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CCC vs Chesterfords - 9th September 2007

Match Reports 2007

CCC vs Chesterfords - 9th September 2007

Posted by: webmaster on Friday September 21, 2007 (17:42:52)   (5977 Reads)
We were delighted to welcome the Chesterford touring team on a genuine Indian summer’s afternoon in mid-september. As usual, arrangements had been made to collect their players form the station in Chantilly and ferry them to the ground. As usual, Geoff had organised our drivers to be there punctually and as usual, half their team missed the first train !

John, who we recognised as one of the Embassy team we played, has a house in the small Cambridgeshire village and was now a non-playing chaperone to the Chesterford squad. He had managed to round up 4 of their players in Paris and had driven out to make the station r-v on time. It was a bit of a disappointment not to have the whole squad present, but things soon started to look more promising. We established that the four players who arrived in the Embassy limousine (Renault Clio) had only had 5 hours sleep between them and were heading straight for the bar de la Gare to top up their lager levels. These were boys on tour, intent on enjoying all that the Paris region had to offer. In fact, so much so, that a number of their (star) players had chosen to go to the Rugby world cup game instead of facing humiliation at the hands of CCC.

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The stragglers finally arrived about 3 beers later and we loaded up the players, kit and club official (aka Jug Buyer the Treasurer) and set off for the ground; Conversation in the car flowed as freely as the beer about England’s great sporting saturday which had seen our football, rugby and cricket teams all THRASH mediocre opposition. This shot of sporting adrenaline obviously raised the motivation and we were soon underway.

The Pigalle had taken it’s toll on the tourists and having threatened to turn up with a full compliment of 14, the match was reduced to ten-a-side. Well 10 for them and 11 for us. Rob was able to welcome Jeremy back behind the wicket, (and thankfully in front of it too when it was our innings) and our youth policy was put to the test. Rob rotated our youngsters in the field following a rigourous trial (drawing straws) and Max Shepherd, Jack Oakley and Nicky Hedley in turn did us proud.

Judging from the build and power of the Chesterford early order batting line-up, it is the only village in England which still has 5 blacksmiths ! Blacksmith Philips (36) saw off our opening bowlers, Shepherd and Congreve and struck some mighty boundaries. His shift was finished by Charlie Hedley’s first ball when he edged to Jeremy. Blacksmith Thake.took up the fight and wrought havoc before Nick the Vic trapped him lbw for 34. Sturdy apprentice smithies Mushal and Perring got to double figures before falling victim to Charlie and Patrick Clarke respectively. This wobble was steadied by a fine knock from Blacksmith Lipscombe (34) but youth won out as Patrick’s figures of 4 for 25 testify. At the end of their 30 overs they had reached a challenging 189 for 7.

Tea was taken – and thoroughly enjoyed - ladies thankyou – Sandwiches, lemon cake, chocolate cake, Victoria sponge with jam and cream, hot and cold refreshments and the prettiest smiling faces in the the world (well in the Oise at least !)

Our reply started ominously as we were completely bamboozled by their spinner-only tactics. Their very own Phil Tufnell, Mr Squares the cricketer (his real name) beguiled us with some off-spin whilst Mr Lightling the leggie, skittled us out one by one. We threw as many Nicks at them as we could muster and Nick Clarke’s impressive strokeplay earned him the high score of the day of 38. He holed out to Blacksmith Lipscombe. who turned out to be a genuine all-rounder and eventual Man of the Match; There were some puzzling dismissals – quite incredibly Tris went early, knowing that less time in the middle meant more time with his in-laws, Captain Oakley and Nick Shepherd fell to catches taken in Blacksmith Mushal’s shovel-like hands and Nick Jones danced like a sugar-plum fairy over his own stumps. Jeremy offered some fine resistance amassing 28 and our guest player John from Chesterford got a useful 10 in the middle order. Patrick capped a fine all-round day running up 20 and won the victory for youth over experience – experience obviously has a shelf-life or use by date which has expired in some of our cases.

Sensing this trend Simon Hedley eagerly gave way to son Nicky who was joined in the middle by Jack Oakley. The run rate of 49 off the last ball was a tall order, but Jack and Nicky managed to carry their bats to the end and to their absolute credit. 140 for 9 and the whole day had been played in glorious sunshine and a fabulous spirit. We retired to the clubhouse (tent) and toasted the winners with a cold and very well-deserved beer (thanks Nick J). Rob presented Blacksmith Lipscombe with the “yellow jersey” in the form of an old school blazer and we returned our guests to the station. Hopefully enough of them survived the Pigalle that night to be able to return next year!

Nick Shepherd
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