Adelaide Summer Tour: Played: 2; Won: 1; Lost: 1 Rained Off: 2
Soren Hughes – Tour Manager’s summary
The Adelaide tour was expected to be tainted by extreme heat and possibly bushfires. Alas, the La Nina prediction proved correct in that it rained twice in January in Adelaide which was so unusual for Adelaide that none of the club’s owned covers, let alone had any thought to cover the pitch. In Grange for the Wednesday fixture and when rescheduled for Thursday, no-one had expected rain. So when we were told that our game on the Friday in the Barossa was a certainty (The owner of Chateau Tanunda, John Geber, had played several games for CCNSW and owned covers which were well affixed), none of us suspected that an overnight thunderstorm would push underneath the covers and ruin our Friday game too. We did however secure John’s presence for a guided tour of the historical Chateau, a wine tasting, an informal game of cricket on the wicket with Jamie Siddons and Peter McIntyre watching on and available chat after the game concluded.
The cricket that we did play was well contested and played with true spirit. On arrival in Kensington, our game was transferred to their No 1 oval and the toss was conducted in the club rooms over a beer or two. The formal game at the Chateau went down to the wire. Our time off the pitch was well spent too, with visits to Glenelg, Hahndorf, Adelaide CBD, Adelaide Oval and the front bar at West Lakes Resort Hotel. A highlight for some was meeting up with the Grange guys after the second fixture was cancelled as both the Australia v West Indies test and England v India test were being played on adjacent screens leading up to our end of tour dinner (for those who weren’t listed on other duties).
There were some awards presented at the end of tour dinner, although it was acknowledged that the opportunities were limited due to cancellation of half of our fixtures:
· To our captains: Jamie Murtha and Soren Hughes (v/c) who both received some choice wine from the opposing sides;
· Batting average: Roman Hughes (our 16 y.o. tourist who hit his first 6 and scored his first 50 in the same innings against Kensington (he was twice stranded at 49* before then);
· Batting aggregate: Soren Hughes;
· Most wickets: Jamie Murtha;
· Most catches including the catch of the tour: Sam Knight (who won the game for us with a high ball taken just inches inside the boundary).
Thanks to all involved, especially Anthony Telfer of “The Spirit of Cricket” whose organisational skills, leadership and professionalism in tour management made this a very successful and relaxing tour for all involved. No doubt all of us are looking forward to the next tour of Adelaide (or a return leg from the South Australians).
Hope to see all of you again in Barbados, St Lucia, New Zealand, Japan (or just Sydney).
GAME 1: CCNSW vs KENSINGTON CC AT PARKINSON OVAL, KENSINGTON GARDENS ON SUNDAY 21 JANUARY 2024: REPORT BY JAMIE MURTHA
After a couple of days relaxing on the sunny shores of Adelaide, or sipping the splendid Shirazes, the CCNSW Adelaide touring party arrived on Sunday morning for the long awaited match against Kensington District CC. A late venue change allowed us to play on the number one ground, Parkinson Oval which was as pretty as a painting. Our hosts guided us to the Pavilion for a pre-game beer, which we all agreed was a brilliant way to start the day!
The weather was about as perfect as it could be: low thirties with a gentle breeze and not a cloud in the sky. The pitch was well used with a light covering of grass and relatively firm, on the surface it seemed like a good deck. Match day skipper Jamie Murtha lost the toss and we were appropriately sent into the field.
Soren Hughes and Roman Hughes opened the bowling and got us off to a great start. Soren bowled a vicious yorker in his first over to remove the first opener and got the second opener the very next over, bowled around his legs! Roman bowled well without luck, but also kept the runs in check! Paul ‘Mullo’ Mullens followed Roman and Craig Fletcher followed Soren, both bowlers were caught in the sights of the big hitting number 4 who retired very swiftly on 50*. Shortly after, Mullens bowled a jaffa to remove the number 3 batter, pegging back the top of off.
In the middle overs after drinks we brought the run rate back under control, Mike Power bowled six overs straight, proving difficult to get away, he picked up two valuable wickets. Jamie Murtha picked up two of his own including the Captain Rumblelow thanks to a brilliant catch running backwards at deep mid-wicket by the debutant Sam Knight. Some late hitting from the massive number 11 elevated the opposition to a strong 8-177 from their 35 overs. Kensington CC were particularly great hosts and put on an excellent spread for tea over which both teams mingled.
