SCCC 215-7 (42 overs)
Shackleford 122 all out (30.4 overs)
Won by 93 runs
won the toss
With the weather
promising an on/off game at best, stand-in skipper for the
day, Pippa, declined Shackleford's offer of a limited overs
thrash on the basis that the inevitable rain breaks would
make a nonsense of the format. Better, he argued, to rely
on the respective skippers' finer judgement to juggle the
situation to manufacture a competitive, exciting game. Toss
lost, the Cryptics promptly posted 215-7 in 42 overs untroubled
The opening pair
of Wright and Hogben - restored for the first time since the
Platypods debacle - saw themselves comfortably outscored by
wides (16 the final tally) before Hoggers managed to pull
a short one onto his middle stump on 6. Pippa followed for
17, having almost hit (top-edged) his first 6 since 1992,
long-leg taking a fine diving catch at deep backstop.
This brought in
Scott to join an up-to-then-watchful Simon Parrish, promoted
to the three slot in only his second Cryptic appearance. The
56 partnership that saw the 100 up in the 24th over was evenly
split, despite it looking like Parrish's circumspect rapier
to Scott's cultured bludgeon.
And talking of
bludgeons, Scott's failure to pick a rare straight one brought
Highland He-Man, Tommy Hope-Dunbar to the crease just one
over after Shackleford skipper Blundell-Jones had resorted
to spin. Anyone hazard a guess at what happened next? Hope-Dunbar;
Blundell-Jones: four names (all foreign); two hyphens; one
When H-D departed
fewer than six overs later, he had added 36 runs, the Cryptics
59, and some of his belligerence had rubbed off on Parrish,
who cruised to his 50. Mousinho Snr came and went and would
not have claimed even to have got close to hitting the one
to which he was adjudged LBW. PAJA had rather the same feeling
when he was given out caught behind. The pool umpire was on
a roll, however: he obviously had a firm grasp of all the
laws and was keen to apply the whole lot at some stage during
the course of the game. A back-foot no-balling of a
non-plussed Shackleford bowler was the zenith, 'one-shorts'
in both innings rather tame. Just why it took him until the
third over of the second innings to signal 'dead-ball' was
a mystery to most.
Mousinho Jnr came
in for a classy, if brief, 14* and when the seemingly tireless
Parrish finally ran himself out for 80, Goss arrived for his
weekly cheap not-out. Only 5 this time, but his average must
fast be approaching 50.
With tea pencilled
in for five o'clock (and history dictates that tea waits for
no man in Shackleford), Skipper Pippa declared at five-to,
only because he was too short-sighted to see that England
youth soccer sensation Mousinho had been quicker than expected
and not been run out after all.
A spot of fatherling
teatime cajoling saw said Junior discover a previously undetected
muscle tweak. His resultant volunteering to be gloveman for
the day had nothing to do with the fact dad was going to have
to do it otherwise. Obviously.
And a fine job
he did as well, snaffling one early on off Goss (11-3-32-3),
who was heard to comment that it made a pleasant change to
have a keeper who moved his feet rather than just sticking
a big glove out. Mmm, could be his last caught behind for
a while then.
Nick Pow opened
up at the other end, bowling a beautiful line outside off
stump. When he can do it for six balls an over, he'll be a
real handful and his figures better than the 7-0-38-1 he ended
up with. He was replaced PAJA, who was treated with all the
respect his age deserved (and more). His 8-4-17-1 saw him
reach 100 wickets 'in the modern era', as he termed it.
A still fresh-looking
Goss was supplanted by future family member H-D, who proceeded
to spend three overs shopping, taking 3-26. Lucky under normal
circumstances, but even more so given that one was to a fine
catch by Scott at long-on, the ball having gone up many a
mile. Having already dropped two (far) easier chances and
been baled out of another by the ever-eager Parrish, the smart
money was on an easy two runs.
With wickets falling
distressingly regularly, it looked as if veteran spinner Greenhough
could be in danger of having driven from Oxfordshire in vain.
