The penultimate game of the season brought Cranmore to Sea Lane for a top of the table clash with both sides hoping to secure the necessary points to achieve promotion from division 5.

With regular skipper Lloyd still abroad, vice-captain Clemenson got the game off to a bright start by winning the toss and electing to have a bat first.

Chris ‘Inzamam-ul-Haq’ Taylor and Pete ‘Can I borrow your bat’ Stone opened up and were soon into their stride. M. Pang  took the new ball for Cranmore and impressed with good early pace. Keevil from the Bristol Channel end struggled to find form and was replaced after just one over by Lawrence.

The partnership reached 15 overs and drinks successfully, but the first ball of the 16th over saw Stone “Crispined” by the enthusiastic Taylor.

This brought James ‘Bert’ Payne to the crease who looked to be in good form until he too fell to Taylor’s exuberance. His helmet was subsequently driven for four in a classy looking shot by the furious Payne.

Taylor fell one short of his half century, looking to lift the ball over mid-off, instead hitting it straight into his welcoming hands.

Gary ‘Pampers’ Stone showed his class as he rocketed to 40 before being caught from the tempting bowling of A. Pang, slashing a wide ball to cover. Munro was able to add 5 more to the score before being bowled by the returning M. Pang. The score then stuttered on 142 as Damo ‘Holiday maker’ Sharp lasted only two balls and then Glen ‘Daddy-O’ Manchip was well caught by the tallest man on the field – not many people would have stood a chance of reaching that!

Skipper Clemenson carried on his fine form of the week before and stroked the ball with confidence. Duncan ‘Furious D’ Malpass fell to Lawrence, seeking to accelerate the score.

Quinton ‘Sharky Rampage’ Button strode to the crease with the authority of AB de Villiers. He and Clemenson were able to add 12 before the skipper was also caught from the bowling of Lawrence. Fortunately, Ryan ‘Wendy’ Penwell had been practicing waiving his bat around whilst on holiday and he and Q were able to pile on the pressure at the end of the innings. Both were extremely happy with the stars next to their names as the Kilve innings came to a close on 181 for 9, and importantly, Kilve had secured 9 points towards the 18 needed for promotion.

Tea was beautiful, with a wide selection of sandwiches and savory goodies, not to mention the superb cakes. We would love to play at home every week!

Kilve began their defense of 181 with a professional intensity. Penwell opened the bowling with his characteristically casual loping run, but produced awkward late swing that squared up the opening batsman. Skipper Clemenson took the second over with immediate impact, a delivery striking A. Pang bang in front and the umpire awarded Kilve the lbw decision.

Two overs later, Clemenson struck again in the gathering gloom. A genuinely quick delivery found the outside edge of Williams’ bat and nestled nicely into Manchip’s hands at slip – no movement necessary!

Twelve overs ticked by and Cranmore had reached 29 when Penwell’s spell came to an end (8-0 off 6) and was replaced by Stone senior/junior. He found grip, turn and bounce immediately, with the first two balls of the over being borderline unplayable and the third clipping the edge of Lawrence’s bat to again be caught by Manchip at slip.

With the game in the balance, Morse walked out to the square, but before he could take guard a monsoon descended on Sea Lane. No instruction from the umpires was necessary as players, officials and spectators fled for cover.

Although it subsequently brightened, the downpour had proved too much and the game had to be abandoned. In this situation, 12 points are awarded to each team, plus any bonus points collected so far. With 9 batting points and 3 bowling points, this meant Kilve had surpassed the 18 they needed to ensure promotion.

Then we went to the pub