Tom Robertson and Len Volkov opened our batting. Tom’s innings was exactly how you probably imagined it, wide, six over point, bowled and before you know it, we found ourselves at 4-19 after Len Volkov, Sam Knight and Ezekiel (Zeke) Hughes were dismissed by the Kensington bowlers. Soren and Roman Hughes found themselves trying to rescue the day. The pair needed to get through a couple of tough overs but their fortitude paid off and they were rewarded with some comparatively gentle bowling which was handled with ease. Soren cleared the boundary on several occasions and retired in quick time.
Roman’s innings was flawless, he presented the full face of the bat and played in the ‘V’ early on while getting the measure of the pitch. He hit his first ever six with a powerfully struck slog to cow, and also brought up his maiden 50, with it providing us with a glimmer of hope! We required around 60 to win off the last 10 overs but Kensington appeared determined to win, and so brought their opening bowlers back into the attack and stacked the boundaries. Our tail put up some resistance but unfortunately their attack proved too strong on the day and we were all out for 13 with Roman undefeated on 52*.
The game was played in the right spirit on both sides and very well umpired by Anthony Telfer (“The Spirit of Cricket”) to whom we owe much thanks for his invaluable contributions toward making this tour possible
Following the game both teams retired to the pavilion for beers and presentations. Kensington awarded Roman and Soren both with man of the match for their fantastic face saving partnership. Overall despite the result it was a great game played at a very special place and will no doubt be fondly remembered by all who participated!
The Team was: – Tom Robertson 6, Len Volkov 1, Ezekiel Hughes 1, Soren Hughes (c) 54, Sam Knight 0, Roman Hughes 52*, James Murtha 9 , Craig Fletcher 1, John Finucane (w) 1, Paul Mullens 0, Mike Power 2
The Result was: –
Kensington CC: – 8-177 (35 Overs)
C.C.N.S.W.: – 10-134 (32.3 Overs) (Soren Hughes 54; Roman Hughes 52*)
By 43 runs
FoWs: – 1-7 (T. Robertson), 2-9 (Ezekiel Hughes), 3-13 (L Volkov), 4-13 (S. Knight), 5-122 (J. Murtha), 6-123 (C. Fletcher), 7-124 (P. Mullins), 8-126 (J. Finucane) 9-132 (S. Hughes); 10-134 (M. Power).
The Bowling was: – Roman Hughes 6-1-24-0; Soren Hughes 5-0-31-2 ; C. Fletcher 3-0-28-1; P. Mullins 6-0-35-2 ; M. Power 6-1-24-2; Ezekiel Hughes 2-0-10-0 ; J. Murtha 7-1-21-2
The Fielding was: –
Stumpings: – Nil
Catches: – One to each of Ezekiel Hughes and S. Knight
Run outs: – Nil
GAME 2: CCNSW vs BAROSSA AND LIGHT CA AT CHATEAU TANUNDA, BAROSSA ON TUESDAY 23 JANUARY 2024: REPORT BY SAM KNIGHT
Our fixture against a “Barossa Invitational XI” was an absolute thriller, with all 3 results possible in the last over. Played at the amazing venue “Chateau Tanunda”, which had been last used prior to COVID – both teams were keen to have a game. Unfortunately, the weather gods did their best to prevent that. It was forecast to be 41 degrees!
Anthony Telfer (“The Spirit of Cricket” tour organiser) made some calls and the teams agreed to have an early 10am start. The teams first agreed to play a 20/20 and Tanunda won the toss and decided to bowl first. Ten overs into the contest the teams mutually agreed to extend it to a 30/30 over match… would this prove to be a mistake?
The pitch was quite green and there was some big seam and variable bounce on offer. Despite that – Tom Robertson and Jamie Murtha opened the batting with aplomb. Tom made a quick fire 23 (better than a run a ball) and Jamie retired at 30* (as per the agreed rule) at better than 100 SR after cracking one into the gum trees for six.
Scott Wells and Roman Hughes both came in, hit a 6, and then quickly departed for 8. Ezekiel Hughes was next and looked in superb touch – hitting a quick fire 33*, including two massive 6s, then retiring. Soren Hughes and Sam Knight (the local Adelaide boy) formed a partnership – with both scoring 13 at perhaps a slower rate than was required. Both seemed to be saving themselves for a big finish but the opposition had other plans however.
Len Volkov and John Finucane came to the crease and kept the scoreboard ticking over with some lovely cricket shots. The Barossa XI parked five fielders on the boundary and bowled stump to stump in the middle overs which made it difficult to score. Nonetheless, the scoreboard kept ticking over slowly. Craig Fletcher came in on the last over to hit a cracking boundary on his birthday.
