On Sunday the 29th June 2014, the 4s hosted Railway Union at home in the first round of the Intermediate Cup. With the cup final due to be held in Phoenix this year and as defending cup winners, the pressure was certainly on for the Phoenix 4th XI under Captain Anders.
Incredibly this was the 4s first home game since the 27th April.
The skip won the toss and elected to bowl first on a beautifully sunny afternoon in the Phoenix Park. Clarke opened from the Magazine Fort End with Ali Raza from the Graham Paisley End. Some fine bowling saw them take 3 early wickets in put Railway Union in a spot of bother. Clarke got one bowled and another caught at deep mid-wicket by Matt ‘Safe Hands’ Gregg! Ali (1 for 19) picked up a classic LBW with an in-swinger to the left-handed batsman.
The Railway middle order set about rebuilding their innings while trying to get to a competitive total. Their rebuilding was slowed by some excellent bowling from Monjour (1 for 25), Dev (0 for 28), John (1 for 36) and Murali, aka G Millar, (2 for 29).
With 2 overs to go, Clarke was reintroduced into the attack (probably on the back of his spell in Ringcommons last week or more probably because the skipper had lost his radar). Whatever the reason, the plan worked when Clarke (4 for 36) 2 wickets in 2 balls to end the innings.
Railway finished on 178 all out. A quality display in the field saw the 4s hold onto 5 good catches and effect a run-out by Bampfield.
After another super tea, it was all change at the top of the order with Raj Gopal, Matt and Adam back in the team. Raj and Matt both got starts but lost their wickets before getting to 20. Naeem came and went without troubling our scorer, Helen Caird (Thanks Helen). Monjour and Adam helped steady the ship before Monjour fell for 18. When Dev was dismissed cheaply, the target of 179 looked some way off. Anders joined Adam at the crease. Together they set sail for the 179 target in the distance. Adam got to 53 before he was dismissed.
6 wickets down with about 60 runs needed most teams may start to show signs of some nerves. But not this 4th XI especially with Grant White next out to bat. John and Grant abandoned the sail boat and jumped into the speed boat. It wasn’t long before the target of 179 was passed with John finishing up on 27* and Grant 40* from 25 balls.
Another fine all round display from the 4s.
Next up is ???. Well we don’t know yet. Leinster 5 v Terenure 3 has yet to be played. The quarter-final is scheduled for Saturday 5th July but at this stage, it looks like that will be refixed to another date.
Thanks to Helen for scoring and Kate for the teas.
Next up for the 4th XI is trip to Castleknock College for a home game versus Leinster 5 in the league. The word around the club is that Castleknock College is a picturesque place to play cricket and would rival any second ground in Leinster. And it seems our President, Michael Brown, took a liking to get last Sunday when he rolled back the years to score 63.
Phoenix 4th XI Team that played Railway Union: John Anders (c), Grant White (wk), Raj Gopal, Matt Gregg, Adam Bampfield, Naeem Shahzad, Monjour Ahmad, Devon Dismore, Gordon Millar, Ali Raza, Willie Clarke.