1995 Season Review

by Mike Blake

In the final analysis of the season we were somewhat fortunate that only our 3rd XI were claimed in the relegation stakes.

The 1st XI survived by a whisker with Chingford surviving on the last day of the season by a whisker in the final game at Woodford Wells, when much more had been expected of what was generally a young side. The side did not lack spirit or enterprise and it was hard to pinpoint the reasons for failure and a little luck in a few games could have made a big difference. With the majority of the workload being borne by Spinners Doig, Runciman and Lawrence with 39,26 and 20 League wickets respectively none of the matches lacked interest.  

A revitalised 2nd XI under the astute captaincy of Paul Hart had a super season recording 8 wins with a side many thought might struggle. Team spirit played a great part as the side were even top of the table on 17th June as the skipper bagged 25 League wickets himself. Mark Campbell led the batting with a healthy average of 33.

The 3rd XI had a fantastic first half of the first game against Wanstead, but that was where the success ended! Myles Joyce and Chris Colgan both smashed centuries as we had Wanstead completely on the rack. In fact I remember telling Myles to bat the full 52, give Wanstead nothing and let them be the first side in League history to concede over 300! Myles took mercy on Wanstead –something you never do – and called it a day at the 280 mark. Lo and behold, Wanstead romped home with 10 overs to spare, Tony Umoh smashing 150. After this setback Chingford seemed to forget how to win games despite the efforts of an injured Mike Blake (unable to bowl regularly) who nevertheless hit 420 League runs and Nick Thorpe with 19 wickets who was the pick of a pretty blunt bowling attack. Andy Norgate hit 132 in the match v Fives and Heronians. This side without a shadow of doubt bore the brunt of the loss of a number of senior players in the close season.