Having started the week with lunch with Sir Garfield Sobers (I’m still pinching myself) the cricket theme of my week continued.

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The joys of having 2 memberships means I’ll have cricket galore on top of my Ashes days, being something of a cricket geek that’s a piece of heaven for me!

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The 1st game of the weekend was a spot of T20 Blast and the visit of Hampshire to the County Ground.  They’ve been something of a bogey team in recent years for Essex, we were all hoping of course their spell of wins would be halted.

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I learnt a lesson o Friday – look at the ticket before heading to the ground 2 hours before ‘Play’ – I wanted to say kick off there, but checked the correct term! 🙂  (I do understand it’s like to hurt if they actually kicked off!)

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To my disappointment there was no cake on offer, only biscuits, I’m sure the time would have passed better if I’d had cake to accompany my tea!

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By chance I sat next to a Twitter connection, Jamie – that did mean I had someone interesting to while away the time with, fortunate amongst a ground full of people!

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I was joined by my much more sensible friend Tina with another cup of tea in hand.  I realised I’d actually made a school girl error in my choice of seat, I had the umpire blocking my view for half of the match!  How rude!

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Hampshire won the toss, as was loudly announced – I’d add another request to cake for Essex, please turn the announcement/tannoy down!  It is great to be able to hear the announcer but not quite as LOUD!

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Credit after criticism, I’m very pleased to say Essex listened to the concern about the barely dressed cheerleaders, much better!

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And so to the cricket – Mark Pettini and Jessie Ryder opened the batting, and wow they did so in style!

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How to describe this?  Let;s start with Pettini – he’s been in great form opening in the T20 matches, playing the fast paced, exciting cricket needed in this format.

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And he made no exception – scoring a highly entertaining 74 runs in 40 minutes, including nine 4’s and three 6’s – shout out loud exciting cricket (good job it’s allowed at T20!).  Jesse Ryder was going along well at the other end.

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Pettini was caught by  a superb effort from Gareth Berg off the bowling of Will Smith.  Ravi Bopara joined Ryder at the crease, but in common with those filling him – not for long!  He was out for 3, caught by James Vince from the bowling of Danny Briggs.

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I’m going to list the next 3 batsmen – Ryan ten Doeschate – out for 9 – caught Wheater, bowler Yasir Arafat. Graham Napier caught by Vince, bowler Berg for 6 – James Foster bowled by Chris Wood for 4.

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That’s the tale of the batsmen outside the openers – the big tale of the innings on top of a great start by Pettini was Jessie Ryder.  He showed the near capacity crowd just what he’s capable of!

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He scored a thrilling 107 runs from a mere 55 balls – that run count included eight 4’s and eight 6’s – it was a joy to behold!  Tom Westley saw the final few balls out adding 2 runs.  Essex Eagles finished on a huge 212!

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I imagine Hampshire regretted the decision to put Essex in to bat to say the least!  I’m not going to linger on the response by the visitors.  That old saying – they were up for it – certainly applied to Essex.  They were great all over the field!

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Hampshire were on 21 for 3 before 3 overs were bowled – with the big scalp of Michael Carberry included.  Hampshire offered scant resistance and were all out for 134 with 9 balls remaining.  The wickets were shared out, with Reece Topley and Ravi Bopara taking 3 apiece and David Masters and Shaun Tait 2 each.

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Jessie Ryder was rightly awarded Man of the Match but the win really was a team effort – Essex got the monkey off their back that is Hampshire.  A thoroughly enjoyable evening!

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One of the joys of watching sport in my home town is a quick journey home – they’re far and few between.  Next up – a wholly different form of the game!

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2 Comments »

    • Thanks, he is, getting wickets but very expensive. If you look back you’ll see more cricket. Including some very famous names for Ravi Bopara’s benefit match

      Like

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