Match Reports

Match Reports

17th September 2011


THE V&A ARCHIVIST will have problems deciphering the scorebook, when it comes to writing the V&A CC history. To call it a buggers muddle would be an insult to buggers and muddles. It seems to have been written by a drunk, which Richard Adamson is surely not. Anyway, it was so confused that at the end of our innings we could only hazard a guess at the overs we had faced, and the brilliant 51 that Dennis scored could have been 61. But the scrawl in the scorebook remains the official record of our last match of the 2011 season, and shows that we batted first in a 35 over game, that Adam was out for 5 after walloping a 4 to the square leg boundary, that Sunil and Nick Emley (skip) struggled to get the ball off the square, with Sunil the more successful. When a batsman like Nick […]
10th September 2011


A dodgy forecast suggested a truncated day at least, but in the event we were lucky, rain arrived briefly after lunch, which we fielded through, and then lovely sunshine. Actually Peter Linthwaite and I did not field in the rain. As we were 13, Peter and I opted to take our turn off the field, in the comfort of the porch. Martin (skip) had lost the toss in a 35 over game (bad omen – we lose when batting second) and Acme had elected to bat. They started horribly well, scoring at 8 an over. All might have been different if their top scorer had not been dropped at gully by Martin (tricky one) and then by Peter at short cover (not a tricky one). Peter said at lunch that he gave up reading these match reports four years ago because he found references to his wallydom upsetting, so I […]
4th September 2011


IT WAS PISSING DOWN at 11.30 and then pissed down heavily until just after 1. We sat and thought about buggering off. Nick Pritchard-Gordon, a new recruit from Wargrave, said he had been looking on the internet at motorway cameras to glean the course and extent of incoming rain. There then followed a discourse on motorway cameras in general until Adam cried ENOUGH! And the conversation turned to weightier matters like the position of the boundary rope, and the imminent arrival of Patrick Cobb, a V&A veteran now playing for the opposition. Patrick had received a letter from our Treasurer, Rupert, to say that it would be unfair to accept his sub for the season as captains could not offer him enough games, as younger regulars took precedence. This left Pat less than gruntled. But he was diplomacy itself on the day and the hurt he felt at being told, […]
27th August 2011

V&A v. Taylor Family

Andy Taylor, who with his elder brother Rob plays for the V&A when available, suggested he could get a team to play us and he was right. He warned that they would be young and fit and butch but he added that not all would be useful. He was right but those who were useful were very useful indeed, like Man of the Match, Rob Taylor, who batted with élan. I mentioned this to a lady spectator and she said was élan the man with the cap. I think she thought I was referring to his batting partner. I said she was a fucking moron and for some reason this caused offence. Rob also bowled nicely crafted off-breaks, one of which got me so he must be good. The pitch was uncut, unrolled and wet. The outfield was long and slow, so I pulled the boundary ropes in which Adam […]
30th July 2011


The DEVIL’S ADVOCATES, a team of barristers and teachers, are the perfect opposition I was told by their chairman before the game. He said they always manage a close finish and always lose. I hoped they would maintain this consistency, but I was perturbed by their youth, and by the sound of a South African, never a good sign. Martin Bowden (skip) lost the toss and they batted. We have never won this season when batting second. Things went wrong from the start. Jamie Noble, an Eton 1st XI cricketer, went for 12 in his first over. The South African cut three consecutive shots to the boundary. The next over from Tim Green was similarly profligate. Although both bowlers settled into a better line and length the opening batsmen reached 50 after 6 overs, and 100 after 12 or so. But the turning point in the day came when, in […]
10th July 2011

V&A v. GT’s

We struggled to raise a team, it being Sunday and with several players away in Cornwall and Barbados. But Sunil of the GTs, ever generous, gave us three players –major players too, all of whom shone. I won the toss on a lovely day, in a 35-over match. I elected to bat, as we have won all our games when we bat first. We opened with our guest player, Ivan Mulford and a new V&A man, Richard Adamson. Richard looked the part when he whacked a 4 and less so when he was out next ball. But when he learns the vagaries of the pitch he will excel. Ivan was a wonderful batsman, technically correct and versatile. He scored at a brisk rate, accompanied by another GT man, Mark Baring, a powerful hitter. Mark had had one hour’s sleep, having partied in Warwick, yet was seemingly unaffected by being sleepless, […]
2nd July 2011


Martin Bowden was skipper, caterer, scullery maid. He saw little of the game from his servile position in the kitchen. There were no WAGs. I was on the Somme for the 95thanniversary of the first day of the eponymous battle. Terrible hotel, no ensuite facilities, no mini-bar, worse than the trenches where they at least had free rum. After a late start – The Thebertons were held up at Henley – Martin won the toss and elected to bat, as we have won all our matches where we have batted first. Sean and Nick Emley opened and faced some good bowling. Nick had just hit two great fours when he was brilliantly run out for 11. Olly Bett’s mate Tomlinson came in and was out first ball. Bummer for your first game at Stonor. Olly came and went for 3. Things were not looking good. And things looked bleaker when […]
11th June 2011


Paul Harris came from L.A. to play village cricket with us. It was everything he hoped for: a perfect green pitch in the sun and a deer park opposite. And exactly what he wanted to get away from: competitiveness, business talk. A pity about the absence of cucumber sandwiches but that is down to Sarah and I have had a word. Our opposition were precisely what Paul imagined: gentlemen all, mostly from Balliol where the team originated, and decked out in a variety of pink and green striped caps and jackets, from the smarter clubs. Their captain, James Rivington, sets the tone. Corinthian in every sense, ensuring that everyone who wants to bat or bowl does, whether they can or not. Although a Magdalene man himself he is a democrat and prepared to rub shoulders with the Balliol men around him. And he defies the years at the crease and […]
28th May 2011

V&A v. Legends XI

That learned philosopher Roy Keane once remarked – Fail to prepare, prepare to fail. This may be true but preparation does not guarantee success. Our skipper Dennis de Caires had printed a beautiful team sheet with batting order, designed in an attractive sans serif face, in 14 pt., and centred. He had rung the Met Office to get the latest weather forecast, so he could decide scientifically whether to bat or field if he won the toss. A fat lot of good it did him. He won the toss. He chose to field, hearing that the afternoon would be dry and hotter and thus the pitch easier. Well, it wasn’t. And his batting order was fucked by the late withdrawal of Rupert Morris, with a temperature of 106, and by Adam Jacot buggering himself while bowling and being unable to move. Literally. Someone made a lame jest about the difference […]
21st May 2011


It was the return of The Prodigal JAKE WARMAN. He turned up before our skipper, and well before Peter Linthwaite who lives 5 minutes away. He was tidy and but for some errant footwear was in white. He bowled beautifully, swinging it prodigiously. The ball that bowled John Langley first ball after tea would have bowled an even better player. He brings exuberance and energy, which we sometimes lack. I have been singled out for being partly to blame for the dreadful over rate, no more than 12 an hour, for dawdling between overs and discussing cloud formations with Peter, or talking smut. Jake moves with purpose, and his erudite discourse on George Carman’s drinking habits and the most boring first class cricketer ever, Chris Tavaré, elevatedthe conversation at lunch. We struggled to get a side together, as did the NT. In the end we pinchedback Adam Jacot who was […]