A Draw !- Remember Those ?- SWCC v Brighton & Hove Crescent 02.08.2020

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The Wanderers tour of the local grounds continued with a trip to the outskirts of town and the Horsdean pitch at Patcham. Horsdean is a quite a pleasant place for a match, possibly the best of the circuit Brighton venues. Ample in size and set to the north of the suburb, just below the by-pass, it could easily be missed for someone not local and non-cricketing. It has been home to the established Brighton & Hove Crescent for some time. For Brighton, the wicket always seems relatively well kept too.

A very regular Wanderers side won the toss (Lloyd takes a bow) and decided to bat first on a breezy and pleasant August afternoon. Openers Wilson and Barber resuming their partnership, or rivalry, and adding 42 for the process. Much of their conflabs in the middle of wicket doubtless discussing the fine delineation of descriptions for bowler speeds. Was he quick or rapid ?  One wonders if the budget will extend to a speed gun this winter.

Lloyd and Teflon Noakes did little to trouble the scorers once the openers had gone and the partnership of the innings was left to the Big Bear and slasher Styles. 64 was added to steer away from potential batting calamity and the total looked like it might be heading for safety as it reached 136. Once Peter had departed, Gwyllim continued to anchor the innings, the last four wickets yielded 52, and Wanderers finished their innings on 188-8. Gwyllim finished on 68 not out, Wanderers first fifty of the season. The highlights section of the averages finally has an entrant.

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B

Who needs the old teas back ?

Historically, Brighton & Hove Crescent traditionally bring the curtain down on the season and, these days, in unusual fashion- better put, some traditionalists would describe ‘proper’ fashion. Although 80 overs were the limit, all three results were allowable. For those who don’t remember, a draw can be a result in a cricketing match if a target is not reached and ten wickets were not taken. A prospect of much bewilderment to most folk under 30 or foreign visitors who have been introduced to Test match cricket. It may be that Mr Noakes had some explaining to do in the car on the way home.

Talking of the Noakes cricketing academy, young Alice opened the bowling with the Oldest Swinger in Town. This provoked online discussion about the biggest age gap running between a pair of bowlers in SWCC history. At 59 years, an uneducated statistical neck can safely be stuck out when assuming that this is highly likely to be the winner. And accounts talk of a splendid showing from the Noakes stable, including a wicket and the second tidiest economy of the afternoon. A Wanderers ladies’ team ? The Sunday side might wish to keep things as they are if this continues. ‘Alice in Wanderers Land’ has gone into the corny cricketing library to be headlined at a later date…

The BHCC line up nearly all had starts, and given the nature of the match the breaks could be applied at any time. 188 never looked in any danger as a reachable target but Wanderers had to work for their wickets. Lloyd picked up most of the top order with 3-35, but it was tough to build up a head of steam. The fifth wicket fell in the 23rd over which meant, with 15 left, an outright win was always going to be a tough ask.

The under-rated Gwyllim turned his arm, Ant had a bowl, and Will found his way back to the oche. Eventually sharing four wickets between them in the process, there had been hope on Wanderers side as two wickets were needed for victory when the last five overs arrived. But like the days of 70s, when matches of huge deficits resulted in draws, there was to be no last hurrah as the tenth wicket fell. The Crescent held on and hands were shaken, or rather acknowledging nods exchanged, and the match was agreed upon as a draw…

…. or a winning draw, as we used to say to our colleagues on a Monday morning.

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Once We’ve Found It.. SWCC v Poynings 29.07.2020

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A nice evening sojourn to Poynings then. A pleasant ground that, surprisingly, some haven’t played on and others even less known of. Some might not have even got there as the seductive lady on Google Maps sent them down the lane opposite into the deepest countryside. There is a horror film in there somewhere- although some might argue that Wanderers calamities provide quite enough gore. ‘’I might be gone some time’’, says the confident Wanderers batting saviour. You know what happens next….

Wanderers lost the toss, which is less of a hammer horror and more of a pantomime these days. Poynings chose to bat and a steady stream of contributions down the order led to a healthy total on a bouncy, and perhaps a tad dangerous in the wrong light, artificial wicket. The Wanderers bowling was shared around. The Big Bear, upon The Author’s appearance, spoke gleefully of his 3 wickets for 15 runs. Gwyllim has always been a capable bowler when he has the opportunity- although one would consider he doesn’t see it as a serious part of his game.

In clear weather and a cooling evening breeze Poynings found their way to 147.

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The light remained good for the second innings. Playing 10 overs from one end then the other is a clever way of keeping things ticking over. At Poynings they have another rule, as arbitrary as they often are, that a wide results in two runs and no extra ball. On the face of it, this seems like another sensible plan. Not perhaps, though, when a team’s run rate needs to eclipse 12 an over- as Wanderers were at when a young lad was struggling to keep things in the tramlines.

It wouldn’t have mattered though. Against some very pacey, occasionally erratic and, given the amplified bounce of the wicket, rather testing early bowling, it never looked like Wanderers would meet the demands of over 7 an over. There were a few batting highlights. Some lovely biffs from top scorer Teflon Noakes who copped a nasty one on his, thankfully, helmeted bonce and a lovely drive into the cow field at a low full toss from Will.

Poynings were strong in the field and knew the terrain. The final response of 103-7 fell well short but again folk had enjoyed the evening, chalked off a new ground, and found pleasant company. The last of the 20 over matches have been played and thus we return to the Lord’s Day. And we’ll all be praying before the toss…

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Wanderers Win In The Weald… SWCC v Mayfield 26.07.2020

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Wanderers journeyed north today to the resplendent High Weald and its splendiferous Mayfield cricket ground, Wish Park and Hove Rec looking from behind with forlorn resignation.

