This was the trilogy.
Think the Thriller in Manilla but on the village green. The third time these teams had met this season and despite expectations that the main clash would be rain against the covers the full match was played and it turned out to be a real nail biter. This was a shame really because everything in DIY knows screws are way more palletable... If the Thriller In Manilla was the heady clash between Ali and Frazier this one had a match up that was equally savory, Matthew Hoggard M.B.E facing up to the bowling of 'Fun Time' Frankie Smith O.L.D.F.A.R.T. Any bowler fortunate enough to dismiss the former England man would be eligible for the Jimmy Loomes 'Dine Off This Wicket' for the season award. Sadly Frank wasn't the beneficiary of the award but Ben O'Reilly deservedly was when Scotty Roberts pouched a catch in the Covers. A worthy victim for a much improved cricketer this year. Now if Ben has improved (and there is surely little doubt there) then we must also give nods to the obvious promise of both Dom and Lachlan who both bowled well in difficult conditions. We might go as far to say Dom was probably the pick of the Duckhunters attack. 197 for 4 doesn't really show how well the young Duckhunters bowled. It was no surprise to see Mike Dunkley open the innings but the Skipper himself was confident enough to partner him, possibly risking a severe case of vertigo in the process. Seasoned Duckhunter fans were not sure whether to cheer or hide behind the sofa and pray. It was not all plain sailing in the early stages. The skipper took until the 10th over to score his first run and Mike was dropped more often than a furtive teenagers dubious magazines when a creak of the stairs was heard. From unsure foundations though something beautiful grew. The partnership slipped past 50, then 100 and even 150 before Mike played on for the dreaded score of 99. Cue mischievous cackling from the visiting V.I.P. and some very gentle mickey taking in the pub afterwards. However we have not yet reached the Zenith of our tale. For although Mike had departed the skipper remained and was approaching a personal milestone. Already his personal best was beaten but a maiden 50 was in the offing, the kind of success that only those with Miss World's phone number could possibly appreciate. With two overs to go Scoot was on 44, a carve for 4 took him to 48 and then a booming 6 down the ground took him over the line and to rapturous and deserved acclaim from his teammates. Only the imminent end of the game (and possible need of an oxygen tent) threatened to end his vigil. 17 were needed off the last over but young E Hoggard (that E for Ernie not E as a tribute to Hoggys Yorkshire roots) bowled a skilled and nerveless last set as Barkby triumphed by 11 runs. Congrats to Barkby, you played a good game and in wonderful spirit too. However this game will forever be remember for Scooters 50 which proved that even a once upon a time rabbit can move along the path to being a G.O.A.T. of Duckhunters history.