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2005 Match Reports

Date: 30th August

Versus: Epsom

Venue: Gibraltar Rec

Result: Draw


The traditional end of season do at Epsom greeted the OCs on a glorious sunny evening at the end of summer.

As usual, the OCs do not travel well and turned up in drips and drabs, despite communication suggesting there would be 11, 10 eventually turned up with the available Manuwar, absent due to communication and selection difficulties. Skipper Doyle was absent & took his two headed coin with him so the return of Skipper Bisson saw us lose the toss and field in a 15 by 8 game.

Finnerty opened the bowling on a wicket that although green was consistent and managed to get one to move, have the opener play & nick into Colletts glove, that’s right a one handed catch by Collett behind the stumps. Rumours that the Chairman of Selectors was on the phone asking if he was free over the winter may not have been true.

A confident Shoaib Ducklin, the “Hampton Court Branch Line” came on with his new action and actually beat the bat on a few occasions before claiming a wicket which had the batsman reaching to a wider one and putting the ball into Finnerty’s hands at point.

Steve Cunnah, James & Skipper Bisson came on at the change and despite some early setbacks claimed their share of wickets. A tenacious tail ender was magnificently bowled by a returning Finnerty who seemed to find an extra few mph of pace and son of Cunnah managed to get a wicket lbw with one of the slowest balls ever seen. Some errors in the field and being a man short saw Epsom finish their innings at 132.

The OCs had a run chase to make which was against a setting sun, Reuben and Cunnah opened the batting seeing out some bowling before Reuben the elder fell on 22. James then contributes to the score before falling for 12 and being followed by Collett for 10.

The O's own barmy army were in attendance, chasing the sun themselves and offering support, moving chairs every 5 minutes to stay out of the shadows. although Gibraltar rec did not have a bar to supply them with Scenic ridge Shiraz, the resourceful ladies brough their own drinks cooler, carnage averted.

Despite the darkness there were two bright points of the match, Cunnah the man Cunnah the hour as Steve Cunnah scored a magnificent 68 which almost won the match. The second bright point is the sporting nature of the Epsom team, a number of catches were made just outside the boundary line, where it would have been easy to claim the wicket, they gamely admitted the 6’s. At least two run outs were not claimed due to hands hitting the stumps before bails saving Cunnah and Reuben the elder on occasion.

However both teams could not beat the darkness, a tense final over saw not a lot of runs needed of 8 balls. Wickets fell and the runs reduced as batsmen & fielders couldn’t see the ball. Bisson needed a miner’s hat rather than the helmet he took out into the middle. Despite the tension that could have turned into carnage, Epsom gamely offered the light with 4 runs left with 3 balls to go and one of the most sporting draws you would see saw honours even. Outstanding.

A number of OCs retired to O'Neills Kingston then to a curry to see out the season. Though the anecdotes weren't as funny as Doyle's the week before.


Date: 23rd? August 2005

Versus: Molesey CCCC

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: OC's win by a few runs


OCs looked to play Molesey with more C’s than Ellen Macarthur’s round the world log book.

Never having played them before, OCs brilliant team of voluntary researchers (well, it beats actual work) committed a search to see of the oppo had any history. A brief look at showed that they were finalists in a recent National Christian Cricket Cup, the OCs were tentative in facing an oppo who may use god to move the ball in mysterious ways.

MCCCC turned up early and professional looking in their strip and kit. OCs did the usual of turning up in drips and drabs. The records do not recall whether skipper Doyle won the toss or MCCCC took pity on us and put us in to bat first, maybe Ponting & the Aussies should have done the same thing for the Ashes series.

The usual mid to late August policy of squad rotation took place with a number of regulars missing and replaced by a number of irregulars. Steve Cunnah & Ben Reuben took to the usual Reeves strip, Hampshire have the Rose Bowl, OC’s have the Pudding Bowl. Steve & Ben knocked the ball around for the opening spell before falling on 12 and 7 respectively. Test match Trev & skipper Doyle then came on and proceeded to knock up the run rate aided by what would turn out to be 43 extras! (Surely some mistake) Collett fell near the end of the innings on 33 to be replaced by Ducklin (1 n.o.) and Doyle finished unbeaten on 33 n.o. to leave a target of 133.

The friendly nature of the fixture meant that OC’s were to give everyone 2 overs each. Finnerty opened with his usual pace outside off stump and was rewarded with a wicket off his 2 overs for 6 runs. Sensing to make a game of it, Doyle brought on Ducklin at the Pavilion end despite the risk that his usual leg side lobs would be swiftly dispatched to the boundary. Fortunately Bowler Ducklin turned up and upped the pace and put it outside off before collecting a wicket with a bouncer, I say bouncer, I mean a ball that bounced twice. Shoaib Ducklin collected 1 wicket for 7 runs off his 2, less Rawlpindi Express, more Surbiton Commuter Train.

Bisson and Reuben the youngest collected a further wicket each for their spells and it was becoming apparent that the MCCCC on Tuesday was not the one advertised on the website, MCCC also played the bizarre method of 15 and retire. Father & Son Cunnah, Parker & Mahesh were fruitless but economical but a couple of run outs put the skipper in a quandary, how to make a game of it!

MCCCC’s motto is “due unto others what they would do to you” from Luke 6:31 which is what the score may have been at one point. Due to the Reuben the Fathers hamstrings of glass, Collett took ball in hand near the death and proceeded to give out what he has received outside off, down the legs and the rest before getting a wicket with a straight one for 8 off his 2. Totally out of options, Skipper Doyle bowled buffet to the oppo to make the score a bit more charitable getting spanked for a few boundaries, despite his best efforts, he still managed to take 2 for 18 as the surfers cantered home.