A decision to spare the opposition any further Hope-Dunbar
saw him eventually get a go with two wickets still needed,
however. Perhaps out of fear, perhaps out of sheer spite -
we will never know - the Shackleford No.8 promptly ran himself
out, his demise brought about by a direct hit from, yes, you
guessed it, Simon Parrish at wide mid-on.
When No.10 Palley
twatted the fourth ball of Jimmy's next over to the ubiquitous
Parrish at square leg, it was all over: Shackleford all out
for 122 off 30.4 overs. Had they used their remaining overs,
they would have had 42, the same as the Cryptics.
was a comprehensive victory, helped in no small part by Parrish's
fielding and batting. Those that saw him at Headley last season
know that he can bowl as well! It was just like having a new
Puppy - with talent.
Simon Parrish wins
this week's Pedigree Chum man of the match award.
SCCC 178-8 (35 overs)
Bounders 159 - (all) 9 (30.1 overs)
Won by 19 runs
Bounders won the toss
The Cryptics arrived
at the Bank of England ground with ten players after Mousinho
jnr got a call from Watford FC. Luckily the Bounders turned
up with nine, and a girlfriend who fielded for them. It was
agreed that their lowest scorer could bat twice in a 35 over
contest with bowlers restricted to eight overs. Wright got
off to a flier (22 of the first 30) as Hope-Dunbar, the hero
a week earlier, lost his middle pole for a duck. Wright's
downfall was swiftly followed by Hogben running himself out
for nought. McLoughlin made to play sensibly but became the
first of four players on the day to be bowled the ball after
hitting a six. When Gordon Mousinho became the third duck
we had lurched to 53-5 in the thirteenth over. The out of
form Seeckts joined the scratchy Cupit and the pair doubled
the score, cautiously at first, by the 26th over. Not quite
the stuff of Strauss and Flintoff but certainly against the
odds. Cupit, previously thought to be Australian, 'walked'
on getting the finest of edges to the 'keeper for 35, bringing
the hopelessly out of form Ware to the wicket. Sporting his
new spectacles and instructed to have a look at the bowling
first, the puppy carted his first ball for six. He proceeded
to blast a thrilling 34, Scott followed with a more educated
21 and the captain's anchor role ended on 29. It had been
a most un-Cryptic recovery.
Bounders responded with the whirlwind Spenno Pollard biffing
12 from Goss' first over and continuing in the same vein as
they raced to 74-2 in 10 overs despite efforts to starve the
big man of the strike. Scott's first ball was lofted into
another postcode but his second got the vital wicket as Spenno
swept onto his stumps. Tenacious field placing, aided by crafty
bowling from Scott and Hope-Dunbar dragged the Cryptics back
into contention and the wickets fell at regular intervals
even though the required run rate was absurdly low. That McLoughlin
made the final wicket fall with a classy run out in the 31st
over saved the potential embarrassment of having no real bowlers
for the last three overs of the match. The gamble came off.
Twice in the match we were all but buried, but we came back
to record a memorable win with significant contributions from
unlikely areas. Ware kept wicket very well and picked up the
Specsavers Man of the Match award.
Tom Ware - a career saved by glasses??
Cobham 194-6 (40 overs)
SCCC 71-0 (11.4 overs)
MATCH ABANDONED AS A DRAW
Most of the team and supporters at Cobham - 27.06.04
day started so well. Dwight didn't get lost, the full Cryptic
team was at the ground on time with our biggest crowd
of the year (7), the sun was shining and England's overpaid
footballing failures had ensured that their game was finally
off the menu for a few weeks. Pyjama cricket has now claimed
leafy, middle class Cobham and we can only speculate on when
the likes of Headley and Tilford will fall victim to the 'no
draw' form of the game. It will be a sad day. Even football managed
to illustrate the value of a draw last week.
Cobham were inserted and initially were cautious, allowing
Goss and McLoughlin to bank a few cheap overs. Newland
came out of his shell, tonking Goss' fifth over for 15, and
stayed out. By the time Goss bowled him with a beauty of a
ball in his second spell the Cobham opener had 92 to his name.
