Stragglers of Asia vs Northchurch CC at Northchurch.

Result: Stragglers of Asia won by 90 runs


A fine victory by 90 runs was recorded by the Stragglers that took the field at Northchurch Cricket Club on Sunday 2 July for a forty over match. There was a carnival atmosphere in the beautiful, sun-drenched ground as many spectators gathered to enjoy what promised to be a succulent event with several tantalising matchups.  On the home team, Straggler Matt Suckling captaining an enthusiastic bunch, including several bowlers queuing up to have a crack at Tom Calder, who left NCC this season after many years.  In the Stragglers XI, Tom Vila, Northchurch’s club captain, and guest Pete McGiffin, father of the home team’s visiting Aussie, who was also taking the field.  Hooper, Brown, M Cavanagh, Allsop and Trapani drooled as they inspected the hard, flat pitch and were thrilled when, very sportingly, Northchurch were persuaded to let us bat first.

Hooper joined McGiffin snr in the middle.  Fifteen overs later, number three Allsop was in the unfamiliar territory of still having his pads on and watching an unbeaten century opening stand from the comfort of the pavilion.  Erstwhile Queensland player and now professional coach, McGiffin demonstrated that class is permanent by striking an elegant 80, three years after playing his last match.  Only a direct hit from deepish mid-off, after an ambitious call for a single, could send him on his way.  Meanwhile, Hooper had compiled a very smart 40 before one brought two and he top edged to the keeper.

Allsop missed out on the fun by nibbling an off break that went straight on and, in doing so, sent Matt Cavanagh out to meet Conor Brown.  Another fine partnership developed before Brown, having hit some lovely clean straight drives, was smartly caught by a tumbling Australian running forward at long off.  Cavanagh soon followed, having established an excellent platform for the duo of Tom Calder and guest Dave Pearce to increase the rate and take the Stragglers well past the 250 coveted by the captain.

Seamers Vila and guest James Deas worked hard to extract what advantage might be gained from the new ball and it was left armer Deas who struck first, a very full ball straightening to trap Suckling lbw in the third over of the Northchurch reply.  Replacing Vila, Hooper found some swing while, at the other end, Tom Calder got some grip with his off spinners.  The sideways movement slowed the run rate and when trying to break the pressure, the Northchurch bats holed out at a regular rate.

McGiffin jnr, although not as fluent as his father, looked determined to contribute the majority of the runs and, after a watchful start, began to cut loose.  When joined by the experienced Mike James, the run rate increased alarmingly and the captain took some time to reconsider the strategy while on the roof of the pavilion retrieving a maximum.

Dhiraj Patel, entering the attack and whirling in off one pace with his skiddy leg breaks, pushed up the rate required to 10 an over and there was no let up from the other end as Deas, Calder, Vila and Hooper rotated.  When Allsop took a neat catch at backward point to dismiss the charging Aussie, the writing was on the wall for Northchurch and two junior players, though taking the opportunity for some middle practice, succumbed

A superb day at lovely ground and against a spirited but great fun opposition.  Although an untraditional limited-overs-against-club-opposition fixture, all agreed that we should request a re-run next year.

Team Batting First: Stragglers of Asia


  Batsman How Out Bowler Score
1 Tony Hooper Ct Suckling+ Sweeten 38
2 Pete McGiffin (G) Run Out (J Smart)   81
3 James Allsop Ct Suckling+ Steve McGiffin 2
4 Conor Brown Ct S McGiffin Mike James 47
5 Matt Cavanagh Ct J Smart Mike James 38
6 Dave Pearce (G) Not Out 51
7 Tom Calder Not Out 6
8 Nino Trapani + Did Not Bat    
9 James Deas (G) Did Not Bat    
10 Dhiraj Patel Did Not Bat    


Tom Vila* Did Not Bat    
      Extras: 5 TOTAL: 268 for 5


Bowler Overs Maidens Runs Wickets
Matt Dawson 7 0 59 0
Joel James 8 0 65 1
Steve McGiffin 6 0 39 1
Charlie Sweeten 5 1 16 1
Mike James 7 0 47 2
Ollie Johnson 7 0 38 0


Team Batting Second: Northchurch CC

  Batsman How Out Bowler Score
1 James Smart Ct Deas Tom Calder 13
2 Matt Suckling LBW James Deas 13
3 Ryan Smart Ct Deas Tom Calder 22
4 Steve McGiffin Ct Allsop Tom Vila 73
5 Jack Fantham Ct & Bowled Dhiraj Patel 3
6 Mike James Ct Cavanagh Tony Hooper 28
7 Matt Dawson Bowled Tom Vila 0
8 Ollie Johnson Bowled Dhiraj Patel 6
9 Charlie Sweeten Bowled Dhiraj Patel 0
10 Joel James Not Out 4
11 Calum Lindsay Ct Deas Matt Cavanagh 0
      Extras: 15 TOTAL: 176 all out


Bowler Overs Maidens Runs Wickets
James Deas 6 1 26 1
Tom Vila 7 1 19 2
Tony Hooper 8 1 51 1
Tom Calder 8 0 44 2
Dhiraj Patel 9 4 28 3
Matt Cavanagh 0.3 0 1 1

Scorer(s): Barbara Egglesfield