CtCCCC were playing their first ever match at Highgate Wood and were intrigued to know what the opposition had to offer as the quality of the ground raised expectations. The opposition in question were The Strongroom CC, a friendly side with a 34 year old history, who had nearly felled the Chairman with excitement when sending an unsolicited email requesting a fixture over the winter. Not only was this new opposition for CtC, but also a first domestic Saturday fixture, a detail which had made raising an XI quite tricky, with most of the team engaged in weddings, stags, yoga-brunches or other cappuccino-swilling millennial urban nonsense. As such CtC were forced to borrow friends from old-friends and north London dwellers And That's Lunch to form something of a hybrid team, which became known as the "Prius XI", much to the mirth of your correspondent Rupert Rudkin.
The majority of the team were in fact still fuelled off fumes from an ATL social at Rowans bowling alley the night field in somewhat cautious fashion. However, a slightly overcast day had the seamers licking their lips and an attack led by wise old head Davoe (5-1-18-1) and debutant May (5-0-10-2) made no mistake by putting the batsman under a lot of early pressure. This pressure gave way to wickets and after getting the top few batsmen out quite easily it soon became apparent that this may not be CtC's toughest opponents of the season. That said the opposition managed to scramble together a few runs, despite strong bowling from Eric Heath, and some unorthodox hitting by their lower order got them to 124ao, which they declared to be only just under par for their home ground. (Ed - your correspondent Rupert Rudkin finishing with 2-17 which he modestly forgets to mention)
The hosts put on a more than satisfactory picnic for lunch which was thoroughly enjoyed by all, before CtC openers and debutantes Powell and Wright went out to open the batting. The physically mismatched pair got the team off to a solid start, albeit in contrasting styles. Whilst Wright was watchful on a tricky pitch Powell raced to a quickfire 20 before being caught. Wright was joined at the crease by Nunez who both in true test match style punished the bad ball and slowly edged the team towards a victory.
The oppositions bowling wasn't overly dangerous but nonetheless it still took some proper application from Wright and Nunez to put CtC into a commanding position, and soon it looked like the two would guide CtC home unbeaten. However with the end in sight Wright fell on 38 and in came "Hammmmo" who stated that he was keen to try and catch the end of the England South Africa rugby match in the pub and wasn't looking to hang around in the middle.
Seeing the self-styled big show stride to the middle the opposition captain cunningly called for substitute fielder Davidson to enter the attack. This brought strong attention from all members of the team as they were keen to see who would win the duel. After some testing first balls from Davoe, his attempts to bounce Hammond were to prove as predictable as they were easy to play, and Hammo played some lusty blows to take CtC over the line for the loss of two wickets. Hammond finished on 18* and Nunez 30*.
All in all a very enjoyable trip to the charming Highgate Wood for a well spirited fixture which we hope to repeat next year.
Cambridge to Casablanca Cycling Cricket Club