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“Another Rapturous Evening Out

 

 

Match:  16 / 397

Lost by 31 runs

 

 

Team

 

Total

Middleton Stoney CC

143 - 6

T. Smith  3 - 17

 

FFTMCC

112 - 3

R. Hadfield  26*,  D. Shorten  22

 

 

 

 

Middleton Stoney sounds like a fictional village from a J. R. R. Tolkien novel, but is actually a reality just 2.5 miles west of Bicester. It also represents the jewel in the crown of long-winded, late afternoon journeys through Oxfordshire’s pitiful road network following a less than spine tingling day in the office. Unless of course your name is Mr R. P. Turner, you own your own printing press and live just down the road.

 

Team MAD have played in the scenic and charming surrounds of Middleton Park twice before. They got a total hammering in the darkness in 2014, but prevailed in the light in 2015. Henceforth, there is very simple formula for which a degree of success can be gleaned from the evening’s cricketing fare. Win the toss, bat first, and ensure your batsmen can actually see the lacquered red object before lengthening shadows give way to mining helmets and moonlight.

 

 

 

 

Onto the action… after an extended period of wanton fannying about and Skipper Shorten wins the toss. Fantastic news. And we’re… having a… bowl. Oh, joy. A most brilliantly inventive, well researched and inspired decision.

 

During a quiet and distinctly pedestrian opening, the scoreboard would read 42-0 after the first 2 overs. Mr Shorten (3-0-29-0) went for an inconsiderable 11, whilst Mr Howarth was only slightly more profligate in going for 31. It is worth noting however, that there were three excellent dot balls delivered during this passage of play, and also, lest we forget, some magnificent ball searches undertaken by the team – threshing around though the long grass and brambles a good distance past an undistinguishable boundary line.

 

After Mr R. Simpson’s protracted and humble knock of 52 retired off 18 balls, the rest of the home team added 81 runs with the addition of 10 extras. Bowling was tidy as a whole, with Howarth’s (4-0-47-1) second spell mesmerising in bringing his bowling average down from a workmanlike 31.00 to a modest and more satisfactory 11.75. Other standouts in the FFTMCC side were Mr J. W. Pearson (4-1-15-1) who didn’t bowl at R. Simpson, Mr T. P. W. Smith (3-0-17-3) who didn’t bowl at R. Simpson and Mr J. D. Hoskins (4-0-19-1) who did bowl a few at R. Simpson – and was understandably shocked and saddened that the batsman retired before James inevitably claimed his wicket.

 

A paltry 144 to chase in the gloom with the excitable ambience of bats, owls and other forest denizens chirping into life.

 

 

 

Mr R. P. Turner studies a floating red ball – can it be eaten?

 

 

In reply, openers Turner (20) and Hill (9) coped admirably with a surfeit of bouncers and short stuff, with Hill in particular, a baseball player by trade with little in the way of cricketing nous or technique, delighting in the balls that tickled his whiskers and grazed his spectacles.

 

Ever the man to up a tempo, Skipper Shorten (22) unfurled some lusty blows, before acute tiredness and a childhood fear of the dark forced his early exit. Shame, for a fleeting moment with balls sailing out the stadia, the more deluded members of Team MAD dared believe. Then again, a casual stroll through a lunatic asylum shows that faith does not prove anything.

 

Hobbit R. Hadfield (26*) was now joined at the crease by Bilbo Howarth (20*), and not withstanding that this could’ve been the most vertically challenged MAD partnership in history – it was quite possibly the darkest too.

 

Following much swishing of the air, cursing and ball by ball adjustments to MAD night-goggles, Middleton then opted to bring back their opening bowlers at the death with an insubstantial 40 runs to defend off the final 12 deliveries. A grandstand finish saw batsmen Hotson and Westmoreland look up to the night sky and thank God they weren’t required out in the middle.

 

 

 

Mr N. Hill (batting) deftly manages to avoid a brain injury and subsequent coma and probable death.

 

 

The post-match ritual of a non-vegetarian barbeque and home side speech was now observed, with wisdom concerning certain rules and regulations not in keeping with localised law expanded to all. The bar was also now open, whereupon Mr R. P. Turner and family could be found, in jovial, nay animated discussion, regarding wife Madge’s outstanding £100 bar chitty.

