Do the Funky Gibbon
By Rogers and Out
August 16 2020
With an unpromising weather forecast, it was with more hope than expectation that I set off for to see Ealing's Middlesex Premier League fixture against Hampstead at their pleasant Corfton Road ground on Saturday morning.
My journey on the E7 bus to Ealing Broadway was slow but uneventful and I was pleased to note two hostelries, namely The Haven and The Wheatsheaf, close to the ground on the short walk from the town centre.
The weather remained overcast for the entire day, but fortunately, the rain kept off and the game was uninterrupted by the elements.
Ealing had won the toss and inserted Hampstead, presumably in the hope of skittling them quickly then knocking off the runs before the anticipated rain came. Both sides wore coloured clothing and a pink/orange ball was used, in contrast to the white attire and red ball I witnessed at second division games in previous weeks.
Hampstead, resplendent in claret and blue, had made a decent start reaching 36 without loss before losing both openers in quick succession to catches by the splendidly named Mungo Russell.
The North Londoners struggled from then on, and when Ben Ladd-Gibbon ran out Jonathan Dunne to make the score 54/5, a decent score looked unlikely.
With a few decent blows from the lower order, Hampstead managed to reach 109 all out in 37.4 overs. The lad Gibbon was the pick of the bowlers with 3/34 from his allocation of 10 overs, ably assisted by captain Kristian Martin with 2/10 from 4 overs.
By this time, I had been joined by Fulham Des and Primrose Hillbilly and we sampled some good ale from the fine pavilion (socially distanced of course).
We had a nice chat with Hanwell Town FC supremo and lifelong Ealing CC member Bob Fisher who filled us in with the comings and goings at Ealing and we enjoyed his kind hospitality.
Ealing looked to get off to a quick start on resumption of play with brothers Ollie and wicketkeeper Mylo Wilkin opening the batting. Ollie had played a handful of red and white ball games for Middlesex around seven years ago.
However, they were both back in the pavilion quite quickly as Hampstead sensed an unlikely victory. Ealing managed to steady the ship and although they lost wickets at regular intervals, they were always just ahead of the game.
25 runs apiece from Ben Graves and Juan Henri kept them ticking along, but it was Ladd-Gibbon who got them over the line with an unbeaten eleven, leaving Ealing the victors by three wickets with seven overs to spare.
Ben Frazer bowled well for Hampstead with 2/15 from his 10 overs but Ealing consolidated their pole position in the league table and look favourites to take the title in this curtailed season.
It was a most pleasant day and I must congratulate both sides for an entertaining match. Ealing CC deserve much credit for their excellent facilities and good organisational skills in these difficult times for all sport.
We adjourned to The Wheatsheaf to ruminate on various matters, namely Suzi Quatro, Captain Beefheart, Willco Johnson and Middlesex CCC (in no particular order).
On a final note, I have been to Stanmore, Harrow St Mary's and now Ealing cricket clubs in recent weeks and been welcomed with terrific friendliness and hospitality. I can certainly recommend club cricket for anyone suffering withdrawal symptoms from not being able to watch Middlesex live. It's much less stressful too !
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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2020:08:26:11:17:06 by BarmierKev.
Real ale on offer as well?
Ealing are one of the strongest sides in the league, and have visited before, along with our mate Diamond.
As you say Mick, always get a good welcome.
My next ground will be Brondesbury on 29th Aug for game vs The Bush.
I'm only here for the tele
When some pubs are still struggling to keep one real ale on the bar, this speaks very healthy volumes (in both senses of the word) about the state of Ealing C.C.'s membership and attendance.
A lovely ground - beautiful old victorian Pavillion, welcoming people around us, the nets constantly busy with kids, ...........I will be back.
A tremendous day!