Please be at West Haddon for 5:45pm PROMPT (match starts at 6pm). The wicket is artificial and the postcode is NN6 7AR.
This won’t be a shakesperian 5 act play of a match report like Scotty’s but hopefully better than a Brooksy report . Which would go something like bowl…..hit it……….go down on my farm boy…..unlucky lads…..try again next Saturday.
Perks started sunday morning with 7 players, not unusual for him but by kick off he managed to rope in George Riley’s dad James, Debutant Tom Hill’s dad Grainger and the Haywood twins. Still on paper looked a typical friendly side with 5 juniors and 5 half dead blokes.
The Toss was intereting as the lad who was skippering for Alcester and Ragley had given Perks a send off the day before (“well blocked mate”) which was deserved to be fair. It got worse as Perks one the toss and chose to bat, skipper Brad then replied “you absolute c**t”.
Perks walked back smugly and told Sutcliffe and Mad Matt to get their pads on. The first Ten overs were steady as Aaron and Mad Matt put on 20 until Aaron was bowled, but he did his job well seeing off the strong opening Ragley bowling. Aulakh finally got out of bed at 2.10pm and put some impetus into the innings by smashing 41 of 31 balls. Though Mad Matt looked solid enough he was struggling to time the ball. His frustrations boiled over when he realised the ball was coming out of the steel bar frame of the sightscreen, so he strode over and pushed it himself. Once Aulakh had fallen he put Mad Matt out of his misery by triggering him.
The ball was going 2 feet down leg….was an odd decision (there was no message sent out to the middle by the skipper…honest). George Riley faired better than his dad hitting a positive 11 until he was caught by the Bizzare Biddle. This left Long Itch 91 of 29 overs, needing a lot of work to be done to get upto a competitive total. Perks decided to stretch, eat a banana and have a few throw downs, whilst Greavsey nerviously rolled a fag. Before long they were out in the middle together. From here the game changed, Perks finally hit the ball of the square for the first time in weeks and Greavsey was looking as quick and sharp as he did when he entered the world Dwarf 100meters in 1972. The last 10 overs were a mixture of tremendous running by the baked bean and powerful hitting by Punisher Perks. Going into the last over itch had been ratling along at over 10 an over with the score on 196….would this be enough? The problem was Greaves had run Perks off his feet, The skipper decided he had enough of this running lark and spanked 26 of the last over to get the boys upto a fantastic score of 222. Though Perks did turn down a straight forward run 4, he had enough of Greavsey’s barking.
After a splendid tea from Jo Crosthwaite the boys came out of the pavilion and left the chairman to clear up. Zach and Aaron both hobbling on one leg set the tone by bowling controlled opening spells. Then It was the under 13’s show with senior cricket debutant Tom Hill and Scott Haywood showing off the skills. They both bowled consistent lines and what was more impressive they bowled 8 overs each, which helped the skipper set tight fields, this let to Ragley staying well under the run rate in the middle overs of the innings. They were well supported by the other Haywood, Luke who kept immaculately behind the stumps. Great to see three inexperienced youngers rise to the challenge!! As the Juniors had done so well, Perks decided to make a game off it and bring on the Ten Pin bowler Greaves and the Pie chucking Mad Matt into the attack…..this was painfull watching! Ragley then needed 34 off the last 5 overs….Long Itch needed some inspiration….the Skippers booty was twitching, so he threw the ball to another debutant James Riley who nobody had seen bowl apart from George in the back garden. What a decision this was, His 3 overs went for 16 and he picked up 3 valuable wickets. This meant there was even time for Luke Haywood to take off the gloves and bowl the penultimate over and take a wicket. Riley bowled a tidy last over which meant Alcester and Ragley finished 6 runs short. Another brilliant sunday afternoon, great fun as always.
Big thank you too The Haywoods who stepped in at the last minute and Grainger Hill for fielding for 40 overs, Long itch wouldn’t have won the game without these guys…..also James Riley you are in next sunday!
Perks 77 of 34 balls
Aulakh 41 of 31 balls
Greaves 31 of 22 balls
George Riley – confident 11
Tom Hill 8 overs – 49 runs
Scott Haywood 8 overs – 43runs- 1 wicket
James Riley – 3 overs -16 runs – 3 wickets
Luke Haywood – great glove work
Please be at the ground for 5:40pm prompt and remember to bring along your match fees (£2 unwaged/£3 waged).
Written by the Major’s quill and parchment:
Long Itch drove to Stanway, one of the most beautiful grounds in the country, nay the world, through the showery weather in a hopeful party mood with a strong side and feeling confident with the usual mixture of fleet of foot youth and has been’s. On arrival (well most of us arrived Mr Greaves, sack the navigator) a sharp shower had meant the pitch was not immediately playable and between the captains and umpire for the day Lord Mayor Rawbone senior, it was decided that the game would be reduced to 40 overs per team.
