Yard and beach cricket in April – a match report

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Send your match reports to king@kingcricket.co.uk. We’re only interested in what it was like to be at the game, so if it’s a professional match, on no account mention the cricket itself. Conversely, if it’s an amateur match, please go into excruciating detail.

King Cricket reader and regular contributor Sam writes…

There’s a lot of nonsense spoken about early season conditions in England. Batting in April isn’t that difficult. Of course, it helps if the bowler serves up a feast of slow full-tosses. And if he’s six years old.

On the day it emerged the ECB was considering replacing ‘wickets’ with ‘outs’ in the game’s new format, with whose name I shan’t sully these pages, the small people in my house suddenly began to show a previously non-existent interest in cricket. Coincidence? Yes.

We started in the back garden. Plastic bat, yellow stumps – minus lost bails – and a small red tennis ball which soon disappeared into the neighbouring yard at cow corner. Just getting my eye in. 

An audacious reverse ramp over backward point heralded a change in tempo, and after the luncheon break play resumed at the beach.

A sandy surface providing little or no bounce might be seen as a challenge. But once again, our naïve young seamer declined to use the facilities and was dispatched over his head, straight into the ice cream stall and out again. ‘Don’t bowl there, son.’

The girls decided they wanted to – if I may borrow a tired Vaughanism – ‘come to the party’, at which point proceedings descended into mild chaos.

There was still time for my wife to grace the crease for a little do. Ball in hand, I attempted a rib-tickling bumper, to push her back and keep her honest. But the ball stuck in the pitch and dribbled through for a double-bouncing leg side wide.

‘We’re cricketing!’ exclaimed the youngest from a very short, extremely silly mid-off. And we were. What a terrific day.

14 comments

  1. I’m very glad to see the use of the term “luncheon” rather than the abbreviated form, “lunch”. The term “luncheon interval” works even better than “luncheon break” in my opinion but I admit that distinction is splitting hairs a bit.

    A little disappointed also that we have not been told anything about the luncheon itself. It seems to me that a match report is always lacking a little something without that.

    But the cricket itself is described wonderfully and I could almost smell the sea while reading the piece. Sadly I couldn’t also almost smell the luncheon.

    Well writ Sam.

  2. I must admit, the report of a second innings at the beach was mildly confusing to me, given it’s abundantly clear from the actual pyjama kit in the first innings that this was white ball cricket (although admittedly the actual red ball in the same image gives that view somewhat short-shrift…)

  3. One point though sam, If the images supply the correct information, then would cow-corner be somewhere inside the house rather than the neighbours garden??

    1. That first picture is an excellent action shot, credit to the photographer – who, unless an extraordinary feat of dexterity was involved, doesn’t appear to be Sam.

      Not sure it entirely encapsulates the spirit of “red ball” cricket, but who cares when you’re having that much fun?

      1. Yet captured the ball perfectly in mid-air like that? That’s two elite skill-sets being executed right there. You took a shot of your own shot. Only a shame you didn’t shoot yourself taking a shot of your shot!

      2. Superb piece of action photography there, Sam.

        Until now, no-one has remarked upon your left-handed batting yet right-arm bowling, reminiscent of the great Jimmy A. Or are you batting left-handed in this instance merely to give the kid a chance?

      3. I am indeed a ‘southpaw’ with willow in hand. The Looe Lara, they don’t call me.

      4. It’s a shame the Looe Lara wasn’t available to play with us in the high hills of Greater Tibet some years ago, where zho dung was the most abundant source of ball-like material for much of our cricket-inspired trek, as reported on this very site more than 10 years ago:

        https://www.kingcricket.co.uk/tibet-v-england-match-report/2010/05/27/

        3,500 meters above sea level, that was.

        How far above sea level is the small coastal fishing town (or perhaps I should say towns) of Looe, Sam?

  4. Tantalising last sentence, Bradders. “I….think therefore I am?”, “I …. may be gone for some time?”, “I…Claudius?”

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