1st X1 vs Albion
With our position in North A1 still in serious doubt, the encounter with bottom placed Albion provided us with the chance to gain some badly needed points to lift us out of the relegation zone. Winning the toss and inserting the visitors, a run out in the first over got Seddon off to the start required. A wicket to Weitzel in the next over had Albion teetering at 2/4, however a steadying partnership saw the Cobras snake their way to 35 without further loss. Another run out via the newly promoted Rae, combining with the important wicket of the captain to Weitzel saw Seddon break the back of the opposition. The introduction of spin brought about their quick demise as Grant wrapped up the innings with the figures of 5/4.
Chasing 62, with 51 overs to do it in surely wouldn’t pose a problem and with the search for points well and truly under way, the edict to get them as quickly as possible contributed to the loss of Van Kruining in the first over. Shah and Godakanda took the game away with a solid, if unspectacular partnership of 33. Some tight bowling hindered Seddon’s charge to first innings points, but some lusty hitting from Stevens and the also promoted Grieves, saw the hosts over the line in the 23rd over. At this point, Grant put a stop to the innings and set about trying to eke out as many wickets as possible in the remaining 28 overs.
A wicket in the first over to Matkovic had the Albion opener considering retirement on his way back to the dressing room shed for a 3rd ball duck to go with his diamond duck in the first innings. The introduction of Godakanda and Grant again saw Seddon make timely breakthroughs as Albion slipped to 5/34 and staring at outright defeat. At this pont, the Albion captain made his return to the crease and set about avoiding the impossible. Another wicket to Grant and a late one to Rae saw Albion finish on 7/56 at the close.
Many much sought after points will no doubt go a long way to securing Seddon’s position in the league next year, however there remains one hugely important match in the season to negotiate. Here’s hoping that the Seddon boys bring their A games on Saturday.
4th X1 vs Royal Park / Brunswick
Winning the toss, we sent them in and the pitch was certainly helpful to our bowlers. Lots of balls kept low whilst the occasional one kicked up. Timm Weitzel opened the bowling in his first game in the 4ths for a year or so, and bowled his usual good line and length, picking up 3/28 from 9 overs. Anirudh Kakulapati was very economical with 2/13 from 7 overs and Nathan Greelish produced 1/20 from 9 accurate overs. Srikanth Kancherla took 2/31 and was unlucky to have their top scorer given not out caught behind early in his innings and dropped soon after. Despite being one short, Royal Park/Brunswick held on to make 8/113 from their 36 overs.
Our batsmen struggled to get the score moving early despite the advantage of only ten fielders and after 12 overs 2 wickets had fallen for only 21 runs. Almost half of those runs came from Anirudh’s brief but entertaining innings of 9 from 4 balls. The next 12 overs yielded 40 runs, including a partnership of 38 between John Dryiski and Srikanth. Johnno eventually made 32 from 27 overs and Srikanth 20 from 12 overs. We had conserved wickets but 3/61 meant the scoring rate had to double in the last 12 overs. The seventh wicket fell at the end of the 30th over, bringing Laurie to join Bale at the crease. Needing 33 from 6 overs, the pair put on 24 in 5 overs. Sadly, this was the fastest 4 overs of the innings. This and each of the last 4 partnerships ended with a runout. Four runouts for a season total of 16 isn’t a good look, but the runouts were all ambitious but necessary efforts to lift the scoring rate. Needing 9 from the last over our tailenders did their best but two runouts left us six short with one ball left.
Five positives emerged from the game:
• 1. Riaz Salar played his first game for Seddon and his attitudes and skills demonstrated that he can be a valuable member of future Seddon teams.
• 2. Nathan Greelish demonstrated that he has matured as a seniors bowler.
• 3. Despite the last 4 wickets being runouts, we showed a vastly improved approach to aggressive running between wickets.
• 4. After playing out 16 maidens in the previous game we only conceded 5 this time.
• 5. Ani’s 4 ball cameo shows that even in the race to the bottom of the ladder there are brief moments of inspiration and enlightenment.