With the last two matches in the U13B league frustratingly rained off, the BPG U15s were pleased to see rays of sunshine beating down on the Chiswick & Whitton pitch on Wednesday as the planes roared overhead. Unfortunately, the girls were once again a player short going into the fixture and with a side made up of both experienced senior BPG players, young hotshots and a smattering of debutantes.
Captain Paige Goodwin won the toss and elected to field. She turned to Imogen Higgins and younger sister Erin Goodwin (3 overs/9 runs/1 wicket) to open the bowling. Both girls rattled the Chiswick boys early on, with their openers looking nervous in the onslaught. The first few overs resulted in sparse runs on the board before Imogen took the first wicket with a tasty catch by fielding supremo Jess Low. The first bowling change saw Paige (3 overs/17 runs) take the ball in hand and she was unlucky to not come away with a wicket in a spell that was neat and accurate. Evie Mayhew (3 overs/14 runs/1 wicket) had better luck with a wicket from a run-out coming from the very capable hands of wicket keeper Kerrie-Ann D’Cunha before the diminutive Rosie Davis began her spell.
And spellbinding it was – fast, tight and resulting in three wickets to add to her tally. Your scorer had to keep reminding herself to watch the runs and not the bowling masterclass on display.
Amy Coppin (1 over/11 runs), in her first match for the U15s, and JLow (1 over/9 runs) bowled an over each, but wickets were needed as the opener was starting to look too comfortable, so Simrat Khaira was called up. Although proving the most accurate bowler and the only one to not concede any extras, the wickets were not forthcoming, but Khaira proved she can be relied upon for economical bowling spells.
Erin was invited back for the closing overs and clean-bowled the bemused middle order batter with the score on 93/6. Despite wanting to keep the boys under a target of 100, the final score reached 101/6 – close enough… cue the excited whooping from the boys.
Paige and JLow barely had time to take a sip of their Ribena before they were padded up, hair plaited and striding to the crease. These two are seasoned openers for the older age group and have been known to carry their bats in previous games, but this wasn’t to be their day. JLow found herself clean-bowled at 14/1 and the opposition bowler’s exuberant celebration was quite the Oscar-winning performance. Someone should sign him up for the theatre.
JLow was replaced by Ella Jones in her first competitive match not just for the U15s but for BPG itself. But if she was feeling nervous, she showed no signs of it as the opening bowlers flung everything they had at her. She was eventually clean-bowled, but can be proud of her debut performance.
In strode Erin G Jnr to take her place opposite her older sister and she made her intentions clear from the start with a walloping shot. Her sister fell cheaply soon after, to be replaced by Kerrie-Ann, but Erin stood her ground and began to hit boundary after boundary on a pitch that had seemed as though 4s were hard to come by (the boys only managed 5 4s in their entire innings).
Unfortunately, all that bending and squatting had taken its toll on wicket-keeper Kerrie-Ann, who found herself hobbling with a leg strain, so arguably the team’s best runner in JLow was called in to help Kerrie-Ann as her runner. It was short-lived, however, and another wicket fell. Simrat tried to tonk the ball a few times but was unlucky to find herself run out, before being replaced by Evie Mayhew.
Meanwhile, Erin was channelling her inner Stokes and wracking up the runs, eventually achieving not only her first half century of her career, but a final score of 53 runs off 39 balls and including 8 4s. She was eventually bowled by our favourite amateur dramatics bowler and Imogen Higgins got a brief chance to bat and secure victory for the girls with a final score of 103/6 after 16 overs.
This was another good-natured game featuring some very promising young cricketers, not only showing their development on the pitch, but also their team ethos off the pitch in their all-inclusive attitude in supporting and encouraging the younger, less experienced players, which is what BPG is all about.
A shout-out to Imogen for her bowling spell (3 overs/10 runs/1 wicket), Rosie for her wicket-taking tally (3 overs/13 runs/3 wickets) and JLow for her calm catch on the boundary. Stand-out fielding came from the likes of Amy and Ella on debut and Evie, who is always reliable in the field, and all of the girls played their part to cover the hole left by being one player short.
There were indeed Goodwins everywhere you looked on this occasion… whether scoring, umpiring, captaining or hitting boundaries. Thank you as always to our parental cheerleaders and volunteers and to our hosts at Chiswick & Whitton.