Teenage sensation (and current England youth football international)
John Mousinho broke the opening stand when Hogben took what
his wife described as a brilliant catch, despite her being
immersed in The Mail on Sunday at the time. The score was
151 when Goss got his man, by which time Mousinho and James
Scott had tidily ushered the middle overs past and Hope-Dunbar
and Kowalski had done a respectable impression of a fifth
bowler. McLoughlin's second spell was sharp and productive. The
fortieth over, including eight deliveries and three wickets,
took an eternity and will have Ross Greenwood spitting in
Sydney as the African finished with 4-19.
teatime plan to make a bold early assault on the target saw
Hope-Dunbar promoted to open with license to play his
shot. And how he played it, again and again. By the fourth
over Cobham had set a long off and two long ons for him but
when the swashbuckling Scot middled the ball it cleared the
fielders and when he didn't it dropped short of them.
The plan worked well and we were well on the way to victory
when the second rain interruption became a deluge. Hope-Dunbar was
on 53* and Wright had played his part in the thrash with 11*.
The Cryptics were robbed by the rain. Duckworth and Lewis
would have given us a win but those who had wanted pyjama
rules in the first instance decided to call it a draw. Funny
old game, cricket.
Landmark of the day: Tommy Hope-Dunbar bought his first full
jug of beer (the previous attempt having resulted in three
pints of shandy).
SCCC 131 all out (34.3 overs)
Platypods 135-4 (28.2 overs)
Lost by 6 wickets
Pyjama cricket, in this case 35 overs per side, has never
been the Cryptics' forte but such was the difference between
the teams in terms of sporting talent and youthfulness that
we would likely have lost any sporting contest bar sumo wrestling
and tug of war. We have to bat first in this fixture to ensure
that some members of the Cranleigh schoolmaster opposition
meet their obligation to attend evensong. As things turned
out they had ample time for a shower and beer before being
called by God.
The man upstairs had at least meteorologically smiled
on our game as heavy showers fell all around on a blustery
day, our game was uninterrupted. Hogben and Wright made a
circumspect start as they counted the Oxford University sweaters
and other garments in the field revealing the fielding side's
prowess. They also came up with a novel excuse, that they
had difficulty seeing the new ball due to the large amount
of gold writing on it. The fielders had no such trouble, catching
almost everything and saving runs in the outfield in exemplary
style. Andrell (32) made a welcome return from paternity
leave, putting on 53 with the newly wed McLoughlin (17) as
they tried hard to run each other out. Extras contributed
22, every Cryptic got off the mark before joining the catching
practice and the skipper's horror run continued, this time
being stumped off a wide in the 33rd over.
The total was too small to defend. McLoughlin and Edwards
bowled well and the openers had a bit of luck early on. Andrew's
dobbers kept control from one end while McLoughlin was saved
for a later burst which delayed the inevitable defeat. Brooke-Webb
and Scott had a go and with three runs required, Seeckts'
second ball was propelled most of the way to Dunsfold
to complete the humiliation.
Landmark of the day: Peter Andrew took his 99th wicket since
records began, so might just have to buy a jug at Cobham
Cedars 158 all out
Won by 4 wickets
A topsy turvy match made all the more interesting by the best
efforts of both teams to lose. The Cryptics won the toss and
elected to chase a total, batting second looking like the
only way to win on a hard and flat pitch. Goss (11-3-28-2) and
Edwards (8-3-11-1) continued to enjoy their 2004 purple
patch in yet another difficult opening hour for the batsmen.
The skipper did not drop a catch at slip until the sixth over
and Cedars barely scored a run in front of square.
As in 2002, Cedars
made the Cryptic change bowling look good. Blamphin's first
over since marriage was a maiden and Brooke-Webb rattled through
nine tidy overs either side of lunch, taking 1-31. A grand
plan, hatched by Edwards, for Kowalski to bowl an over of
bouncers immediately before lunch ended disastrously, taking
nine deliveries and costing 14 runs.
