Saxton Cricket Club vs The Greyhound
Sunday 3rd September 2017, Match Report by Steve Moxon.
Saxton Ashes 2017 – The future is bright, the future is… sort of…..Oringe!
Henry McCarty, AKA William H. Bonney was known to have taken 8 victims in his illustrious career. Based on his first senior appearance, Saxton’s own Billy the Kid will surpass that feat by some distance and most likely before he is 10!
After a few years absence, the Saxton Ashes - club versus Greyhound pub was resurrected and based on the day’s events made a compelling case for a return to the annual calendar.
Keeping with tradition, the majority of players arrived after the allotted 2 pm start time, a considerable portion having partaken of a healthy liquid lunch at the opposition sponsor’s hostelry.
The toss was taken, the Greyhound were to bat first and by around 2:30 they managed to get 2 individuals attired for the game, into the middle and it was time for the support act of Steve Moxon and the returning Dan Gilbertson to make their mark on the game.
Steve took the ball for the first over with Joe Ball facing. A Saxton player yesterday but clearly a stroke of genius on someone’s part to allow him to play for the opposition. Steve gets a bit of turn first ball and Joe edges. The only challenge is whether Danny Walsh can focus on the real ball of the three that he is seeing – he does and Joe “golden” Ball is heading back to the pavilion (this wasn’t to be the last time in the day he had to hang his head in shame).
Next out was birthday boy Jake. Jake had been promised at least a 2 ball innings but somehow Steve manages to put one on the stumps, timber is scattered and up goes the “no ball” shout from umpire Hills (footnote, Wetherby league are aware of this performance and have demanded his availability for officiating somewhere in the league next week). Time for captain Bottomley to have a quiet word in Steve’s ear. “Steve slow down, we’ll be all done in 4 overs at this rate, bowl outside off”. This might have been a reasonable request of anyone who was used to throwing the ball down in earnest. However, Steve’s next ball “aimed outside off” takes out middle stump and Jake is free to enjoy a few more birthday beers! Steve did manage to follow his orders for the rest of the over.
Harry bowled a tidy one at the pavilion end before Dan took over from Steve at the equestrian end. Any thoughts Gareth had that this change might slow down the wicket taking were misplaced as Dan took out the 2 Johns, the first with the support of the elder Oringe and then forcing John Potter to drive straight back into his welcoming hands for a caught and bowled. Neither had troubled the scorer and the Greyhound were 5 for 4.
The Greyhound did then show some resistance as Charlie and Chris Atkinson steadied the ship. The score had moved to 62 by the end of the 14th. It should have been for 5 but Oliver shamefully dropped off of Bill’s bowling (which was nowhere near being a bump ball for the record!).
Atkinson got his 26 and retired whilst Oliver made amends for his fielding error with a wicket in his second over. In the field Nick Dee entertained with a boundary save which included a sojourn into the surf slide he’d set up to keep the kids occupied and Danny Walsh was clearly focusing more on the refreshments as he prioritised keeping his beer in the bottle above stopping the ball.
At the end of the 19th over, the Greyhound were on 101 for 6 and thinking they could hit out big in the last over to set Saxton a more challenging target. They hadn’t read the script!
Step forward William Borrowdale, Saxton’s own Billy the Kid. First ball goes for one before mayhem ensues and Dunny is run out on the second going for a single that just wasn’t there. Sean, having then got to the other end, goes for a mighty sweep and father and son combine for a neat stumping (was that dust in Oringe’s eye or a little bit of emotion?).
Up steps Greyhound captain Jem, another on Saxton duty yesterday and another “golden” transfer as, first ball, he lofts optimistically in the direction of one Mr Cunningham, who disappointingly for Jem firmly decided not to ‘Ian It’ on this occasion!
2 balls left and out steps Mick. Bill’s first ball to him goes straight through to Dad, no run. Final ball of the day, up comes Bill, Mick goes for it, bat misses ball and the castle is dismantled – bowled! 4 wickets in the last over and Bill finishes with figures of 3 for 2 off 3 overs. He proudly leads his team off to great applause from both teams, a healthy group of spectators and a slightly emotional Mum.
The Greyhound head out for the field with a lot of bottle. No, actually with a lot of bottles, mainly Budweisser!
Gareth clearly thought Saxton needed a healthy start as he sent out Oli and Dan Gilbertson to open. Setting a strike rate that would have given Arthur Scargill palpitations, Saxton had made 27 by the third over when Dan mistimed one and was caught by Noble off Potter’s bowling. Out steps Josh for his moment of glory – first ball is a wide, second ball he’s stumped going for the big one. Question, first ball was not legit so does that make it a golden? Saxton CC, discuss.
Time for William Borrowdale to make his senior batting debut and Oliver and Bill put on a partnership of 20 before Oliver puts orthodox in his back pocket and gets bowled playing across.
The Hollywood script writers are gathering in their numbers as Oringe heads out to the middle to bat with his son in their first senior match together. They have moved the score on to 60 when the Greyhound’s own Voldemort enters the stage. Maybe his mind was still on getting out first ball to one of Saxton’s lower than average bowlers when he put one down that beat Bill and hit the stumps. Bill exits having scored a very credible 5 runs and Joe gets the ‘applause’ normally reserved for Pantomime villains.
Harry Barlow enters the fray and he and Oringe push the score on to a respectable 80 by the end of the 16th. Recognising the target is achievable as long as treated with some urgency, Oringe goes for one and is stumped.
Danny Walsh heads out and bats flamboyantly (I’m sure it had nothing to do with the amount of alcohol consumed) before being caught.
17 needed off 3 and a bit overs and out steps, Saxton’s Mr Ambidextrous (AKA Nick Dee). With the game finely balanced Nick decided that this was the ideal opportunity to check out his left hand technique. 4 runs added in the 18th, 12 now needed off 2! Nick reads the script, reverts to right hand and as we enter the 20th over the scores are level and Harry is on strike. Second ball Harry drives exquisitely for 4 to win the match, finishing on 13 not out, to add to some very tidy bowling figures.
The scorebook will always show that Saxton CC beat the Greyhound in a tight game. We’re all familiar with the phrase “It’s just not cricket” and in the last week we’ve heard about a team declaring on 18 for 1 just to win a trophy. Today epitomised everything that true cricket evangelists love in the game. Played in great spirit, with a wonderful sense of humour and valuing the future of our game. With the likes of Harry and man of the match Bill, Saxton’s future is in good hands. We look forward to many more days like today with our good friends from the Greyhound but watch out because we do intend to use this as a place to unleash our future talent!