The Andy Taylor XI are great company of mixed cricketing ability. With an average age of about 25, they have unlined foreheads, bagless eyes and supple limbs, to sound a Gary Glitterish note. They may have lacked bowling in depth, but they could all run, dive and throw. They could all move. V&A pre-match talk was about the threat of the Taylor brothers. Rob Taylor did not distinguish himself. The V&A team bestowed on our fortunate skipper, Ross Ashcroft, had an average age of around 48 and was boosted by the inclusion of the talismaniac Andy Fraser, and the ageless Peter Linthwaite. The Andy Taylor XI was relatively untroubled as they overhauled the 177 target by 5 wickets and with 8 overs to spare in a timed game. Their reply was built around 43 by A. Taylor, a lovely 50 from Sethi that included 2 beautiful square drives, 29 from […]
Well, the less said the better. It was a wretched V&A batting response to a good session in the field. The domino cascade of dismissals ran right through the side and, worse still, no one could quite say how and why.
The day dawned about as badly as it could for a game of cricket. The rain had begun in the early morning and periodic bursts of torrential downpour followed from about nine o’clock. Nicky Bird, however was made of sterner stuff (well, he isn’t, but as he wasn’t playing he conferred such stuff upon his team mates) and suggested that whilst an eleven o’clock start would be impossible, a game could be played from one o’clock. His meteorological instincts proved spot on and by one, the heavens had relented and the Stonor valley redeemed itself with an afternoon of flawless sunshine. The wicket, whilst soggy, was drying fast. Perfect conditions for a sticky wicket. V&A Captain, Dennis de Caires, won the toss and rather than taking the decision to bowl, took a leaf out of the book of that great allrounder of yore, W.G.Grace, If you win the toss – […]
The scorebook records the weather as warm, sweaty and almost foreign. The setting was as blissful as ever. All the V&A needed was good company and a tight game to complete the dream. The National Theatre was the finest of company, but could not match the strength in depth of the 9-man V&A team on the day. Skippers Peter Singh and Nick P-G did not toss, but agreed that V&A would bat first in a timed game. An hour later, questions were being asked whether Nick Emley understood the difference between a timed game and a timeless game. The V&A batting order was set by age order. Initially. We may feel that we ought to bat higher, bowl more overs or umpire less, but we keep shtum. Petulant Lachlan Nieboer (1981) did not. Thankfully, his David Essex neckerchief was tight enough to stop his neck exploding with rage. Of our […]
As there is no match report to post let me use this space to update fellow professionals on a couple of things. A heads up we marketing people call it. Several players wondered about a brief V&A TOUR in 2015. Three games. The Cotswolds was proposed as being a) not too far b) pretty. Perhaps Swinbrook, Blenheim, Bibury – all have lovely grounds. Two nights in a hotel or pub. What do you think? We used to stay away in Cornwall, Gestingthorpe (Essex) and Urchfont (Wilts). I’m afraid there was bad behaviour which may explain why the invitations dried up but Andy Fraser and Simon Foster do not play these days, and Roger Smith is in Oz, so we might be welcome again. However, the Cotswolds are more convenient. Someone suggested a French tour. This would cost more of course and entail an extra night. The event might be enlivened […]
A gorgeous spring day, and a thrilling game of cricket. Who could ask for anything more? The auguries were not all good. Our revered founder, spiritual leader and chief scribe had been laid low by a bout of Bird flu, and we looked like taking the field one short. The opposition were late arriving. The auxiliary lunch chef had not bought enough cold meat, and struggled for at least 20 minutes to find out how to turn the oven on, while his pleas for help fell on deaf ears. Eventually, enough of the Town and Countrymen turned up for Lachlan Nieboer, making his debut as V&A captain, and George Winters to stride out to a distinctly damp wicket and toss the coin. It was a good toss to win, and when George won it, he had no hesitation in asking us to bat. Nick Emley and Ross Ashcroft opened our […]