With Dwight Cupit
wearing the gloves for the first time this year, Graham 'Basher'
McLean was able to bowl (7-1-16-2) and he performed a rare
Cryptic feat by knocking a stump clean out of the ground to
dismiss Phipps, Cedars' top scorer with 40. Inspired (or sympathetic)
captaincy saw Blamphin given a second spell. Opening the hutch
at once the Ulsterman gobbled up Flopsy, Mopsy and Cottontail
in three overs to end with 3-30. By the end the Cryptics had
dropped half a dozen catches but still left themselves a straightforward
Grindrod, after his second ball duck in the previous week's
debacle at Salesians, was promoted to open with Wright. In
a trice he was tonking the ball to all parts as if to make
a point. Twice dropped, but twice heaving the spinner
into the neighbouring cornfield, just watching this innings
was a dizzy experience. The tea interval did nothing to slow
him down but he finally missed a straight one in the 16th
over, on 76 in a partnership of 91. Wright was on 8.
Ware, Seeckts and Cupit then tried to even things up
by falling on their swords, Wright (24) perished LBW
at the hands of an umpire who wanted to see someone play shots
and McLean was out skying a big shot. It was left to Kowalski
and Goss to see us home from a dangerous 129-6 with Cedars
closer than they realised to opening the Cryptic hutch. The
pair showed uncharacteristic maturity in securing the victory,
apart from one filthy cow shot that Goss fetched from a foot
outside off stump.
The bells jingled
with three overs to spare, the Cryptic flag had flown for
the first time and we had been joined for tea by Tim Lamb,
though he wasn't brave enough to watch any cricket.
Landmark of the day: Richard Seeckts took his 50th catch since
records began, while expressing relief that records are not
kept of dropped catches.
Old Salesians 162 all out
SCCC 63 all out
Lost by 99 runs
The Surrey Cryptics' 47 week unbeaten run ended with
a jolly good hiding thanks to three men called O'Connell and
one Nick Potter, a veteran veteran if ever there was.
The Cryptics bowled
and fielded pretty well after losing the toss. McLean and
Kowalski took the field with water bottles, having spent the
previous evening with Andrew McLoughlin on his 'Night of a
thousand tongues' stag event. The shotgun groom was well enough
to open the bowling respectably, partnered by Edwards whose
form with the ball this year is better than his Black Cap countrymen.
Once the skipper
had dropped a blistering slip catch in the first over, good
catches were taken all round the wicket as Salesian batsmen
played a variety of strokes to reflect their lack of confidence
in an awful pitch. The bounce was less irregular once the
ball had softened but we knew from the start that 150 would
be a good score on the day.
kept it tight from one end while Kowalski, Scott and Ware
used considerably greater variation from the other, keeping
the runs flowing in the process. Ware's two overs pitched
almost everywhere except the cut strip, apart from the ones
that bounced two or three times.
With bags of time
available, and recognised batting from top to tail, the
Cryptics had a sporting chance. Sadly the pink and black
beast proved spineless and we were dismissed for our fifth
lowest score since the great Penner Close scorebooks disaster
11 reasons for scoring 63
The Salesian bowling
was good, but we struggled to 60-5, so 63 all out
was quite an achievement. Coincidentally the lowest score
on record, 37, was made in the corresponding fixture in 1994.
The only Cryptic to play in both games? Pippa.
Landmark of the
day, Philip Wright passed 3,000 runs since records began in
SCCC 190-8 dec
Advocates of pyjama
cricket should stop reading now. Their preferred form of the
game would have rendered this contest dreary in the extreme,
for we were never going to lose once our weighty top three
had made a commanding start. 86 on the board when the second
wicket fell in the 16th over, how did you guess that Pippa
had cried off having been leaped at by a staircase?
estimates suggested our top three weighed around 50 stone,
and the way they scored their runs should have the Atkins
dieters among us reassessing their goals. Hogben's 13 set
the pace for Hope-Dunbar who thrashed 39, launching the ball
into the trees twice while Streeter played some sumptuous
cricket shots in contrast. Pete Stewart (right) showed
too much determination to protect his average by retiring
hurt having hit his first boundary for the Cryptics, effectively
making the game ten a side after a Putney fielder had injured
himself in the first ten minutes.
