Madrid CC returned once again to the Costa Blanca to play Sporting Alfas but once again they headed back to the capital without that elusive victory.
The visitors won the toss and elected to bat first. Opener Joe Healey departed early and Tetlow soon followed as Alfas had Madrid reeling at 16 for 2. Then followed a century partnership between Adam Langhans (83) and S. Awan (66) as the visitors began to force their way back into the game.
Unfortunately, once Awan and Langhans departed the batting collasped and Madrid were finally bowled out for 219. Mohib Husseini returned the best figures for Alfas, finishing with figures of 4 for 37.
Madrid started well and had Alfas wobbling at 3 for 2 at the beginning of the home sides innings. However, the visitors found Christian Munoz-Mills in cracking form and had no answer to Spanish National captain. He finally ended the game 150 not out as the hosts went on to overtake the required target with six wickets in hand.
Madrid Report on the match
Magnificent Muñoz mauls Madrid
Richard Wilson and his Madrid troops left rubbing their eyes and contemplating legal action against Spanish captain Christian Muñoz-Mills, as he ruthlessly dominated the Madrid attack in a quite stunning 150* to see Alfas home comfortably to a 6 wicket win with over half of the innings remaining.
In a similar vein to the La Manga trip a few weeks previously, skipper Richard Wilson was left with precious few bowling resources, that had even seen him scouring parts of Patagonia to enhance their bowling attack. Wilson returned from Argentina empty handed and a non-existent tan, much to the amusement of Langhans who had ironically got sunburnt at Wimbledon the previous week. Remember your factor 50 next time. Joe Healey, commonly known as Madrid CC’s answer to Shakespeare was playing his last game, before an all-inclusive break to Romania. Following, Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Ian Shackleton was eager to return, purely just to poke fun at Scot David Stirton rather than for any cricketing reason. * No Scots were harmed in the making of this match report *.
With so few bowlers and since according to Adam Langhans rain was forecast in the afternoon because, “Alfas is on the coast”. With that in mind, Wilson thought it was imperative to win the toss and bat first ©. He did exactly that and Shahid Awan and Joe Healey opened up.
400 looked on the cards when Healey put the first ball away for four, but accurate and intense opening spells from K. Perman and Roper really put Madrid on the back foot as they picked up the wickets of Healey (4) and Tetlow (3) respectively. Tetlow did pay a precautionary visit to Albir General Hospital after a short ball hit him in the chest, where the doctors unfortunately confirmed the worst possible news that he was still OK to bowl. At 16-2, Madrid needed a partnership and a recovery. They got exactly that as Shahid Awan and Adam Langhans came together to form a great combination. The two put on 108 for the 3rd wicket. Awan, who was promoted to the top of the order for the day by Wilson, looked particularly impressive as he carved a number of strokes through the offside, whilst playing intelligently enough to rotate the strike with his Australian teammate. Langhans at the other end was reintroducing himself to the form he found in Pinatar on the previous trip to the coast, as early on he found the boundary with regularity and aplomb, before he too started to settle down. Unsurprisingly this settling down was no coincidence as it occurred at about the same time as left armer Taylor was introduced into the attack. A great bowler who has the knack of deceiving the batsmen with his flight and variations. That knack did for Shahid Awan as he was finally dismissed for 66. In truth Awan batted sensibly and responsibly to set the innings up for their side.
At the other end Langhans continued on his merry way as he brought up his first 50 of 2016 with Wilson at the crease with him. The two would put on 48 before Wilson, the part-time Jonny Bairstow lookalike departed playing the risky game of trying to hit the ball off the square for 14. President Jon Woodward was then brought to the crease. Woodward who recently announced a deal to become an ambassador for Coke Zero Zero would surely be flying high going into his innings. It would only last 2 balls though. The first one sailing out of the park and the second one sending his stumps back as Alger took his second wicket. The rest of innings stuttered and stumbled along as Madrid CC would eventually get to 219 all out. Langhans top scored with 83, continuing his fine historical form in Alfas.
For Alfas the pick of the bowlers was M.Hussain as he chipped in with a performance of 4-27 off 6.5 overs, picking up the wickets of Langhans, Stirton, Hussain and Shackleton senior. He ably supported by his leg-spinner colleague Alger.
With the aforementioned limited bowling resources, it was paramount that Madrid bowled Alfas out to win, even though they had put 219 on the board. That task looked in sight with a double early blow. Awan continued his fine all round performance with first the wicket Muddasar off the second ball of the match. His new ball partner was 14 year old Guillermo Shackleton who had earlier out scored his old man. The younger Shackleton got a dream start taking a wicket with his first ball to leave Alfas precariously poised at 3-2 off 1.1 overs. With J. Perman and Mudassar both gone early, was a shock on the cards?
Enter Christian Muñoz. The Spanish captain had to make a big contribution. He did just that. Ruthlessly massacring the Madrid bowling attack as he carved and caressed the ball everywhere in quite astonishing fashion. After just 11 overs he brought up his 100. It didn’t stop there though as he continued smashing the bowlers around the local area of Albir. Rumours that Alfas took out an additional insurance plan during the innings appeared to be wide of the mark, but it just goes further to show how well he was batting. It wasn’t all his doing though, as K. Perman got involved with 21* and 15 earlier from Alger helped Alfas over the line. In reality Madrid didn’t bowl too badly despite their scare bowling resources, they were just outdone by a batting masterclass and can be proud of their efforts.
Madrid’s next game is on Saturday the 9th of July at home to Madrid United. Before the game, Adam Langhans will be signing his cover version of the book, “The Giving Tree”.
Alfas took 20 points from the contest whilst Madrid scored 5 points.
Sporting Alfas 221 for 4 beat Madrid CC 220 all out by six wickets.