There was a huge disappointment on The Common on Sunday as after 5 overs of play the match was interrupted by a rain shower which brought an end to proceedings. The subsequent delay caused the match to be abandoned at 2.15 after Melton St. Audrey did not believe that the game could be completed, nor did they wish to consider the alternative option of a 20 overs per side contest.
It was a strange scenario – the shower was brief though relatively heavy and after 15 minutes had blown over. Whilst all present agreed that the field would need some time to dry out, Melton were obviously hesitant. Under sunny skies and with a warm breeze blowing across the ground, drying the pitch off, Melton decided that the pitch was still too wet and were reluctant to continue the original match. Southwold captain Craig Gorst-Allman pleaded and tried to bargain with his counterpart but, like Margaret Thatcher, the Melton skipper was not for turning and his mind was made up. His team weren’t playing.
What followed was a deeply awkward post-match tea, an uneasy truce. It was Israel and Palestine; the British and the IRA; the Nazis occupying France. The Swiss Rolls didn’t go flying; there were no grapes launched into enemy territory – but after finishing their teas the opposition swiftly scuttled away.
In the 5 overs of play that were possible, Southwold swarmed over Melton, as both opening bowlers took a wicket. First to fall was Shrubshall, as he flicked a ball from Charles Le Versha down the leg-side. Wicket-keeper Gareth Gorst-Allman took an outstanding one handed catch inches above the ground to give Southwold’s newest player his first wicket. And then in the subsequent over Steve Hines had Andrews as he skied an attempted heave down the ground to Sam Booker, who took a good catch at backward point as the ball swirled in the air. Only two more overs were possible before the rain needlessly curtailed proceedings with the visitors 9/2.
It was a sad day and Southwold will be looking forward to sunshine and a full day’s play next week as they host BT Waldringfield and Martlesham.