A 30 over bash starting early at 12.30 suggested that some may have hoped to catch the action of the Premier League’s conclusion, or at least the events unfolding in the Test match. The Author, thinking to make the journey, decided against arriving mid-afternoon due to the potential for a short match and nearly an hour’s travel time (certainly at his speed). Such a decision proved wise as the match failed to go a full distance, even with a few ‘beer’ overs added once the victory total had been passed.

And victory fell to Wanderers.

Mayfield won the toss and batted. In customary fashion the overs were shared among the Wanderers numbers. From 58-2, and after Lloyd’s opening brace, Mayfield struggled to make fluent progress. Young Edward took his first club wicket, Noodle added a couple of his own, and Master Hyde finished off the tail end in Bothamesque fashion. The home team’s total of 104 was looking doubtful against what was a strong batting line up today.

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Thus it proved, and the victory margin may have been wider and the much shorter had Lord Sponge not determined, as usual, to give everyone an opportunity to enjoy the play.

Noakes snr and Noakes jnr opened the batting. The first time a father/son combination have opened the batting since- perhaps someone can answer that ?

Teflon Noakes swotted 24, although at one stage Wanderers found themselves tottering at 33-4. No need for concern however. Cometh the hour, cometh a new player for this term. Chris Barrett made 41 even outstripping the flashing blade of Mr Styles who contributed 11 to a 46 run partnership. With Jamie joining him for final knockings, Wanderers arrived home in 20th over with five wickets in hand.

A pleasant victory and another fine example of involving everyone in the match. On to Poynings mid-week and more lovely Sussex scenery. Is there anything better ?

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One Man Went To Mow.. v Gully 10.06.2018

 

Back to Berrylands. One is persuaded that rather than cutting the outfield at this venue it would be better to graze livestock. Apart from the wicket itself, which played well at times, the pastures resemble a High Wealden autumnal meadow. But, then again, left unattended that is almost what they are.

The recent trend of pleasant Sunday weather shows no sign of abating and much of this week’s encounter was played in warm sunshine that flooded lobster like arms and elbows. Indeed, when sitting on the bench at this mid-Sussex abode it is wise to be conscious of the gamma effects. The author found the shower a bit prickly for a few days after some short sleeve shirted scoring for twenty overs.

Losing the toss, Lord Sponge’s ghost lingers, The Big Bear was asked to bat. Tis not a footnote to mention that, needing a new recruit to make eleven, Wanderers had a scout around the park. The options were pretty narrow. In the end the choice was limited to the scoring bench, a baguette, The Author and young Alice Noakes. Only one of those could be described as having any knowledge, understanding, and small ability to play cricket. So Alice was correctly chosen… Thus, it is believed, she became the youngest female to play for the team (DJ Dave can’t remember a younger one so that should be enough given his length of service) and possibly only the third or fourth to play a whole game in twenty five years. Slow progress in this area. It would be good to see Sunday cricket as a more mixed affair. Perhaps essential for the long term survival of the game.

In true Berrylands fashion, the match was dominated by individual efforts that dwarfed the able collective. The Big Bear elected to take the first ball and with Wanderers 11-1 at the end of the fourth over, and a tentative approach in prevalent, no-one was really expecting an onslaught. But that is what we were treated to.

With contrasting approach, as indeed we are used to, The Bear clubbed his way to fifty to ton and Wilbarb glided a sweet course of elegant beauty with nudges, nurdles and classic correctness. A potential stand of 200 was only broken at G man’s decision to retire upon reaching three figures. Amiable, perhaps, but an annoyance to scoring statisticians. We seem to get few of those. Will did the same upon reaching his own landmark. Wanderers are so thoughtful. The 40 over innings closed on 251-5.

As ever, tea was ample and immediately available. The only danger here being the tendency to forget that there could be a long haul coming. For Lord Sponge that was indeed the case. The affable and accommodating fool had offered to field for the opposition who were short of personnel. He fielded for 70 overs….

The Gully response, much like that of Wanderers efforts, came from two anchors of support in a second wicket stand. Opener Previn fell in the first over yet not as a sign of things to come. One would have thought that a target of 252 in 40 overs would have proved overwhelming for any chasing side at the meadow. But for a while, although the outcome looked relatively certain, Gully were in the hunt. A century stand between opener Zakir and number three Kanag gave the match a respectable edge and kept Wanderers labouring in the field on what certainly felt like a very long afternoon. Both Zakir and Kanag reached well earned half centuries, Zakir especially wading in with some hefty blows.

Ultimately, with a three wicket return for the Slaymaker and two for Ashley W, an industrious Gully fell short of their target. Wanderers would have preferred them much shorter with the long and arduous heavy fielding experience. By the mid-evening finish only young Alice seemed unfazed by the extended play. Other than that, creaky limbs and bones could be heard above the thunder of the A23. Fond farewells were issued and no-one hung about too long. One year on, one year older..

