Traditionally games between The Hills and YMCA are close-run affairs, but today’s result constituted a major departure from tradition. YMCA won the toss and opted to field because the weather forecast was full of grim foreboding for the mid to late afternoon. The first wicket fell when the score was 14 runs, and the second wicket fell after 20 runs had been added. A partnership of 79 runs between Athar Farooqi (40) and Dylan Blignaut (42) gave The Hills hope of posting a competitive score, but their wickets fell at 113 and 114 runs respectively. Mark Donegan (31) and Levon Shields (12) added a further 42 runs, but the big partnership which the situation demanded never materialised. There were two run outs and The Hills’ final score was 227 runs for the loss of 8 wickets. For large parts of The Hills’ innings, there was a lack of intent with regard to scoring runs as distinct from blocking the ball or shots found fielders with great regularity.
Had The Hills enough runs? It is rarely wise to pontificate on what constitutes a good score in the first innings, but among The Hills’ cognoscenti, it was being suggested that the team was about 50 runs short of a good total. The wicket of Mitchell Thompson was taken by Dylan Blignaut thanks to a smart catch by Cormac McLoughlin-Gavin, in slip, when YMCA had only scored 28 runs, and that was the last success which The Hills had during a very chastening afternoon. Jack and Tim Tector batted brilliantly, punished any loose bowling, and ran very well between the wickets. Jack scored 107* and Tim scored 105* and their performance was a bonanza for statisticians and sports historians as they wondered if brothers had ever scored centuries in the same game.
This was a day when two batsmen were totally in control, and it is greatly to the credit of The Hills’ bowlers and fielders that they persevered when nothing positive was going their way. In the words of Van Morrison, “there will be days like this” so it is a matter of learning from the experience and preparing for the visit of Rush to The Vineyard on Friday next. Until then, it is onwards and upwards.