Riding the high of an unprecedented 2-0 start to the season, the cougars arrived at Beacon Hill Park in the blistering heat ready to extend the win streak against the winless Alcos.
After strategically maneuvering the coolers and kits for maximum shade coverage, Doug's deputy Izak managed to successfully navigate a must-win toss and elected to bat. KP and Noel strode to the crease and proceeded to play pat-ball with the opening bowlers, extras more than making up for a slow run-rate. Wides came thick and fast requiring Rajeev and JC to get creative in the scorebox to accommodate some extended overs.
Having successfully seen the shine off the new ball and setting a nice platform, Kieren and Noel simultaneously and graciously made way for what would prove to be a record-setting partnership between Chewie and Dilip.
In the blistering heat they destroyed the morale of the fielding side, forcing them to chase balls hit to all corners of the ground, building a 140-run partnership for the 3rd wicket. It was a batting masterclass and a game-winning partnership that was thoroughly enjoyed by the smattering of spectators in attendance on such a hot day. Both players executed the sweep shot to perfection; Chewie crushing one for a massive 6 and Dilip working his hamstrings to score many runs behind square off a toothless spin attack.
Heat exhaustion was the only way the partnership was going to be broken and sure enough Dilip was caught on 60, Chewie feathering one to the keeper shortly afterwards for the devils number 87. With Duke and Cocks at the crease looking to increase the run-rate, it was starting to look bleak for the home team.
JC's stay was short-lived, managing just a single boundary before being skittled, unable to capitalize on a botched runout attempt. Izak and Duke proceeded to pummel the hapless attack, scoring 26 and 38 respectively at better than a-run-a-ball before running out of deliveries.
In the latter stages of his innings, Izak flushed a sweep shot directly at poor A. Richardson who unfortunately split the webbing in his hand and couldn't continue with the match. We wish him a speedy recovery from what looked to be a nasty injury. The cougars ultimately set an imposing target of 274 for victory on a slow, scorching hot BHP wicket.
Izak and Rajeev took the new ball and a breakthrough was quickly had with Satinder playing far too aggressively, holing out to Pieren at mid off who looked uncharacteristically confident under the high ball.
Rajeev was able to bounce back after a loose opening over to control the run rate and turn up the pressure. Alcos opening bat was able to keep the run-rate ticking over despite a fairly consistent stream of wickets at the other end, notably from Ro who took two, by bowling very tight lines making scoring difficult. Another solid bowling effort from Metchosin's premier all-rounder Chewie was able to tighten the screws further, continuing his inevitable march towards sweeping the VDCA end-of-season awards with 2 more wickets.
Towards the end of the day Izak tossed the ball to BDV completely unaware of the fireworks that were to come. After a single loosener that was hit for a boundary, Viquar bowled disciplined, tight lines and kept the batting attack in check.
After taking a couple of wickets to catches from Pieren and Cocks respectively, Viquar tore through the final two batsmen, quite literally. Wicket number 3 was cleaned bowled, shattering the wickets and breaking middle stump in two. After some scrambling from Alcos to replace it Viquar repeated the feat the following over, this time cracking the batsman's off-stump in two.
It was a memorable finish and a great win for the Cougars, ultimately dismissing Alcos for 179, almost 100 runs short of the target. Smashing stumps and breaking hearts, BDV's 4 wickets earned him the Cougar of the match award and capped off a great win for Metchosin.
Scorecard can be found here: https://www2.cricketstatz.com/ss/runreport2.aspx?club=23365&mode=100&match=394744
Next match will be against the United Victoria CC back at the MCG on July 4th.