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Posted in Recreational

The first East Anglian Premier league (EAPL) game gave us a trip to Burwell. Playing in the league does mean a lot of travel and is a big commitment playing all-day cricket.

Really it is a young man’s game but we all still love it.

Availability was good in the first week and we had to leave one person out. Not a nice call to make which was made worse by the fact that there was not a second team game for that person to play in.

We arrived keen and early at around 9:45am. I won the toss and decided to bat on a good wicket and small ground. Small grounds are definitely not uncommon in the EAPL.

We had a great start to the season and declared on over 300 thanks primarily to a fine hundred from Jaden Hatwell. At tea time, however, we looked to be on the way to an opening day loss but thanks to a good all-round bowling and fielding display we ended up winning by 60 runs.

A good start but with two guys teaching sport at local public school Norwich School we knew we would be shorter for the next few weeks.

Our next game was at home against Bury St Edmunds. In came bank manager Will Rist and 14 year old leg-spinner Matt Taylor. As a club we have always tried to promote youngsters and give them the opportunity to play the highest standard of club cricket. We are proud to have played Robert Newton from the age of 14 and now he has a first-class contract with Northamptonshire.

We bowled first at the Common and restricted Bury St Edmunds to just over 200. A total that we should chased easily on a decent wicket.

At 110 for six this looked a long way off but we got within five runs with three wickets in hand. That we were in this position was primarily thanks to Peter Lambert, our Rose Bowl hero from last year, but despite him making 94 we ended up losing.

History was to repeat itself just over a week later in the first round of the National Club Championship.

This time we were 120 for six chasing 212. At 195 for six with six overs left the game was ours to lose and we unfortunately obliged, losing to Chingford by one run.

Peter Lambert

Peter Lambert was our hero at the Rose Bowl last September but not even his 94 could stave off defeat to Bury St Edmunds

A great century from Hatwell was not enough but it was great to see young Taylor bowl eight very good overs of leg spin.

The loss is still playing on my mind and I can’t help but blame myself for getting out in my customary manner, stumped when the total was 195 for six.

Before that match we had a good win at Sudbury. Batting first we declared on over 300 thanks in large to a fine hundred from Joel Abraham. We won comfortably with Norfolk skipper George Walker taking five wickets. It was also good to see young Mark Crofts make his debut behind the stumps.

I have spent some of my first few weeks watching our scorer Norman Bygrave juggle the scorebook (now a laptop) while on his phone updating scores on Twitter during the match. We even have followers from overseas. The play-cricket website is also great for looking at stats and results.

After our regular net practice on Wednesday we had a bi-monthly committee meeting where we discussed all club issues. There were a number of points to note including the organization of our 25th annual dinner in September and fundraising social events for the summer.

We are going to try to make the dinner a great occasion by getting an even more high profile speaker.

After the narrow loss on Sunday we are looking forward to the weekend and getting back on the pitch against Saffron Walden at home. We hope the great weather continues all summer.