 

With votes cast concerning who did what and who didn’t do that much at all, the FFTMCC returned borrowed torches after locating their cars and disappeared off into the night. Mr Turner remained on at the ground after being alerted to spare rolls and a supply of unloved Cumberland sausages on the coals.

 

Further joy and eternal happiness awaits this scribe tomorrow, as he returns to his soulless office and fitful pangs of a wasted life, tempered slightly however, by such a rewarding and gratifying cricketing experience the previous evening.

 

 

‘Mr. D. Pan’

 

 

 

 

 

*

 

 

Statto Scorecards

 

 

 

Far from the MCC versus Middleton Stoney CC

Played at Middleton Park, 28 July 2016

 

Far from the MCC won the toss and elected to field

Middleton Stoney CC won by 31 runs

 

Far from the MCC debuts:  none

 

 

16 / 397

 

 

 

 

 

20 over match

 

 

 

Team

Middleton Stoney CC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Batsman

How Out

Total

Balls

4s

6s

FOW

1

R. Simpson

retired

52

(18)

4

5

-

2

M. Ford-Langstaff

b Hoskins

14

(11)

3

-

1-49

3

J. Springer

c Hadfield b Pearson

3

(9)

-

-

2-70

4

A. Willcock

c Shorten b Smith

34

(30)

3

2

3-114

5

S. Jackson †

c Hadfield b Smith

15

(29)

1

-

5-125

6

J. Mumtaz

c Shorten b Howarth

0

(2)

-

-

4-119

7

P. Wordsworth

not out

13

(15)

2

-

-

8

O. Selway

b Smith

1

(5)

-

-

6-136

9

S. Midson

not out

1

(3)

-

-

-

10

J. Ford-Langstaff

 

 

 

 

 

 

11

S. Lee *

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Extras

NB2, W4, LB3, B1

10

 

 

 

 

 

TOTAL

(for 6 wickets, 20 overs)

143

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Bowler

Overs

Maidens

Runs

Wkts

 

1

Shorten

3

0

29

0

 

2

Howarth

4

0

47

1

 

3

Hoskins

4

0

19

1

 

4

Pearson

4

1

15

1

 

5

Smith

3

0

17

3

 

6

Westmoreland

2

0

12

0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Notes:  R. Simpson retired at 70-1 (5.3 overs)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Team

Far from the MCC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Batsman

How Out

Total

Balls

4s

6s

FOW

1

R. P. Turner

b Midson

20

(26)

4

-

2-35

2

N. S. Hill

c Jackson b Midson

9

(20)

-

-

1-28

3

R. J. B. Hadfield

not out

26

(37)

-

-

-

4

D. Shorten *

b Willcock

22

(15)

1

1

3-65

5

I. Howarth

not out

20

(26)

2

-

-

6

J. C. W. Hotson

 

 

 

 

 

 

7

M. T. Westmoreland

 

 

 

 

 

 

8

J. W. Pearson

 

 

 

 

 

 

9

T. P. W. Smith

 

 

 

 

 

 

10

M. Bullock †

 

 

 

 

 

 

11

J. D. Hoskins

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Extras

NB4, W6, LB1, B4

15

 

 

 

 

 

TOTAL

(for 3 wickets, 20 overs)

112

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Bowler

Overs

Maidens

Runs

Wkts

 

1

Selway

4

1

12

0

 

2

J. Ford-Langstaff

4

0

12

0

 

3

Midson

2

0

14

2

 

4

Wordsworth

2

0

19

0

 

5

Willcock

2

0

10

1

 

6

Mumtaz

2

0

7

0

 

7

Simpson

1

0

6

0

 

8

M. Ford-Langstaff

1

0

10

0

 

9

Springer

1

0

11

0

 

10

Lee

1

0

7

0

 

 

 

 

 

MOTM:  T. P. W. Smith

Champagne Moment:  D. Shorten’s maximum into the trees over deep cow

Buffet Award:  I. Howarth’s sumptuous steak and kidney pies (with cheap gravy)

 

 

Opposition:  V079 / 03

Ground:  G071 / 03

Captain:  C016 / 21