It looked a good toss to win, and again we lost it, with poor tosser Brooksy again saying ‘sorry lads we are batting’. However with a strong batting line up confidence was on the up, although Openers Ryan and George, both in the middle of spells drier than the bottom of Sandy’s glass strode to the crease on a pitch, and outfield that looked like a big score would be needed.
Ryan initially batted liked he cared too much, cautiously building a score, George at the other end, looking like he cared too little wielded his bat axe like, to intimidate the opposition bowling and wanted only to deal in boundary’s.
It was later found out (in the Green Man) that George had been taking psychological advice from his new Guru, Abi, that he was to relax and go with the flow more, although how she relaxed him still remains a Gentleman’s secret, but maybe more of us should try it.
I digress, back to the game.
Ryan’s runs started to flow and George continued in a similar way and soon the 50 partnership was up after only 10 overs. Both the openers then started to declare the pitch was turning ‘sticky’, this combined with a change of bowling, with spin coming on, slowed the run rate down but both openers continued in good form punishing anything loose and by drinks, at the 20 over mark, we were 90 for nought.
Skipper Brooksy at the drinks break now declared, it’s a 20:20 game now lads, another 150 needed.
George in trying to up the rate holed out for a fine 41 off 65 balls, and a welcome return to form. This brought the skipper to the crease and with Ryan in form now and the skipper looking to punish anything the rate went up with another 20 runs added in 3 overs until Ryan was out to a good stumping for 52 of 66 balls. This brought Brennan to the crease, and after sensibly getting his eye in, started to unpick and punish the bowling with a fine range of shots. This was the key partnership of the day with 104 of 13 overs with both bats scoring freely and running well to pressurise the Stanway attack. Brooks eventually out for a belligerent 49 of 43 (5 fours). Brennan was out the next over for a crafted, gifted 58 off 46 balls (two 6s, six 4s) which showed a ton must be coming up soon if the 16 year old continues the progress shown this year. The innings was finished off with Rawbone S hitting 20 off 12 with 2 partnerships with Finn and James Scott to move the score up to a competitive 242 for 5 off 40 overs.
Long Itch still need to bowl well on a ground where it was now getting easier to score. Aaron and Brooks opened the bowling, with Aaron going for only 14 off his first 5 things were kept initially tight but a combination of loose bowling, poor fielding and catching kept Stanway in the hunt and after 22 overs there was a hundred on the board with 3 wickets down, they were in a similar position to Long Itchington. Also rain had reduced the requirement to 219 off 36. We regained composure however and although under pressure Stanway were never quite up with the rate and we continued to take wickets at critical periods. All rounder Clarke was the key who hit a strong 51 off 34 balls. When he was out off a fine catch from McKenna all was lost and Stanway finished on 212 for 7. A mention must be made to youngsters James Scott and Aaron Sutcliffe who bowled the last 8 overs under pressure to see Itchington home. Off such things abilities are honed to make fine cricketers.
A good win and a good day out!
Steve R 20
Steve R 2-44
The Rawbones M&S banquet
Grahams co-op picnic
After taking one step forward last week Itchington took two steps back on Saturday with another below par performance against Alcester and Ragley.
Having won the toss Clarke asked Alcester to bat on a rain threatened afternoon. A good toss to win and with tight bowling Itchington could be chasing a reduced total due to the forecast.
What was to follow wasn’t in the script and Itchington gifted momentum back to Alcester as they bowled 5 overs of wides in their given 45 overs. This was also met with an exceptional knock from Adam Warbrick who hit a superb 78 before the ever reliable Alex Jack had him caught behind for 78.
Earlier on in the innings Ben Lee showed his intent by hitting anything loose before he was caught by Mr Cool Lewis Dodds off the bowling of Jake Butler. Jake showed why he has been promoted to the first team by bowling a consistent line in his ten overs. Joel Bennet also showed his talent by taking two wickets in his 6 overs.
Aulakh returned at the end of the Alcester innings to gain Itchington an extra point by getting two wickets.
Alcester finished on 247-7 in their 45 overs and Strain batting well to finish on 58 not out.
Itchington clawed the innings back well in the end as Alcester were looking at scoring 300+ at one stage and Clarke tucked into a Mrs Aulakh tea thinking a good batting display might see Itchington reach their given total on a belter of a track.
Jack and Lidster set about the total and all looked to be going well until Lidster was caught at gully in the 5th over with the score on 23.
The returning Goatley looked in great touch and played some gorgeous shots. He was supported by Jack who was starting to dominate the Alcester attack until he mistimed one into the hands of Capron for 17.
Itchington 79-2 in the 19th over and still feeling confident of chasing down the runs but then Goately missed a straight one and was out for 46. Itchington never really got going after this and runs dried up. Only Perks (29) and Dodds (17) reached double figures and Itchington crumbled to 147 all out. Warbrick continued his good afternoon by picking up 4 wickets for only 23 runs.
Itchington travel to Leek Wooton next week (12th August) and they will need to raise their game if they want to stay in the top flight next year.
Matt Goatley – 46
Aulakh – 10-0-49-3
Alex Jack – 10-0-39-1
Bennett – 6-0-34-2