Far from the MCC

~ Est. in 1998 ~

 

 

“Annual Gin Tasting

 

 

Match:  18 / 471

Won by 4 runs

 

 

Team

 

Total

FFTMCC

121 - 8

J. Webster  1 - 10

 

Hendrick’s XI

117 - 4

C. Williams  32*,  J. Webster  32*

 

 

 

 

Once a year, Far from the MCC deviate from their usual beverages of beer and cider to sample the ever-increasing variety of offerings from the world of gin.  It’s a timely departure, as many of the team have had a surfeit of the former on tour the previous weekend.

 

The format is akin to chess boxing, a hybrid sport combining two traditional pastimes, but with T20 cricket instead of boxing, and gin-tasting instead of chess.

 

After Far from the MCC won the toss and elected to bat, first up was C. Williams (11), complex but well balanced, with a dryness and zestiness to stand out; one that you instantly know is top quality. Although a few delicate cut shots were to be had, today’s supply was limited. T. Smith (4), who’d been swinging at everything, downed the remainder, connected with one, then missed a straight one.

 

 

 

Lovely shot of the T Smith exquisite cover drive.

 

 

Next came R. Hadfield and B. Walker (10). The latter, smooth and refreshing with big hits of orange and lemon citrus and hints of elderflower, with a bold blue bottle firmly hit everything in sight until finding the trajectory to Saunders at cover.

 

Hadfield, distinctive, aromatic and full of character and flavour, capturing the essence of the English coast, had begun to play the anchor role, and saw no need to change tack when joined by D. Emerson, with whom whether it’s the apothecary-style bottle or the sight of a cucumber garnish, is distinctive and recognizable and has opened many people’s eyes to the less traditional.

 

Launching into an explosive array of cuts, pulls and sweeps to complement the more customary drives into the V, Emerson (44*) quickly found the meaning of life, before his captain, R. Turner (0) – fresh, smooth and complex, expertly balanced to combine the pine, citrus, floral, sweet and woody notes that are all evident, with real heart behind the clean and fresh flavours, though not to be tried neat – didn’t.

Subtle juniper behind the bold, warm and herbaceous flavours, Hadfield (22) was still there, but as he tried to push the run-rate in the final few overs, soon wasn’t.  G. Timms (5), M. Reeves (7) and C. Vermaak (2) all tried likewise with some success before J. Hotson (3*), complex, vibrant and untraditional, demonstrating new flavour notes and aromas, from berry fruits and citrus to floral and herbal characteristics, together with M. Rundle (2*), added a few at the end.

 

 

 

Williams wonders what’s between Ben’s ears.

 

 

121-8 the target to beat, some gin cocktails during the changeover, then The MAD would open their bar, which would prove initially to be somewhat miserly.

 

At one end, the traditional and iconic stalwart of the UK market for over a century, M. Rundle (4-0-20-0) was smooth and subtle, with more fruity flavours coming through in comparison to the mainstream. At the other, the well-recognized and popular M. Reeves (4-0-11-2), with a little more complexity than some, was comparatively subtle when it came to being driven by juniper, with the other botanicals also coming to the forefront, and bagged a couple of ducks.

 

The first change of bowling kept the visitors’ progress in check. Found in almost every bar, G. Timms’s green bottle was instantly recognizable to the home team, but not entirely to the opposition, as both established batters were bamboozled in his first over.  At the river end, the bold and flavourful T. Smith delivered with fruity lemongrass at the forefront and aromas that bring lemon cheesecake to mind.  The scoring rate may have picked up slightly but the worm and WASP still remained in The MAD’s favour.

 

Then it was Happy Hour. Timms’s (4-0-27-2) final over went for 14, and with fragrant lemongrass and hints of pepper exciting the batters, Smith’s (4-0-29-0) had a finish of sweet, fragrant orange and hints of rose petals for them.

 

 

 

Smith dispensing with a few hand grenades.

 

 

33 now needed off 4, and up stepped D. Emerson to bowl miserly outside off, conceding just three in the over.

 

Perhaps you wouldn’t expect South Africa to be producing fine quality spirits, but C. Vermaak is a surprise package. His first over was also on a length outside off, though a couple were deemed too far outside.

 

After Emerson’s (2-0-9-0) second, thirteen were required from the final over.

