Match Report - Round 2: VOC vs VRA
After a close loss to the defending champions the week before, the Fluffers were determined to find their first win of the season away in Rotterdam in week two. Inclement weather washed out training on match eve, and with plenty more rain forecasted for game day there was forbidden fruit in the offing. Wisely though, the jongens elected not to play a rain card, and arrived at VOC fresh and raring to go. The Fluffers had been handed a huge boost the night before, with gun bowler Fred "105kph Trent Boult" Klaassen passed fit by the VRA medical team. Along with confounding Fantasy League managers around the country, Klaassen's appearance in the warm up surely sent a ripple of fear through the Friends' batting line-up.
They didn't have to wait long to have their fears realised. Skipper Borren won the toss, elected to bowl, and Klaassen and fellow red Quirijn "Ned" Gunning set about dismantling the VOC top order with ruthless precision. It was an immediate resumption of last season's demolition, as Gunning quickly removed both openers and Klaassen did the rest, removing all three of VOC's pretty boys with superb deliveries, the highlight being the inswinging seamer that removed Pieter Seelaar's middle stump. Quickasaflash the opposition were 5-32, and with a very brittle looking tail last season's 39 all-out was in danger of being outdone. However a KNCB limitation on Klaassen's overs, some extreme uncoordination from the 'keeper, and a valuable rearguard 35 from Jelte Boomheim led a partial recovery that eventually saw the home team to 125 all-out. A less than imposing target despite the unpredictable nature of the pitch.
Perhaps there was something in the lunchtime broodje kroket, or the Red Bull, but with rain in the air and the prospect of some silkies the Fluffers set out like they needed the runs in five overs. First Mitch "give yourself a chance" Lees played a shot that would have embarrassed a 12 year old, then Ben "two fantasy league teams" Cooper lost his off pole in the same over, and the score was 2-7. A long period of rain and a brief period of consolidation followed, but when Vikram "Fig Jam" Singh chipped a catch and Peter "I need to plan my post-match activities more carefully" Borren took a questionable option, the Fluffs were 4-37 and behind the Duckworth-Lewis par target.
Fluffers fans would have been worried if Inzamam ul-van den Burg hadn't strode to the wicket to join the immovable Eric "Zoolander" Szwarczynski. The contrasting pair proceeded to make the rest of the chase look like they had a bet on who could score the most runs. With a 20 run head start Zoolander looked the favourite, but Inzamam had other ideas, and used Zoo's struggles against the accurate Bobby Hanif to narrow the gap. Zoolander whipped out his trademark sweep to maintain the advantage, but Inzamam hit back with three consecutive boundaries to tie it up at 41-all. It wasn't to be for Inzy though, as a faint edge sent him packing and allowed Szwarczynski to take the Fluffers home, bringing up his half century - and 25 bonus fantasy points - in the process.
Though not without its moments, in the end it was another comfortable victory for the Fluffers over the Friends, and takes the winning streak over our favourite rivals to four. Next up, the Fritzls at home in the Bos this Saturday. The first wicket is scheduled for 11:02, so don't be late!
Go the Fluffers!