Highlight of the evening was the curry afterwards & Doyle’s anecdotes of drunken antics involving being mistaken for an employee of Barclays and getting into the Long Room at Lords


Date: 16th August 2005

Versus: Sutton

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: Old Cunnahfornians win by about 35 runs


A warm, sunny evening greeted Sutton at Ruxley Lane, as for the Californians, despite the nights drawing in, they decided to arrive in drips & drabs for the customary late start.

With The absence of Bisson, Bolland, Reuben the middle, Manuwar, Mahesh & Collett, the OC’s looked a bit short and Doyle pulled out all the stops during the week to get in an “A” team. Doyle played the role of Hannibal, leader, fearless, always loving it when a “plan comes together”. Parker played the role of Face, dependable, a hit with the ladies, looking like he’d prefer to be in the bar or on his way to a late night card school. Ducklin played “Howling Mad” Murdoch, not sure whether his batting, fielding or bowling personality was going to turn up, his schizophrenic nature exhibited by wearing an England hat with a Pakistan top! Hamilton played BA Baracus, promising much before pulling a muscle in practice and saying “I aint gonna go near no square!” before going off before the other members could drug his milk. Someone did play with a sore hip after having some bone taken from it at hospital during the day but managed to play.

Doyle won the toss by default due to the lack of players due to traffic on Surbiton Hill allegedly and elected to bat. Occasional surfer Steve Cunnah returned to the fray & opened the batting with James, both survived the opening few overs pushing singles and keeping the run rate ticking over. James eventually fell to deep backward square for 16 and Cunnah fell for 8 seeking to up the run rate. Hannibal & Face both entered and struggled with a typical Reeves pitch, just like a box of chocolates, you didn’t know what was coming next. Both batsmen upped the run rate before Hannibal seemed to generously bat to the wicket keeper whilst on his bum and left for 32. Reuben the elder then returned for another crack of the whip maintaining that he wouldn’t run & pull a muscle because “I would hit boundaries”. Reuben then proceeded to knock singles giving Face the strike so Face could hit massive sixes off generous bowling. A weird last over saw Reuben depart for 6, Parker 1 short of the half century, Murdoch not sure whether to call a run or not and 3 dot balls as the OC’s got 124 off 20.

Surrey were set 6 an over and Finnerty and Face opened the bowling. A tricky left / right opening partnership kept the score kicking over at the required rate as Finnerty was fruitless for 23 off his 4 while the Face went for 18 off his 3 for no wickets. In typical A team fashion during the change they managed to construct a bowler with a few left overs, the accuracy of Bolland, the rabbit hunting ability of Bisson (thankfully not his knees), the containment of Manuwar on a good day and fortunately not the back of Hamilton (Michael Clarke batted for the Aussies) and brought on Steve Cunnah in as change bowlers. Needing to reduce the run rate with the match in the balance, Hannibal also called on the services of the 12th man, the darkness, as the gloom came on.

Hannibal managed an to have an economical 2 overs worth 9 runs and a wicket, but with Steve Cunnah, the A team produced their secret weapon to save the day as he tore through the middle order with figures of 2 maidens 4 wickets for 10 runs off his four overs, which almost cost him 2 jugs, one for nearly getting a hat trick, the other for nearly getting a fivefer!

With the run rate accelerating away James (2-0-3-1) and Beeks (2-0-12-0) kept the remaining batsmen honest as well as a couple of run outs.

Hannibal, sensing that the plan had almost come together & loving it then brought on the second bowler made up from spare parts left over and on came Adam Cunnah who took 2 wickets for 8 off 2 overs. What spare parts he was constructed from, answers on a postcard please.

OC’s needed up comfortable winners and made their way back to the pavilion by looking for the light coming through the windows.


Date: 9 August 2005

Versus: RBK Overseas

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: Old Californians win by 13 runs


Welcome Cricket lovers, after a victory over the Aussies by the Professionals at Edgbaston it was down to the surfers own…….er …….profess………….well players of various degrees of ability and indeed disability, (well my knee still hurt anyway) to provide the follow up entertainment, ok….laughs.

This latest match against the RBK volunteers overseas was different in that the game was subject to more restrictions than a male porno star in a Paula Radcliffe’s running shorts.

Whilst the skipper was negotiating the latest road rage antics of Tolworth Roundabout, stand in tosser, Collet, put us into bat. Sparky and DJ opened the batting, scoring quicker than a flea in a nudist colony. DJ perished and Collet joined the fray.

Sparky retired (restriction’s!!!) on 28, followed by big hitting Collet (25*) and a subdued (I hate Ruxley Lane Pitches..winge…winge) Doyle (25*). Whilst runs had come quickly, the target of 150 seemed out of reach as the middle order faltered, Terry (Roxanne….come on think about it….lead singer…raspy voice) Beeks was quickly followed by Bisson, both mystified at their LBW decisions, leaving the unlikely pairing of Munawar (6*) and (Re-born Lahorian) Ducklin (12*) to forge ahead.

OC’s finished a creditable 145-5.

The seeming social of the nature changed during the course of the next 19 overs as the two well matched sides fought head to head with increasing intensity. Bowling 2 overs each was always a challenging task for an already folically challenged skipper.

Bolland took an early wicket, but things got steadily worse for OC’s as the ball consistently disappeared into the distance like a red far away thing. Three Aussies came in scored 25, and retired before you could say “Sh*t I’ve just been stung”. Ducklin bowled 2 overs for 32 runs which is…………well I really don’t know what to say about that….answers on a postcard.

