Tuesday June 30th 2015

Not many cricketers (and maybe coaches) read the Laws of the game. I now quote from The Spirit of Cricket which is admittedly only a pre-amble rather than part of the actual Laws; more?s the pity, as I have often argued before (in a disappointingly woolly sense it is because Law 42 says that The responsibility lies with the captains for ensuring that play is conducted within the spirit and traditions of the game, as described in The Preamble – The Spirit of Cricket, as well as within the Laws). Anyway, the Spirit of the Game describes it as ?cheating? or ?sharp practice? to seek to distract an opponent either verbally or by harassment with persistent clapping or unnecessary noise under the guise of enthusiasm and motivation of one’s own side (my emphases).

Many people, admittedly of an older generation, can’t bear watching schools cricket any more because of the nonsense that nowadays goes with it: ludicrous noise, clapping, shouting, everybody called Buddy or Fella, wides applauded with cries of ?well bowled?, catches greeted as if you’ve just won the football World Cup etc etc. It’s all cheating of course (see above), intended not to encourage your own side but to intimidate the batsmen. I was therefore delighted to hear of a school match recently where the umpires, fed up with all this, instructed the fielding captain that the game would now be conducted in complete silence. Sounds like a good wheeze to me. Actually, it was a bit more complicated than that, but let?s leave it there for the moment. And on Saturday I watched a match played exactly as it should be: highly competitive, but with none of the above nonsense from either side. Hugely refreshing.

Free at last! Free at last! Mildly disrespectful to quote a much more serious cause but schools burst free from the shackles of the exam term, which has gone way beyond a joke, to play as much cricket as possible, in some cases almost every day. Encouraging too to see schools playing some two-day games, a format which is very different from the all too usual 50-over version and takes considerable skill (particularly from the captains) to make a good contest.

Shrewsbury?s Oliver Westbury scored his sixth century of the season in a two-day game against Uppingham (only James Taylor has done better for the school) and reached 1000 for the season in all forms of the game; there is still a festival of three matches being played this week. Shrewsbury declared after 60 overs, with Uppingham finishing the first day on 156-9 after 45 overs. They were soon dismissed on the second morning and invited to follow on 138 runs behind. As so often happens, they made a better fist of it second time round and batted through most of the day until they were bowled out in their 94th over and the second over of the last hour, leaving Shrewsbury to chase 179 off a minimum of 15 overs. This proved an impossible task, and the captains shook hands with two overs remaining and Shrewsbury 59 runs short. In a later 20-over match against touring Brighton Grammar School, Shrewsbury?s Daniel Lloyd took a hat-trick.

Oakham partnership

Oakham?s opening pair Will Wolstenholme (Fifth form) and Sam Horrell (Lower Sixth) ? pictured above – chased a fairly demanding total of 219 for four in a 40-over match with some style against a club side, Holcott Arcadians CC. They rattled up a partnership of 214 in only 24.5 overs before Wolstenholme was out for 102 and the total was overcome in 26.1 overs, Horrell finishing on 101 not out.

Kingswood clinched the Peak Sports League (Bath and surrounding area) with a hard-fought victory over their nearest rivals and the title holders, Dauntsey’s. Kingswood managed 192 for eight in their 40 overs, and Dauntsey?s fell just 14 short at 178 for nine, Kingswood?s captain Rowan Duckworth taking six for 24 with some quick bowling.

Local rivals Taunton and Wellington enjoyed a tight little game at Taunton. In a 40-over match, Taunton were bowled out for 168, and even that was achieved only by a last-wicket partnership of 35. Wellington seemed to be cruising to victory but when Brendan Howe was dismissed, they began to wobble. Needing 31 from seven overs and with only six wickets down, they then lost three wickets in three overs, leaving twelve to win from the last three overs. They finished five short when number eleven, attempting a four, chipped to mid-on.

There was a special page last Friday about the National Twenty20 finals day at Arundel. To go to that page, click here.

Results:

