Trouble with the kids!
The build-up of London Saints’ annual Somerset tour involved a desperate search for players and hotel rooms. Many thanks to Mick, Andrew, Ralph, Matthew and The Rat for helping us out on tour which once again was thoroughly enjoyable A fine time was had by all with two excellent matches, a wet round of golf, a bizarre unlicensed curry house and further evidence of Witham and Norton’s conveyor belt of young talent!
Friday 16th July
Tour started early for the six of us who elected to play our annual round at Frome Golf Club – DT, Lucan, Wath, Paltrow, Baker and Hilda took a right old drenching as the heavens opened in familiar fashion.
It turned out to be the last we saw of the rain but it did have an effect on the pitches as runs became a premium for all – that and lack of ability of course!
Saturday 17th July – Witham Friary – 40 overs
Witham 120 all out (DT 3-5, Nanton 3-9)
LSCC 124 for 9 (Nanton 29, DT 18, Hilda 17)
So off to friendly old Witham for the ‘tea of the season’ – but before that there was half a cricket match to get through and what a fine contest it turned out to be as the final pairing of Finn and Mick Stanley guided us home to a one wicket victory.
With a few new faces, the line-up had an unusual look to it and Garry Burrell kept wicket in the absence of Prof and Speedtwin.
There was a slight delay as Garry realised he didn’t have the adequate underwear required to hold his box in place – apparently his better-half Anna came to the rescue with hers (she subsequently also offered Mick Stanley her bra on seeing his manboobs in motion)!
The opening pair of Hilda and The Skip kept things tight as Witham got off to a disastrous start. DT soon bagged their openers which included a fine catch by Finn Quinn that caused a finger injury. Finn was due to replace Hilda at the Farm End but he’d gone off to get treatment so DT turned to the marginally older alternative, Steve Keenan, to devastating effect!
With his first ball, Lucan removed Faprari’s leg stump and McComas played on 4 balls later to leave the home side floundering at 13 for 4.
A promising middle order partnership between J.Wolff and J.McComas stemmed the wicket flow until Nanton and Griffiths struck. JG is famed for admonishing his team-mates and he set about them collectively after failing to receive any back-up for a dodgy lbw appeal. A fine ‘c&b’ followed a ball later to calm his anger.
B.Wolff batted well for 34 but eventually ran out of partners (including a returning opener) as Witham finished off on 120.
Tea report – a fine array of cakes, sarnies, quiche, savouries and of course cream teas means that once again the famed LSSC top tea award will head West.
The absence of Mayhew, Jones and Chalmers meant that JG was carrying a weight of responsibility as the only recognised batsman on tour. Paltrow strode out to the crease with the air of a man who could carry such a burden with ease – after all he had a full belly. A minute later he was making the return journey having been cleaned bowled by 13 year old Matthew Barton with the first ball of the innings!!! The outpouring of sympathy from his team-mates could be heard all around the village.
Berkeley and Davies, playing his second LSCC game in 10 years, kept things steady for a while but then a mini collapse ensued and before long Witham’s modest total looked daunting. The Skipper’s latest example of blind faith in Lucan’s batting potential by placing him up the order was once again thrown back in his face. Debutant Ralph Wilson gave hope with a fine boundary but he didn’t stay long as we witnessed the first example of Wathan’s coaching of the canoe-club boys!
A superb 7th wicket partnership of 50ish between ‘Emile’ (Nanton’s latest nickname) and DT got things back on track (at this stage, figures become questionable as we relied upon Witham’s scorer) with regular boundaries.
It should be pointed out that Witham had been short of players, but the second of the Wolff boys joining the bowling attack late on (having been representing West of England at Hockey) met with instant reward as he removed both players in quick succession – the dismissal of Nanton was nothing short of stunning as Dave struck a solid drive back down the wicket inches from the ground only to see a fine example of athleticism snap up the catch.
Nerves were in shreds as we were soon down to the final partnership, one of which was Mick Stanley who did well to fend off a couple of good deliveries to bring Finn back to face as he had looked assured in playing himself in. The youngster saw the visitors home with a fine drive through the close field to bring victory to the visitors.
Over to the legendary Seymour Arms for a fine barbecue unusually enjoyed on a balmy summer’s evening and ‘killer bar-billiards’ with The Wath taking the cash in both games – the pockets of his dodgy trousers bulging!
Champagne moment – Johnny G’s bewilderment as his leg stump tumbled from the 8 year old Matthew’s fine delivery will live long. Paltrow consoled himself with many pints of fine local scrumpy and by the time we had reached the ‘Blue Posts’ for a late nighter we’d managed to convince him that the bowler was in nappies.
Man of the Match – Highly commended to DT and Finn who guided us home but 3 wickets and a top score of 29 gives ‘Flatliner’ Nanton the nod.