(Message in a bottle) Beeks was given responsibility to bowl at a crucial time and responded with 2 overs for 10 runs, nice work fella!!!

RBK’s tactics in running out most of their middle order to regain the antipodean upper hand changed the style of the game, and was the first time bowlers and fielders have been greeted with total silence when completing a wicket taking manoeuvre!!

James and Doyle came on to bowl the last 4 overs and the Aussies returned.

Bunfight at the OK ploughfield commenced……………………………!!!

(Apart from Beeks who took his shirt off to expose his latest waspish battle.)

Doyle went for 8 runs in 5 balls before pinning back a stump, whilst DJ produced another telling spell, with 15 runs needed, 2 overs to go, 1 wicket left and most of the field spread round the boundary he produced a cunningly disguised wide full toss, the ball was hit high and handsome towards the leg side boundary and thankfully eventually fell to earth just inside the line to the waiting, relieved skippers, sweaty palms, OC's winning by 13 runs.

This was a another tough game. Although the skippers beta-blocker prescription was well used once more.

Support was plentiful, the weather was nice and it was good to have a couple of pints after. The undying support of the Rueben and Collett clan was pleasing, whilst Jane seemed to have borrowed Collet the younger’s shorts and won more shares in the Sunbed shop.

Terry Beeks got stung in case yopu didn't know

Not many games to go…..bring on the oppo next week!!!


Date: 2 August 05

Versus: Hounslow - The rematch

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: Tie


Spirit of Cricket: Preamble to the Laws

Cricket is a game that owes much of its unique appeal to the fact that it should be played not only within its Laws but also within the Spirit of the Game. Any action which is seen to abuse this spirit causes injury to the game itself. The major responsbility for ensuring the spirit of fair play rests with the captains.

Extracts from the laws of cricket

Law 42
6(b) Bowling of high full pitched balls
(i) Any delivery, other than a slow paced one, which passes or would have passed on the full above waist height of the striker standing upright at the crease is to be deemed dangerous and unfair, whether or not it is likely to inflict physical injury on the striker.
(ii) A slow delivery which passes or would have passed on the full above shoulder height of the striker standing upright at the crease is to be deemed dangerous and unfair, whether or not it is likely to inflict physical injury on the striker.

7. Dangerous and unfair bowling - action by the umpire
(a) As soon as the umpire at the bowler's end decides under 6(a) above that the bowling of fast short pitched balls has become dangerous and unfair, or, except as in 8 below, there is an instance of dangerous and unfair bowling as defined in 6(b) above, he shall call and signal No ball and, when the ball is dead, caution the bowler, inform the other umpire, the captain of the fielding side and the batsmen of what has occured. This caution shall continue to apply throughout the innings.

Well, we called it wrong and we apologise, but apparently I missed one as well, so it evens out.

Law 38 (Run out)
1. Out Run out
(a) Either batsman is out Run out, except as in 2 below, if at any time while the ball is in play
(i) he is out of his ground
and (ii) his wicket is fairly put down by the opposing side.

(b) (a) above shall apply even though No ball has been called and whether or not a run is being attempted, except in the circumstances of Law 39.3(b) (Not out Stumped).

3. Which batsman is out
The batsman out in the circumstances of 1 above is the one whose ground is at the end where the wicket is put down. See Laws 2.8 (Transgression of the Laws by a batsman who has a runner) and 29.2 (Which is a batsman's ground).

I dont recall that happening near the end of the Hounslow Innings......


OC's batted first on another dodgy Reeves wicket, James & Parker opened, James holed out for 6, Collett came on & followed without taking up too much of the scorers ink. Doyle came on to a slow run rate (3 an over) and formed a great partnership with Parker beofre Parker fell to a deceptive slower delivery at 52. Daniel Reuben (15 not out) then ably assisted Doyle (55 not out)in making a total of 144 by the end of the 20 overs taking singles and making singles 2's or even threes.

A daunting target was set and Finnerty & the returning Bolland set about the task.
Finnerty went for 24 off his 4 with no wicket whilst Bolland managed to go for the same runs off his 4 which saw a ball pitch up catch an edge and into the hands of Shabash Ducklin in an inspired fielding postiton by skipper Doyle. Manuwar & Bisson came on for the change, Manuwar producing one of the best spells of containment ever seen from him and getting a late wicket for 15 off his four. Bisson on the other hand came out for the rabbits bowling lettuce as the batsmen helped themselves and were aided by some uncharacteristic fielding errors which saw singles turn into 4's. Doyle was now wishing that the Ducklin twins were actually quadruplets on the boundary. A late wicket salvaged Bisson's figures as he went for 40 off his 4. Doyle came on at the death hoping a repeat of his dot ball heroics from last week. Despite an "interesting" run out or two as Hounslow chased the target, a stubborn Hounslow batsman managed to get his eye in and spank the red marker over Doyles head as well as that of James at the long off boundary & Ducklin at long on who would have needed red pants, blue suit and a large S on his chest to reach those massive sixes. James (1-0-5-0) came on on the penultimate to leave a tense final over for which Doyle (3-0-35-0) tried every trick in the book, off cuts, leg side deliveries, slower balls etc as Hounslow found the runs and tied at the death. Outstanding.


