John Rowan and Partners v Network Homes – a credible win

Wednesday, 4 August 2021

On Wednesday evening, the presence of cloud cover didn’t dampen spirits as John Rowan and Partners’ cricket team returned to action after an enforced two-year hiatus. With the pandemic taking its toll both John Rowan and Partners and their opponents, long standing clients Network Homes, were unable to field full teams.

Given the choice the visitors opted to field first at the quaint Ealing Cricket Club grounds.  The rain held off as Royle (51*) and Brown (7) opened the batting for us with some power hitting, and the score soon raced to 40 from 4 overs. After Brown’s departure Kalyan (11) offered further support to Royle before being caught and triggering what can only be described as a catastrophic collapse.

Price (3), Rhoomes (5), Cherry (2) and McColgan (4) were dismissed in quick succession, with the Network middle order bowlers having them in a spin. Royle still stood on his bat at the non-strikers end until Shah (9) finally offered some semblance of calm, allowing Royle to retire and Pearse (25*) to nudge us towards a respectable total. Royle returned with some spectacular hitting to pick up a half century on his debut, with us finishing on 161 from our 20 overs.

After a short break, Network Homes started strong but by the 7th over we were in control, with Network reaching 35-2. Nic (32*) and Rodney (27*) then came together and things got difficult for our bowlers, returning openers Cherry and Price taking the brunt of the punishment as Network reached 78-2 after 11 overs.

Fortunately, we started to turn the tide with Brown (2-7) and Rhoomes (2-5) the pick of the bowlers, and a special mention to Muller who thought he was coming down to watch before being dragged into fielding, then bowling and taking a prized wicket on debut. At 90-6 off 16 the game looked in the bag, little did we know that Network had some fireworks left in reserve.

Network captain Stephen (27*) took no prisoners dealing primarily in boundaries and having our fielders chasing the ball all over. Despite Price and Cherry again taking a hammering, McColgan however kept his nerve in the final over. Network unable to meet the required target and ending the match 10 runs short.

In true sporting fashion, we rounded the event off with a BBQ and a few drinks.  A great evening was had by all.

Player of the Match – Hotly contested by Royle, the key performance was from Rhoomes who delivered his own style of spin to take two wickets and conceded only 5 runs at a crucial time. A fantastic debut performance!