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Not Hot to Trot

Posted by John Beckett on 13/07/2017 11:56

After the excitement and excesses of Cambridge and Lords at the weekend, it was back to business as usual with a T20 against old rivals Shakespeare CC. It was the Bard himself who asked if one can desire too much of a good thing and the five touring members of the side, playing their fourth game in six days, must have been pondering the same. Baz in particular was feeling the (cheek) pinch, badly suffering with the two bobs after consuming fellow crustaceans in the shape of a prawn sandwich on Sunday, nicely warmed by the 30 degree heat. The season debuting double act of Cripper and Tripper bought some much needed fresh legs to the side, along with Big Red, Doc, Les and Silky all playing for the first time in a while.

The pitch at Springfield Park had taken an overnight soaking of biblical proportions but was finally deemed fit for play around 4.00pm. The strip was right on the edge of the square, creating one massive boundary and one ominously short one. The Tavs mantra ‘ABF’ was bandied about as usual, but in the event Thommo lost the toss leaving Shakey’s skipper Toby with a decision to make which he admitted he had hoped to avoid. In the end, he elected to bat.

Meanwhile, the Tavs on the sidelines (except Baz) were tucking into the beers and mezze generously provided by the Cripster. Boon-Doc Blunden, who as anyone that has shared a flight with him will know, knows a thing or two about tinned beer, declared that this was the only occasion on which Fosters was a good option. A smorgasbord of pork pies, felafel, salamis, hummus, crisps and nuts helped soak up the amber nectar.

Tavs first choice opening pair of Alo and Ollie geared up their weary bodies and once again, as they have all season, bowled with pace, control and variation to keep the openers tied down, before removing one each, both clean bowled. Alo also had an LBW shout turned down that was plumber than Stanley Fletcher holding a plumb line in one hand and eating a plum with the other. The demise of the openers brought danger man Toby to the crease along with the impressively dreadlocked Orande. In his third over, Alo pulled his groin/was hit for two massive sixes (not necessarily in that order) but still finished with 1 for 19 off 3 despite the brace of maximums. Ollie bowled out for 1 for 20.

Silky came on first change bowling tight lines and was a bit unlucky to concede a few boundaries off inside edges and mishits. He was rewarded with the wicket of the big hitting Orande, well caught behind by the skipper. At the other end, Thommo rotated his options. Tripper looked rusty in his first over but tightened up for his second. Baz bowled like the opening bat he now is, but in his defence it is hard to bowl with clenched arse cheeks and the constant threat of producing an Havana omelette. JB nicked one out thanks to a good catch by Thompson after a bit of a juggle, but the pick of the change bowlers was Mezze-Man, Crip. He clean bowled both Toby and the mighty Mohsin and finished with figures of 2 for 24 off 3 overs. Despite some decent bowling all round, the combination of some big hitting and the short boundary meant that after the 20 overs, Shakeys had amassed 180 runs for the loss of 6 wickets. Probably 20 or so over par, but by no means out of sight…

Tripper and Boon-Doc opened against the Shakey’s orange ball and moved along steadily enough, moving to 20 without loss after 3 and a bit overs - ahead of where Shakeys had been at the same stage. Tripper, playing his first game in over a year, looked in decent touch before falling to a rash shot and being cleaned out. Pete T joined Doc at the crease to be greeted by the sight of a small child called George coming on to bowl, the classic hiding-to-nothing scenario. Four balls later, Pete was back on the boundary, clean bowled for 1 by said child. He was in good company though, as young George proceeded to also clean bowl Bomber and the skipper. Meanwhile, Doc had fallen victim to Vicky’s wiles. The only high point of this session of play was Bomber's first ball faced, which he smashed over mid wicket for 6. Sadly, this was about as good as it got for the rest of the innings. Silky showed resistance, scoring 18 off 27. Ollie and Crip both came and went, Baz again batted well for 12 off 11 before Silky lofted one straight, leaving JB not out at the other end and Tavs all out for 77 in under 15 overs. Alo, by now having decided he had done both groins, elected not to bat with the game gone - probably the wise decision, although naturally he was lambasted for it.

With quite a few Hackney locals unable to make the journey back to Highgate, fines were convened at the local Crooked Billet - minus Baz who, not for the first time in his life, had to rush off to find an acceptable toilet. Alo accompanied Baz with his groins and Silky shot off on his two hour odyssey home. This being the Tavs, despite the absolute hammering spirits were high and a lively fines session ensued. Thommo awarded Crip the MOTM award for his excellent mezze, plus a bit of bowling. Bomber’s 6 was Champagne Moment and Alo’s groin(s) unanimous Babycham Moment.