Date: 26th July

Versus: Hounslow

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: OC's win by 20 something runs or 2 good catches


Clouds gathered on the horizon as the Surfers faced Hounslow, OC’s did the usual thing of turning up late to their own ground leaving skipper Doyle the option to bat first. Unlike the England selectors, the OC’s were faced with a couple of changes from the previous week with Mahesh & Bolland absent being replaced by Hamilton & the old warhorse Ben Reuben, someone who claimed to be Ducklin turned up wearing a Pakistan top (bought on ebay) “well, Bisson wears powder blues” was his reply.

When they arrived, Collett and Reuben the elder opened the batting facing some “right arm over with a southern hemisphere accent”. The partnership almost weathered the storm before Collett floundered for 6 and Reuben holed out for 12. OC’s own “Professionals” James and Doyle steadied the ship with a respectable partnership, helped by some wayward bowling but hindered by a typical unfriendly Reeves pitch and helped accelerate the run rate before Doyle played on at 35 and James soon followed on 31. The pitch took advantage of those less able to bat and run rate soon slowed as the wickets fell with no others managing double figures as Bisson & Hamilton ended the innings on 3 not out apiece as OC’s reached 130 something for 8.

Hounslow looked handy and it was going to be an interesting run chase which would have to be matched by top notch fielding and bowling. Finnerty opened with the usual and showed that he’s too good for Tuesday as he went for an economical 16 off his 4 overs including a maiden but without a wicket. Reuben the elder opened from the other end but pulled up lame first ball, Doyle, as skipper made the rather strange decision at the time of putting Beeks on the chance that he either looked good on the practice strip or promised that he could get wickets through ebay. However Beeks first over was all over the place as he managed to find other parts of the strip (or neighbouring ones) other bowlers couldn’t reach.

Despite this, Doyle kept the faith and Beeks produced a second over, one ball was struck to long on in the vicinity of Ducklin’s Pakistani registered twin. Ducklin’s first thought was a case of saving the runs as he ran towards the airborne ball & It was a case of uncatchable object meets uncoordinated human as the ball caught the forearm and most parts of the upper torso before finally landing in a hand and taking the wicket. Never had a catch been made to look so difficult as the shout of “Yes!” went round the ground as Ducklin took his first catch of the season, the smile on his face soon turned to terror though as he saw the form of Beeks bearing down on him to clutch him to his ample bosom (ask Rupe about that!) to thank him for making his average look good.

Beeks then continued his policy of “sh*t gets wickets” as he took his second one with a ball that didn’t pitch before Doyle mercifully removed him from the attack before he died of embarrassment at 2 for 23 off his 3. Bisson donned his rabbit hunting hat and took change with Manuwar. Bisson, bowling from the Pavilion end, had a ball skied to deep mid on in the direction of Ducklin, trying to judge the ball against the cloudy skies managed to get himself in just about the right place to put hands to it, this time only about an inch away from the ideal catching position as he stopped it with the heel of his hands and caught it at the second attempt again making the easy look difficult. Another “Yes!” followed but the sting to the hands curtailed any high fives for the next few minutes It was the turning point of the match as Bisson took 2 for 21 off his 4 and Manuwar was wicketless for 15 off his 3 despite his appeals. Doyle wondered what had been put into the fielders teas as even Reuben the youngest, subbing for father Ben got in an excellent run out helped by hardly any ielding errors or shelled catches.

The run rate the slipped away from Hounslow as Doyle (3-0-11-3) and James (3-0-15-1) came on to mop up the tail by doing the simple things like pitching it around off stump as OC’s wound up comfortable winners, the rematch takes place next Tuesday, what Ducklin twin turns up remains to be seen.


Date: 12 July 2005

Versus: Epsom Taxes

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: OC's win by 6 runs


At last it was sunshine city on the beaches of Ruxley (well the ‘soil’ on the wicket was sand coloured anyway!!). When you are used to playing in front of a large gallery the lack of spectators meant a subdued performance from our heroes in white.

The weather of the last 2 weeks and probable netball clashes have led to a decline in ‘Scenic Ridge’ red wine sales. No sign of Ben Reuben, and Mark Bisson phoned to say……….do you need me???????, meanwhile Sparky phoned to see if the beer delivery had arrived.

So the ‘return’ of Epsom Taxes was the order of the day.

The Skipper won the tass and botted. Dan and DJ opened and Dan quickly came back. The main partnership of the innings took place between Doyle and DJ before DJ tapped the ball to square leg and ambled back to the pavilion for 27.

Doyle pushed on before trying to hit one six too many and having his stumps rearranged for 36. Trev (Don’t make me angry) Collett failed to give the scorer RSI , setting a new OC’s dot ball record, before waving madly at another straight ball and returning to the ‘hutch’.

The unlikely pairing of Finnerty and Beeks then put together what turned out to be vital runs. Beeks in the process injuring his gluteous max……..ok buttock!! This hindered sprinting of course!! Meanwhile Finnerty continued to lap Beeks like a hare in a race full of tortoises and one hare. Beeks fought through the pain using his ‘shot’ to great effect, ending up 10 n.o and taking OC’s through to 104.

All seemed set for a fine match as the Taxes smelled a winning opportunity, like a dodgy tax return, and set about their task in a cautious determind fashion.

Finnerty and Bolland set about their task, mostly keeping their runs down, until Bolland capped another excellent performance by despatching one of the openers with a swinger Yorker,ending with 4 overs for 8 runs.

After 8 overs the game changed, James came on to bowl and celebrated his birthday with a fine display of present giving, as OC’s fielders were sent off ball searching on a number of occasions. On the other hand Munawar started his extraordinary spell with a tight over before bowling the biggest bunch of tosh seen since James's last over and taking 2 wickets in 2 balls narrowly missing out on a Sh*tetrick!!! Munawar finished with figures of 3-17 off 4 overs ('Isn't that what you wanted captain').

