We hope you're in the mood for a feed, as this weekend sees the ultimate feast of cricket for you to gorge on - we've got the penultimate league games on Saturday and Sunday sees the conclusion of the Chertsey Premier League tournament. We'll also be having our end of season celebration early and marking the occasion with a disco (remember those? Take it easy won't you), after we've crowned the CPL champions so double the reason the celebrate we think.. you've got Monday off after all.
Opening the Batting
Let's get into it and unpack CPL Finals Day then. The CPL21 tournament has always been a welcome salve on the rough and tumble of the leagues and this year's CPL tournament has been no different. Our intention this year was to rewrite history, and its fair to say we've achieved that with the biggest draft ever, including a Public Draft, more Colts than ever involved (and exceling!), new rules, more star turns, and incredible stats.
So let's get our the engraver. If the Enforcers win they will be the first team to win two years on the bounce, if the Armada win they will be the first team to win three titles, and if the Knights win they do so without requiring a bonus point. So how have they got there?
Post-draft night Grove Armada left the crowd in shock with the most purchases and biggest squad, and their route to Finals Day started promisingly in the blisteringly hot opening round with an epic win over the Bourne Stars, dangerman David Sloan earning his fee and providing the biggest score so far of the competition with 118, and going on to (currently) top the MVP table with 206 runs. Rounds Two and Three hurt them coming up against the Knights and Enforcers but never write them off - they are battlers.
Reigning champions Meads Enforcers had a star turn the first round - ex-England star Monty Panesar, but unfortunately he wasn't on the winning side, the Knights coming off better in that duel. The next two rounds saw wins against the bottom-placed Stars and they nudged the Armada down into third place in the table, ending second on run-rate. The Enforcers bat deep, and have gone on to flood the batting MVP table with names, along with three out of the top four places in the bowling table, showing Panesar isn't the only star player in their squad. Can they hold onto their bragging rights and succeed in a repeat of 2020's Final against the Knights?
Speaking of the Knights, they have had a perfect tournament, with only the rain standing in their way of a full house of wins in Round Three. They got there without picking up a bonus point, and it was mostly down to a magical partnership - Karthik Menon and Zeeshan Mehtab, with 271 runs between them in the tournament - Zeeshan was only thwarted in the first round by retiring hurt and their partnership against the Armada in Round Two was impenetrable. We didn't think anyone could top the Armada's score in the first round, but the Knights have a habit of going big. They earned a free pass straight to the Final, but may be without key players, will that hurt their chances?
CPL - Grove Armada 209-8 v Bourne Stars 139-7
Grove Armada: David Sloan 118, Josh Jackman 2-10, Jacob Loveridge 2-16, Mark Nuti 2-29
Bourne Stars: Tom Bolger & John Bailey 22, Phil Boast 2-13, John Bailey 2-11
CPL - Meads Enforcers 148-7 v Gogmore Knights 186-7
Meads Enforcers: Luke Westcott 45*, Monty Panesar 2-16, Hugh Aish-Lyons 2-16
Gogmore Knights: Zeeshan Mehtab 111 (ret), Will Cooper 2-26
CPL - Gogmore Knights 211-2 v Grove Armada 191-7
Gogmore Knights - Karthik Menon 111*, Liam Fisher 2-18, Jamie Anthony 2-21
Grove Armada - David Sloan 56, Cameron Wakefield 1-23, Rahane Nafaz 1-40
CPL - Meads Enforcers 179-5 v Bourne Stars 132 a/o
Meads Enforcers - Allan Inwood 37, Will Morris 2-12, Josh Fyfe 2-23, Hugh Aish-Lyons 2-26, Joe Clarke 2-28
Bourne Stars - Elliott Bloomfield 23, Dylan Pandya 2-28
CPL - Grove Armada 149-7 Meads Enforcers 166-8
Grove Armada: Jacob Loveridge 35 & 2-26, David Sloan 2-15, Josh Jackman 2-23
Meads Enforcers: James Tindall 53, Joe Clarke 4-21
CPL - Gogmore Knights v Bourne Stars - Abandoned
The batting and bowling MVP tables make for interesting reading going into Finals Day, with potentially eight bowlers in the running for the orange cap. Joe Clarke currently has the golden arm with 6 wickets, but there are three players hot on his heels - Josh Jackman (GA), and Hugh Aish-Lyons and Josh Fyfe (both ME) with four wickets.
Batting-wise we have four players in contention, David Sloan currently tops with 206, but he has two potential opportunities to bump that total up so Zeeshan Mehtab will be looking to go big again in the Final to snatch it away. Or can Jacob Loveridge improve on his steady rate to outfox them all? Check out the standings here.
Over on the socials we've been enjoying C-P-L Week, celebrating all that's been and diving into what could be and we had a little surprise for the teams (one of a few this weekend btw) - a go well mention on the BBC podcast Tailenders no less. It didn't completely go to plan, and they kind of didn't get it, but you get the jist. https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/p09szwnm around 47:30.
The weekend didn't really get us any further forward in our quest to shuffle up our tables - rain looked set to be the winner yet again (why does it always rain at the weekend?). Cancellations do have their perks at this end of the season though, East Molesey were thwarted by the duke before we could even start so they and the 4s make use of five points each in the bank without lifting a finger - thankyou very much, don't mind if we do.
