Hendricks XI at Stanton St John. Twenty overs, then a ten overs thrash.
After a seemingly endless run of games under a boiling sun on brown dry pitches Bodley finally played a game under cloudy skies yesterday with the threat of rain ever present. We were playing Hendricks, old friends led by Tim Saunders, but on a ground not used by Bod for a number of years, Stanton St John. Stanton has a slope and an interesting wicket but an picturesque element to the ground was lost under the low clouds. Hendricks have some familiar faces but are missing Ross Quest, much to the relief of Bodley bowlers. Ross has scored big both for and against us in the past. Bod bat first and open with a father and son partnership of major and minor Shaw. James scores a four off the first ball and both do well on a slow outfield before James is run out for 18. Dan, playing some beautiful shots, retires on 30. Leigh biffs briefly before being clean bowled going for a glory shot, Phil is out for a rare duck, Dave's B then S come in while all the time Tim scores at the other end. David Shackleton sent down the order as punishment for poor geography, Phil lives in Lime Walk, not Lime Road, or Lyme Regis. Getting to the ground 45 mins late is taking it a bit to far, even for the much loved Mr Shackleton. He makes amends though with a stylish 29 to get what looked like a low score up to a respectable 139. Hendricks decision to give everyone 2 overs each certainly helped, with extras contributing over 30 to the total, which made scoring tricky with some overs taking 10 or more deliveries to complete.
Due to predicted rain we'd decided to have a twenty20, then tea then see what we could get out of the rest of the day, so following a quick turn round Bod take to the field and decide to do the two over thing as well. Tim takes the gloves and goes behind the stumps. Leigh opens the bowling and soon has the opening bat caught behind, sharp work by Tim and the quickest wickie catch in Bod history, he follows this with a clean bowled. After this everyone contributes, with wickets for Dave B (another caught behind for Tim and a nice link-up with these two popular cricketing brothers), Phil gets two and Tim, after coming out from behind the stumps gets an lbw. Trouble is Hendricks have a couple of big hitters, one in particular coming in at the end and scoring sixes at will see Hendricks over the line with a couple of balls to spare.
Tea follows, sandwiches, cake (not enough though, need an extra one next time) and samosas that would definitely prove too hot for some. A few of the Hendricks have to leave so a quick, 9-a-side 10 over thrash is played out, again Dan does well and this time Bodley creep home with a few balls to spare. Comedy highlight of the afternoon comes when a caught and bowled is offered, 'Catch it' shouts the wickie, the bowler tries and spoons it in the air and has a desperate lunge, 'catch it again!' comes the shout from behind the stumps. The rain finally comes during the last few overs and at the end of the game the covers are scrambled into place. As is traditional with Hendricks matches the best player on the opposition side gets given a bottle of Hendricks gin, there can be only one winner. Dan retires in both innings and bowls very well, James gladly accepts the award on his behalf.
Next game is against the interestingly named White Hunters on Saturday, then it's a small matter of a Jack Cox final a few days after. The season slowly draws to a conclusion but there is still plenty to play for.