Match report - vs Goldsborough CC, 25th June, 2022.

Written by Andy Wood

As Rich Brooke rose from his bed on Saturday morning he sighed a deep and painful sigh. He didn’t feel too good at all. Staggering for his morning widdle he fell weakly to the floor, the crashing sound waking his wife Hannah. “I told you not to have that last glass of wine last night!” she sneered, before rolling over and going back to sleep. But this wasn’t right. Rich was struggling to get back up. His whole body felt heavy ..... and it wasn’t just the weight of his balloon sized bladder, the affliction that hits every 40 year old human male at 7 o’clock in the morning! (Wait till you’re 50 mate ..... you ain’t seen nothing yet!!)

 

He was worried though. The aching and the tiredness, he’d seen the news reports, he’d read the papers. Crawling to the bathroom now he reached into the cabinet for the lateral flow tests, pausing only to release two gallons first. As he commenced the test he suddenly burst out laughing. Blimey was that a symptom too?! No, that cotton bud up the nose just REALLY tickles! As he put the kettle on downstairs he waited fifteen minutes for the inevitable devastating result ...... but blimey here it was ...... negative!

 

While that was great it still didn’t explain his symptoms. The constant aching ..... the knackeredness. A concerned Hannah had now got up, nicked his coffee .... and was phoning the emergency doctor. Twenty minutes later he had arrived, looked Rich over and was shaking his head. “I can’t understand it” he mused, “I’ve run every test I can think of but I just don’t know what it is. I think you had better go back to bed and rest for a day or two”. But that was no good to Rich. Pointing to the team photo on the mantelpiece, Wetherby’s finest explained “I can’t do that, I have to open the batting for Sicklinghall this afternoon!”

 

The doctor looked at the photo and looked at Rich ...... “and would this team ever win if you didn’t play?” “NO ..... they’d get mullered” replied the honest and accurate opener. A bell went off in the doctor’s head, “Well that’s it. That’s why you ache so much, you’ve been CARRYING the team! ....... and look at the SIZE of some of them!!” He reached into his bag and passed Rich a packet of pills. “Will this cure the pain?” asked Rich hopefully. “No”, replied the doc getting into his car, “That’s beyond medical science ..... I’ve given you LSD, it’ll take your mind off it at least!”

 

And so as Rich crashed his car into the hedge outside Goldsborough CC, he was pleased that he was able to take his place in the side ..... though less pleased by the sight of fifty marauding elephant sized rabbits, which were heading over the hill towards him and screaming that they wanted to eat him!

 

Meanwhile in the changing rooms Claz, sick of his terrible knee trouble and how just every now and then it impacted his fielding, had also been to his hard of hearing doctor and enquired if he had anything to cure a limp. Cheerily gulping down the subsequently prescribed viagra, he was pleased that his medical man had seemingly found a cure. Judging by the view of Claz’s groinal area his team mates could SEE that he was pleased!

 

In other team news Opper and Callum had gone on holiday, Ben M was recovering from painfully discovering that he CAN’T fly, Toby was swotting for an exam, Pecker had his calf at the vets and Sharkey was still contemplating having a new knee fitted, many years in advance of his SAGA insurance kicking in. Coming in to the side then were Ben Claz, Robbie - up for the week, Quirkey - back from his voyage of discovery, and 13 year old Alfie ..... who had announced that he’d “better get at least four overs today or someone would be sorry ..... because he’s a tough farmer”.

 

Also in for an all too rare appearance was septuagenarian Phil Taylor, a man who had played a much higher standard in his day and who if he still HAD any standards would have told Zai to **** off when asked if he would play. Unable to think of an excuse though here he was now coming into the ground ..... despite the best efforts of his intelligent SAT-NAV, which had taken him to every other cricket ground in the Knaresborough area first, before reluctantly bringing him to Goldsborough with two minutes to spare.

 

Luckily there was no desperate rush as Quirkey had gone out with his opposite number for the coin toss twenty minutes ago and they were still seemingly swapping life stories. As the minutes ticked by and the leaves on the boundaryside trees began to turn brown, the home Skipper now finally flipped a coin, which since walking out to the middle had ceased to be legal tender. As he came back to the changing rooms a now bearded Quirkey announced that we would be batting.

 

In Opper’s absence Rast was given the responsibility of joining Rich, to get the boys off to a solid start. As he irresponsibly whacked a wide long hop straight down deep point’s throat, he walked off to consider his actions and the very real threat of having to umpire for about thirty overs! At the other end Rich just groaned and reached for the spinach .... and then cracked off another sumptuous cover drive for four.