 

Not being overpowering or too perfumed, Vermaak maintained the pressure until eight were needed off two balls. Then, fielding wide off his own bowling as the batters scampered a single, on hearing his team-mates shout “Hold it!”, had a moment of hibiscus flowers and hurled the ball at the umpire standing behind the stumps, somewhat in the belief the latter would gather the ball and knock the bails off, but instead allowing an overthrow, which itself, as panic set in, was almost in danger of being overthrown again.

 

So, it wasn’t over yet – a six could still win it for Hendricks.  It soon was, however. Vermaak’s (2-0-19-0) final ball was close enough to the blockhole, and the fielding not calamitous enough to allow an all-run five or six.

 

 

 

MOTM Emerson became MAD winner III of the prestigious bottle of spirit.

 

 

A bottle of gin for the winners, G&Ts each for the losers, and a relatively new sport had provided entertainment and excitement till the very end. Time for a beer…

 

 

‘Gordon’

 

 

 

 

 

*

 

 

Statto Scorecards

 

 

 

Far from the MCC versus Hendrick’s XI

Played at Brasenose College, 10 August 2018

 

Far from the MCC won the toss and elected to bat

Far from the MCC won by 4 runs

 

Far from the MCC debuts:  none

 

 

18 / 471

 

 

 

 

 

20 over match

 

 

 

Team

Far from the MCC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Batsman

How Out

Total

Balls

4s

6s

FOW

1

C. T. J. Williams

c Shaw b Robinson

11

(9)

2

-

1-11

2

T. P. W. Smith

b Robinson

4

(11)

1

-

2-17

3

R. J. B. Hadfield

b Bakhtiar

22

(34)

2

-

5-102

4

B. E. L. Walker

c Saunders b May

10

(15)

1

-

3-32

5

D. Emerson

retired

44

(24)

5

-

-

6

R. P. Turner *

b Bakhtiar

0

(1)

-

-

4-97

7

G. J. Timms

b Shackleton

5

(4)

1

-

6-103

8

M. K. Reeves

c May b Shackleton

7

(6)

1

-

8-113

9

C. J. Vermaak

c Saunders b Bakhtiar

2

(6)

-

-

7-113

10

M. S. Rundle

not out

2

(4)

-

-

 

11

J. C. W. Hotson †

not out

3

(8)

-

-

-

 

Extras

NB2, W9

11

 

 

 

 

 

TOTAL

(for 8 wickets, 20 overs)

121

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Bowler

Overs

Maidens

Runs

Wkts

Econ

 

1

Gilbert

3

0

10

0

3.33

 

2

Robinson

3

0

11

2

3.67

 

3

Hewlett

2

0

17

0

8.50

 

4

May

2

0

15

1

7.50

 

5

Shaw

3

0

19

0

6.33

 

6

Crawford

1

0

12

0

12.00

 

7

Bakhtiar

3

0

22

3

7.33

 

8

Shackleton

2

0

8

2

4.00

 

9

Wickham-Smith

1

0

7

0

7.00

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Team

Hendrick’s XI

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Batsman

How Out

Total

Balls

4s

6s

FOW

1

Q. Khattak

b Timms

21

 

1

-

3-33

2

T. Saunders *†

c and b Reeves

0

 

-

-

1-15

3

D. Shackleton

b Reeves

0

 

-

-

2-15

4

A. Bakhtiar

c Turner b Timms

10

 

1

-

4-34

5

O. May

retired

42

 

7

1

-

6

A. Cranfold

not out

23

 

2

-

-

7

J. Gilbert

not out

15

 

-

-

-

8

E. Robinson

 

 

 

 

 

 

9

V. Hewlett

 

 

 

 

 

 

10

J. Shaw

 

 

 

 

 

 

11

H. Wickham-Smith

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Extras

W4, LB1, B1

6

 

 

 

 

 

TOTAL

(for 4 wickets, 20 overs)

117

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Bowler

Overs

Maidens

Runs

Wkts

Econ

 

1

Rundle

4

0

20

0

5.00

 

2

Reeves

4

0

11

2

2.75

 

3

Timms

4

0

27

2

6.75

 

4

Smith

4

0

29

0

7.25

 

5

Emerson

2

0

9

0

4.50

 

6

Vermaak

2

0

19

0

9.50

 

 

 

 

 

MOTM:  D. Emerson

Champagne Moment:  M. K. Reeves’ bowling Shackleton

Buffet Award:  C. J. Vermaak’s Bobotie with extra egg-based topping

MAD Moment:  n/a

 

 

Opposition:  V088 / 03

Ground:  G040 / 72

Captain:  C024 / 17

Match No:  20 / 124