New Shirts = Unhot-like Performances
(Season 23 Game 9)
Forrest here, also known as YCFTN (Your Captain For The Night), ready to rock for Game 9 of Season 23. Ready to rock? Well, that's probably a bit too extravagant, however, as YCFTN, our side of Schlang, Mary, Bukkake, Dr Karl and Conan (aka Pretty Eyes) and late call-up player Toby (recruited in dubious circumstances - something about having a bat - well, in Boo-Cake speak, that could mean anything!), we front up to the WACA for our six fiddy appointment with a side called the Dilberts.
As research shows on the Partridge website that never lies, Dilberts are a side we've not played before, not that really matters, as we seem to be graded into every possible side going round the House of Blooodyfaaaarkin.
I could've also taken the easy option of just giving you the final scores, but that wouldn't be fair. Besides, the night we played is also a short time after the Aussies crumbled to the hands of the Poms in Adelaide on the final day of the second test for the Ashes. If you thought the Australian green and gold were a disgrace in the City of Churches, then they'd never match the mediocrity levels of the purple and lime green. The test team could probably afford the cha-chings a little more, but that's beside the point.
So, with 7 players, our opposition are already cheating, er, practising on the WACA and while the umpire Andrew tosses the coin, the twenty cent piece hadn't even hit the ground when YCFTN calls out "Tails". It lands 'Heads', I tell them "We'll have a bat" and by the power of coercion, we get to have a bat. (No Boo-Cake, not the kind of 'bat' you're thinking of!)
Given Bukkake's fine work in recruiting Toby, although by Toby's own admission, he's known in criggit circles as 'Juggles', YCFTN send Car-Keys and Juggles out as the first pair. So what if they're still drinking beer, everyone wanted to see the second outing of the new Partridge summer strip and who better to model them, but these two. YCFTN didn't see if there was any 'Paper, Scissors, Rock' but Ma-Lar-Keys gets to face the jackpot ball. Minus 10 the result and a collective shouting of "Scoreboard's broken!" Not that it really got any better throughout their four overs. Plenty of outs meant the scoreboard remained broken for much of their innings, the highlight being Juggles thinking he'd leave what looked liked a leg-side wide, only to have it swing back and bowl him behind his legs without offering a shot. Perfect textbook sway, minus the sway and minus the two runs you'd normally expect. Oh how we chortled. Despite all this, a partnership of five runs was amassed and ironically, no negative batting, with Bukkake troubling the scoresheet (that never lies) with two runs and Juggles, making his Partridge debut, with three runs.
Next up would be Schlang and YCFTN. Like Bukkake's jackpot ball, YCFTN would also succumb to a minus ten in similar fashion, with added shoutings of "Scoreboard's broken!" Schlangy did his gallant best to farm the strike after this as clearly YCFTN had no idea how to hit the yellow dot the size of a grain of sand. Although, Schlangy was quickly finding himself out a few times too. YCFTN managed a zak in this innings, but it wouldn't be enough, as the partnership was a minus two. Okay, so a cha-ching would be forthcoming, but both YCFTN and Schlang guessed out scores of minus one each (which it was) and subsequently relinquished any further opportunities for fineage.
At the halfway mark of our innings, on what was fast becoming a muggy night (or could it have been the shirts?), Da Famulee was the grand total of 2 runs. Surely we couldn't go backwards from here???
Enter Pretty Eyes (aka Conan) onto the WACA with Mary who (fingers crossed) would put on a display that was sadly lacking on that final day of the Adelaide test from our national side. We would not be let down, except with Pretty Eyes facing the jackpot ball. Usually, based on recent form, Pretty Eyes will either (a) hit a zak and get 14 runs up on the scoreboard or (b) hit it straight to the fielder who then catches him out, runs him out or does something (doesn't really matter what that is) and gets him out and the result is minus 10 on the scoreboard. Well, just to be different, its a 'one' times two for a score of two runs. Mary does some fine dabbage to the fruit being thrown up at him, cracks a couple of sensational zaks in the mix, but a couple of outs between them, build a solid platform of 42 runs.