 

Number three batter Robbie was so inspired by the opener that he launched some sumptuous drives of his own, before confusedly and accidentally becoming inspired by the other shamed opener ....... and also whacking a wide long hop down deep point’s throat!

 

Ginger Brett Anderson was next in and fresh from lecturing Andy Wood on how he should have moved his feet better, he duly started moving the opposition bowling all round the local area with a series of fours and sixes. For a moment Rich wondered if the LSD was REALLY kicking in and he was hallucinating, but no, this is just the new Leo .... all rounder extraordinaire!

 

Between Rich’s classical strokes and Brett’s classical strokes mixed with thuggery, they took the score to 120 before Leo played on while trying to hit the ball back to Wetherby. Meanwhile Rich was carrying on serenely and as Irish Steve and Quirkey played useful cameos, he was approaching three figures when a still pleased looking Claz came out to join him.

 

Accidentally poking Rich in the helmet with his own protruding helmet, Claz duly announced that he had spent the last five minutes unsuccessfully looking for a box that he could get on, but not to worry because if the ball DID hit him in the groin it would fly off for six! Another great bonus was that Claz found that he could ‘run’ ones and twos without moving from his crease, simply by lunging forward and touching down with his narcotically affected appendage. He didn’t have to run at all and that suited his bad knee just fine. Sadly it couldn’t last and as the weather vane switched from due North to South so to speak (a slump even worse than the Tories in a by-election), he holed out and sloped off to find his pills.

 

There was just time for Rich to go to a deserved century before being caught going for late runs. Also going for late runs was Ben Claz, who waited 39 and a half overs to bat, only to have to give his wicket away attempting a suicidal late run ..... an unselfish act which was countered by his father, who selfishly laughed his head off at his son’s misfortune. The target for the home side then would be 226.

 

Teas were copious and tasty and were made all the better through the discovery of Ali’s stash of Percy Pigs. Mature fifty odd year old men were more than happy to enjoy the porcine, sugary treats, while eruditely discussing subjects ranging from war in Ukraine to the state of the economy .... a shocking state, but apparently not the fault of the Government or their Brexit!

 

As Goldsborough came out to bat, Ginger Brett Anderson was finishing off his twenty minute bowling prep in the nets. After his punishment last week he was keen to make amends this time round. Unfortunately the nets hadn’t been marked out and to his horror Leo was soon discovering that his prep had been off twenty four yards and he was now dishing up full tosses with regularity.

 

Rast though was his usual squeaky self at the other end and eventually made the breakthrough when the opener missed a straight one. With his spell ending though Quirkey was now turning to his trump cards as he introduced the Club youth policy in glorious tandem. Zai Ali and Phil Taylor shook off their tartan rugs and with 143 years of experience between them, set about pegging the home side back. Queen Victoria was nobbut a girl when these two started their illustrious journeys and with both soon in the wickets the boys would hopefully soon be Victoria-s!

 

Goldsborough did though keep battling and on a firm deck and with a quick outfield, the boundaries were still flowing. At one stage the field consisted of an inner arc of A Wood, A Challenger, P Taylor and T Quirke ...... about one good leg between them. No wonder then that poor old Rich was currently having to do more diving round the boundary than Jack Grealish ..... and wishing he hadn’t left his pills in the changing rooms.

 

With two young lads at the crease it was finally time to bring on our own young superstar in the even younger Alfie. Annoyed at being left out to graze for thirty overs and even more annoyed when Irish Steve ran West round the boundary after a ball which had gone East, Alfie charged in snorting like his dad’s bull ..... and it wasn’t long before he was taking his first senior wicket, as Rich pouched one on the boundary. He daren’t drop it as he’d have had the tough young farmer to deal with.

 

Not content with that Alfie was now charging in again, this time rattling the batter’s grill with a vicious bouncer. He merely sneered and walked back to his mark. There was just time for the youngster to rip out the other batter’s off stump and give him a send off. Yes Alfie ..... TWO wickets! The boys were on the brink and three overs to go and high Summer giving way to the rain and tales of late Autumn, it was left to Ginger Brett and ironically Rast, to rush through the final knockings and seize the win.

 

As the boys soggily got changed and celebrated with a trip to the bar, Claz and Rich had unfortunately picked up the wrong pills in their dripping haste. As a result Rich was currently driving home as fast as he could, grinning and relieved that he didn’t feel tired at all ..... while a limping Claz had stripped naked and was now barking at the rising moon, while humming the theme tune to ‘The Magic Roundabout’