Sunday XI: 242 all out (34.2 overs: Cowie 50)
Kensington: 157-8 (Waller 3-13)
The Sunday XI finished their 2018 season with a strong win against Kensington CC on a stunning September afternoon. The two sides agreed a 35 over game and a negotiated toss saw Headley bat first by dint of having just 7 players present at the start time, a tactic that will surely be outlawed by the ECB soon but for the moment continues to pay dividends. Regular Saturday pair Barney Cowie (50) and Jeff Haywood (39) opened up nicely as the 4×4 cavalry arrived, with Cowie hitting some crunching strokes to reach a quick 50 before being bowled the very next ball. This season’s run machine Andy Pickering came and went quickly, but the in-form Gus Noble (33) joined Haywood in the middle overs and the pair laid a solid platform of 150-4 before both departing. Headley were fielding a usually destructive lower middle order, but Kensington fought hard and in the end only Steve Barton (47) came off, putting together a savage knock as wickets fell all around him, powering Headley up to 242 all out. Barton looked set for a 50 but was run out in the penultimate over by Nick Tunnell, who was himself then bowled to leave Bobby Barton stranded on 1*, not a strong 5 minutes for the blonde bombshell from Tonbridge, but he redeemed himself with a great tea.
Kensington’s reply stumbled immediately with Grant Waller (3-13) in lethal form with the ball and Bobby Barton (2-11) bowling accurate away-swingers and incredibly almost recording four maidens on the trot. The visitors were around 30-3 off ten overs and from this point the run-rate just became too much. The classy Neeraj Nayar put together a good 54* but Headley’s phalanx of slow bowlers gradually saw the required run-rate climbing past 10, 12 and then 14 an over with Steve Barton and Steve Winslet taking further wickets. With three overs of the season remaining Bobby Barton was re-summoned to take two wickets in the final over. The penultimate ball of the season was then hoisted high to deep midwicket where that man Tunnell emerged from the gloom with redemption of Tunnell / Barton relations looming. Sadly a hard chance went down, leaving it to the bar instead! Headley ended up recording a 85 run win with another fine team performance.
Kensington were as ever fantastic visitors, handing out cold Cobras in the changing rooms, and as the sun went down over the trees a presentation saw the club awarded two bottles of Johnny Walker, one to the club (pocketed for the dinner) and one to the Barton clan. Headley awarded Kensington’s man of the match to Sunil Amar, who had bowled brilliantly in the closing stages to take 3-30. Steve Barton said a few words to mark the passing of Joey Barton, a regular fixture at the club for the past four years and a canine legend. Rest in peace Joey.
Sunday XI: Played 21, Won 13, Drawn 2, Lost 4, Abandoned 2 – thanks to everyone who took part.