In a world full of uncertainty and confusion, of one thing you can be sure: Matt Westley will crown the big moment with a boundary. And so it was on a muggy day at the Rec, as the gentlemen of Fernhurst's Sunday XI sought redemption for the 2018 fixture against Elsted. A coulda, woulda, shoulda affair which saw FCC earn the title 'The Fernhurst Chokers'.
In 2019, at home, Westley and opening partner Chris Williams put on a scorching century partnership inside 16 overs: Williams falling one run short of his half ton. Westley got there with a four and totalled 78. Alasdair Kidd made 26 while there were useful cameos from Joe Unwin and Sam Meier. FCC finished their 35 overs on 207 for 5 and tea was taken at 4pm.
And what a tea. Amid rumours this was to be 'standard', 'basic' and 'cold', what emerged from the executive kitchen was anything but. There was a new dip which, we now know, is the rocket fuel for amazing catches.
The opening batsmen for Elsted were in mid-season form and they had to be, up against the fearsome attack of Unwin and Meier. After their allotted 14 overs combined, Elsted still had their openers at the crease but it was a truly great match. In the end, first change bowler Kidd claimed E Norris for 34 while Mark Langridge bowled Massion on 58. The visitors were not done but these middle overs were decisive and Kidd & Langridge tightened the grip. Fuelled on fabled new dip, Chris Williams bagged catch of the season so far. It was a last gasp, diving effort which had them cheering in the Red Lion. And they couldn't even see it. Joe Unwin's laser-guided throwing also ensured a great run out while super sub Tim Freeman claimed a top catch.
Williams and young Jack Kidd bowled the final overs to great effect: Jack claimed two scalps (both were ducks) at 2-18 while father had 2-27 off three more overs. Elsted were 28 runs short as Fernhurst nailed the victory.
These were two well-matched teams with plenty of young talent on both sides and a few, wily old dogs too. We look forward to the return fixture next year at Elsted's beautiful ground overlooking the Weald.
That's Elsted near Midhurst, not the one near Godalming, spelt Elstead. We're not making that mistake again ...