OUCCC vs Emeriti

at Mansfield Road, May 16th 2004


A controversial win, on a bright sunny, beautiful day. It started when we all arrived half an hour early only to find 22 well-motivated, angry, frenzied women kicking around a ball on our pitch, elucidating the comment from one of our more experienced members: "There's something wrong with this picture." Little did we know it wasn't the last time an angry frenzied woman would kick around some balls on our "sacred" pitch. Comments about hair-dryers and mirrors in the men's changeroom floated around as we all marvelled at our wonderful new pavilion. Jason especially happy that he finally found a changeroom worthy of taking a shower in. We all know you really work out a sweat standing at slip the whole day and only scoring three singles. In the meanwhile experiments were being run on how much bounce will be extracted from the Manny road pitch. Guys, it might have looked and felt new and hard, but it still played the same. My continued form in losing the toss ensured that we were sent out to field in some blistering heat. Our new-look subcontinental attack of Deb and Hamaad opened up with a fiery spell, but both were unlucky not to pick up any wickets. It was during this opening spell that Watto suddenly caught my attention and said: ?I?ll just be off for an over?, only to be seen 5 overs later. Now at first I thought that it was an urgent call of nature, but it soon became clear that he?s balls was in some other kind of grip than the natural. Now we all know by now how, when and why he left the field; but given the fact that this is a personal matter, and that we have already absurdly examined this issue for hours in a very soapie-like manner in the pub, I feel nothing more needs to be said. I know that last year we debated the issue of the girlfriend who attends and the girlfriend who bakes. Given what happened on Sunday I must say my vote have been changed to the girlfriend who bakes, in fact I'd rather prefer that they didn't even know where we were playing. It was only the introduction of Martin at the Balliol end, that suddenly brought us two quick wickets, as well as all of our attention back to onfield matters. Sam bowled a tidy spell, but was refused a couple of very close LBW shouts. It was about this time that Watto made his return in a very angered and red-faced state, which was obviously the perfect time to bring him on. Now whatever might have transpired off the field, Watto bowled as fast and as feisty as I?ve ever seen him bowl, completely beating batsmen with his speed. (Maybe a case for the girlfriend who attends can yet be made.) Had he bowled a bit more accurate and the umpiring been a bit more forgiving, he would have ended up with a lot more wickets. However, he ended with the excellent figures of 3/17 and a warning for dissent ("How's that not f*$&x%$ out"). Bumby failed to impress with his usual pies, and their innings was finally ended with a couple of runouts in the 40th over. Leaving Deb to complain about how he always gets to bowl at the kids and the elderly, yet never is able to take their wickets. Mention must be made of Martin being involved in all three runouts, one hitting the wickets directly, while lying on his back. Tea was had on the ?dick? of our new pavilion, with Jason finally meriting his selection with his wife?s brownies. With our recent history of chasing down small targets without any fuss, 174 in 40 overs did not seem to be a problem. However we soon found ourselves in trouble at 41 for 4, with McNally showing us his one leg-side shot, three times in a row, only to be bowled on the third occasion; and Jason mystified by how he could be bowled when he actually hit the ball playing well forward. Enter Watto, who has in the last three weeks become the ?Bevan of Oxford?, showing his true worth as a middle-order batsman. But in a situation like this calm heads were needed, and Watto soon showed that calmness is not something to be associated with him, rushing down the pitch to a gentle spinner and completely missing the ball. Quickly the bails were taken off and appeals heard all around. However, your benevolent captain calmly gave him not out. Now since many binocular-eyed onlookers, sitting 50 yards away, watching all this action through a wire-fence on the pavilion deck, have questioned my decision and some even call me a cheat; I at first felt it necessary to prepare a whole technical explanation of how modern third umpire replays have shown that a batsmen can easily make more than 2 metres if a keeper takes the ball wide, and how Watto with his wild swing ended up having his bat on his left pointing at about legslip, and all he had to do was to use his rotational momentum to turn slightly around and bring his bat down, which he did quickly enough to beat the keeper who had to take the ball fairly wide. But I don?t think it is needed to either complain about our opposition?s decisions or vindicate our own, because as these wide-eyed sightseers who have previously and frequently complained about decisions made against them understand, we all call it as we see it. Now at the other end there was Benson, our placid unmovable rock adorned with a new shirt, fluently hitting bad balls to the boundary and showing a liking to the late cut, unaltered by all the off- and on-field controversies. Soon he and Watto got on top of the change bowlers and finely chased down the target in the 34th over, with Benson ending on a well-played 79* and Watto, 69*. Leaving Deb to complain how he always have to sit with his pads on, never getting a chance to bat behind Watto. Another good win showing the strength and depth of our team. Discussions at the pub were all about Watto. Including how much to fine him for his sacrilege of the oval field, how many decisions he survived, Jason finding a ?mate? for him, how to handle the girlfriend who attends, and finally who to blame for the whole 5-over awol/treason incident. The following fines and awards were settled on:



Watson: 25 - Leaving the field during innings for 5 overs

- Chicks before mates

- Back to play during delivery

1 - Dropped Catch

1 - Trisha fine

Bumby 1 Dropped Catch

1 Pies

Deb: 1 Trisha fine

1 Abrogation of tea responsibilities

Wenderoth 1 Trisha fine

1 Nobody fine

Booth: 1 - Recalcitrant misfielding

Nomination for Awards:

Watson Most irresponsible act of the season

McNally Best sandwiches of the season

Watson Bevo award the finisher

Dean Most overs in Pavillion with pads on 16 overs

Bumby Worst ball of the season 2 bounces before batsman

Mcnally Worst shot of the season Mindless hoick to leg and being bowled

Benson Best innings of the season 76*

Watson Angry award

If you have any comments about these pages, please email Sam Dean (sdean@atm.ox.ac.uk).