The Badgers resumed their rivalry with the Ducksmen at the Trevor Bailey ground in Dulwich, on the second weekend back post-lockdown.
Having chosen to bat, Cloke and the returning Rory made a strong start, dealing well with Robin's opening spell and putting on a promising 40 before Rory skied a leg glance to that man Mackrell, who took a fine running catch on the long leg boundary. A flurry of wickets followed, and although the middle order all made starts, none could go on to make a big score - surely to the dismay of Trevor "Barnacle" Bailey himself.
The exception to the rule was Stew Mac, who battled hard to make a stodgy but important 30-odd, before departing in the final overs in traditional Badgers fashion - attempting a death or glory quick single to a very tight mid on. The Ducksmen looked to have done a great job in keeping their target low, but having thrown the ball to Robin for the final over expecting him to clean up the tail, had to watch in horror as it disappeared for twenty runs after a series of canny deflections from T Rex.
In response the Ducksmen lost regular wickets too, with the early highlight being a combative exchange between Cornish and their number four: after being driven for six Benno cranked up the pace, only to see a bouncer uppercut and a full toss slapped for four apiece. Cade struck twice in a controlled spell but Ducksmen opener Al Smith continued to accumulate, and was joined by Robin at number six.
Unlike the Badgers, this pair stuck in on a true pitch, endured any tight spells and waited to pick off the inevitable bad balls. They wore down the Badgers in a partnership of 80 and looked set to take the Ducksmen all the way to the target until Al finally fell for a superb 89. A couple of late wickets from T Rex had the tailenders scrabbling for their batting gear, but to no avail, and the Badgers succumbed to their first defeat to the Ducksmen since 2016.
It was the kind of day when one could revel in the little things which make a day at the cricket worthwhile. Speculating on whether a fielder's nautical-looking hat means he was intending to service his yacht today instead; scrambling through brambles because a wayward delivery has burrowed under the sightscreen; agreeing with the next man in that it's a day for patient batting before seeing them bowled attempting a lusty swipe five minutes later. But Cloke Junior stole the show when asking innocently, as Charley and a filthily mustachioed Lawrence went for a quiet stroll together at tea, "What's that girl doing with her Daddy?"