The 3s were over at the Rec facing top of the league Esher, and for the second week in a row a team had brought their own keen umpire with them (oh joy!). Batting first the 3s started well, opener James Wooltorton with his best runs of the season (45) including six fours, Kevin O'Flynn went biffing Kev-style with 22, and from then on in decisions started getting a bit wavy, and the bottom seven went for sixteen (sidenote: when Phil Boast's wicket goes down it is a bit like Virat Kohli getting out, it reverberates around the grounds), leaving the 3s on 112 all out and understandably despondent. We were present for these wickets so we felt we may have been somewhat of a jinx, so trundled back to the Club to inflict further jinxment on the 1s instead (more on that later). Esher had time to play with but still found themselves on 4-1, 24-2, 54-3, a bit of 3s carnage could be upon us we thought, but five and six dug in and took the win home (eye roll).
Over at Farnham, a ground up there on our list of top five recreational cricket grounds (if you have an hour we'll bore you with the other four) the 2s weren't too affected by the morning's downpour. Batting first, they faced a lotta baalls... Dan Perks hung about for 19, Vishnu Remesh made the leap up from the 3s and carved out a usual bombastic innings, and Stuart Eagles chipped in with not his best figures of the season, but close to push things along, and they found themselves all out for 93. In reply it was the same story as the 3s, lots of time for a leisurely chase down and the win was achieved in twenty overs. The defeat settles the 2s' fate and their return to Div 2 cricket next season, not completely an unwelcome outcome so they can take a long overdue breath. Dorking, Leatherhead, and maybe Cranleigh, here we come, there's always room on the best ground list for some more.
Finally over at the Club the 1s were taking on Old Emanuel. Now two things we've learnt about Old Emanuel is that they are loud, and they like batting, and Saturday was no different. After a near 2-hour rain delay things were underway and the 1s took a while to get going, probably ending feeling they'd gifted the Emanuel a few more than they would have liked. The fourth-wicket partnership was the most damaging, putting pressure on the batting line up who were without Karthik Menon after he picked up an injury in last week's game. Josh Jackman was the most economical of the bowlers, with 2.75, and Captain Ogle picked up four wickets, his best haul of the season. The Emanuel had a bit of a collapse towards the end and twenty were put on for the last four wickets, they went on to end 184 all out. The Chertsey batting line up had had a little reshuffle, and it looked good, openers Elliott Bloomfield and Jake Taylor coming out with intent, Snake in particular giving the Emanuel a taste of their own medicine and after a jinxing from us three wickets for no runs piled on the pressure in the middle order and it looked like the winning draw total would be out of reach. In view of some CCC legends - Dodd, Stilwell, Wells, Shepherd, Hanger, to name a handful, we therefore needed to bat out the overs, try to get as near as we can, and bat out we did, Jamie Anthony filling Stuart Eagles' usual shoes with the Jack Leach award for his 4 off infinite number of balls and the losing draw was secured, saying goodbye to timed cricket for the last two games of the season. Phew.
It was an excellent week for the U13s, with two wins under their belts in the Ray Denne trophy. Friday saw a win against Windsor, and two days later they took on an Egham side in a low scoring game over at the Club. Egham were never really allowed to get going and wickets were taken ay key times and in response healthy runs at either end of the innings from Luke Russell and Barnaby Rowe (with everyone inbetween chipping in) the win was secured.
Friday 20th August
U11s 109-6 v Valley End 113-3
Kit Schofield 35, Enan Parmar 2-15
U13s 126-7 v Windsor 125-8
Saturday 21st August
Surrey Championship - 1st XI 111-8 v Old Emanuel 184 a/o
Jake Taylor 21, Jack Ogle 4-25
Surrey Championship - 2nd XI 93 a/o v Farnham 94-3
Dan Perks 19, Cade Skelton 1-8, Stuart Eagles 1-29
Surrey Championship - 3rd XI 112 a/o v Esher 117-4
James Wooltorton 45, Joe Clarke 2-23, Joe Blanks 2-27
Surrey Championship - 4th XI v East Molesey - Cancelled
Sunday 22nd August
U13s 80-4 v Egham 76 a/o
Luke Russell 27*, Jack Reisch 2-0, Edith Schofield 2-8, Maff Barnes 2-8
Tuesday 24th August
U15s v Ewell
Wednesday 25th August
U15s 170-4 v Crown Taverners 78 a/o
Alex Ozer 19, Mark Lemon 1-22, Dylan Pandya 1-27, Thijs Wjingaarden 1-30
This week sees us saying naff off to the timed format in the league, but hello to earlier starting times so just bear that in mind when heading out.
Saturday 28th August
Surrey Championship - 1st XI v Old Pauline (A) 11.30am start
Surrey Championship - 2nd XI v Banstead (H) 12pm start
Surrey Championship - 3rd XI v Normandy (HRec) 12pm start
Surrey Championship - 4th XI v Walton on Thames 12pm start
Sunday 29th August
CPL Semi Final - Grove Armada v Meads Enforcers (12pm start)
CPL Final - Winner of Semi Final v Gogmore Knights (3pm)
Dates for Your Diary
29th August - CPL Finals Day
18th September - Colts Dinner
You've got less than a week to go until we close the ticket window for the Colts Dinner, you've got until the 1st to get your tickets bought and dinner choices made so if you haven't bought already you've not got long to go. Visit https://chertseycc.org.uk/colts-dinner/colts-dinner to book your ticket.
We're off to check on the Bourne Stars' bar progress for Sunday - someone needs to sample the cocktails before you lot do don't they?