It’s taken me a while to post this, as the Pleasure felt the pain of being eliminated from the playoffs on bonus points. In truth though, we only have ourselves to blame after losing our last three games when points from any of them would have seen us through.
The game against Dynamite started badly with yet another lost toss, and freakishly hot conditions for 8am. We also started two players short with Genghis and Long Dong arriving late. It wasn’t the ideal start for such an important game, but Bugs and Swahili bowled well early on to minimise the damage. Our full compliment was on the field by the time Swoop came on in the seventh over to start a magnificent bowling spell. He took a wicket in each of his first three overs, and another two in his last two overs to finish with a career best 5 wicket haul, completed with a sharp, low caught and bowled in his final over. Long Dong supported Swoop well in a welcome return to form and the Bashers were looking good. Bugs came back for an excellent second spell, and finished with only 12 runs off his six overs, including two maidens, while Swahili picked up a wicket off the last ball and Growler was very unlucky not to take wickets. The fielding was a great improvement on the previous week, highlighted by a direct hit run out by Pothole, who also finally got one to fall from his chest to his hands, and Long Dong grabbing two catches and taking his season tally to six, the best by a Pleasure outfielder. Dynamite had made it to 160-8, a very gettable total. It remained to be seen how much the heat had taken out of the Bashers, and whether we could put up a better effort than the previous game’s debacle.
The chase got off to the worst possible start, with Pothole bowled off the very first ball. Korean and Genghis consolidated for a while before Korean was caught driving, followed almost immediately by Growler. Genghis (LBW again) and Swoop were also back in the hutch before the 50 came up, leaving a lot of work for the middle and lower order. Even the weather was refusing to cooperate, as fielding conditions became much more tolerable. I’m pleased to say that there was some genuine fight shown by Badabing, Post-op (19), Tank, Bugs (22), Swahili, and Long Dong. Unfortunately we were always slightly behind the run-rate after the early losses, and never had a partnership over thirty, so ended up 22 short of the target.
It was a disappointing end to a season which showed a lot of promise, followed by a boisterous if bittersweet fine session, which saluted the positives and looked back at what could have been.