Surely the game was in the grasp of the speedo wearing, athletic, surfing cowboys, but no………Again the Epsom boys fought back, scoring runs at will before Doyle took 2 wickets to halt the on rush and DJ’s identical twin bowled from the top end, (Must have been, the ball landed on several occasions).

Left to score 11 runs off the last over, the Taxes went at it gamely and were only foiled by a fantastic boundary line stop by Ducklin’s twin brother, who rescued the family reputation, after 2 dropped catches earlier in the piece.

Taxes were spirited and a touch unlucky to finish 6 runs short in an excellent game of cricket.

Beeks was left placing bids on Ebay for : 1) A runner 2) pain killers 3) a Glutous Buttock.

Collet cheered up slightly and took a selection hardline…..dropping Bisson for……….well anyone…….as for Hamilton….well who knows what goes on in that world.

The Fosters Ice was lovely and cold, Happy birthday to DJ….and good to see the ‘Duck’ smiling. Personally my bar bill seems to get bigger every week, and this captaincy stuff is getting stressful


Date: 5th July 2005

Versus: Wandsworth

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: Wandsworth win by 8 wickets?


Grey wet skies greeted the OC’s for this fixture whilst skipper Doyle was greeted by the Hampton Court Flower Show it wasn’t looking good to get a game on.

Despite the incessant drizzle, groundskeeper Reeves prepared not one but both the wickets as Deando Ruxley had a 20/20 game. Reeves must have had a lottery win, pulled or got something to get him in a good mood as he even put sightscreens out for us.

Not known for travelling well, OC’s were forced took to the field to the other pitch, known to some as the better batting track. Wandsworth were initially going to bat due to being a number of players short but then minds were changed & OC’s took to the crease at a very late hour leading to a game of 18/18.

With the retirement of Reuben the elder, James & Beeks opened the batting, A lively opening bowler managed to get the ball rearing up on the damp track as James started tentatively. Beeks faced one ball which came in clipping the off stump without troubling the scorers in an innings that was shorter than the time it takes to read this sentence. Doyle entered and gave support to James, pushing the singles and twos keeping the run rate rolling. James then remembered his secondary task in life, to run out every member or the OC’s before the season is out and a direct hit from Wandsworths fielders saw Doyle fall on 10. Daniel Reuben then came in promising much with the “Collett” shot but showed he still has to learn the forward defensive as he didn’t play a straight bat to a straight ball and left without troubling the scorers. With Parker playing for Deando, Collett came on as the last batting hope, Wandsworth showed a lack of depth in bowling as Collett accelerated the run rate including two massive consecutive sixes and was catching up to James approaching 50. Collett on 48 lost concentration and instead of pushing singles for his half century got frustrated for the big shots and holed out short. James polished off his half century finishing off on 65 not out assisted by Bisson at the death leaving a target of 149.

The number of southern hemisphere accents and accurate throws from the boundary suggested that though short of numbers Wandsworth may have some batting talent to hand. Given the wet conditions, the ball was like a bar of soap, difficult to bowl and difficult to field. The usual dependable opening partnership of Finnerty & Bolland opened the bowling but were exposed by a good left / right hand batting combination on a good batting track. An excellent catch by Doyle off Finnerty saved his bowling average from being savaged by 38 off his 4 whilst Bolland had two expensive overs before being pulled off. Doyle & Manuwar came on for the change but they only came away with the bill for damages to a local greenhouse. James came on and swiftly off for an expensive over and Doyle was running out of options as dot balls were scarcer than a compliment about British food from Jacques Chirac. A couple of dropped catches were costly but academic in the long run while Bisson came on to claim a rabbit but the burrow only had foxes as Wandsworth cantered home with just under 2 overs to spare.

Still not sure what happened with netball, but Doyle should be back with reports next week.


Date: 28th June 2005

Versus: Kingston Taxes

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: OC's win by 5 Wkts


Clouds were gathering, weather was moving in and in the car park, dark forces were gathering, “we’ll never get all the overs in” said a number of foreboding voices.

The OC’s hosted the taxmen from Kingston on a stormy day, Doyle lost the toss and the Taxmen were to bat first. A tentative start was forced back by the rain and everyone retired to the bar without a ball being bowled. After a couple of minutes, the rain lifted, the skies brightened and the players took to the field.

Groundskeeper Reeves was still in attendance and proceeded to follow the players on, what he said, we don’t know, his voice was drowned out by the thunder!

With Finnerty absent through Glastonbury trench foot (wuss, I made it last year though I have to bow to his 8 hours sleep in 4 days!) Reuben the elder opened the bowling with Bolland from the other end. Both produced some fine bowling with Ben having an economical 9 runs of his 4 and Bolland getting a wicket for 7 of his as he took advantage of the conditions which suited his bowling. James took the gloves behind the stumps as Collett was running late.

Manuwar (4-0-23-0) and Beeks (3-0-15-1) took the change, with an excellent stumping from James, showing the newly arrived Collett how to do it. During this time Ben’s body gave up on him at deep backward square, reports of a sniper in pastel blue in the trees in the car park were unfounded and Reuben left the field, possibly and unhappily for the last time. If this is true he will be missed.

As if by magic, or some dark force, a master rabbit hunter came out of his Rover 75 and changed into his pastel blue pyjama top (where are the rest of these by the way, is there a stockpile of them still unused or did he wash it with some jeans or blue pants?) and Darth Bisson entered the field for the first time in the season.

