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Sutton Old Boys Cricket Club (SOBCC) v WMP Vets CC

SOBCC arrived for their first away fixture of the season keen to build on a well deserved 2nd place in their opening fixture. Tally Ho! was the venue for the latest chapter of the Ray Russell trophy and with the sun shining brightly the ground looked nearly as good as Jeff Brooks in his new cricket top, that was only a couple of sizes too small but much less offensive than the one worn in his previous outing.
The coin toss was an edgy affair with heads and tails equally likely to come to the fore. Skipper Marsh (MCS) made it a brace of toss wins for the season and chose to bat in order to limit the negative impact of the inevitable intoxication of his side. The wise head of the vets (reference to age as opposed to animal surgery) skip led to the happy medium that they would bowl first.
Having protested more vociferously than a tree-hugger at the Newbury bypass in 1996 (noted for tour), Stu Lewis (Huey) took the field to open the batting with big Jeff in his little top. Both showed unlikely resolve against an accurate and spritely attack, taking 18 off the first 8 overs before Jeff fell pitifully C&B. MCS joined Huey to see off the opening bowlers and take the score to 53 – 1 off 16 overs, falling shortly afterwards for 22 (or anywhere between -5 and 1138 depending on which of the ‘scorers’ you blindly put your faith in!! (eye roll emoji).) It was a stroke of genius from the skip to sacrifice his wicket as it bought Paul Townsend (Turnip) to the crease. Both batsmen found their range, Turnip in particular punished anything remotely loose before retiring on 100* an hour or so later…..It will come as no surprise that only one of the two scorers acknowledged his century – the other making it 97 on countback…….. Who would have believed cricket was such a fast flowing game that seemingly intelligent adults (our scorer,Adam France (Frenchie), works in intel!!!) couldn’t keep up with play. It seemed only right to credit Turnip with 98.5 J.
Cue the inevitable collapse. Sean Miley (Milesmeister) on debut joined his Wishaw CC colleague at the crease and their telepathic club cricketing brains were demonstrated almost immediately with the Milesmeister being run out for 1. Huey, feeling guilty, went soon afterwards for a magnificent 79. Martin Russell (MOP), elevated up the order for this occasion made his late father proud (again) with a golden duck. McCarthy (SQ), Paul Johnson (Johnnno the deserter) & Frenchie managed 12 between them. Roger Hazlewood (VCVC) showed a welcome return to form with the bat in taking a golden duck off the final ball of the innings. After giving up on the ‘scorers’ it was agreed the score was approx. 241 – 8 off 40 overs.
Tally Ho! supplied a scrumptious interval feast which many of the SOBCC squad washed down with too many apple juices #danger
The potential father and son combination of the Hazlewood’s opened the bowling for SOBCC. Dad (tbc) was more economical than junior, who was plundered for 42 off 4 tortuous overs. All the more worrying given one of the Vets Openers was batting upside down. This can be the explanation for the home umpire calling a no ball for an over-the-waist full toss when his mate was caught off a knee high delivery! Embarrassed as the batsman was, he chose to bat on to make 77. Paul Rees (Nick) was asked by the skip to leave the field halfway through the innings in order to scour eBay and Gumtree for an LBW decision because we certainly couldn’t buy one on the field of play. Nick, Turnip, MCS, Johnno and SQ, bowled admirably in Caribbean type conditions, but they were generally ineffective against the determination and application of the Vets batting line up. Our general lack of ability with the ball & in the field didn’t help (Big sigh….). The anticipated debacle in the scorer’s cabin meant a forensic accountant has since been contracted at great expense to make sense of the bowling figures.
The Vets deservedly reached the probable total for the loss of 3 wickets (approx.) and with 2 overs to spare (approx.).  In doing so they regained the famous Ray Russell trophy – it’s the only thing Sean Russell managed to keep in his grasp all afternoon.
Anti-Corruption are currently investigating the post-match raffle, MC’d by MOP, after 98.2% (stat provided by the scorers) of the tickets drawn by Izzy Russell belonged to her mommy. Nepotism aside, a fantastic £240 was raised for the Midlands Air Ambulance Service J.
1st innings: SOBCC 241 – 8 off 40 overs
Huey 79, Jeff 11, MCS 22, Turnip 100*, Sean 1, MOP 0, SQ 7, Johnnno 2*, Frenchie 5, VCVC 0, Nick dnb.
2nd  Innings: WMP Vets 244 for 3 off 38 overs
VCVC                     4 - 1 – 20 – 0
Hazlewood Jnr 7 – 0 – 51 – 0
Nick                       4 – 0 – 22 – 0
MCS                       7 – 2 – 28 – 0
Townsend           5 – 0 – 25 – 1
SQ                          5 – 0 – 44 – 1
Johno                    6 – 0 – 43 – 1
MOM – Turnip – for retiring himself against the skippers wishes on 98 ½ runs.
Team: Richard Marsh ©, Roger Hazlewood, Trevor McCarthy, Paul Rees, Jeff Brooks, George Hazlewood, Adam France, Martin Russell, Sean Miley, Paul Johnson, Paul Townsend
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