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Match report - vs South Milford, 11th May 2019.

Report written by Andy Wood

Nessie Gant today contemplates her future as an SCC supporter (and her remaining teeth) following yesterday’s drama, when what should have been a genteel afternoon watching the cricket, sat comfortably in her deckchair, turned into utter carnage when she was brutally attacked by a rogue boundary flag. Eye witness accounts are sketchy, what with the incident taking place during the mass scrummage for teas, and CCTV footage only showing a dark cloud descending before the flag is viciously uprooted and seen heading rapidly in the direction of poor Nessie’s gnashers. Conclusions are being drawn given the sudden approaching depression that it must have been a mini tornado ..... or Ginger Brett suddenly realising he needed to get a lick on to be first in the tea queue!

So after last week’s comfortable win against Crompark, it was all down to South Milford on Saturday, with its short side on boundaries and average scores of 270 ....... Oh dear!! Despite a week of rain the weather had also taken a turn for the better with more than one Hall player nearly being late as they spent a sunny Saturday morning seeking out their Summer wardrobes .... they needn’t have worried.

An ironic piece of team news saw Rich missing the game due to baby sitting duties, while Zai’s bus pass carrying buddy from the over 60s, Phil Taylor, was having a South Milford Groundhog Day, playing as he was his second game for the club, two years after Milford had also been the venue for his successful first .... maybe not such a Groundhog Day after all then. 

Also back from two years ago was the enormous bull in the adjacent field. Last time he had sulked moodily as his attempts to charm his harem into action were regularly disturbed as six after six was blasted one after the udder (I thank you) into his “play area”, confusing his ladies as there were just too many balls flying around. By all accounts his confidence had suffered since then and he had resorted to spending time alone in the barn with just his copy of Holy Cow! magazine for “company”. But now he was back and raring to go. Imagine how it felt then to look up from his foreplay, to see Claz walking through the cricket club gates and realise he wasn’t even the biggest load of bull in the village!! With a loud bellow of resignation he was off over the fence and heading once again for the solace of the Newsagents ..... while ten cows, all primed for action, looked at Claz and winked

And so to the toss, which was won by the home side, who after limbering up and moving the covers off, on and off again, were definitely loose and raring to go in the field. Matt and Rast then to face up, unlimbered up save for the effort of trying to pad up in a confined space, while surrounded by team mates hell bent on also avoiding anything that could be construed as limbering and thus show weakness. Some of us just have to carefully manage when we peak these days .... it’s a very narrow window. In the now time honoured fashion it was Matt to take first strike, Rast having given that up last season during a slump, so that he might see the second over. As Matt’s middle peg disappeared with nil runs once again to his name, he was already thinking about which coin he would be bringing next time to toss for who will fill the clearly cursed role. Oh for the heady days of Rufforth!

To be fair as Opper made his way out, it was doing a bit and six overs later, batting like a God, but a God still on nought .... Rast decided a quick single would be the order of the day. Had the fielder but known he could have just walked the bails off instead of throwing and missing, Hall would have been two down for not very many and the veteran opener would have been red faced indeed. That came two overs later when the strain of the quick single caught up with him and his hamstring pinged and he looked like he’d been shot. In an act of shocking sportsmanship Matt was tasked with padding up to be the runner ..... the equivalent of a Derby winner running for Darby and Joan

By now Opper’s cameo knock had come to an end and it was Ben who unluckily was going to have to try to figure out three way running. Still the discussions were had and everyone knew their role in proceedings. How hard could it be? Thick outside edge from Rast behind point, Ben calls Yes, Matt responds, Rast doesn’t move, Ben sees Rast, Ben stops, Ben groans ..... you do the Hokey Cokey and you turn around, that’s what it’s all about. Luckily there was a misfield and everyone somehow ended up at the right ends .... as easy as that!

So the runs came. Fifty for two became eighty for two. Nay bother. Talk in the middle turned to what a good score might be. Two hundred maybe. Keep going, don’t change anything. So next ball Rast sensing fifty, danced down and attempted to hit the ball to the nearby airfield. “What a cow shot” snorted the nearby bull, splattering out an enormous steaming heap in tribute, as the stumps were splattered unceremoniously on the floor.

Still Ben was going well at the other end. No harm done and Immy to come. As Immy trudged off soon after following a disliked LBW decision, it was clear that harm was about to be done ..... to the bat anyway and oh, crash, bang, wallop .... probably the Changing Room. The captain, nothing short of professional though was changed in an instant and off to sit in his car .... to study videos of Milford’s batting and plot the second half response one assumes.

And with 25 overs still to go he looked like he had plenty of time. Oh dear though, as the last six wickets fell for fifteen in seemingly no time, the prep would have to be cut short ..... as would the prep for the teas, with the poor guy in the kitchen running round like a blue arsed fly, putting sandwiches out and cursing the ineptness of Sicklinghall CC, as his turkey twizzlers needed at least another ten minutes at gas mark 5. His stress was not helped by the sight of Ginger Brett Anderson, hovering round him, flapping his wings and slavvering like a buzzard which had spotted a roadkill. With no one willing to go and disturb the captain from his second half planning, he was last to the teas and was left with a choice of unwanted crusts and Leo’s crumb coated dribble, as the copious and tasty offerings were gratefully sacrificed by those present

So then to the second half, where it quickly became clear that Zai was setting the field and determining who would bowl. The captain it seemed had not spent his car time planning Milford’s demise, but had in fact taken holy orders and become a Trappist monk. The one legged hamstrung veteran then got the second half underway, HIS planning having been completed through the consumption of two big bananas during tea for extra energy. As he had said to a member of the opposition at the time “I will either bowl you out ..... or sh*t myself!” I have to say subsequently ...... he didn’t bowl them out!

Tommy 5 wickets Ryko was on at the other end, but it just wasn’t happening for the Hall boys. Sure it was doing a bit but it wasn’t until the score was 50, when a wicket finally went ..... and that to a rank long hop. There was time however for youth to be given its chance again as Ginger Brett and Erotic joined the attack, and Erotic it was who gave the boys some hope as straight away he teased a routine edge to slip. .... Hope soon faded however as it was Claz standing there. One doesn’t like to scoff but If he handles his grocery deliveries in the same manner there must be eggs, cheese and Onions splattered all over the poor folks of Wetherby’s doorsteps. A bit of hot weather could see a rather nice omelette. Poor Claz, turns out he’d put his new contact lenses in the wrong eyes. It’s not his fault. He tried to fix the problem in advance but unlike with his boots, there wasn’t room to felt tip L and R on them

And so with that spillage Hall’s last chance came and went. Claz still found time to encourage Leo with his bowling, asking him which field he was picking to serve up the next six to. Ah, faaaammmilllly! As the bull ducked once more as the winning runs were hit and he contemplated a field somewhere safer .... Beirut perhaps, the boys took solace in the knowledge at least that at 5pm as it was, they wouldn’t have to rely on 3rd hand updates from Pride Park, and could instead go and watch Leeds give Derby a schooling live ...... Come on you Whites!!

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