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AUSTRALIA 050S UK TOUR 2017

GAME 5 AUSTRALIA 050S VS SHROPSHIRE 050S

AT SHIFNAL CC SHROPSHIRE

SUNDAY 23 rd JULY 2017

 

Wilfred Owen is a favourite son of Shropshire and regarded by many as the greatest poet of the First World War. One of his most famous poems is “Anthem for Doomed Youth”. The first few lines run thus:

“What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?

Only the monstrous anger of the guns.

Only the stuttering rifles’ rapid rattle

Can patter out their hasty orisons.”

Befittingly on this Sunday morning the orisons (a wish or communication with God) muttered by the Australian 050 team over breakfast at Angel’s Hotel in lovely Leamington Spa, was, ‘please God, let the rain ease up’. The Australians’ prayers were answered as the clouds cleared and the game started in sunshine on time in front of a growing, large and appreciative local crowd. They even bought a cake to celebrate our first birthday.

The Shifnal Cricket Club presented a second-day wicket for the Australians where the previous day in a local league match, the team batting first scored 336 from 55 overs; more than a run a ball. The ground is a minor counties venue and today the game was played with a short boundary on the western side. Like other pitches encountered on tour the wicket was expected to play slow and low although it appeared harder than similar county pitches. Along with Fabian Heath (wkeeper); Warwick Hayes and Allan Chellew Australia went into the match brimful of bowlers with Stenhouse, McGhee, Sargent, Pellen, Briggs, Judd, Miles, Moore and Belstead leading the charge.

Although Charles Darwin may have hailed from Shropshire it was Australia that had to evolve and adapt as skipper Paul Stenhouse lost the toss for the first time on tour and Australia was required to bowl first.