Match v Gully Format 40 Overs
Date 10/06/18 Venue Berrylands (H)
 
 
Innings of Southwick Wanderers
1 Jones (G) * Retired OUT 101
2 Waymark (A) b Zakir 0
3 Barber (W) Retired OUT 100
4 Noakes (D) + c & b Deepak 16
5 Preston (A) Not Out 2
6 Slaymaker (P) b Deepak 5
7 Walker (A) Not Out 0
8 Johnson (M) Did Not Bat
9 Smith (L) Did Not Bat
10 Noakes (A) Did Not Bat
11 Field (D) Did Not Bat
Sum 224
Extras 27
Fall 7-200-230-251
Total 5 Wickets 251
Bowling
Zakir 8-1-28-1
Deepak 8-0-43-2
Gopi 6-0-25-0
Akshay 3-0-40-0
Hari 7-0-56-0
Kanag 8-0-52-0
Innings of Gully
1 Zakir b Slaymaker (P) 67
2 Previn c Johnson (M) b Smith (L) 0
3 Kanag c & b Johnson (M) 77
4 Hari lbw b Slaymaker (P) 5
5 Gopi lbw b Walker (A) 3
6 Arjun lbw b Slaymaker (P) 1
7 Deepak b Waymark (A) 25
8 Akshay b Waymark (A) 0
9 Previn (returned) Not Out 6
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Sum 184
Extras 28
Fall
Total 8 Wickets 212
Bowling
Smith (L) 8-1-25-1
Field (D) 8-2-28-0
Slaymaker (P) 8-0-46-3
Walker (A) 7-0-50-1
Preston (A) 3-0-33-0
Waymark (A) 4-0-24-2
Johnson (M) 1.2-0-4-1
Result Southwick Wanderers Won by 39 runs

The Week That Was- Thursday 10th August 2017- Another Defeat…. Another Sport

The weather having relented, Thursday provided the first opportunity for some proper bat ‘n’ ball. And indeed all who attended were given an opportunity to get involved. The afternoon’s fare took the shape of a twenty over game in which ten on each side were to bowl a couple of overs each and a batsman was to return to the hutch upon reaching 25 and only return to the field once all others had either been dismissed or retired in the same way.

This format, though admirable, was to be Wanderers Achilles heal. Still, a match that includes everyone and is played in a spirit of both entertainment and competitiveness rightly dwarfs such analysis. Luke went out to attend the toss and, of course, Brittany used the result’s natural default to make a choice of batting first….

Brittany’s early efforts were hampered by a slow and long outfield that wasn’t being addressed by any aerial routing. Taylor Sombrero, Lord Sponge and Mr Lincoln were three of the opening four bowlers and went for less than ten runs each. The run rate gathered pace, however, once The Author was forced to bowl and others, although far more capable these days, entered the fray too. Batsmen Scanlon and Morgan retired at the 25 threshold and Mr Snelling, in his new part time bating role, tucked into some dangerous Fennell leg side long hops to ceremoniously join the retirees.

A left field record was probably broken by The Author in this innings which ended on 149 with Baker Joe the pick of the bowlers at 2-12. The most unfortunate, and most affable, batsman Valace was bowled by a Fennell delivery that actually pitched and did so in line. Whilst Peter may be able to cite shock as the cause of the castle this meant that a Fennell wicket appeared in the Wanderers score book for the first time in 19 years (May 1998). Probably the longest distant between wickets.

 

Britanny All Stars
           
1 Valace P     b Fennell I 16
2 Scanlon M   Retired     25
3 Morgan M   Retired     25
4 Snelling L   Retired     30
5 Akroyd W c Naidu R b Baker J 22
6 Cox D   Not Out     11
7 Ward J     b Baker J 2
8 Heard D   Not Out     10
9 Cox J          
10 Slaymaker P          
11            
           
  Extras         8
             
  Total 3 Wickets 20 Overs 149
             
  Fall Of Wickets 45, 126, 132
  O M R W
1 Salerno T 2 0 9 0
2 Smith L 2 0 8 0
3 Barrs K 2 0 15 0
4 Lincoln P 2 0 7 0
5 Fennell I 2 0 25 1
6 Walker A 2 0 19 0
7 Jones G 2 0 17 0
8 Naidu R 2 0 18 0
9 Baker J 2 0 12 2
10 Wadey D 2 0 17 0

Nibbles were had in between innings. Not perhaps the original intention, but as Mr Slaymaker had made the effort to bring food in the previous day it was decided best not let it go to waste. Alas Master Wilson wasn’t present to give it full homage.

Wanderers replied at blistering pace. Ronnie and The Big Bear opened and, in a reversal of the previous innings, it was the opening five bowlers who took a clubbing. With the top five being initially placed in the score-book it was suggested that the rest may not be need- especially as the 50 came up in only the fifth over. Ooops….

You see, as I said earlier, everyone gets a game. And, in a strong sense, we get a better look at relative strength. Alas, on this afternoon, the robust top order of Wanderers made way for a soft, well, rather squidgy, underbelly.

The Big Bear and Ronnie were retired to the hutch. Baker Joe made 16 (including a rare six) and Mr Lincoln rolled back the years wielding the bat like a caveman’s club. Unfortunately, batsmen six to eleven could not even muster a retirement score between them, using up the overs in the process. Thus only 39 runs came off the final ten overs. With the order ran through Ronnie came to crease again needing to clear the boundary every ball for the match to be won. The reality was, through steady bowling, and clear all round ability, Brittany added cricket to their skittles success with a 19 run win.

A special mention here must go the Slaymaker. Wanderers current holder of the bowling trophy shone at the death. Four miserly wickets in two overs. His uncomplicated slow medium pace hitting the deck and forcing batsman to improvise, or in this case implode… A special mention to the other Peter for some competent keeping.

