Erratics Cricket Club Erratics v Isis (tour team) on Sat 22 Jun 2019 at 1.00pm
Erratics Cricket Club Won by 4 Wickets

Match report Before I begin my report proper (don’t get your hopes up), let me take you back in time… The date is August 27th 2005. We are nearing the business-end of what is commonly regarded as the greatest Test series of all time. Thanks to the excellence of the cast – on the one side, Trescothick, Vaughan, Pietersen, Flintoff; and on the other Hayden, Langer, Ponting, Gilchrist, Warne, McGrath (and many others) – and the fact that the entire series is broadcast free-to-air, the nation is gripped by cricket fever, the like of which has not been seen before.

Since snatching victory from the jaws of defeat in the second Test at Edgbaston, the England team have been playing the cricket of their lives, testified by the exuberant reaction of the Australian galacticos to securing a draw in the previous Test at Old Trafford. Over the past month or so, Michael Vaughan’s fast-bowling quartet, the ‘four horsemen of the apocalypse’ – Harmison, Hoggard, Flintoff and Jones – have had Australia’s much-vaunted top seven on toast. Indeed, in the Test match in question, England have played so well that, following their own 477 batting first (the highlight of which was an epic, rare Flintoff century), and bowling Australia out for 218 in reply, they are confronted with a choice of whether to enforce the follow-on or not. Skipper Vaughan, always on the front foot, chooses to enforce, but is soon left pondering his decision, having lost his hero of the first innings – Simon Jones – to an ultimately tragic knee injury. The Australians, spear-headed by the limpet-like Langer and their pugnacious captain Ponting – are batting for their lives in reply.

The score is 155-2, still 104 short of making England bat again… Flintoff charges in for what seems like his millionth ball of the summer… The out-of-form Martyn softly drops the ball into the off-side and – via an instinctive understanding with his captain at the other end – sets off for a run… A short, dark-haired fielder at cover attacks the ball, picks it up and in a continuous motion throws down the one stump he has to aim at… The watching crowd (and nation) know immediately that the Australian captain is out… Ponting delivers an expletive-laden rant at the England dressing room… The rest is history: with one series-defining moment the previously unknown Gary Pratt writes himself into cricketing folklore.

One wonders how long the legend of Pratt will live on. A Cricinfo search reveals a player that, overall, barely qualifies for ‘journeyman’ status; a six-year first-class career that yielded only one century and an average in the mid-twenties is not a record for the ages. In years to come, once memory of the summer of ‘05 has faded, will these numbers be all that remains of the legend? The reason for my digression: not even a week has passed and this fate has befallen the Erratics’ hero of Lustleigh, a man who like Pratt, came onto the field as a sub, and instigated a brilliant run-out of the opposing Isis captain. Save that, in his case, I do not even have his name; this piece of cricketing brilliance is preserved in the annals as simply ‘Run Out (Sub)’. What I do recall of this man is that he was, perhaps ironically, quite a loud-mouthed Australian, who produced several brilliant pieces of fielding, cheered on by his beer-swilling supporters.

So what else happened at Lustleigh? Well, first and foremost, the Erratics won, thanks in part – no doubt – to the above-described moment, but arguably more so to the brilliance of opener Chave, whose unbeaten 100 formed the backbone of an epic chase of the Isis total of 211. Chave’s innings, much of which I had the pleasure of watching from the other end, was full of shots ranging from the agricultural hack into the Lustleigh creek, to the glorious Ian Bell-esque cover drive. At the other end, he was helped by sprightly innings from Power and Gutha, and an important contribution (after a minor collapse) from Prosser to take us over the line.

Despite my innate bias, I ought also to mention the bowlers, who – helped by the excellence of our sub – did a great job in pegging back a strong Isis line-up on Lustleigh’s postage-stamp ground. The spin-twins (Power and F. Chave), in particular, provided sterling service in unfavourable conditions. Mention also ought to be made of Gutha, who after a 10-year hiatus offered to don the keeping gear, and did an admirable job.

Tea – the component parts of which were assembled and presented with panache by A. Chave – was excellent, as was the post-match rehydration session at the Cleave, during which thoughts turned from an excellent victory to upcoming challenges in the #NDT19.

Ben Pullan

Isis (tour team) Batting
Player name RunsMB4s6sSR
for 8 wickets
209 (35.0 overs)

Erratics Cricket Club Erratics Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Ben Youngman4.0024124.006.00
Mark Hailwood7.003200.004.57
Connor Johnson-Goodier6.0045145.007.50
Phil Power7.0020120.002.86
Fraser Chave7.0046146.006.57
Dominic Prosser4.0050150.0012.50

Erratics Cricket Club Erratics Batting
Player Name RMB4s6sSRCatchesStumpingsRun outs
for 5 wickets

(25.1 overs)
Duncan Chave Not Out  100 6 5
Ben Pullan Lbw  39 7
Phil Power Caught  27 4 1
Connor Johnson-Goodier Bowled  12 2 1
Rithvik Gutha Caught  22 1 1
Fraser Chave Bowled  0
Dominic Prosser Not Out  5 1
Ben Youngman  
John Curtis  
Mark Hailwood  
N.O. One  

Isis (tour team) Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
No records to display.