Match report ECC vs Cannes Lions – Sunday 4th May 2014

Lions roar defeats Entrecasteaux

In winning the toss Cannes Lions decided to bat on a pitch that had, the previous day, received a heavy deluge of rain. At the outset this seemed a dubious decision to have made as the bounce was variable and the ball was not coming onto the bat in a consistent manner. Cliff Gregory (5-0-14-0) opened the bowling from the Garden House end and delivered a fast and accurate spell in which he was unlucky not to claim a wicket but did have Lal (2) run out in a bad between the batsmen. Glen Burrell (4-0-13-1) at the Football pitch end was also proving a handful and when Charles (5) edged a rising delivery Gregory gratefully accepted the offer at first slip.

This had brought Chaminda (22) and Shan (13) together and the batsmen were patient and careful as they steadily began to accumulate runs. Chaminda always looking to take advantage of any short delivery with his favoured pull to the legside and in such a manner he was caught by David Coates on the square leg boundary, off the bowling of Anthony Slack (6-0-25-2), who had taken over at the Garden House end. David Coates (5-0-26-0) with his left arm spin was very unlucky not to claim a wicket when Shan hit the ball directly and fiercely to an ever grateful Gregory at extra cover, but the square leg umpire had called a no ball to a delivery which could have been no higher than knee height. The left handed Gayan (28) had replaced Chaminda and in commanding style dispatched any wayward delivery to the boundary.

Andy Fife (4-1-10-3) was now bowling from the Football pitch end and Entrecasteaux were in dire need of a wicket. Gayan at the same time was looking to force the run pace, but in playing back to a ball that was going to hit middle and off, he miss timed his shot with the ball going on to strike his pad. A loud and confident appeal produced the dreaded digit from the vigilant Maurice Mitchem behind the stumps and Gayan was returned to the pavilion. Meanwhile Slack and Coates had teamed up together again when Coates superbly caught Roshan (6) one handed at a rather closer square leg than his earlier dismissal. Fife continued with both Madu (8) and Anura (1) being bowled. Yannick Perera (5-0-20-2), the rapidly improving elder son of Chaminda, finally had Shan caught at the wicket by Ed Harland and then bowled Wasantha (7).

Entrecasteaux were unable to wrap up the Cannes Lions innings as Janze (12 not out) and young Loyed (7 not out) defended their wickets admirably and so the Cannes innings closed on a score of 121 for 9 off the 35 overs.

It was therefore a confident Glen Burrell (16) and Anthony Slack (3) who opened the batting for the home team. A mere formality one would have thought with a run rate of no more than 3.5 required. Slack did not have enough time at the crease to read the pace or bounce of the ball before he offered a tame catch off the bowling of Shan (4.2-0-26-2) and so Andy Fife (28) entered the fray. He and Burrell set about their work and had taken the score  to 51 with some particularly forceful straight drives to the boundary off the bowling of both Shan and Gayan (5-1-21-1), when Burrell smote a ball from Shan, which flew to the covers with a speed akin to an exocet missile,  where it was remarkably and brilliantly caught by Wasantha.

Ed Harland (7) now joined Fife but they were not together for long before Fife played across the line of a straight ball from Charles (5-0-13-1) and so had his middle stump knocked over. An unfamiliar and ineffective Chaminda (2-0-4-0) in the guise of a quick left arm bowler had tried two overs of fast bowling before running out of steam and, in his own words, would have been better off with his left arm spin.

There now began a period of stagnation and it was only after the drinks break when the score had reached 78 off 19 overs that Harland decided to up the pace. Unfortunately for him he was promptly caught at mid wicket off the bowling of Lal (3-0-5-1). David Coates (4) showed some promise with a well struck boundary but was then caught at cover point having not got on top of a long hop with a little extra bounce from Anura (3-1-5-1). Steve Crozier (19 not out) carried his bat, prodding and pushing singles and twos but no one else would stay with him – the tail would not wag. Yannick Perera (4) did well before being bowled by Gayan but Max Harland, caught at extra cover off the bowling of Wasantha (2-0-8-1), Cliff Gregory, caught at mid off off the bowling of young Loyed (2-0-7-1), Tom Slack, bowled by Madu (1-0-1-1) and Francois Xavier Lecomte, bowled by Shan, did not trouble the scorer.

Entrecasteaux had been bowled out for 98 runs and so lost the game by 23 runs. It was without doubt a poor batting performance by the home side against what could hardly be described as anything other than a fairly sedentary bowling attack, but to give the Cannes Lions their due they fielded with an intensity and keenness which demonstrated their desire to win. Any ball driven into the covers was pounced upon, like a lion on an impala, and returned immediately to the wicket keeper. The Cannes Lions lived up to their name and deserved this victory.

Many thanks to Maurice Mitchem for umpiring so stoutly.


6 mai 2014Permalink