Skipper Doyle (3-0-20-1) finished the attack with Bisson who still showed he had his preservation at hand when he ducked out of a caught & bowled to protect what’s left of his cruciate ligaments. Despite a rusty return with balls either side of the wicket, Dark Lord Bisson used all his Sith power to rustle up a straight one to take 1 rabbit for 10 off his 2 as the Taxmen got 88-4 of 20.

The change took place followed by a change in weather, Ben Reuben was out of the running so James and Collett opened the batting on an ever dampening track. Despite balls skidding and balls rearing up the opening pair managed to get the run rate flowing. Umpires Manuwar & Ducklin pulled everyone off for a brief moment due to the weather but play eventually resumed. Collett eventually fell for 10, his big shot not getting a sniff today.

The rain then came down in fits and starts, well, once you are wet, you are wet, and we had a game to win. Beeks joined in the support before James fell to a catch from a ball that was wide and ugly for 36. Doyle came in and struggled with the conditions before falling for 8. Parker entered with a face as miserable as the condition of the track, probably preferring the only wet thing to touch him to be Oranjeboom down his throat. The run rate was comfortable despite the conditions but as Beeks fell to a ball that seemed to pinball off of bat, pad and everything else for 10, the inevitable fairytale (or nightmare) came.

Putting on his protective mask, Darth Bisson took to the crease waving his sabre around in his left handed style. Between them, Sparks and Bisson brought the target closer and closer. A six from Sparky (12 n.o.) brought one more boundary required for victory. Another great stroke seemed to get it but some seemingly dark force held up the ball and they took 3 with the Dark Lord on strike. Despite just needing a single, Bisson turned to the dark side and summoned up all his might to play a lovely stroke for 4, you couldn’t make it up on his return.

As for both teams not getting their 20 overs out, they were right as OC’s cantered home with 5 wickets and 5 overs to spare.

No netball updates again, Ian Doyle is not unwell and will return shortly.


Date: 14th June 2005

Versus: Epsom Taxes at Wandgas

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: OC's win by 42 runs


OC’s once again showed they do not travel well by struggling to get an 11 out by 6:00 at Wandgas, unprepared and running late, even Ducklin took to the field with work clothes under the umpires coat. OC’s either won the toss or were put into bat by sheer lack of numbers.

James and Ben Reuben opened uneasily with some nervous batting in overcast gloomy skies. Reuben succumbed early to a swinging ball from the Cromwell Road end which reared up, came off the gloves and carried to the keeper and he departed for 5. James survived a couple of early scares and shelled catches early on which were to be telling in the later stages. Daniel Reuben came on with his unorthordox batting style and took advantage of some wayward Taxes bowling including a six which came off the pavilion, during this partnership James reached his 50 before Daniel was caught for 27. “One Shot” Collett then came to the crease and proceeded to use the one shot in his armoury to take advantage of wayward leg side bowling as he flayed massive sixes off the pavilion roof keeping the local tiling company in business. The OC’s innings entered the final over with James requiring 1 more run to make his century. Collett (40 n.o.) tried too hard for three balls to give James the strike before James got an opportunity to reach the target and he did with a 3 glanced down the leg side as he finished with 102 of the OC’s 194-2 off 20. A great century covering all the shots including a 4 which managed to get to the bar (though it did not come back out with a round of drinks).

OC’s then took to the field with the Taxmen facing an uphill battle, the gloom had lifted and Finnerty & Bolland opened the bowling taking a wicket apiece before being pulled off after 3 overs each. Beeks and Manuwar then took the changes for a couple of overs of economical bowling and were then replaced in the attack by Mahesh and Nathan Reuben who did their best to make a game of it. With the run rate back up but not in danger of being overcome, Manuwar and Beeks returned to the attack to take 3 wickets between them aided by great catches in the field from James and Ben Reuben with a great pick and roll rarely seen in gymnastic competiton. Beeks made match best figures of 2 for 19 off his 4 overs suggesting to some that “s**t gets wickets” and he is the “New Bisson”. Finnerty & Bolland returned to finish their 4 overs before Ben Reuben came in to close off proceedings for the final over and took a wonderful running caught and bowled off the last ball as the Taxmen fell short at 150.

The taxmen are also to be commended for putting on some food (good thing Hamilton was absent) after the match and having great facilities, leading to certain members asking if they can join up or have need for a second team.

Champagne moment: although the James century deserves its place in the annals of OC’s history, Ducklin as umpire was walking backwards from the stumps after a run out attempt and promptly tripped up and landed on his ar*e causing much mirth & merriment, apparently.

As for Doyle’s regular netball updates from the OC ladies, none were forthcoming; hopefully Doyle can give us a 2 week recap on his return.


Date: 31 May 2005

Versus: Priory Panthers

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: OC's lost by 6 runs


T’was match day 5 and the sun shone bright upon the arrival of the ‘Priory Panthers’………'what is the origin of your name' I asked….

'Well we thought it sounded good’ came the reply…………………….oh well!!!

These were tough and worthy opponents, and this match was destined to have a more pulsating finish than Jane and Ben’s last night ‘home alone’.

Our twelve quickly turned to eleven as Mahesh went home to do something far more worthy, unlike Terry ‘Tiler’ Beeks who turned up specifically to avoid working on the bathroom. Lorraine came along just to make sure the old bugger was actually doing some exercise…………….wrong again!!

On their last visit this lot racked up 160 odd, so a fielding and bowling performance second to none was required……………well cometh the hour cometh a totally different team to the usual mob.