With Dr Karl to come in, the Dilberts need to pick a second batter, but Bukkake self-nominates to go out a second time (much to Schlang's relief!) but it quickly became apparent that Bukkake would regret going out for a second time. Okay, so he managed to equal Mary with 2 zaks on the night, but with eleven outs between them, the scoreboard was once again broken and after 16 overs, Da Famulee would see a total of 32 runs.
It's about this time of the game that Conan has come to the realisation that the new shirts, which he wears for the very first time, are very 'Unhot-like' in both appearance and ability to keep one's body cool in the coarse of a game of indoor criggit. Well der, we did warn you!
So, with a low score to defend (but not the lowest ever - that would be Season 2, Game 12 - losing margin of 217 runs), the first pair of the Dilberts come out and YCFTN gets Conan to send down the first over, hot shirt or not! First ball, the jackpot ball, results in a run-out, which seems to be a trend for the evening. Juggles is up with over 2, and it soon become apparent why he's called 'Juggles', as Toby's ability to hold the ball cleanly when given to him is a 'challenge', fumbling a little, kinda holding it, sorta fumbling it again, wanting to take it cleanly, if you know what I mean. The best part of Juggles' over is the kitty. Plenty of leg-side wides in the mix, together with a wicket. YCFTN takes over 3, not that it was any good, with Mary in for over 4 and with his usual 'fizz', takes the Dilberts back a notch, but they eventually take the first skin with 34 runs. So, they're ahead by 2 runs overall, surely we couldn't go backwards from here?
As it turned out, the chickeny-duck-things put on a fine show of criggit, unlike the current Australian test team. We held catches, threw down the stumps for runouts and made their second pair look even more mediocre than the Partridge Famulee on one of our better mediocre days. With Bukkake's usual swing and fizz, he managed to make up in his bowling what was sadly lacking with his batting from earlier, Bang-Schang-A-Lang got a wicket (but he was zaked too), Dr Karl got a hatrick with some of the best fruit you're ever likely to see on the WACA and with YCFTN chipping in with over 8, a few more wickets fell and we win the skin. Remember, we managed minus 2 for the second skin and they end up with minus 17, a 15 run difference. Who'd thunked it?
So, after 8 overs, the Dilberts were 17 runs in total, and we were still a chance. *
* May actually be optimistic!
As their third batting pair come in, YCFTN gives Mary (who's been outstanding on guard of the back net) the ball to open with over 9. Despite cramping the batters with some fine swinging deliveries (and a couple of dodgy ump decisions), he bowls without luck. Bukkake is back and it wasn't looking good for him either in over 10, despite YCFTN having all the confidence in the team around him.* Schlang then chips in with some fine tweaking in his deliveries which secures a runout and then YCFTN brings back the good doctor, and like his first over, Dr Karl picks up two more wickets against his name (on the scoresheet that never lies) and we win a second skin for the night. Hoorah!
* Confidence is sooooo over rated!
We're still trailing on the scoreboard at this stage (but not in the kitty - it's making a motza from wides, dropped catches and anything else in the rules, and yes, I know the rules!) but there was still a sniff of hope. Or was that smell from Bukkake's oorse? Conan had another go with the jackpot ball to repeat his earlier efforts, but it wasn't to be, but still managed to make the score for the Dilberts go backwards. Juggles, still trying to hold the ball in one motion, bowled a few wayward deliveries and got smacked (he's a natural for fitting in with the purple and lime green!), then Mary and Juggles would finish off the innings, much to Juggles' disappointment with over 16, but YCFTN thought it a fine induction to Da Famulee at the time. Mary managed to bowl tight and again helped to bring the Dilbert's score back closer to ours, but it quickly turned 180 degrees and went the other way in the 16th and final over.
Final scores were Dilberts 65 runs, a little over double our score of 32 runs.
Zaks on the night to Mary (2), Bukkake (2), Forrest (1).
Wickets on the night from bowling were Dr Karl (5), Forrest (4), Conan (3), Mary (2), Juggles (2).
YCFTN had a Captains Fine about zaks but has since forgotten what it was, but still the kitty was the winner.
Toothpoints are a fight between Mary and Pretty Eyes, given their batting partnership, but I'll let Reubs sort that one out. Maybe he can look at those flaming hot shirts too....!?!?!?!?!