Picture the scene, the opposition, chasing down 240 on a ground with a quick outfield are off to an ok start, 26 fer 1. The opener is starting to time the ball nicely and has progressed to 16 off 23 balls. Jason Derulo bowls a full slower bowl which deceives him and he spoons it in the air back over Jases’ head; the cry of catch it reverberates around the sparse, cold field. Mid on turns and starts to sprint after the ball, the wind rushing through his hair; the ball starts to drop, it looks like the batsmen may have got enough on it… But wait, the fielder leaps backwards, reminiscent of a beached whale trying to get back to the safety of the sea. He unfurls his hands and arches his back to gain those few extra inches. Time stands still. No one can see if the catch is made, the impact of the fielder on the ground creates a tremor that reminds Albie of being back in Tokyo… no one had called for the heavy roller. The moment of truth, the fielder gets up, grin etched onto his rugged features; ball securely in hand. I had taken a screamer….
The coastal town of Hull was next up on our tour of the finer establishments of Yorkshire, famous for its bridge, its average football team and for generally being a pretty dire place. With wind speeds high enough to almost lift the Berlin Wall off his feet Governor Dixon lost the toss and we were inserted on a deck with more than a tinge of green about it, some say it was greener than the first girl who saw me naked. Callis opened up with the Ninja Turtle in the absence of Blade, who was busy checking out retirement homes in Devon; and with 3 on the board the human monkey decided to play a forward defensive with his back pad and was adjudged L to the B to the W. William Thomas Root strutted to the wicket with his own words “Hull players think I’m a legend” reverberating around the cavernous space between his ears. They’ll think your even more of a legend if you keep getting out first ball against them Bill, although the catch was admittedly a blinder, although it didn’t quite show the unbelievable tekkers that mine would later display. Out trudged Riaz “ghetto booty” Richards with the score at 3-2… soon the score was 48-2 with Riaz on 41, courtesy of some sublime shots that had Wall-e’s dog peeing on a fencepost with excitement. Albie was manfully sticking to his task and had scored a mightily impressive 4 when the 50 came up. Soon he reached the magically double figures owing to a debatable 6; did the ball land on the line? Everyone else says no but I was so quick raising my arms in the motion commonly associated with the giving of 6 runs that the decision was given. With the score at 87 Rizla chipped a catch to depart for a marvellous 64. A vital partnership with Albus broken after 84 majestic runs. MaccaDonalds was next in and he immediately looked in good touch, together him and Albuquerque took the score to 133 before Albie played on to Bills favourite cricketer in the whole wide world for a gutsy 37. The Great Wall of China came in next and did a fine job in giving Macca the strike. Macca who was now striking the ball maccanificently took the total along with Wallsall up to 211 before the latter fell for 28. The teams other player of oriental looks, Wongy came and went for 4, stumped by quite a long way to say the least. Edward McKenna had meanwhile departed for 75, caught on the square leg boundary aiming for 6 of the best. J-Dog had started brutally marmalising the ball and dominated the scoring in the latter stages with 17 of 10 including 2 maximums. With myself departing for one and T-bone steak hitting an all run 4 we closed our innings on a very respectable 241-8. Hulls wickets were shared around, James Phillips taking 3 fer.
Tea was the best of the season so far, anyplace that gives you onion rings AND roast potatoes has to feature highly. Sandwich choice was limited but well made and dessert was again limited but scored highly on taste. Only let down were the sausage rolls which quite frankly were vile.
J-Dizzle had the honour of bowling the first over and it soon became clear that length was going to be key; anything short sat up and asked to be spanked like a waitresses bottom when she bends over in tight trousers. T-Diddy, bowling into the wind as his lack of hair means less wind resistance, got the first wicket of the innings and of his season as he got a ball to nibble back a little and cannon into the stumps. Hull 10-1. Next to go was Hulls’ other opener to a catch that, while being well described, will never quite be described well enough by mere words. After Audi TT had finished his opening spell with the fine figures of 7 overs 1 fer 21 it was time for Bill “I am Legend” Root to come on and bowl into the wind. He hurried some balls through at a thoroughly decent pace and bowled many balls that had the batsmen hopping around like a 70s punk concert. However, the curse of the slow pitch came to the fore again and anything fractionally short was seized upon gleefully by the Hull batsmen. Jason Fisher finished his spell with figures of 10 overs 1 fer 40 and it was time for the game changing decision. Matthew Dixon OBE, MBE and LS brought himself on. In a simply stunning spell (good alliteration) he bamboozled batsmen after batsmen on his way to taking the outstanding figures of 15 overs 6 fer 46. He showed a mastery of control last seen when Luke Skywalker was flying his X-Wing fighter. After Bilbo had come off after bowling 7 wicket less overs for 28 (5 years and counting for that first wicket! It will happen!) I found myself on and playing a supporting role to the wizardry of the Silver Fox. After Dicko had removed Hulls’ version of Kieron Pollard, there only really looked like being one winner; and so it was proved when the 2nd poshest boy in the game (one of my friends was playing for Hull and his Dad owns Aunt Bessie’s so he is by rights posher!) had the Hull number 11 stumped to finish with figures of 10.4 overs 2 fer 29 and Hull were dismissed for 171 with 5 overs left. Collegiate 3 from 3 in the league and flying high in 3rd place. Team song has yet to be decided on but the Aussie with the fit girlfriend seems desperate to have one so it could be in the pipeline!