PP set off like professionals but OC’s fought back with some genuinely inspired bowling from Bolland (1-9 off 4 overs) and Andy (DLT) Finnerty (2-10 off 4). John (I’m inspired I am, calm down, calm down) Bolland’s fielding mirrored that of the rest of the team as he dived, stopped and chased everything.

Doyle, Reuben and James all got a bit of stick but Munawar came to the rescue with an excellent spell (1-12 off 3 overs).The Panthers ended on 104 which signalled a fine effort from OC’s.

The swelled, watching Collett clan watched the story unfold with more and more focused interest, Jackie back to the now familiar red wine refuge of previous weeks whilst younger Collets turned to the delights of Smirnoff Ice.

Meanwhile Jane and Lorraine wore themselves out chasing the sun round the boundary as the increasing shadows heralded the arrival of the OC’s batsmen.

David (Please stop making jokes about pies, Doylie) James and Benny Rueben got OC’s off to a steady start before Reuben succumbed to a straight ball, narrowly missing his wild swishing bat and Doyle came to the wicket. With James (19) and Collett (Bugger all) falling in quick succession, the run rate began to rise. Dan (motor man) Reuben came to the wicket but both batsmen struggled against tight bowling.

With 4 overs to go OC’s were still 36 runs short. Drastic action was required. Doyle crashed a straight six and twelve runs were scored off one over. When the last over arrived 17 runs were still required and tension was high. Doyle attempted another straight six and was caught on the boundary for 36. Reuben battled on heroically but despite two 4’s OC’s finished 6 runs short on 98-4.

It was a bloody good match, enjoyed by all and worthy of the celebrations that followed. July 19th is the return match.

Otherwise Jane's everlasting tan got deeper, Jackie's 1970's sunglasses helped on the the humour front whilst for reasons best known to himself John Bolland explained the meaning of the word 'Scouser' i can't remember!! but if you ask him i am sure..........

Both Netball teams won last week though the scores have not been made available.


Date: 24 May 2005

Versus: Croydon

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: OC's win by 97 runs


Match Day 4 dawned, in fact dawn looked like the probable finishing time at one stage!

Selection problems were abound as Jane Reuben fretted over the decision made earlier in the season to field 2 netball teams this season, ‘why did we do it’ she asked........Answers on a postcard!! (Only today had various girls dropped out with stomach aches, illness and exams). The update on the netball results will appear next week

Well, what about the cricket I hear you ask??

The Croydon boys finally arrived and Ducklin quickly ‘migrated’ to the oppo in a bid to reduce the average age and increase the batting average.

The captains tossed up at the stroke of midnight, (No unsavoury jokes please) luckily the bar stayed open, in fact it was empty by half way through this moonlit fest of night time cricket.

DJ and Danny R set about the bowling in a steady manner reaching 50 off the first 10 overs before Dan departed for a useful 26. The pace of the Scoring continued to increase as Doyle added a quick 17, whilst DJ was finally out for a foundation building 56.

Whilst the score was always heading for a respectful 100-110 or so, no one was prepared for what was to follow. ……

Striding onto the stage like a Greek god with a magical light sabre came a rejuvenated ‘Clubber’ Collett. In one over of savage destruction the mighty one smashed four sixes and one four ending 40 n.o. (And where was Jackie I hear you say),

Added to 3 wides the over cost 31 and gave OC’s an imposing 160-4

If the OC’s team had run out to field accompanied by the sound of a circus theme, it would have been appropriate. The galaxy of fielding gaffs that followed had to be seen to be believed, Finnerty and Doyle particularly suffering from ball blindness.

Croydon batted gamely but OC’s impressive array of accurate bowling quickly put any hopes of reaching the target quickly out of the square window.

Finnerty bowled 4 accurate overs for 1 wicket, with Bolland the pick of the bowlers taking 2-11 off 3 overs. After 8 different bowlers had plied their craft the score ended 63-5, although Ducklin remained unbeaten in isolated defiance.

OC’s ran out convincing winners by 97 runs,

Fortunately most people were dressed for work, so were able to head straight off to their offices.

Supporters were fewer, although the ever reliable Mrs C Senior, and faithful canine companion, were there to question the captains batting order and ensure fair play all round. Abi bored Nathan with Physical education exam stuff and Jane continued fretting about netball.

OC’s are officially on a winning run, allegedly!!

Note: Sales of Scenic Ridge Shiraz have risen to new heights, according to informed sources (well the groundsman told me)


Date: 17 May 2005

Versus: Sutton

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: OC's win by 53 runs


Match Day 3 saw some changes to the OC’s line up as Trevor’s rotation policy continued.

Into the team came Paul (I only came for some practice) Simner as well as Dan (I’ll run all day, I will) Reuben and his brother Nathan (Cricket…what’s that??) Reuben.

I’m not saying it was cold in the early part of the day, but the temperature was lower than a snakes belly in a deep canyon.

But the sun did eventually come out to greet the OC gladiators.

New skipper Doyle won the toss and elected to drink….er I mean bat. DJ (14) and Sumo (12) then made history as OC’s heaviest ever opening partnership, getting the team off to a rapid start.

DJ’s departure brought in the former skipper, Grey Boy Collett, who continued his good form with a rapid 21 including 2 sixes. Doyle (46) arrived at the wicket and tried to run himself out, and did run out turning circle Simner, before eventually playing a decent shot.

A succession of low scores followed including 3 duck’s, combined with a comical visit to the wicket by Rupert (I can’t see, it’s too cold, it’s too hot, I’m only a student, my bat’s too small etc) Hamilton.

