League cricket is back at Dulwich in a cut-down format lasting only a few weeks.
AJ Fordham Sports and Fullers Brewery, sponsors of the Surrey Championship and Surrey County League respectively, joined forces to sponsor a challenge cup contest in a number of regionalised groups.
Each group has eight teams playing each other once in 40-over matches.
The fortunes of local team Dulwich have been mixed in the first three games.
The first, against Old Wimbledonians at Dulwich was abandoned with the visitors on 147-7 after 33 overs.
Old Wimbledonians would have been one of Dulwich’s opponents in a regular season after winning promotion last year from Division 3.
Sushant Marathe survived two edges through the slips off the first three balls from new skipper Jon Lodwick, and got the visitors off to a rapid start, hitting 49 off 45 deliveries before becoming the second wicket to fall with the score on 69 after 14.2 overs.
The Dulwich spinners then reduced their opponents to 147-7 after 33 overs.
At this point, rain drove the players from the field, and brought the match to a premature end.
Ben Swanson finished with 3-34 off seven overs, Alex Gledhill picked up two wickets and Ahmed Khan one. Opening bowler Simon Harwood had claimed the first wicket, and also pulled off a stunning catch on the long-on boundary.
After the glorious sunshine of April and May it was perhaps predictable that the eventual resumption of cricket would be ruined by the weather. Next week Dulwich have a tough match away to first division Spencer when they will be hoping the conditions will allow a full game to be completed.
SPENCER 230 (39.4)
DULWICH 118 (32.2)
by 112 runs
Dulwich travelled to Earlsfied to meet Spencer for their second match, but found the task of beating a Division 1 side beyond them, going down to defeat by 112 runs.
The Spencer innings was dominated by former Hampshire batsman Calvin Dickinson, who scored 39 out of a partnership of 51 for the first wicket, and went on to make 104 off 76 balls. He fell to left arm spinner Frankie Brown’s second ball to make it 152-3 after 25.2 overs.
The score advanced to 228-6 after 38.5 overs, whereupon the last four wickets went down in five balls for just two runs to see Spencer dismissed for 230 with two balls of the innings to spare.
Brown took the last two wickets to finish with 5-44 off 7.4 overs, while Ahmed Khan, one of three 15-year-olds in the side, took 2-41 off eight with his leg spin.
Chris Purshouse and the second 15-year-old, Veer Patel, got the Dulwich reply off to a good start, putting on 39 for the first wicket before Patel was run out for 15 off the first ball of the ninth over.
Purshouse followed three overs later for 24 with the score on 54. The following batsmen were unable to maintain the pace against tight bowling.
Sam Ellison enjoyed stands of 23 for the third wicket with Brown and 18 for the fifth with the third 15-year-old Ollie Sykes, who was making his first team debut and who had earlier brought off a fine diving catch.
But Ellison’s dismissal, having top-scored with 29, sparked a collapse which echoed the first innings in that four wickets also fell for two runs to reduce Dulwich to 98-8.
The last three batsmen took the score past the hundred mark, but the innings closed on 118, with slow left armer Hugo Trotter taking five of the last six wickets for just 15 runs.
Bank of England
DULWICH 219-8 (40)
BANK OF ENGLAND 135 (38)
by 84 runs
Dulwich played Bank of England, a better-matched opponent, in their third game, emerging convincing winners by 84 runs.
The visitors put Dulwich in to bat, but failed to make an early breakthrough as Chris Purshouse and Veer Patel put on 57 for the first wicket in 12.2 overs.
Purshouse’s dismissal, bowled by skipper Kit Winder for 22, off 32 balls, brought in Sam Ellison.
The scoring rate slowed as left arm spinner Rory Sale bowled his eight overs straight through for 29 runs, while Winder conceded only 14 off six overs in his first spell.
But the next two bowlers could not maintain the pressure, and Ellison in particular went on the attack. The second wicket pair added 114 in 21 overs before Ellison fell for 73, scored at exactly a run a ball.
Patel followed in the next over for a mature 68, scored off 98 balls.
Frankie Brown and Michael Harms took the score to 197-3 after 37.3 overs, whereupon five wickets fell off the next 15 balls as the batsmen sacrificed themselves in a search for quick runs. The innings closed on 219-8 after 40 overs.
Bank’s reply got off to a poor start as skipper Jon Lodwick took two wickets in his first four overs to reduce them to 20-2 in the seventh.
He came off with figures of 2-10 off six overs, as the seamers gave way to the spinners.
Slow left armer Alex Gledhill took the third wicket and conceded only five runs in his four-over spell, and 15-year-old leggie Ahmed Khan bowled his eight overs straight through for just 25 runs. He also picked up a wicket to make it 65-4 in the 21st over.
The fifth wicket pair then tried to accelerate, but never looked capable of matching the required rate, which had by now risen to eight an over.
They were, however, quite severe on Ben Swanson, who conceded 47 off his eight overs but also picked up the next three wickets to go with two fine slip catches earlier in the innings.
Brown bowled five overs to take 1-15, while Gledhill returned to take the last two wickets and finish with 3-12 off six overs. Dulwich had dismissed their opponents for 135 off 38 overs.
The bowlers were well supported by keeper Harms, who took three good stumpings off the spinners.
Dulwich have now won one, lost one and had one abandoned to stand in sixth place in the eight-team group. On Saturday (15 August) they have another difficult fixture, away to first division Beddington, who have the same playing record and stand just one bonus point above them in the table.
Edited from reports by John Lewis