D.Shepherd Bowled Thomas 1
C.Shepherd Ct F.Quinn, Bowled Thomas 1
Faprari Bowled Keenan 3
I.McComas Bowled Keenan 5
J.Wolff C&B Griffiths 18
J.McComas Bowled Nanton 17
B.Wolff Not out 34
Barton C&B Thomas 2
Heath Bowled Nanton 8
D.Shepherd Bowled Nanton 0
Total 120 all out
Berkeley 4 1 3 0
Thomas 6 2 5 3
Keenan 5 1 17 2
Nanton 7 0 9 3
F.Quinn 6 1 34 0
Griffiths 3 0 22 1
Wathan 2 0 7 0
Griffiths Bowled Barton 0 (Golden)
Berkeley Bowled J.Wolff 17
Davies Bowled J.Wolff 7
Wathan Ct Bowled J.Wolff 2
Keenan Ct Bowled I.McComas 0
Wilson Bowled B.Wolff 5
Nanton Ct Bowled C.Wolff 29
Thomas Bowled C.Wolff 18
Burrell Ct Bowled J.Wolff 4
F.Quinn Not out 12
Stanley Not out 0
Total 124 for 9
Sunday 18th July 2010 – Norton St.Philip – 25 overs
Norton 98 all out (Griffiths 3-18, Rat 2-1)
LSCC 92 all out (Rat 22, Griffiths 16)
An early start of 11am and domestic pressures on some of the oppo meant a shorter form of the game which once again was a low scoring, close encounter. Whilst there were a few youngsters in Norton’s side, they also had 7 first teamers and with our suspect looking batting line-up we knew we were in for tricky encounter. Matthew Harvey and Pete Rattue replaced Andrew and Ralph from the Witham game. The Rat had joined us the previous evening in his splendid motor home complete with telly which was handy for catching up on the Open Golf.
What followed was a fine display of bowling and fielding that never allowed the home side to get going.
The Finches opened for the home side but DT, who bowled well all weekend, soon struck with a fine delivery. Next up The Rat announced himself to the cricketing world with a well taken catch at point from Finn’s bowling.
Wickets fell periodically with JG showing good character to defy hangover and lack of confidence following the previous day’s buffeting at the hands of a child (and teammates).
What turned out to be the penultimate over was The Rat’s one and only. It started with White offering the simplest of caught and bowled opportunities which in true London Saints style was spurned – let’s face it we only take the impossible ones. The error was not too costly as Rat cleaned bowled White two balls later.
In strode Lee Hodgson, batting down the order, but comfortably the best all rounder of all our regular opposition. But Rat had the better of him and off he went with a ‘golden’. He would have to wait for his next over to complete his hat-trick but it never came as ‘Johnny G’ ruthlessly appealed for lbw (once again unsupported) against a young batsman – you would have thought he had something against these youngsters!
A quick turnaround with Paltrow and Hilda once again opening up. Hodgson and Ansee offered little with quick accurate bowling. However, they finished their spells wicketless and it was the change bowlers that struck with JG the first to go, bowled by M.Cadaywould – one should point out here that the ‘M’ stands for Matthew and he’s 13 years old!
The Wath came and went in true Wath style with a silver duck which prompted a mini-collapse. The run-rate required was becoming a problem, particularly in the knowledge that Norton’s openers were to return.
Finn was unable to repeat his previous days heroics while Mick Stanley managed to contribute four.
Lord Lucan, back down in familiar batting order territory, brought things to a close getting himself run-out to complete a tour duck double!
Mick now sits above messrs Keenan, Pearce and Grimes in the batting averages – just thought I’d point it out.
Champagne moment – Would be easy to nominate JG once again being bowled by a child but he was an excellent bowler and also took Wath’s wicket so it has to be Pete Rattue’s dropping of the easiest catch in cricketing history! Should also help to keep his feet on the ground as…..
Man of the Match – Also goes to The Rat for his 22 and 2 wickets, John’s contribution also warranted consideration but Pete lost his wicket to a grown-up!
J.Finch Bowled Thomas 10
M.Finch Ct Rattue, Bowled F.Quinn 21
Barnes Ct Thomas, Bowled Keenan 23
Priddle Ct Thomas, Bowled Griffiths 19
P.Cadaywood Bowled F.Quinn 1
M.Cadaywood Bowled Griffiths 2
Mazan LBW, Bowled Keenan 4
White Bowled Rattue 4
Dutton LBW, Bowled Griffiths 3
Hodgson Bowled Rattue 0
Anstee Not out 0
Total 98 all out
Berkeley 3 0 15 0
Thomas 3 0 10 1
Nanton 3 0 13 0
F.Quinn 5 0 17 2
Keenan 5 0 17 2
Griffiths 4 0 18 3
Rattue 1 0 1 2
Griffiths Bowled M.Cadaywood 16
Berkeley Ct, Bowled Mazan 11
Wathan Bowled M.Cadaywood 0
Nanton Ct, Bowled Anstee 8
Harvey Ct, Bowled Mazan 0
Rattue Bowled Hodgson 22
Thomas Bowled Ansee 0 (golden)
F.Quinn Not out 10
Burrell Bowled White 3
Stanley Bowled Hodgson 4
Keenan Run out 0
Total 92 all out