The 18th Jun 2016 will go down in infamy for a few reasons - firstly, the first time P Cade has captained the Battersea Badgers, secondly the Battersea Badgers losing after a 4 game winning streak, and thirdly, Australia being humiliated at home by England, in the middle of their four game losing streak to England*.
As always, it was the tribulations of an Australian sports team which most upset the Badgers.
However, wiping away their tears, and noting that the oppo had in fact stayed in the pub to watch the end of the match, so we were starting late, we assembled at South Park (sadly not the famous one) to play cricket, on what only the most generous of observers would call a goat track. No, if anything, this was a full blown goat motorway. Merton had tricked everyone by cancelling the booked pitch at the last minute after heavy rain, leaving the oppo to very generously scrape around to find a substitute pitch. Sadly it was a crap hole. A large pit had been dug to one side of the pitch, and the last time anything had seen a mower must have been a year ago.
In addition, the opposition warmed up by actually bowling at a stump, which seemed unfairly well organised.
After being put in, the Badgers responded well, with the first wicket being bowled by a pea roller, second wicket being bowled by a pea roller, and third wicket being bowled by a pea roller. 12/3 was the score (3/12 if you are Australian). Super-Ben played against type to score 32 from 32, and Dolli played very well for 36, seemingly finding the pitch the easiest of all of us, though it may also have calmed down a little. Still, the holes in the pitch were still there, so can't have calmed down that much. Jim remarkably was 3rd highest score, with 8 from 27.
Oppo bowlers looked accurate and appealed in a very sporting fashion (i.e. only when it might actually be out...), and we were all out for 107. Not the best Badger batting performance, but not the best Badger pitch.
The oppo came out to bat, with the Badger aiming to apply similar pressure to them. However, by and large, we didn't bowl straight enough on this dodgy pitch, and gave them some chances to whack over the top. Despite some wickets from Rory, the game looked finished after the first wicket partnership, and so it proved, with the game finished inside 25 overs.
On the plus side, we went to the White Horse, drank lots of beer, and the oppo were very nice.
*I think there is some link between Cadey and Australia doing badly at sports - note that he was born in 2003, when England beat the Aussies at home to win the Rugby world cup, and first went to prison in 2005, when England beat the Aussies to win the Ashes for the first time for ages. Coincidence? I think not.