Lodge inspires miracle 1-run win
By Antony Ireland
Llamas take 4 wickets for none to snatch victory from jaws of defeat. By Dick Belcher
Summer made an appearance just in time for the start of Wimbledon fortnight.
The venue was Centre Court, Park Lane where the Llama’s 2 nd team –seeded 3 rd in the Men’s
team event- where up against 4 th seeds Weybridge.
Henry lost the toss and Weybridge chose to field.
New Balls of course.
1 st serve to Weybridge.
A flurry of 4’s from Smudger and Rory saw the Llamas reach 20 by the 3 rd over before a
healthy stride down the wicket failed to save Jon (10) from being lbw to left arm opening
spin bowler Sam Crabtree (14 overs 1-48).
Neil Saker joined Rory and the pair took us to 52-1 after 15 overs before Neil then danced
down the wicket to play 3 cracking cover drives for 4’s to take us to drinks-it was HOT-the
weather not the drinks !
You know what’s coming. A wicket straight after drinks in the 17 th over when Neil (22) was
lbw to Adam Dean
Last week’s run scorers Rory & Henry were now at the crease and Rory continued his good
form to reach his 50 in the 27 th over but was then out for 51 caught by the wicket keeper off
George Watling (8 overs 1-35) with the score now 103-3 in the 28 th over.
Next over this became 104-4 as Luke Haughton (1) edged one to be caught at slip to give
James Cunningham his 1 st wicket.
U16 William Hodgson (40) had a few edges get past the slips before settling in to play some
attractive shots before Henry (38), also continuing his good form, was bowled by James
Cunningham to leave the Llamas on 131-5.
Ali Raja, coming to the crease in the 37 th over, then dominated the next few overs as he
swiftly moved to 30 taking the score to 179 in the 45 th over before he was the 6 th wicket to fall
caught in the slips for James Cunningham’s 3 rd wicket (by the way that’s not how Ali viewed
This combination of caught in the slips off the bowling of James Cunningham (14 overs 5-
55) then saw Toby (2) and Mobeen (0) out to see the Llamas slip to 185-7 and then 189-8 by
the 49 th over.
Meanwhile U16 Will Hodgson was playing an important innings and his contribution was to
be vital but he was then run out for 40 to a direct hit going for a second run.
Ollie Simms (7) was last to go, caught in the covers off the bowling of Adam Dean (12 overs
2-29) to see the Llamas all out for 203 in the 52 nd over, leaving Elliott Lodge the not out
batsman on 2. This looked a bit under par on this good track.
Another week where despite the hot (did I mention it was HOT) temperatures and 2 drinks
breaks, the over rate was excellent with 52 overs bowled in 3hours 20minutes.
With the restart scheduled for 3.50 and the game to finish by 6.50 (a time that was to prove to
be important) this left Weybridge with 3 hours, and at the recommended over rate of 16 overs
an over; this meant there were at least 48 overs for Weybridge to get the runs.
Toby, fresh from getting his 200 th 2 nd team wicket, quickly added to his total when he got one
to nip back to bowl Harry Samuels for 4 to give the Llamas the start they needed at 5-1 in the
3 rd over.
The time up to the 1 st drinks break (did I mention it was HOT) at 16 overs was dominated by
Opener Tim Cross and number 3 Jordan McKinlay. A bowling change at drinks brought a
wicket when Tim Cross (26) was caught in the slips by Henry off Ollie Simms (3 overs 1-7)
to bring the Llamas back in the game at 72-2.
But it was Weybridge who continued to keep the upper hand as James Cunningham and
Jordan McKinlay scored freely.
It was the 30 th over before the Llamas got the next breakthrough when keeper Ali Raja took a
sharp chance off Luke’s bowling (6 overs 1-23) to dismiss Jordan McKinlay for 68 with the
score now 124-3.
Weybridge Captain Alastair Stanley joined James Cunningham and the pair looked
comfortable taking the score onto 159 in the 37 th over when U16 Will Hodgson’s 2 nd over saw
Smudger catch James Cunningham for 45 for a good all round performance from James
following on from his 5 wickets.
With the score now 159-4, it was still “Advantage” to Weybridge.
A smart stumping chance, turned down by the Umpire, could well have been followed by
“YOU CANNOT BE SERIOUS” from Ali; and Will Hodgson, who had one or two edges in
his own innings, was finding the edge of the opposition bats on a few occasions and his
figures (6 overs 1-36) would have looked better had the Llamas fielding been on song. One
ball even evaded Smudger and that’s not a phrase you hear very often. However it’s difficult
to be critical given the heat (did I mention it was HOT) and our not so smooth outfield and
one shot could have done Mobeen some serious damage had he not taken evasive action.
Weybridge on 172 in the 40th over then lost their 5 th wicket when Toby (12 overs 2-43) got
opposition captain Alastair Stanley (28) lbw.
Luke put a chance down off Will’s bowling but it was not to cost as at 179 in the 44 th over the
6 th wicket fell when Ollie Simms took a catch to dismiss Chris Jarvis (7) to give Elliott
Lodge; back for his 2 nd spell, his 1 st wicket.
A glimmer of hope for the Llamas perhaps ?
With the elder statesmen of the team (Sakes and Ali) constantly reminding the batsmen about
48 overs; the nerves were getting to the Weybridge tail but nonetheless with the time at 6.35
when the 48th over arrived (which Weybridge mistakenly thought was the last over, rather
than the 6.50 finish time) and the score on 202-6 Weybridge were still firm favourites with
just 2 runs to win.
An exhausted Elliott Lodge was given the ball.
Warning to Ollie T in the scorebox-get ready as you’re going to be busy.
Take a breath 1st ball a dot ball
2 nd ball Lodgey gets his 2 nd wicket dismissing Oliver Downey (7) lbw with the score now 202-
3 rd ball Lodgey in the action again when he dived to deflect a shot to run out a stranded Adam
Dean for 15 to leave Weybridge on 202-8.
Take another breath 4th ball a dot.
5th ball George Watling (0) charged down the wicket and Ali takes the bails off to give
Lodgey his 3 rd wicket (9 overs 3-29). Score 202-9.
It can’t happen can it ? Surely not ?
6th ball and the batsmen decide to run to a shot played in the direction of Will Hodgson.
Rather than throw to the stumps Will decided to run to the stumps (having been run out
himself) and he reaches and breaks the stumps to run out Sam Crabtree to give the Llamas the
most unlikely of victories by 1 run.
The time was now 6.40 and there was still 10 minutes to close of play; a fact that seems to
have been missed by Weybridge who had been getting the better of the Llamas for all the
game except for this last over when, but for a better knowledge of the playing conditions,
they should have won.
Man of the match
U16 Will Hodgson certainly in the frame with 40 runs, 1-36 and the final run out but Elliott
Lodge, who would readily admit to having bowled better, just takes the honours with his final
With Wimbledon beating Spencer in the battle of the top two, the 3rd placed Llamas moved to
within 4 points of 2 nd placed Spencer but still 28 points behind top placed Wimbledon who
they visit next week.