impact would probably have pole-axed Chelsea striker Didier Drogba, there was little doubt that it would've failed to dislodge the timber had the bails been in place. Sadly for Mr Gooch, stand-in umpire Carib Turner had seen the exact same scenario in a recent edition of 'You Are The Umpire' and correctly gave him out. Carib Rayner took the decision with good grace and refused to mention the incident even once during the remainder of the game or post-match drinks.

Despite the controversy, Carib posted a decent total of 140 for 7 from their 20 overs with extras top-scoring for the fourth consecutive game (surely making it a shoe-in for one of the end-of-season awards).

In reply, the home bowlers tore into the opposition's top order with Carib Willis swiftly skewering top order batsman Barbatsoulis and Georgiou to bring up his third hat-trick opportunity of the season.

However with Carib captain Mr Haigh once again passing up the chance to bring in the field, Delta Gilbert calmly saw off the delivery, leaving the honour of the first-ever Carib hat-trick still unclaimed.

Gilbert proceeded to casually loft the next delivery into the pitchside café and followed up with a number of other clean boundary hits.

However, with his partners becalmed by the miserly bowling of the Carib attack, Gilbert's attempts to up the run rate saw him fall victim to the wiles of field marshal Haigh. Stationing fielders in the deep, the Carib skipper dared Gilbert to clear the ropes, but instead the batsman was only able to hole out to Increasingly Useful Fielder Carib Berry at deep mid-on.

With the opposition now well behind the required run rate, mercurial change bowler Carib Rayner was brought on to apply the coup de grace. The giant Essexman answered the challenge, immediately getting the ball to turn and bounce, take the edge of the bewildered Chapman's bat and find the safe hands of Carib Berry at slip.

Tying the opposition batsmen in knots with his mastery of line and length, Mr Gooch nearly repeated the trick in his second over, only for Overrated Fieldsman Carib Berry to spill the chance. However the damage had been done, and despite some lively batting from Delta Ablett and former Carib ringers Ford and Curtis, the opposition were to finish 28 runs short of the demanding target.

Both teams retired to the pub and despite the usual lobbying from man of the match contenders, it was finally decided that with six players reaching double figures with the bat and six different bowlers taking wickets, the Carib Beer XI were indeed the men of the match.

Carib Beer XI Win by 28 Runs

Opposition Wicketkeeper Ford
Relentlessly correct Umpire Michael Lee
Michael Lee, concerned tha this beer can maybe empty
Michael Lee, studying the line of the ball, while Steve looks on
Captain, Martin Haigh, Hits out
Martin Haigh drives to the cover boundary
Martin Haigh chatting to the opposition
Practice Ball, after a session with Mr Gooch
Carib Turner, back in the hutch
Michael Lee, warming up for another umpiring session
Mr Gooch straps on his pads
The Ranks of the Carib Beer XI
Mr Gooch, showing the team how it's done
Mr Gooch, poised for another huge innings
Opposition Bowler, Michael Lee umpring, and Barry Willis watching
Martin Haigh's on field drinking shield
Mr Gooch, practicing his Gooch like backlift
Mr Gooch, hitting a perfectc cover drive
Ringer Bailey, losing his middle stump
Ringer Uttam, on his way out to bat
Mr Gooch, contemplating another 333
Mr Gooch, contemplating another 3
Ringer Uttam, on his way back to the boundary
Barry Willis, on his way back to the hutch


Carib Beer XI      
Andy Bowen Bowled Gilbert 2 (4)
Jarrod Worthy Caught Ford Bowled Gilbert 10 (13)
Steve Turner Stumpted Ford Bowled Gilbert 14 (25)
Martin Haigh Caught Bell Bowled Curtis 19 (20)
Ringer Uttam Not Out 27 (14)
Barry Willis Run Out 11 (14)
Glen Rayner Bowled Chapman 10 (4)
Rob Bailey Bowled Gilbert 0 (4)
Gordon Berry Not Out 4 (9)
Dan Tungate Not Out 0 (2)
Rob White DNB - 0
EXTRAS     43
TOTAL   For 7 (20 overs) 140
Chapman 3-0-8-1 Tom Gilbert 4-0-17-2
Bell 3-0-14-0 Thomas 2-0-19-0
Barbatsoulis 1-0-7-0 Georgiou 1-0-6-1
Curtis 2-0-14-1 Draper 2-0-20-0
Ablett 1-0-10-0 Ball 1-0-15-0
Delta Rail      
Barbatsoulis Caught Tungate Bowled Willis 0 (8)
Thomas Bowled Uttam 5 (11)
Georgiou Bowled Barry Willis 1 (2)
Gilbert Caught ? Bowled Uttam 23 (17)
Ford Caught ? Bowled Tungate 14 (23)
Chapman Bowled Rayner 2 (10)
Ablett Bowled Berry 15 (20)
Curtis Not Out 25 (18)
Bell Not Out 1 (1)
Ball Bowled Martin Haigh 0 (1)
Draper Not Out 0 (1)
EXTRAS     26
TOTAL   For 8 (20 Overs) 116
Rob White 2-0-7-0 Barry Willis 2-0-8-2
Steve Turner 2-0-7-0 Ringer Uttam 2-0-13-2
Jarrod Worthy 2-0-3-0 Dan Tungate 2-0-11-1
Glen Rayner 2-0-8-1 Rob Bailey 2-0-14-0
Gordon Berry 2-0-14-1 Martin Haigh 2-0-11-1