After two defeats over the Bank holiday weekend Phoenix were still looking for the sixth league victory of the season which surely be enough to survive in Division 1. With Chester suspended and Ian Anders away on representative duty and Stephen Black and Mike Godwin out of the side after the YMCA match Gordon Millar, Matt Scott, James Maginnis and Andy Brawders were all recalled . There seemed to be some nice heat in the sun and the three scorers agreed to sit outdoors initially at least which made it easier to hear the umpires and get a clear view of the action. Phoenix won the toss and elected to bat. The batting order was Reinhardt Strydom, Scott, Rory Anders, Nicolaas Pretorius, Ari Karvelas, James Maginnis, Thomas Anders, Ben White, Andy Brawders, Gordon Millar, Graham Morris.
Strydom and Scott were adhesive early on and probably felt that they hadn’t been given any easy runs by Shoukat and Cartwright. At 13 for 0 after 9 overs they were probably happy that Phoenix had not lost any wickets. It was Luke Clinton’s second over that put the pin to that balloon. Three lbw verdicts in four balls saw Scott exit on 3, Rory Anders out on his second ball and a golden duck for the skipper. Karvelas managed a single from the hat trick ball. Karvelas realised that a swashbuckling cameo of 20 would not get Phoenix very far this time and after two boundaries early in his innings he settled down to play patiently with Strydom until Phoenix got to 60 when the opener was caught behind. Maginnis was out early as Clinton reached 5 wickets. Thomas Anders outscored Karvelas in their partnership but unfortunately they were separated when a straight drive from Anders was deflected by the bowler back onto Karvelas’s wicket and he was run out backing up. White’s 10 included two boundaries and then Phoenix suffered a second run out when Anders fell for 45. Brawders held his end up and finished on 7 while Millar made just 1 and Morris backed his eye to score 6 quick runs from his first two balls faced. The innings closed on 163 all out.
Karvelas and Thomas Anders took the new ball for Phoenix and they were relatively economic against McLoughlin and Donegan. After 9 overs they were rested and Strydom and White came into the attack and then the runs came more quickly for the visitors. After 74 minutes the first wicket fell when Millar had McLoughlin caught by Brawders but the stand of 83 had brought The Hills more than half way to the target. Morris bowled Terry for 10 and ended Donegan’s hopes of making a century when he had the opener caught by Thomas Anders for 65. Sorenson hit a quck 14 andwith 4 wickets down the visitors still needed 37 to win but Shah and Van der Merwe batted steadily to complete a 6 wicket victory with 7.5 overs to spare. If one over can ever decide a game this was one game where it did and Clinton finished on 5-35.
After the YMCA game one of the Phoenix grey eminences suggested that it has been some time since Phoenix had such a poor run of results as the team is having at the moment. One hopes that it can be rectified.