Putney pulled a
fast one by summoning their man Smally - who took 8 wickets
and scored most of their runs last year - as substitute and
persuading the Cryptic skipper (who had not played in 2003)
to allow him to bat and bowl. Result: he took 2-15 including
the skipper for 7. Dare ran Streeter out on 48, something
Mrs Dare was blissfully unaware of as she embraced the tall
fellow when he left the field. Ever the gent, no harm was
done, and his form two weeks after giving birth was an example
to many a new Cryptic father.
James Scott looked classy for 25 and Cupit, demoted to number
8 for no particular reason, looked a couple of places too
high for a tortured 14. Kowalski had a go too and Goss thumped
his third ball into the trees, thus revealing that he'd learned
something from the Tilford tail last year who kept tonking
his bowling into the river. Putney's over rate rivalled the
1976 West Indians' so a late declaration put added pressure
on the depleted Cryptic attack.
from Goss (8-4-5-2) and Kowalski (6-0-26-1) put the lid on
Putney's chances of winning so we confidently opened the canteen
with Dare and Greenhough who had two catches taken by the
wicketkeeper in his first over. Both were taken in front of
the stumps, suggesting that the veteran publisher has lost
a little pace, but it put us in firm command. Our wicketkeeper
was the spritely 'Basher' McLean, on as substitute for Stewart
whose injury was so serious that he could not make it to the
pavilion for tea. Scott was tidy for 1-23, the wicket being
a Hope-Dunbar juggle on the long on boundary and Greenhough
ended with 4-40. The ninth wicket fell with four overs remaining
but even the returning Goss could not prise out the last man
and we had to settle for the draw.
It felt like summer,
the Cryptics looked like a cricket team and the omens for
the summer were good. Tougher days lie ahead.
Kingstonian 119 all out (49.2 overs)
SCCC 120-5 (28.5 overs)
Won by 5 wickets
A break in the Bank Holiday weekend rain allowed the Cryptics
to notch a convincing win on the soggy acres of New Malden.
The Cryptic side showed ten changes from the last game, that
glorious victory in Sydney just before England's World Cup
triumph, but the rusty bowlers were straight into their stride.
McLoughlin (8-4-10-2) and Edwards (9-5-7-1) bowled with astonishing
accuracy. Pow and Andrew, the most frequent attendees
at pre-season nets, took somewhat longer to find any rhythm
but swung the ball prodigiously in the helpful conditions.
With Kingstonian scoring at less than 2 per over, Wright
had his token end of season bowl four months early and the
batsmen even made him look good. Debutant Zimbabwean Pete
Stewart opened his account respectably, but it was the burly
Andrew who took the plaudits with 4-30 from 13 overs. So gentle
have his dobbers become that one delivery clipped the off
stump on its way to the 'keeper without dislodging the bails.
Tommy Hope-Dunbar took three catches behind without threatening
to look graceful, Wright pouched two good ones in the gully
and then dropped a sitter and, naturally, started to bleed.
Pow spilled a couple of dollies but he and Hogben
were the pick of the outfielders, chasing, diving and stopping
with a zest reminiscent of the absent Ware.
Some dark teatime humour led to the skipper and Pippa
opening partnership being tried again. They raced to 4 before
the skipper got a snorter that leaped from a good length to
gully via the shoulder of the bat. Four balls later Hogben quacked
his way back for an early shower, Wright soon followed
and we were 12-3. Cupit steadied the ship while McLoughlin
showed an array of strokes in a sparkling 45. Hope-Dunbar
clattered a breezy 25* and David Grindrod got off the mark
by hitting the winning run. Cupit's 25 was made out of 107
while he was in and involved him running 11 threes and 10
twos, mostly for other people. Good club man.