Southwick Wanderers
           
1 Naidu R   Retired     25
2 Jones G   Retired     30
3 Baker J     b Cox D 16
4 Smith L*       Run Out 7
5 Lincoln P   Retired     25
6 Johnson M (wk) c Snelling L (wk) b Slaymaker P 9
7 Fennell I st Snelling L (wk) b Valace P 4
8 Wadey D lbw   b Slaymaker P 5
9 Walker A     b Slaymaker P 0
10 Salerno T   Not Out     4
11 Barrs K c Cox J b Slaymaker P 0
           
  Extras         5
             
  Total   Wickets 20 Overs 130
  O M R W
1 Akroyd W 2 0 23 0
2 Heard D 2 0 17 0
3 Snelling L 2 0 18 0
4 Ward J 2 0 14 0
5 Cox J 2 0 17 1
6 Morgan M 2 0 10 0
7 Scanlon M 2 0 11 0
8 Cox D 2 0 6 0
9 Valice P 2 0 7 1
10 Slaymaker P 2 1 5 4

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Another day of fun and much merriment was nicely topped up with a couple of brews and a meal at The Duke. Lovely stuff.

The Week That Was- Wednesday 9th August 2017- A Non (Miss) Match Report

The British summer, having decided that BREXIT means BREXIT, greeted our French friends last week with a first cricketing day of climatic misery. After all, a morning of dry weather with a depression moving in from the west- just in time for cricket- is the lot of a Sunday journeyman in these parts. Having realised that most of our guests were English anyway, and the West Indian among them would also be familiar with rain too, it eventually decided to try the tactic of turning dry instead. We were quite happy with that- and so was anyone else tasked with the job of tea preparation.

The festivities had started in the Duke of York Inn at Sayers Common- although The Author, unfamiliar with such a setting, had missed the jollities thinking that a watering hole with such a grand old title could only exist in an urban scrawl and got ready for an evening out in Brighton. It seems that, however irregular my appearance during, a season will always have a Fennell story attached somewhere.

As Wanderers and the Brittany All Stars (some folk troubled when spelling the region of our southerly neighbours) made there way to the ground for the first match ominous clouds hung overhead. Muggy and dark an hour before play was due to start, it was soon raining heavily. The track at Sayers Common, in common with most clay soil in Mid-Sussex, holds water like a grudge and play was thus called off very quickly.

So what to do. Well, the starts of Brittany seemed less bothered by this eventuality as they were mostly still in the pub. And why not ? So accepting the weather’s poor judgement of inconvenience, a spontaneous and happy gathering was had. But there was not be an ending there. With an evening table booked at the Plough in Pyecombe a few hours were yet to be had. So a small convoy of cars made is way to Henfield for the first and unofficial challenge of the tour. A game of Skittles…

The teams were evenly divided according to, well, which cricket team they played for. The Slaymaker representing France. In fact, the games were billed as England v France- although it may well have been San Marino v France such was the thumping Wanderers took. French Dave (every team should have a ‘Dave’) and Mr Snelling were the pick of the overseas bunch. Six strikes were to be had on the french side with only Lord Sponge responding for the home team.

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So Wanderers first match had ended in defeat without so much as a ball being bowled. But no-one seemed too fussed as some attendees then made there way to Pyecombe for a splendid evening meal.

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Nervous Nineties- Southwick Wanderers CC Reaches Another Landmark

For some reason I thought it was Engelbert Humperdinck who sung ‘Happy Anniversary’ but it was Slim Whitman who sung the 1974 classic so engrained in my mind as it was repeatedly played on Radio Brighton when I was a kid. I wonder if DJ Dave has this in his collection of reminiscent numbers.
There has been no ‘last waltz’ for Wanderers though- despite the ruthless decline of Sunday cricket. At times the club, like others, has suffered for playing personnel. It should, perhaps, have suffered more given the lack of a league structure and a colts section. The secret of the teams endurance could be pontificated over many an evening pint but with so many references to the ‘Wanderers spirit’ one would be inclined to believe that such an oft used colloquial to describe a team with guts and determination is not miss-placed here.
This week sees a few matches of celebration to mark the clubs 90th year. The original plan was to run a cricket week in a tournament format although unnecessary delay from the masters of Wanderers home of the last 21 years, Plumpton College, put the plan into turmoil. As a result of this and other frustrations we have now wandered to Berrylands Farm, the home of another former club that has met sad demise, and have de-camped there at this current time. It seems the destiny of Southwick Wanderers to be forever rural in its station but that is part of the fun. The term ‘village cricket’ could hardly be applied to an urban recreation ground with a power staion for backdrop. You cant beat a warm summer Sunday in the sticks.
Our friends from Brittany our joining us as opponents. Wanderers have enjoyed splendid tours in the area and our looking forward to their company. A number of guests and friends from other clubs will feature in the matches during this week.
The agenda for this week is below:
Wednesday 9th August- 40 over match, to be played at Berrylands Farm BN6 9XH. 1pm start.
Thursday 10th August T20 to be played at Berrylands Farm 4pm start.
Friday 11th August Lunch at Days in Brighton (all you can eat Chinese buffet, with other food available.) 7pm @ Sussex County Ground -Sharks v Gloucester. Tickets £28
Saturday 12th August – 40 over match to be played at Berrylands Farm 1200 start. Slow cooker curry and beers at the ground, with end of tour presentation.
Join us if you can. We are looking for more numbers for the Saturday fixture.

Amicitia et liberalitas….

As the early autumn sun lowered in the west, and a crispy air engulfed the barbecue embers, the pavilion of rural Chailey Cricket Club was awash with wistful chatter. As much as the summer was saying goodbye, the cricket schedule had been holding out for as long as it could. But now was the time of benediction. The grace of a Barber drive, the love of a Lukey toss victory, and the fellowship of a Wanderers social gathering had indeed been with us all. Amen to another season.

Chailey had hosted the final match in the absence of Plumpton’s invitation. Overnight rain had made way for a dry, bright and breezy afternoon. Arundel, most affable opponents, had struggled for numbers. Under normal circumstance the match may have fallen victim to this current Sunday struggle amongst the more established clubs. Thankfully, due to enthusiasm for one final hurrah, the Wanderers were over subscribed. The Author, Lloyd and Butcher jnr joined the opposition ranks and a forty over match was agreed upon. Lukey won the toss (read that again) and elected to bowl. The stage was set for the final scene.

