On Thursday, taking advantage of the Sant Joan holidays, we welcomed the University of Reading’s cricket team to the baseball ground in Montjuïc. With a 2 o’clock meet, we were prepared for something of a warm day. This was only compounded when Umer Razi managed to lose the toss against a random Reading player (rather than their captain), who rather sensibly put us in the field. Their squad consisted of a mix of first- and second-team players, as well as some social members enjoying an end of year blowout. Despite it being their only game of the week, they had enjoyed some beach cricket and even had a bowl in the bay. Their youthfulness managed not to show that they had been out until about 7am that morning…
Such youthfulness was not on show for our opening bowler Simon Eldridge, as Umer went for a spin/ swing opening bowling combination with Sam Phillipps at the “other end”. Sam bowled a wicket maiden in the second over to get us on the board. Henry Hawkes came into the attack soon after and picked up a first BICC wicket (in his last game before leaving!), well caught by the keeper Barry Edwards. This was a trick that Mohsin Nawaz later repeated, as he also picked up a wicket first over. There was a drinks break taken after 16 overs, as we all gave up on trying to make it through the innings without one (it was rather warm!), before the students went on the attack for the final four overs. Reading finished on a respectable 144 from their 20 overs.
Barry opened up with Ravi Maduranga, also in his last game for the club before moving. They got us off to a reasonable start before Ravi got out. Barry followed the ball before the more smartly arranged halfway drinks break with us on 75/2 and looking like favourites. Once Umer and Mohsin had been dismissed, it left us with one of the oldest batting partnerships of BICC history - Simon and Anton! They led us across the line to something of a comfortable win.
We headed up to the bar after the game to rehydrate before the Sant Joan festivities that night! Great to meet Reading, and we hope to welcome them back again in the future.