Leicestershire Under-16 X1 181-9 dec,*Oakham 35-2 (rain)
Ipswich 139, *Felsted 142-0
Abingdon 127, *Clifton 129-8
Bristol GS 253-9 (50 overs) (T Rowland 100), *Plymouth 254-7
Colston Basset CC 179 (40 overs) (B Shaw 100), *Ratcliffe 182-1 (J Nightingale 101 not out)
Colfe’s 87 (T Flint 5-19), *Sevenoaks 88-5
Wiltshire Queries 260-8 dec, *Dauntsey?s 194
Oakham 157, *Oundle 161-2
Wellingbrough 204, *Stowe 206-4
*Oakham 171 (J Keeping 5-66), Stowe 0-0 (rain)
*Stowe 200-8 (40 overs), Westminster (Aus) 153-9
*Stowe 186 (40 overs), Myerscough 151-9
*Dauntsey?s 244-9 dec, XL club 204-4
*Bristol GS 149, Clifton 150-4
*Shrewsbury 299-7 dec (O Westbury 112) & 120-4, Uppingham 161 & 316
Cranleigh 277-7 (50 overs) (O Pope 102), *RGS Guildford 134
MCC 212 (A Dahl 5-72), *Cranleigh 214-6
Harrow 219-7 (50 overs), *Cranleigh 188
*Ratcliffe 178-2 (20 overs), School Masters XI 170-4
Westminster (Aus) 140, *Clifton 143-2
*Winchester 153 (50 overs), Harrow 157-5
Cheltenham 216-7 (50 overs)(J Dell 133 not out), *Winchester 217-5
St Kentigern (NZ) 181 (50 overs), *Bede’s 184-6
*Bede’s 252-9 (50 overs), Hurstpierpoint 159
*St Peter’s, York 257-9 (45 overs), Trinity GS (Aus) 144
MCC 256-8 dec (A Mason 110), *RGS Worcester 231 (R Wilkinson 5-31)
Tonbridge 285-9 (55 overs), *Radley 215
Holcott Arcadians CC 219-4 (40 overs), *Oakham 223-1 (W Horrell 102 not out, S Wolstenholme 102)
MCC 219-6 (50 overs), St Peter’s,York 221-9
MCC 233-5 dec, *Clayesmore 172
Bede’s 252-9 (50 overs), Hurstpierpoint 156
Haberdashers’ Aske’s 96 (45 overs),*Bancroft’s 98-5
*Shrewsbury 137-8 (20 overs), Brighton GS (Aus) 113-8 ( D Lloyd hat-trick)
*Pocklington 144 (W Huffer 5-16), St. Peter’s,York 145-7
Marlborough 180,*St Edward’s 181-7
MCC 209-4 (50 overs),*Sevenoaks 210-6 (C White 127)
*Bradford GS 186, Hymers 188-6
RGS Worcester 286-8 (50 overs) (S Gandhi 5-57),*Bristol GS 122
King’s Taunton 220-7 (50 overs),*Clifton 194
MCC 212-7 dec (S Marsh 6-65), *Christ?s Hospital 173
Dr Challoner?s GS 111-8 (20 overs), *Reading Blue Coat 115-8
Aylesbury GS 156-4 (20 overs), *Reading Blue Coat 160-5
Forest (Wokingham) 163-2 (20 overs), *Reading Blue Coat 167-3
*John Lyon 168-8 (35 overs), Reading Blue Coat 127 (T Marshall 5-18)
Old Blues 275-5 (50 overs) (J Halson 103 not out), *Reading Blue Coat 276-8 (M Andersson 137 not out)
*Eton 2nd XI 269-6 (50 overs), Reading Blue Coat 145-10 (M Dundas 5-23)
Dr Challoner?s GS 186-7 (35 overs),*Reading Blue Coat 188-6
MCC 249-7 (50 overs), *Reading Blue Coat 250-7 (M Andersson 118)
*Woodhouse Grove 210-8 (40 overs), Wath 0-0 (rain)
Woodhouse Grove 271-3 dec (B Worcester 100), *Ampleforth 50 (J Godfrey 5-16)
MCC 266-7dec, *Woodhouse Grove 181-8
Woodhouse Grove 245-5 (45 overs), *Stockport GS 171
*Reading Blue Coat 142, Magdalen College School 144-3
*Taunton 168, Wellington 163
MCC 230 (C Harrison 5-62), *King’s Taunton 231-4 (B Lynch 100 not out)
*Kingswood 192-8 (40 overs) (R Duckworth 6-24), Dauntsey’s 178-9 (Peak Sports League)
Old Dauntseians 188-9 (40 overs), *Dauntsey’s 189-7
*Clayesmore 170 (W Hendy 100) & 83, Plymouth 237-8 dec & 21-1
*Framlingham 85 (B Waring 5-26), Felsted 86-1
Wellingborough 204,*Stowe 206-4
MCC 195-8 dec,*Wellingborough 179 (D Foster 5-45)
Bablake 119 (40 overs),*Wellingborough 121-4
*Reed’s 291-9 dec, XL Club 127
*Lord Wandsworth 207, Reed’s 211-3
Old Reedonians 302-5 dec, Reed’s 284

National Twenty20 competition ? regional finals

London section final
St Albans 147-6, Reed?s 153-3
Reed?s play Hurstpierpoint in the South region final

North region final
Sedbergh 144-7, Woodhouse Grove 138-5
Sedbergh now play at Arundel on finals day (July 3rd)

East (and West Midlands & Wales) region final
Bedford 146-6, Malvern 147-5
Malvern now play at Arundel on finals day

South region final
Hurstpierpoint 211-5, Reed’s 133-8
Hurstpierpoint now play at Arundel on finals day

West/ South Central region final
*Wellington 171-6, SGS (Filton) 144
Wellington now play at Arundel on finals day