In a dice cricket encounter that had the build up you would expect from a heavy weight title fight, the Cricket Library Podcast XI have come away with a 61 run victory in virtual Hong Kong.
After winning the toss and electing to bowl, star inclusion Brian Watson got into his work nicely before Brockley sent one into the virtual nets adjacent to the ground.
Brockley continued his powerful display hitting consecutive boundaries and a six before falling LBW to a Lance Mallinson slower ball for 24 off 7.
This brought Brazil captain Roberta Moretti Avery to the crease who built a very handy partnership with Gus Worland. The experience of Adam Hollioake was able to put the breaks on the scoring however which was followed up with some magnificent work from Riding Mill skipper Aly Hall who dismissed Moretti Avery for a stylish 31 from 14.
The wickets & runs then steadily flowed with Brian Watson taking one of the best virtual catches you will ever imagine making remarkably good ground to remove Worland who was looking good making 31 from 16.
Steve Kent got one to keep low which saw the end of Babar Hyatt bowled for 13 off just 5 deliveries. The following over Nina Stevens who was looking good on 20 chipped one straight down the throat of Adam Hollioake off the bowling of Dave Cox.
Tabbernor and Olsen put together a handy partnership with Olsen finishing off the innings with a perfectly timed cut stroke behind point for a boundary.
Good judges had the feeling the 5-155 made by the Cricket Library Podcast XI was about par and an exciting run chase was on the cards.
The first over of the run chase saw Dave Cox take charge hitting the final three deliveries of the over for 4 as the score raced to 0-21.
Enter Marty Rhone who picked up the big wicket of Butcher who was caught behind for 12 off 5. Next ball Kent was struck on the pads and survived a very close LBW shout. It seemed to unsettle the normally unflappable Kent who was lured in to playing an expansive drive on the next delivery which went through to keeper Brockley who made no mistake. Rhone had the double breakthrough and Riding Mill had the wobbles at 2-27.
Things got worse in the next over when Graham Winter had the Kookaburra dice swinging. On the second ball of the over Cox looked to pounce on a short one which found the top edge with Brockley taking a simple catch. He departed for 21 bringing Scott Dickson to the crease. Dickson came and went edging one to the safe hands of Babar Hyatt at slip. The next ball was a carbon copy with Longstaff departing in the same fashion for a duck. Riding Mill were now reeling at 5-44 and in need of a rescue mission from Adam Hollioake and Aly Hall.
Debutant Kelly Meddings closed out her first over in style with the danger man Hollioake stumped by Paul Brockley who was having a day to remember with the gloves. The score was now 6-55 after 4 overs with plenty of work still to be done to chase down the target of 156 for victory.
Luke Olsen was injected into the attack having an immediate impact when the ball kissed the glove of skipper Aly Hall as he was attempting a sweep shot. Paul Brockley continued his day out with the gloves completing a regulation catch. Next ball Olsen spun one through the gate of Kev Frazer who went for 0 to put him on a hat trick.
Nina Stevens brought the field up enticing Mallinson to try and go over the top, in what was a comedy of errors, Mallinson advanced down the wicket only to miss the ball completely which ricochet off Paul Brockley back onto the stumps to see the second hat trick of the tour. He finished with the incredible figures of 3-8.
At 9-55 it appeared all hope was lost but Brian Watson had other ideas dispatching Matthew Tabbernor to all parts of the ground and surrounding post code. Two new dice were required as sixes were hit so far they could not be retrieved. With 29 coming off the over there was a glimmer of hope for the visitors to add some respectability to the run chase.
Captain Nina Stevens ensured the fairy tale finish for Riding Mill would not eventuate when Brockley stumped Joel Marks to claim his seventh dismissal for the match and what we believe to be a dice cricket record.
As the final wicket fell the curtain was drawn on what was a memorable virtual tour. Thanks to everyone who made the tour one to remember.
Stay tuned for audio highlights from Robbie Mackinlay and Matt Ellis later this evening. Our librarians are telling us there is some major breaking news that will be revealed tonight.