Life as a village cricketer

I’m slowly starting to move away from the doom and gloom of the early, middle and late parts of the 2012 cricket season. They yielded very few runs. The arse-end of the season, though, and the runs are flowing.

I managed to get a cheeky reverse sweep in this weekend. It made me no runs and probably didn't look good, but it made people laugh. You can't ask for more than that.

After a steady 12 last time out, I again set a season’s high as I notched 17 runs in a mere one hour and 20 minutes of scintillating Sunday cricket in the cold and the dark and the drizzle of Englefield Green.

If only the season had started had started on the August Bank Holiday weekend, my season’s average would stand at a lofty 14.50.

As it is, it now stands at 5.20. I’m not too disappointed. Only two innings ago it was below three.

My 17 was a decent knock. By my standards, at least. I arrived at the crease with the score on 52/2. Our remaining opener soon got himself out for 30 aiming a loose drive to nowhere in particular and then the floodgates opened.

Batsmen five, six, seven and eight all came and went, adding a paltry five runs between them from 37 deliveries.

It was unusual for me not to be a part of such carnage. I’m usually willingly sucked into the vortex that is Englefield Green’s middle order, so it was odd to see so many come and so many go.

I was lucky, mind. One of their pace bowlers had me in his pocket, but fortunately I only faced his last over.

His replacement was bowling right arm around the wicket. I hate the ball coming across me. Hate it. I countered this in unusual fashion by simply giving him the charge. If it works for Ian Bell…

No runs were accrued, but it’s hard to be given out lbw when you’re a third of the way down the wicket. It was a plan born of self preservation.

The plan worked as we took the extras afforded by him slinging too many down the leg side, clearly ruffled by my uncompromising approach…

At the other end was some very friendly slow bowling. Anything flighted I was down the track to, nudging away for ones and twos in the on side. Anything on a good length I blocked. There was even a reverse sweep. Really. Didn’t get anything for it, mind.

I eventually departed the scene with our score on 113/8, looking to up my somewhat sluggish rate. I strode down to a new spinner and tried to sweep him. I missed and was stumped.

I was pleased to get some time in the middle though. It’d been a while. I was also chuffed to lift my average above five.

I’ll get nowhere near my target average of 11.75, but there’s always next season, right? That may have been my final outing of the season, but I’ll be sure to let you know in due course.

By Miles Reucroft

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