Tezzer Beeks and Rude boy Hamilton took great catches……….all for the opposition!!!
The fact that Tezzer (Hansie Cronje) Beeks later dropped a dolly for the home team has been referred to the ECB for investigation.

OC’ finished 113 all out.

Now I’m not saying the Sutton team were weak, but as Shakespeare said ‘shall I compare thee to Tesco’s home brand tea’.

Sutton were never really in it, as a formidable array of bowlers kept the game under wraps. Ben (One leg) Rueben pinned the batsmen down with an accurate display of dibbly dobbly stuff taking 2-6 off his 4 overs.

Munawar got some hammer, but Beeksy (2-1-2) and Hamilton (4-2-11) bowled well to leave OC’s comfortable winners as Sutton ended on 60-5. Fielding was excellent and, personally, i thought, well placed

As for the important stuff. congrats to the bar staff on the very cold Fosters Ice, whilst the ‘Scenic Ridge’ Shiraz continues to grow on the girls. Support-wise the Collett and Reuben clan increases by the week, whilst Jackie sported another in her selection of fetching sweaters.

Watch out Croydon this team is on fire!!!!!


Date: 10 May 2005

Versus: W.S. Atkins

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: WS Atkins win by 9 runs


Match day 2 arrived and Oc’s strongest opposition were waiting in the wings, WS Atkins. The question was, after the skippers heroics last week, who would come to the party this week?

Frankly some of the O’cs players spend way too much time at the party!!

The pre-match preparations evidenced the difference in cultures. Atkins were a bunch of (very) tall athletic Australian and South Africans, with those huge bags that take up most of the bench space in the changing room, and launch into catching and fielding practice immediately on arrival.

OC’s finest, meanwhile, were found in the bar, tucking into the normal pre-match rituals….beer, fags and chips. Rupert (I’ll get value for money) Hamilton, saving half his chips for consumption some 3 hours later!!!

OC’s finally took to the field and Atkins set about the bowling with gusto, opening batsman T.Allb’stard setting about the rusty bowling of John (I’m from Liverpool me)Bolland and Andrew (Yeti) Finnerty.

Finnerty fought back and ended with fine figures of 2-16, whilst Doyle arrived in the attack and took 3 wickets, in between the odd 6 and 4. Free scoring, however, continued, and Atkins batsmen retired at regular intervals to share the fun with their even taller colleagues.

As the innings drew to a close David (Why is the pitch too short?) James came into the attack and was hammered for 31 off 4 overs. Atkins ended on 133-8.

I guess you could say it was a a ‘tall’ order!

In 21 years of playing and reporting on this teams progress I have seen some fine innings but the one played by Sparky this night was up there with most of them.

Simon (fancy a curry later) Parker and (Pukka Pie) James set about the target with gusto, Parker grew increasingly fluent hitting boundary’s with aplomb (or in most cases a bat) and the target started to look achievable,

James departed for 13 and Captain (if I don’t like it I won’t hit it) Collet added 14 in support.

Doyle came and quickly went bringing (Mr) T Beeks to the wicket. Beeks enterprising stroke play, following his earlier end of innings 2-18, showed him as the find of the season so far.

The pair fought like tigers, ending beaten, but unbowed, 9 runs short of the target,
Sparky 72 not out, Beeks 9 not out. (OC’s 124-3)

A fine performance we agreed (after a few Oranjebooms and a curry)

Able support was provided by the Collet and Rueben clan, with Jane (everlasting tan) Rueben and Jackie (fetching black sweater)Collett particularly vocal,

I did hear an interesting discussion from the ladies based around the subject of just how portly Mr James was this year (harsh I felt)

The barman claimed the red wine was acceptable this week but why did Mrs C gave hers away?


Date: 3rd May 2005

Versus: Epsom and Ewell

Venue: Ruxley Lane

Result: OCs win by 6 wickets


In their first 20/20 match of the season OCs arrived to be confronted with an outfield long enough to lose players in, not good when you only have 9 players in the first place!

(Stand-in) Captain Collett lost the toss and the team picked up their machete’s and fought there way through the undergrowth to the pitch. It was never going to be easy to get the ball away especially against the accurate bowling of Ben I ('urt me leg' again) Reuben and Ian (I’m back I am) Doyle, both chipped in with a couple of wickets and 4 tidy overs.

A direct hit from Doyle brought a run out whilst Terry (Mr T) Beeks and Munawar (put it on a sixpence) Ahmed kept up the pressure. Epsom, however, started to get the ball away at last, with a flurry of boundaries. Dave (Pieman) James stepped in and mopped up the tail with impressive figures of 2-7 and Epsom were all out for 63.

OCs opened with, well not much really. After 7 overs a score of 8-1 had sent the watching ladies into a stupor and requests for more red wine although Mrs C was heard to say, 'Better than the last rubbish you served me'.

Whilst Beeks toiled away manfully, the scoreboard stayed static and looks of concern were evident on the faces of the team, (as they realised the Fosters Ice fridge had not been turned on). James started to move the score along, but it took the arrival of the Skipper to turn the game.

A quick fire 16 including 2 sixes, supported by James's considered 17 enabled Reuben and Doyle (with the help of a few wides) to comfortably overtake the Epsom score during the 18th over.

OCs finished 64-4 winning by 6 wickets in a decent game, all said and done. It is hoped next week will see an improvement in the outfield (shorter) the red wine Decent rubbish) and the Fosters Ice (Cold).

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