Longhorns v Erratics Cricket Club Erratics on Sat 03 Sep 2011 at Unknown
Erratics Cricket Club Won by 11 runs

Match report by Chris Cook

As Jamie, David and Sam slept through a blustery Saturday morning , Chris Ferro reportedly achieved the near-impossible feat of bouncing a tennis ball atop the campsite telegraph pole, thus freeing the boys up to do something more interesting. One option was the word-disassociation game of the previous evening that had puzzled Dan, much-miffed when the challenge against his word ‘brick’, following ‘pyramid’ was upheld. He’d have had more chance following the word ‘tortoise’ with ‘milk’, but Dan wouldn’t realise this until Sunday. Eventually the boys went for French Cricket, and this was to prove a brilliant choice later in the day.

Mid-morning found a phalanx of Erratics on the upper deck of the canal café, their only recourse (since David Salter abandoned the tour for amateur dramatics) as between 12 campers there were only two pans and three cups, most of them belonging to Dan, who managed to make something resembling breakfast for himself in order to take a photograph of it. Chris (Mellett) and Sam treated themselves to celebration breakfasts, as victors from the previous day’s inaugural Erratics partnership competition, held at Frocester on the warmest day of the summer, in the absence of opposition from the Isle of Wight, who were running a week late (which is actually quite early for the IoW).

Our hosts, the redoubtable Longhorns, had a new pitch - a plum’s throw down the road from the old one - for this now venerable fixture. From the lower bar of the Anchor, their captain Ben informed us that we should all go and change in our tents, as ground facilities were basic, and the game would start in twenty minutes. He then promptly ordered himself and his opening bowler another pint. The pitch was in every sense a fine spectacle, the outfield flat and green and even, whilst the wicket was described (by one close to the bosom of the Longhorns) as ‘corrugated’. These corrugations ran laterally up the wicket, alternating green and brown. On winning the toss, Ben generously decided to test said corrugations on the opposition.

Mellett and Ferro put a brave face on it, but soon the both of them plus Phil Power and Cook C were back in the hutch, (aluminium, on wheels, for smart itinerant rabbits) victims of four vicious shooters courtesy of Terry Kripps, who delighted unashamedly in his good fortune. At 32 for 4 the omens for a classic encounter were not good. Cue Sam. Sam found an interesting means of dealing with the corrugation, making full use of his French cricket practice. Anything full he bludgeoned for sixes and fours, anything else he planted a vertical bat in front of pads, in the way of the ball, and stopped the thing dead. It was astonishingly effective, and his score mounted rapidly. But Sam was finding little in the way of support, as Jamie and David both perished to shots that required a far truer wicket than this one (Perth, in fact), gifting Terry his ‘5-for’ (16).

Fortunately, at this moment, the Penny dropped. Penny had set off that morning at 9.30 full of the joys of the world, intending to pitch camp, take in a leisurely lunch, spot a few smews (don’t ask), and saunter down to the ground. As the game began she was on the M5 in heavy traffic somewhere near Bristol, and when she finally arrived, Erratics were 60 – 7, with young Sam Burns and older Paul Tucker making new inroads, despite some resistance from Ed. Penny scored only 9, but her partnership with Sam, who eventually departed for 82, was worth a priceless 61. Dan strode forth and before taking strike bounced bunny-like up the pitch, to warm up. He opened his tour account with an edged 4, and that was the end of the warm bunny, leaving only Burrows to come. I say only – James played with selective aggression, adding 9 runs himself in a 21 partnership with Penny, and miraculously, Erratics had reached 150 all out at tea. The Longerhorns had by now arrived, Andy with the excellent spread, and Richard Watts and Andy Taylor to cheer the home side to victory.

Erratics took the field in earnest, Burrows, tail up from his innings, quickly accounting for Longhorns opener Matt, snaffled by Cook C at slip. Chris bowled himself at the other end, perhaps hoping for another round of shooters, but his length was fuller, and the ball behaved, though not well enough for Terry (Smith) to lay much bat on it. How fantastic to see Terry out in the middle again! Runs were always going to be hard to come by, and a stunning burst by Ferro, replacing Burrows, made things harder still by removing Taylor junior and Burns, both of whom looked set. This gave Erratics considerable momentum, which the captain quickly wasted by turning to spin, for which Longhorns’ middle order seemed grateful, Phil bowling with good turn but variable length, and David at the other end tending to eschew length altogether, the ball dropping directly onto the bat, and thereafter, the briar hedge. The score leapt on to 110 for 5, only 40 now required from 10 overs. Where to turn? Cue Sam. Again. With good pace and generally good direction (we’ll turn a blind and fearful eye to the beamers), Sam clean bowled five batsmen, not with shooters, but with yorkers that clipped the top of leg stump, his fifth wicket ending the Longhorns innings with ten still required. No doubt about the man of the match then! At least he’d have to wear the silly hat and buy the drinks (with his dad’s bar tab).

Talk after the game was of another fine contest and thoughts of a celebration match next year (to celebrate the fact no-one can remember when the fixture started). The corrugations would no doubt be levelled by then, and the pavilion expanded, although these were but minor considerations compared to the fact that Longhorns are re-established in Longney village with a lovely new ground...

Erratics Cricket Club Erratics Batting
Player Name RunsMB4s6sSRCtStRo
1nb 10w 12b 3lb 
for 10 wickets

(32.0 overs)
Chris Mellett Lbw  0
Chris Ferro Bowled  10
Phil Power Caught  6
Chris Cook Bowled  3
Sam Cook Caught  82
Jamie Power Bowled  1
David Pearson Caught  0
Ed Keedwell Bowled  0
Penny Price Not Out  9
Daniel Thistlethwaite Bowled  4
James Burrows Bowled  9

Longhorns Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
No records to display.

Longhorns Batting
Player name RMB4s6sSR
2nb 10w 14b 1lb 
for 10 wickets
139 (39.3 overs)

Erratics Cricket Club Erratics Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
James Burrows8.0312112.001.50
Sam Cook6.303256.404.92
Chris Ferro8.022145.252.63
Chris Cook8.031400.001.75
David Pearson5.003300.006.60
Phil Power4.011200.003.00