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Match Report
Derek Scott

A sad defeat brought about by poor batting in each innings. Two magnificent days, the wicket like concrete and a glasslike outfield failed to bring out any spark in Ireland's batting. Given a generous declaration they failed pretty miserably and were beaten in the second over of the last 20. MS Reith had returned from Australia and took his place in the Irish team for the first time since 1972. DR Pigot, aged 45, was dropped after 42 successive matches since 1966 in which he scored 1465 runs, at an average of 19.53. IJ Anderson was not available and Ireland played four fastish bowlers plus Monteith. MCC had eight players new to the match. B Taylor was the former Essex wicket keeper and test selector in 1974. He was now 42. DC Morgan, the former Derbyshire Capt. and all-rounder was 46. JI McDowell was a Cambridge Blue in 1969. MG Griffith, son of SG, was a Cambridge Blue 1963-65 and a former Sussex Capt. MGM Groves, a South African, was in Oxford Blue 1964-66. J Spencer, currently bowling fast for Sussex, was a Cambridge Blue, 1970-72 and JC J Dye, a fast left arm bowler, currently plays with Northamptonshire, after a spell with Kent.

The game began at 11 AM with two swift wickets for Ireland. With the fourth ball of the match Torrens bowled McDowell off stump from the first ball he faced. In Corlett's second over, at 11, Taylor presented a crooked bat and he too was bowled off stump. In 30 minutes, Clark and Griffith added 30. Torrens came off after five overs and O'Riordan replaced him. In Corlett's seventh over Griffith nibbled and Colhoun took the catch. Groves got off to a slow and uncertain start but Clark was now scoring steadily. Goodwin came on at 56 and Monteith for the 29th over at 73. Clark hit his first ball for four and his fifth ball for six over long off. Monteith had revenge in his third over when he beat Clark in the air and had him caught at gully lunging forward. 99-4-61. Clark's 61 had come in 105 min. Here Ireland's success ended. At lunch the score was 118-4, Groves 27 in 86 min. and Morgan 10. Afterwards an onslaught began and in an hour 112 runs were put on. Morgan made 56 of these and in all for his 74 not out face only the same number of balls, reaching 50 in 61 min. Monteith bowled 11 overs for 49 but it was not a day for slow bowlers. Corlett conceded 20 in three overs in a second spell and Torrens 23 in four overs. Goodwin had bowled a first spell of eight overs for 12. Then he conceded 32 in his last four overs and O'Riordan's last four overs at the other end cost 22. Groves and Morgan in all added 131 in 83 min. off 25 overs! At 166 there was a chance to run out Groves but the bowler, Monteith, failure to position himself to take Corlett's throw from gully. Late in the innings Linehan, at cover, dropped Morgan off Goodwin. In all MCC scored 230-4 off 58 overs in 195 min.

Reith and Short made a good if slow start to the Irish innings. Dye bowled and nine overs spell with seven maidens for five runs, which came off two scoring strokes. De Ville, leg spin, came on for the 18th over and Millett, off spin, for the 19th. In Millett's first over Reith drove a catch to extra cover when shaping very well. 43-1-27. O'Brien played carefully and on each side of the tea interval he added 39 with Short. The score reached 84-1 but then rapidly declined to 96-5. O'Brien chased a De Ville leg break and snicked it to the only slip. 84-2-16. At 87 Short hit a full toss from De Ville to mid-wicket. 87-3-31. At 91 De Ville bowled Harrison for two behind his legs and had taken three wickets in four overs. Morgan, bowling slow medium seamers, have replaced Millett and bowled Linehan for one with the total on 96. O'Riordan and Corlett stopped the rot and, indeed, added 34 in 22 minutes. As 130 O'Riordan was lbw to Morgan for 10. In De Ville's 15th over Corlett struck 22 thus:- 4 . 4 NB 6 4 4. Two overs later to De Ville, Corlett was stumped for 37 scored off 41 runs in 31 minutes. Dye came back for De Ville and trapped Monteith lbw at 166. At close of play Ireland were 181-8, Torrens 25 (with six fours mostly off Morgan) and Colhoun two.

De Ville and Millett bowled on the second morning. As 183 Colhoun departed caught off De Ville. Torrens then struck out strongly again and the last pair added 20 of which Torrens got 18. His 44 was his highest score for Ireland and contained nine fours. He was finally bowled by De Ville for 44 at 203. De Ville emerged with 6-72 in 22.4 overs but bowled a great deal of loose stuff.

MCC went in at 11:32 AM leading by 27. Linehan left the field with a sore arm and O'Riordan directed operations. O'Riordan however did not bowled himself until what turned out to be the very last over. Off 43.3 overs MCC scored 195-4 in 145 minutes. At five McDowell was lbw in Torrens' first over. Taylor and Heroys put on 50 in 55 minutes. Goodwin in his fourth over bowled Heroys for 27. Next over Goodwin repeated the operation on Taylor. 73-3-13. At lunch Clark 24 and Griffith 18 had taken the score 113-3. The post lunch spell was remarkable. It lasted 42 minutes 82 runs were added of which Clark made 57. He went to 250 in 72 minutes off 64 balls and then to 81 in 10 more minutes off a further 12 balls! He hit Goodwin for 13 and then, next over, struck Monteith for 2-6-6-4-dot-4, 22 runs in one over two equal Corlett's performance in the Irish innings. As 148 he lost Griffith whom the sub, FG Brady, caught at long-on. O'Riordan took over from Goodwin and Clark was caught at the wicket from his third bowl. Goodwin emerged with 2-58 in 16 overs but Monteith conceded 76 in 13 overs. On his own dismissal Clark declared, leaving 140 minutes +20 overs for Ireland to score 223. This was most generous and seemed to say "there is no way you would get 223 but I would bowl you out". So what transpired for Ireland to show off inept bashing allied with some peculiar dismissals.

The start was brisk and produced a false hope. Dye conceded 34 in seven overs. Millett came on for Spencer for the 14th over with the score on 48 and De Ville for Dye in the 15th over. At 65 both openers were out. Millett went round the wicket and had Reith lbw playing no stroke. De Ville repeated his full toss trick on Short. This one was very high and Short hit into deep square leg's hands. On the stroke of tea, and 91, O'Brien was out. De Ville bowled a ball which hopped halfway, shot and curled behind O'Brien's legs to bowl him. With his next ball, the first after tea, De Ville deceived O'Riordan with the googly and bowled him. 91-4. A ray of hope came in the next 21 minutes. Harrison and Corlett added 45 in that time of which Harrison made 34. Almost all of these came off De Ville including a six into the grandstand. Harrison, in fact, knocked De Ville out of the firing line after he had bowled 10 overs and taken 3-56. Spencer came back and he and Morgan finished the match. The last six wickets fell for 17 runs. Spencer bowled Harrison in his first over for 49, scored in 47 minutes off 56 balls. At 139 Morgan bowled Linehan. The next two were lbw to Spencer, both on the front foot,one, Corlett, fairly far advanced. Morgan bowled Goodwin in the first of the 20 overs and Spencer repeated the feat on Torrens in the next over. Spencer emerged with 4-18 in a very sorry Irish display.

Harrison, in his 49, reached 1000 runs for Ireland in his 41st innings.