The TCC Veterans were really pleased to be able to introduce international opposition to the Green on Tuesday 6 August. Singapore CC are currently touring the country and they proved to be the perfect Cricket Week guests.
For starters, they added a touch of sartorial elegance to the day by turning up in very natty black and gold striped blazers that, rumour has it, were made of silk. Impressive stuff. Throw in a tour programme and the generous awarding of not one but two man of the match awards to opposition players and they were making an excellent impression.
Beer to the fore
On the field, it was clear that whilst Andrew Beer, the Singapore opener, had a name fit for Cricket Week, he could also bat. Indeed, he chipped in with a commanding 102 (off 81 balls) and had he continued for much longer than the Ts would have been chasing a real mountain of a total.
A TCC side somewhat lacking in bowling was further depleted when Paul Johnson went lame after just one ball, forcing the mercurial spinning talents of Andy Donelan and Steve Watts to bowl seven overs a piece in the middle of the innings. Wickets were duly shared around, with Eugene Berger ultimately coming off with the best figures (1-41 off 7).
As is their way, the Vets' fielding was an eclectic mix of fumbles, tumbles and the occasionally competent. Say it quietly, but there were also rumours of missed stumpings flying about. Throw in the usual array of aches, pains, strains and general dilapidation and the Vets were playing pretty much par for the course.
Blunden and Johnson (M) shine with the bat
245 off 35 was always going to be tough ask to chase down (see here or the card). Colin Blunden (53 off 45) nonetheless gave it his best shot but it was Mark Johnson who really set the tone, helping himself to an impressive 66 (79 balls).
Once he'd left proceedings and a couple of golden ducks (stand up Vokes and Donelan) later the Ts found themselves well off the pace. A stodgy bit of defending at the end from Nigel Gordon was a pleasure for the purists to behold, and Gash's enigmatic 1 helped the hosts close on a respectable 198.
All in all, this was the perfect Cricket Week fixture. Singapore were excellent value on and off the field and should they ever be touring this way again we'd be very pleased to host. Well done everyone concerned.