Even with the added strength of young Butcher and the very able Lloyd, the Arundel innings struggled on the pudding pitch. A team of able Sunday cricketers lacked the flashing blades of Wanderers recent renaissance. As much as Arundel are a successful West Sussex League side, the Sunday team are a splendid tribute to the friendly game. The attitude and desire to include everyone was a pure testament to this. The youngest player was 14 and the eldest, wait for it, 86. More on bowler Denny in a bit. The opening exchanges were a little muted. With DJ Dave and Raunak employing some steady arms the score eased its way to 27 in the ninth over.

Lloyd became the first victim, stepping back to a ball that kept fairly low. Raunak had bowled especially well in his first spell, turning the ball off a fine length, and was most deserving of a wicket. The wicket set a pattern of struggle for the visitors, the next fourteen overs yielding forty-five runs as Wanderers continued to make proper use of a drying wicket. As the score crawled into the seventies a further four wickets fell, Baker Joe, Max, DJ Dave and Will B joining the party in a rotating attack.

Ensuing was seventeen overs of attritional cricket. Sensibly, Arundel clawed their way to a respectable scoreline. Batsman Pitts providing a measured but combative approach to a fully resourced Wanderers attack (every outfield player was used). Naturally there will be no mention of the pea roller from the hand of Will B that sent The Author back to the hutch without scoring…. But after this batsman Shoulders accompanied Pitts in a stand of twenty four which was only ended by a superb one handed catch, behind his head, from Johno at deep square. The innings ended on 139-7, the full forty overs being used.

Arundel
1 Crathern (L) lbw b Naidu (R) 11
2 Dip c Johnson (M) b Baker (J) 17
3 Theodoridi (A) b Wheatley (M) 11
4 Butcher (M) c Wilson (J) b Field (D) 12
5 Adkin (C) lbw b Barber (W) 12
6 Pitts (I) Not Out 47
7 Fennell (I) lbw b Barber (W) 0
8 Shoulders (M) c Johnson (M) b Naidu (R) 12
9 Adkin (B) Not Out 1
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11
Extras 14
Total 7 Wickets 40 Overs 139
Fall Of Wickets 27,34,52,64,72,102,131

 

O M R W
1 Field (D) 8 1 21 1
2 Naidu (R) 8 1 35 2
3 Baker (J) 4 0 13 1
4 Slaymaker (P) 5 2 10 0
5 Wheatley (M) 2 0 5 1
6 Smith (L) 2 0 10 0
7 Wilson (J) 3 0 16 0
8 Barber (W) 4 1 9 2
9 Jones (G) 2 0 9 0
10 Johnson (M) 2 1 5 0

Tea was had, and particular thanks must go to Catherine for her rallying of domestic assistance in ensuring grumbling stomachs were fed and watered. Wanderers opened up with The Big Bear and Will B. It soon became apparent that, in these latter weeks of the flashing blade, matters would be swiftly concluded. But let’s take a brief look at the environment in which it occurred before dismissing a bowling attack as weak and ineffective against a plethora of talent and experience at village level.

Opening from the Pavilion End was a bowler of much ability, and, despite a number of loose balls being punished by Gwyllim’s club- and this was regular and without ceremony- one must take into account that perhaps fifty years previously things may not have been so one-sided. Yes, fifty years. For bowler Denny is eighty-six years young. Coming in off about six or seven paces he produced as much swing as anyone else had all afternoon. Granted, a number of deliveries were falling errant, but one sensed that this was not one of his better afternoons. For as long as he is able this old soldier will be playing the friendly game- and a fine chap he was too. A few Wanderers will be seeing retirement before any such considerations on his part, The Author being one of them.

At the other end, and equally unfazed by the Gywillim onslaught, was young Benjy Atkin. His deliveries were of sometimes good length and quite nippy, yet he came in for equal punishment. The first five overs were therefore the subject of assumed records that need no research. The largest age difference between an opening, possibly any in fact, bowling pairing, and most likely the fastest Wanderers fifty in modern club history- believed to be around twenty balls. Gwyllim retired in the fifth over. He left the field with the score on 59.

What was most apparent was that Arundel could have turned the screws early if they had wished to. Bowler Shoulders accounted for both Master Wilson and Max Wheatley in the aftermath of the carnage. The best, and rather swift, spinner to have bowled against us this season. Despite the outcome seemingly being sealed Wanderers wobbled. Bowler Dip, from the Pavilion End, was quick and dangerous. His errant deliveries saw punishment from Master Wilson and Mr Noakes though- and thankful Wanderers were. At 130-5, and with Raunak having left, there could have been twist in the tale. Baker Joe and Johno, with some fortune, saw the Wanderers home in 20.4 overs. A most surreal passage of cricket.

So that’s all folks, well, apart from a few thoughts and a short benediction of my own. I forgot to mention the game of pairs that occurred at the end of the match by those who were desperate to squeeze the last puff of breath from the passing season. Mr Lincoln had a bowl and The Author was ran out four times in four overs (although Lukey will admit to causing three of them). As the light drew in, and the smell of burgers wafted in the air, time was finally called and we all met for a spontaneous social.

So, dear reader, what of the title of this final match day offering ?

