28th June 2018
In a close fought match, the PPA overcame a valiant effort by the SPA 11 to retain the trophy which has been jealously guarded in Aiden Murray’s locker for the past two years (it did look in need of a polish).
The setting was the St Helen’s Cricket Ground on the seafront in Southsea, home to Portsmouth Cricket Club, and the outlook was glorious as we all enjoyed the early evening heatwave temperatures.
We were hampered by traffic conditions, meaning many of our team to 90 minutes or more for the journey eastbound along the M27.
With no option other than to bat due to short numbers at the outset (ultimately your correspondent was forced to drag his sorry 60yo ass on to the outfield to make up our 11, a mere 35 years after his last exposure to playing the game) we eventually made 90 runs for the loss of 6 wickets in our 20 overs – it could have been higher but for a debatable umpiring decision robbing us of our opening bat. The PPA rammed home their advantage by serving us burgers at the turn-around, further impeding our prowess in the field.
Our total always felt light, but we started well, taking several early wickets before the opposition’s star player took the game away from us with an unbeaten 30 runs.
Eventually the PPA surpassed our total with 15 balls to spare, but for the loss of 8 wickets, and we were obliged to hand the trophy over to the temporary safekeeping of the PPA. Home advantage, travel weariness and burger indulgence had eventually taken its toll.
Despite the loss, the team spirit was good, and the evening was not too soured by the defeat. There was also a moment of history made though as the SPA included a female player for (to the best of my knowledge) the first time in this fixture. Be very proud, SPA.
Regards, Steve Fahy