I've been fretting all week about how the weather was going to be for the cricketing this weekend, and indeed, it did look very grim at one point today.
That was about 8 overs into to our batting against Calverton at the their ground I believe is called The Rookery, a very attractive if awfully slopey ground up the hill from the village, where the horses live in danger of being smacked on the fetlock by a big hit.
I started off umpiring at both ends, thanks to the Calverton player who said I was a very good and fair umpire, and watched our good early batting while doing my arms waving and sounding officious shtick. I also watched as very dark and grey clouds began to block out the sun and hem us in like Dracula's cloak. Sure enough, after those 8 overs, it turned black overhead and it absolutely hammered down on us and we ran off like the proverbial drowned rats.
But local knowledge from the very friendly opponents meant that we were able to get back on after only 20 minutes, while so many other clubs had to abandon their games when that torrential downpour came.
It was very squelchy underfoot, and the bowler sounded like the Creature from the Black Lagoon as he ran in behind me but we GOT THE GAME ON as the slogan goes. We batted for the full 40 overs for only 3 down, and everyone who batted scored good runs, and yes the horses were bothered by some big hits, but none got their manes dented. I umpired for 20 overs, both ends, which I've never done before.
I believe I therefore be what is known as a Good Clubman.
We got to 161, had a good tea, and then it was time to bowl. I was told that I was opening the bowling this week, which was good of the skipper, and myself and my much more accurate opening partner started well. He got one opener, and I got the other with a beautiful yorker after he had smacked me for 4.
Sadly, for me that was as good as it got, as their number three bat, after a shakey start where I beat him a few times, decided he liked the look of my bowling and took me for 15 in one over. It wasn't even bad bowling, just gave him a fraction enough width for him to free his arms and disappear the ball into a bramble bush while the flying swallows admired him.
He went on to score 98 without really any problems at all, although our other bowlers were a bit better at restricting him than I was. Won them the game, as they took the victory by 8 wickets in 30 overs. I ran around like mad in the field and made no mistakes, but my weirdly crappy throw was noted, and twos were taken to me, which was annoying.
We did take points out of the game, and as Calverton are near the top of the league and we are near the bottom, this is still a decent result for us. And it was an enjoyable day.
All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 20.07.19