The 14th July 2013 was predicted to be the hottest day of the year so far with wall to wall sunshine. Their brand new club house sat proudly at the top of the car park overlooking the cricket pitch all shinny and new but most importantly the large flat screen TV above the fireplace showing the final day of the Test Match between England and Australia; it seemed a forgone conclusion that England would win but Australia were fighting back, the England supporters were quietened and the Australian supporters were now all the more vocal as their lower order batsmen were piling on the runs, getting ever nearer to victory.
Summoned to the middle by Odiham’s captain proudly sporting their 1st team kit announced that it is too hot to play for too long and so we were going to play a 35 over game. Losing the toss Odiham decided to bat first, pile on the runs to put the game beyond our reach, but they didn’t bank on our opening partnership of Mykie (NPL) and Mahesh being so effective; each bowled 7 overs and Mykie bagged 2 wickets for 37 runs and Mahesh bagged a wicket for a very economical 32 runs. They were backed up by Meat who bowled 7 overs, 0 wickets for 32 runs. Smarty bowled 7 overs, 1 wicket for 22 runs; Argy Bhaji bowled 4 overs, 1 wicket for 38 runs and finally L’tle Rich bowled 2 overs, 0 wickets for 14 runs which restricted Odiham to 182.
Not only did they have a brand spanking new clubhouse, the traditional tea they laid on was fantastic; only one problem, you cannot eat too much if you are opening the batting but I had a good go of consuming an array of sandwiches, cakes and scones then more sandwiches, cakes and scones. I wanted to carry on but I had to think of the team and pad up. Tuffers and Daisy strolled out to the middle (still eating cake) and mumbled to Clint the guard I required and was promptly told to finish eating before I speak; something that I had told the kids on many occasions.
Odiham got off to a good start by bowling Tuffers without troubling the scorer; unfortunately for Odiham this brought to the crease Meat who hit a very quick 34 before being bowled by their off-spinner. L’tle Rich was next in and determined to cement his place at number 4 and he too scored a quick 21 before trying to pull a short ball from their spinner which he top edged straight into his eye. It was a nasty looking injury and he had to retire hurt for medical treatment. It was so bad his mum even stopped talking to have a look but all that did was to give her something else to talk about.
A little later their skipper came on to bowl and first ball captured Daisy’s wicket who trundled off very hot having contributed 77.
I think this is a favourite ground for Rusty having previously scored a 50 here who went in to score an unbeaten 25 with contributions from Argy Bhaji and Smarty to take us to victory in only 30 overs.
I must mention Clint who had a great game behind the stumps and Scoop who had an exhausting day in the hot sunshine where the ball followed him no matter where he fielded.
With victory under our belt we retired to their brand new bar; Odiham & Greywell are the main supporters of the local ‘Andwell’ Brewery where ‘Gold Muddler’ was the clear favourite although we also had the choice of their summer ale, ‘King John’, ‘Ruddy Darter’ or Resolute Bitter. We enjoyed their hospitality until dusk when we were asked to leave as they wanted to go home.
This is what the summer and cricket is all about.
Thank you every one for making it such a great day.
P.S. England won with Australia only needing 14 more runs for victory.