‘Amicitia et liberalitas’- sounds rather grand doesn’t it ? Well, perhaps. But it runs deeper than that. It’s Latin, you probably knew that, and it means ‘Friendship and generosity’. Two words that currently run through the veins of this cricket club. Two words that sum up all the effort and time that people give to its social fabric. Two words that Luke epitomises in his captaincy, or Gwyllim shows when deciding that someone else should have another go when the fastest century isn’t beyond him. Two words that allow a bowler, new to the club, a run in the attack when the match is delicately poised. Two words that summarise the efforts of the ladies of the club who toil and ask for no recognition. Two words that have kept this club alive when many others are folding in this demise of Sunday cricket.

I spoke to folk on Sunday and suggested that they should become the club’s motto as well as being incorporated in the Mark IV badge for the anniversary year. This was met with much approval. The AGM will have the final say. But ultimately this is academic.

This year the Wanderers season has been most friendly and most generous of spirit- and that is all that matters.

Southwick Wanderers
1 Jones (G) Retired Out 51
2 Barber (W) b Atkin (B) 12
3 Wilson (J) b Shoulders (M) 25
4 Noakes (D) b Dip 25
5 Wheatley (M) b Shoulders (M) 0
6 Johnson (M) Not Out 5
7 Baker (J) Not Out 3
8 Naidu (R)
9 Slaymaker (P)
10 Smith (L)
11 Field (D)
Extras 22
Total 4 Wickets 20.4 Overs 143
Fall Of Wickets 59,70,118,119,130
O M R W
1 Denny (B) 5 0 48 0
2 Atkin (B) 5 0 45 1
3 Dip 5.4 1 36 1
4 Shoulders (M) 5 0 3 2

 

Fixture v Arundel
Date 25/09/2016
Venue Chailey
Type 40 Overs
Toss Southwick Wanderers
Result Southwick Wanderers won by 6 wickets
MOM Points
1 Jones (G) 5
2 Johnson (M) 3
3 Noakes (D) 1

 

 

Photographs by kind permission of Gemma Manvell

 

Early Retirement…..

As much as some cricket seasons, especially those that run deep into September, are less likely to end with a big bang and more a silent fart, Wanderers batting renaissance continued today to the point that some might be asking whether the resulting demands for a continued programme of cricket will mean that we have breakfast between innings as the tired watery sun of autumn is asked to wearily preside over the extended season. Certainly, a match in the first week of October is not beyond the remit of reason- if only to restore justice to the historic AGM’s of that month which produced sun lit afternoons of wistful memory and yearnings for those extra runs or wickets that would have bridged the gap between average and genius-and secured that coveted award…

On the subject of awards and accolades, some folk are very protective of their averages. As a bowler The Author was little bothered by this, but batsman are rather prickly creatures-, as this journal will reveal.

Wanderers lost the toss, as predictable as the seasons. I was wondering if someone could write a line for this statement each week Luke is captain as I am getting rather bored of it. Apparently he won the toss at Preston Nomads although my eyes of doubt were passed over the scorebook that afternoon. I arrived late and was not there to witness this miracle. One wonders if we were playing at Lourdes. That wasn’t that funny, no, but if any of you have been subject to DJ Dave’s jokes in recent time it will have felt that way. Rudgwick asked us to bat.

What ensued was not so much a day of apple indulgence, for those who read last year’s report, more flashing blades blowing raspberries at a tame attack. The much-feared youngster who troubled Wanderers previously was absent from the line up and little was forced upon any tired late season technique. In fact, ‘tired’ is not a fitting description of Wanderers top order at this time. Something of a renaissance has occurred and it is pondered that the first five these days would be a decent consideration when compared to any other of the last quarter century. Perhaps Yogi Whitehead, Martin Malpass, Barry Hawkins and Pappy Preston could contest any claims to the crown, but certainly no top order has accumulated heavy runs as such a rapid rate as this one. Today was no different.

Wanderers once again passed the 200 mark with ease. At present, until the long winter nights are completed, there is no official records, or collated references to official records, that can show if the first four wickets producing 50 partnerships is a modern record. I suspect it is. We saw this today and a joyful sight it was. The Big Bear continued from whence he finished last week with a fluent 59. Will Barber, the most concentrated and technically correct of the crop, made 51. David Noakes, for whom slower and lower wickets are made with his low centre of gravity when striking from the middle, made 52. Master Wilson, overcoming his fear of perennial opposition guest, Keith Barrs, made 50 in his own inimitable style (or is imitable at Wanderers these days). Some well-worn colloquials have disappeared in recent times when describing a Wanderers knock. The score ended at 241-3, although with Mr Higgs and Naidu having been dismissed during this period one might ask how this was possible. Well…

The magnanimous gesture of retiring by Mr Barber and Mr Noakes had allowed others a hit. A debate was had about whether such sacrifice should constitute a ‘not out’. The rules are clear…

MCC Rule 2:

(b) If a batsman retires for any reason other than as in (a) above (EDIT: Unavoidable cause), he may resume his innings only with the consent of the opposing captain. If for any reason he does not resume his innings it is to be recorded as ‘Retired – out’.

Attempts to allow not outs have led to the secretary over ruling the captain here but no one is going to fall out over this. What is most important is that Wanderers players have been willing to selflessly give others a chance, as is expected, and secondly that we have actually found ourselves in this strange position in the first place. How times have changed…..