The Cricketers’ Club had made 5-180 from 30 overs. Jamie didn’t think it was enough – but the rest of the team was quietly confident we could defend it. Time would tell.
There was still a nice breeze when the Cricketers’ Club took the field. That changed about five overs in when the temperature started to approach the promised 41Cº degrees. It was hard work but the boys were determined to stick at it.
Roman Hughes opened the bowling and took 2 important wickets in his first 2 overs. He bowled both openers with quality balls and ended up with 3 for 26 – crucial to the end result!
Craig Fletcher was a touch unlucky bowling on his birthday – but took a nice catch at cover and provided plenty of spark in the field on a tough day for fielding! Michael Power also had a nice spell of bowling – picking up another crucial wicket. The Cricketers’ Club was taking wickets regularly – although the run rate remained high and our opposition seemed in control.
Jamie Murtha (in a BOG performance) took 2-31 and created a run out opportunity from one of the only attempts at running a two all day! John fumbled the ball but then collected well enough to have the batsmen well short.
Ezekiel (“Zeke”) Hughes also did his part in the field – taking 2-24 – and bowling in the heat (both metaphorically and literally). Scott Wells kept for the last 10 overs and also bowled some leggies to get our overs in.
The Barossa XI needed a run a ball from the last 6 overs, with 2 wickets in hand. They also had two of their best batters to come back in after retiring. So, if anything, the odds were with the Barossa XI. Despite that, the Blues dug in, with Jamie bowling some slower balls that were playing tricks and Soren Hughes (“Big Sooz”) putting in the hard yards in 41 degrees.
The Barossa boys kept the scoreboard ticking over – and only needed eight runs from the last two overs, with one wicket in hand. Zeke had bowled the third last over – a wicket maiden and keeping us in the match! Jamie bowled the second to last, with only 2 scored. Amazingly, he kept bowling the slower ball out of the back of the hand, and even more incredible was the respect they showed – blocking it out.
Last over, their two best batters back in and six needed. The “Big Soooooz” took the ball and took control. The pressure was on but the boys were up for the fight; the boundaries looked shorter than ever at this point!
First ball, blocked back down the pitch for a dot. Second ball a single to mid-off. Five (5) need to win from 4 more balls. Their young batter on 31 and with 3 sixes already was back on strike. Every result possible…
The captain of the touring side ran in and bowled it – and their batsmen had another big swing – it was high looked like another certain 6 to win it… but suddenly it started dropping and looked like it may be caught on the boundary… or could it??
Little Sam Knight was right on the boundary at cow corner – and had been watching them disappear over him all day. He went forward and then took a few steps back. It hung in the air for a while before dipping down… and was CAUGHT! Centimetres inside the boundary.
The Cricketers’ Club had won by 4 runs !! A famous victory on perhaps one of the most iconic grounds in Australia. The Barossa Boys thwarted by a fellow South Australian on the boundary. A great team effort in trying conditions – and a match played in very good spirits.
In the terms of the old cliché: ‘Cricket was the winner.’
The Team was: – Tom Robertson 23, Jamie Murtha 30* ret not out, Scott Wells (w) 8, Roman Hughes 8, Ezekiel Hughes 33* ret not out, Soren Hughes (c) 13, Sam Knight 13, Len Volkov 10* ret not out, John Finucane (w) 8* , Craig Fletcher 8*, Paul Mullins dnb
The Result was: –
C.C.N.S.W.: – 5-180 (30 Overs) (Ezekiel Hughes 33*; Jamie Murtha 30*)
Barossa and Light CA Invitation XI: – 10-176 (29.3 Overs)
By 4 runs
FoWs: – 1-32 (T. Robertson), 2-36 (S. Wells), 3-54 (Roman Hughes), 4-151 (Soren Hughes, 5-154 (S. Knight)
The Bowling was: – Roman Hughes 6-0-26-3; C. Fletcher 3-0-27-0 ; M. Power 3-0-26-1; J. Murtha 6-0-31-2; Ezekiel Hughes 6-0-24-2; S. Wells 2-0-21-0; Soren Hughes 3.3-0-16-1
The Fielding was: –
Stumpings: – Nil
Catches: – One to C. Fletcher and one to S. Knight
Run outs: – One to J. Murtha
GAME 3: CCNSW vs GRANGE CC AT ON THURSDAY 25 JANUARY 2024:
Cancelled by rain
GAME 4: CCNSW vs SPIRIT OF CRICKET XI AT CHATEAU TANUNDA, BAROSSA ON FRIDAY 26 JANUARY 2024:
Cancelled by rain