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Bath CC v Ealing CC Sunday 8th August 2010 1pm at North Parade

National Club Championship Quarter-final

The Background :

The 2010 cup run had some familiar elements to it. We played Sulley again - this time at Sulley- without quite the same level of intensity and/or accrimony and Smyth smite a match-winning 94. Regualr cup opponents, Frocester, came to north Parade and left defeated largely through the batting of Barrow and Campbell and the bowling of Stayt and Chris Davies. An epic encounter against Bridgwter ebbed and flowed until James Brown's mecurial innings saw the Swords into the quarter-final once again - and once again to encounter Ealing but this year at North Parade.

August 8th was the date and it is a date on which a large number of famous people have been born and, in a certain light, several can be considered quite coincidental to the match which was about to unfold. As if to mirror the back and fore nature of the Bath v Ealing story it was Roger Federer's birthday, bath hoped to deliver another knockout blow to Ealing's hopes on the anniversary of Chris Eubank's birth whilst some considered the repetative nature of the QF line-up a little boring as Nigel Mansell celebrated 57 years on the earth.

As it turned out as Bath stood on the edge (U2s The Edge was 49 on that day) of another semi-final, the drama did not live up to all expectations (Dustin Hoffman, 73) as Ealing produced a smash and grab raid at North Parade (Ronnie Biggs, 81) and shattered Bath's dreams of The Racecourse Ground, Derby for another year!

The Game :

For whatever reason - probably because we lost - the game has not entered Bath folklore in the way that others have done. Bath batted first and, mirroring the home side 12 months earlier, got off to a good start. Campbell and Lett put on 50 for the first wicket, before JC and then Staunton were dismissed in quick succession. Lett and Lloyd took the score to 133 but from that point everything was downhill for Bath. wickets fell and kept falling at regualr intervals with only the briefest sign that anyone could arrest the slump. simon Hawk swooped in with 4 wickets for the visitors as Bath were bowled out for just 177 - still with 5 overs to go (Criminal, eh Ronnie?)

Quick wickets were needed after tea and quick wickets were delivered as the visitors quickly found themselves 38-2. Whilst the home supporters were not swinging from the treetops (Ester Williams - born 8th August 1921), expectation was high. Hawk (again) had other ideas and he quickly got his talons into the Bath bowlers. Together with David holt he took the score to 108 before captain Stayt removed Holt and the evergreen Chris Peploe in quick succession. Bath were swimming against the tide, however, (Hannah Miley - swimmer in case you don't know, 1989) and were up that famous creek without a paddle (canoeist David Florence , 1982) as even the dismissal of the watchful Hawk for 65, couldn't prevent Ealing knocked off the remaining runs with 2 overs to spare.

Bath had given battle but it was all in vain (Princess Beatrice of York, 1988). Waht will happen in 2013???

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