Southwick Wanderers
1 Jones (G) c b Driver 59
2 Higgs (A) c b Driver 6
3 Barber (W) Retired Out 51
4 Noakes (D) Retired Out 52
5 Wilson (J) Not Out 50
6 Naidu (R) st b Barrs 1
7 Johnson (M) Not Out 10
8 Manvell (G)
9 Slaymaker (P)
10 Baker (W)
11 Smith (L)
Extras 12
Total Wickets 38.4 Overs 241
Fall Of Wickets 50, 102, 157, 213, 220
O M R W
1 Caygill (T) 11 0 53 0
2 Ross (J) 5 0 19 0
3 Driver (J) 7 0 51 2
4 Callaghan (J) 3 0 25 0
5 Brogan (T) 5 0 37 0
6 Barrs (K) 4 0 38 1
7 Hutchin (D) 2.4 0 15 0
8 Page (D) 1 1 0 0
9
10

Declaring fifteen minutes early, Wanderers gave themselves a bounty of time to chip away at a 10-man opposition. But Rudgwick’s batting provided a far sterner test than their bowling. Well, that statement isn’t entirely true. The opening batsman provided most of the test.

On a cool and cloudy evening, Wanderers huffed and puffed for eighteen overs against and established pair of Page and Ross, a left hand and right hand combination of evergreen villager and young and well-coached aspirer. Apart from one spill neither looked in any discomfort. Only the occasional vagaries of a springy and over used pitch might cause any danger. Both batsman steadily accumulated runs, the younger Ross playing some cracking drives and Page proving particularly accomplished off the legs. An hour and a quarter in, and almost on the stroke of twenty overs, Johno held Page off Raunak. Too late, perhaps, but a calamitous middle order, a throwback to Wanderers of the near past, did their best to keep things interesting.

Baker Will and The Slaymaker had made way to Raunak and Jordan. The pitch, although suited to a bowler such as Peter in form, had not been used as well as we would like. Jordan, although essentially a part time bowler, has years of the line and length principle hammered into his cricketing soul. To Raunak such a concept comes naturally also. For a few overs things went tame but, whether through frustration or not, the middle order then lost the plot against this measured attack. Seven wickets were to fall in a period of just seven overs. Even Wanderers in the troubled years of the blade, would have baulked at such an event. A glance at the home scorebook suggested that it was hurried, but not unique. With Raunak and Jordy both on four wickets there were seven overs and one batsman to despatch.

Batsman Driver, an appropriate name, at number nine, decided to attack the bowling but also employ frustrating defence. Batsman Callaghan simply employed frustrating defence. Lord Sponge, correctly, decided that a change in attack might bring new and dangerous initiatives to the batsman’s mindset. Despite some close calls against the newly employed Gywillim and Sponge, the batsmen held out for the draw. At close of play Wanderers had cause to be disappointed, but the position they found themselves in was not one of their own creating. At times the team have been further away from victory and more deserving.

So as the ripe old apples sat in the huge crate again and local rogues hid in the bushes in an attempt to scrump in fading light and avoid the hangman’s noose, the season came nearer to its close. Talk of AGM’s, dinners, Christmas and next year’s nets filled the cooling dusk. Each then went unto his, or hers, home and prepared for the falling leaves. There is another week to go though, or is it two ? Who knows ? The season never really ends does it ?

Rudgwick
1 Page (D) c Johnson (M) b Naidu (R) 39
2 Ross (J) lbw Naidu (R) 58
3 Page (J) c Slaymaker (P) b Wilson (J) 2
4 Faithful (M) c Baker (W) b Wilson (J) 0
5 Hutchins (D) c Wilson (J) b Naidu (R) 8
6 Brogan (T) b Wilson (J) 0
7 Caygill (T) b Naidu (R) 1
8 Barrs (K) c Johnson (M) b Wilson (J) 0
9 Driver (J) Not Out 28
10 Callaghan (J) Not Out 3
11
Extras 9
Total 8 Wickets 39 Overs 148
Fall Of Wickets 83 103 103 111 112 112 114 118
Fixture v Rudgwick
Date 18/09/2016
Venue Rudgwick
Type Friendly
Toss Rudgwick
Result Match Drawn
MOM Points
1 Wilson (J) 5
2 Naidu (R) 3
3 Barber (W) 1

 

 

 

 

No Cameras Allowed…..

Fixture v Chailey
Date 11/09/2016
Venue Chailey
Type Friendly
Toss Southwick Wanderers
Result Match Drawn

It is often written into the terms and conditions of a ticket to many an event that photography, or moving pictures of any kind, are strictly prohibited. Sometimes this seems a little harsh. But this is naturally to prevent the breaching of copyright rules- although with the advent of modern technology it is hard to implement. No such legislation is currently in force for Southwick Wanderers matches, although given the unfortunate timing of some of these features the AGM may need to reconsider. The Big Bear was caught on film being bowled out for 98 recently, as was Will Barber being dismissed for 49 last week. Despite suggestions that our Raunak should not in any way have history record his next run, the one that would bring up a swashbuckling century on a glorious September afternoon at Chailey, one Wanderers player failed to heed the warning. You now how many he was dismissed for….

The delusion of summer, as lamented in last weeks despatches, amplified its mocking mirth this Sunday. At one stage the heat became a little intense for a scorers focus on the sideline- or was that too many tins of Scrumpy Jack. Given that Lukey had opted out, Wanderers had the choice of whether to bat or bowl. It was decided to take first hit- and fruitful it proved.

Baker Joe was promoted to open the batting with the Big Bear. Robin to his Batman, or was it an unusual collaboration between the hare and the tortoise ? Either way, the decision was proved just. Anchoring the Big Bear’s heaving blade, Joe hung around for the entire afternoon’s display of blade swinging prowess from the other end-Raunak playing the Big Daddy to Gywillim’s Giant Haystacks. It was as if we were watching the first swing on the longest hole at times, both players opting to use the wood…

As Chailey’s opening bowlers were mercilessly plundered to all parts of the park the 50 found its way into the scorecard by the seventh over, the hundred, by which time the scoring rate had slowed to a more palatable rate with the steady Will B joining Baker Joe at the crease, the seventeenth. Gywillim had fallen for 61 of an opening 88 stand. Not quite the calculative output of percentages that Master Wilson has had in stands before, but nonetheless a mutual understanding of partnership. Joe would give consistent and quick-footed support to Gywillim’s array of sword work. After the mighty Bear fell, Mr Barber then made 15, falling at 112, and Joe had Raunak join him at the crease. Gwyllim, it seemed, had then been upgraded into an IPL colossus, for as Raunak took guard the swallows flew off to enjoy summer elsewhere. What followed was carnage. No tree top was safe.

For those who wish to analyse an extraordinary innings for future annals, the statistics of Raunak’s are not fully recorded in TMS details. He was in, however, for a period of 14 overs, probably around an hour. His innings of 99 contained seven sixes and nine fours. The 29th over went for 29 runs (doubtless one of the most ever recorded by a Wanderers batsman in a main match). Raunak scored 99 of the 127 partnership. But lets face it, Joe didn’t get a look in. When Ronnie was caught at deep square on 99 Wanderers declared. Joe had performed the task he was set finishing on 35 not out. The offending Wanderer with the moving pictures of Ronnie’s demise wont be named….

Southwick Wanderers
1 Jones (G) b Coppard 61
2 Baker (J) Not Out 35
3 Barber (W) b Demberry (P) 15
4 Naidu (R) c b Harding (M) 99
5 Kamal (K) DNB
6 Butcher (M) DNB
7 Butcher (A) DNB
8 Johnson (M) DNB
9 Slaymaker (P) DNB
10 Manvell (G) DNB
11 Field (D) DNB
Extras 29
Total 3 Wickets 36.5 Overs 239
Fall Of Wickets 88, 112, 239

 

O M R W
1 Hurkett (T) 4 0 26 0
2 Arnold (J) 4 0 34 0
3 Coppard (J) 9 0 26 1
4 Demberry (P) 7 0 21 1
5 Stevens (S) 5 0 37 0
6 Hacker (L) 3 0 34 0
7 Demberry (D) 2 0 16 0
8 Harding (M) 2.5 0 23 1
9
10

At Plumpton last year Wanderers had been defeated in a 35 over match. Young batsman Demberry (P) had made 37 whilst opening. This year, in line with the rapid years of youthful development, he presented an even stronger and more open-faced bat. The outfield at Chailey is even and fast, although it could be said that is a mere footnote to Wanderers who take the aerial route. Some Wanderers may have been of the impression that the ten men opposition may not offer that much resistance beyond a couple of batsman we knew well. This was a poor analysis.

The Chailey response was a calm and measured affair that always gave the impression that, despite faltering briefly at 60-3, could always threaten with a few wayward overs. Thankfully the bowlers were rotated with this in mind. The Wanderers declaration had been well timed (Chailey had been offered four more overs by the close) for any more leverage and the match could have been lost. Demberry being the catalyst for any such defeat.

DJ Dave had opened up from the Pavilion End, Butcher snr the Downs End (interestingly titled as such by The Author for Plumpton matches as also by Chailey for their home affairs). No self-respecting cricketer can fail to acknowledge this glorious sites that adorns the distant scenery of many of our matches. Adrian have proved a little wayward but landed a couple of halting wickets in his five overs. DJ Dave found a fairly consistent line but was wicketless. The general feeling is that the Old Swinger is the unluckiest man in town also, another chance being spilled today.

Chailey were 54-2 after ten overs. Wanderers in the ascendancy. But somehow it never felt as though there would be time enough, the Demberry family seeing to that. The third wicket fell on 60, and that was to be the last till more flashing blades in the closing stages tried to push things along. Kamal, a friendly and affable Wanderers debutant bowled steadily and with pace from the Pavilion End. The Slaymaker, despite hitting the pitch, which had proved quite bouncy at times, failed to work his magic. Raunak came in for some stick from the Downs End. Demberry snr, much like Baker Joe, anchored the innings of the younger. When Demberry jnr fell to Raunak for 118, with the score on 183, the draw was almost a certainty.

And so it was. The overs dried up and, despite a couple of late wickets to Baker Joe, hands were meaningfully shook on a beautiful Sussex evening. Most Wanderers stayed for a while after being treated to pizza and tinnies by the most splendid hosts. As the night gathered in we pondered on the remaining matches and how quickly the seasons pass. Doubtless the AGM will be staged on a beautiful autumn afternoon most worthy of bat’n’ ball. There is a famous cricket match played at Preston Park each year on Christmas Day. One might wonder whether such novelty will wear off as it forms part of the main season in decades to come…

Chailey
1 Coppard (J) b Butcher (A) 18
2 Demberry (P) b Naidu (R) 118
3 Packham (R) b Butcher (A) 4
4 Arnold (J) c Butcher (A) b Kamal (K) 0
5 Demberry (D) c Barber (W) b Baker (J) 35
6 Stevens (S) Not Out 14
7 Crouch (S) lbw b Baker (J) 0
8 Harding (M) Not Out 0
9 Hurkett (T) DNB
10 Hacker (L) DNB
11
Extras 20
Total 6 Wickets 40 Overs 206
Fall Of Wickets 48,54,60,183,194,198
O M R W
1 Field (D) 6 1 21 1
2 Butcher (A) 5 0 33 2
3 Butcher (M) 7 0 43 0
4 Kamal (K) 7 2 20 1
5 Slaymaker (P) 7 0 27 0
6 Naidu (R) 5 0 45 1
7 Baker (J) 2 0 6 2
8 Barber (W) 1 0 5 0
9
10