Match Report v Capel (Sunday 26th May 2019)
By Courtenay Mills
by Billy Hutchins & Courtenay Mills
The fixture might say Mickelham on our website and in our fixture card, but during the week, we received a call from Mickelham who weren't able to field a team. Courtenay "I was only playing for the after match roast potatoes" Mills was particularly gutted at this news. The pub that the Mickelham lads take us to is well known to the more rotund members of the Sunday XI on account of its excellent Sunday roast leftovers. Mark "The Tooth" Pereira was also rather annoyed about missing the chance to have a final look for his dislodged canine last seen somewhere near his feet at the batting crease. Thankfully though, the Mickelham boys had already found us a replacement fixture with Capel when they gave the news that they had to cancel.
Having spent the week on somewhere between 7 to 9 players, with availability up and down more frequently than Jack's mood, there was somewhat of a lack of enthusiasm going into this game. Jack "I didn't think I'd have to play today because I thought it was going to piss down" Bellars turned up in fine spirit, immediately declaring himself unavailable for the Sunday Slam match next weekend on account of having to unexpectedly play in this one, the one he'd actually been selected for. Courtenay "We should have called it off" Mills was still grumbling on about roast potatoes, Yorkshire puddings, gravy and the fact that even with three U14s we only had eight players. What transpired thereafter, however, was so joyful to watch that even the ever miserable Jack was smiling at the end of the day.
To make things even, Capel gave us a couple of players from the thirteen they had available. That put us on 10 until Robin "My Maths is already better than Billy's" Paulett had a quick count of the players on field and realised that we did, in fact, have 11. Just as well really because Farhan "I've never been on time for anything in my life, ever" Ali was nowhere to be seen. He sent a message into the WhatsApp group saying he'd be there by 2pm, 30 minutes after the scheduled start time, but when Billy "I've no idea where our 11th player came from" Saunders checked his phone and saw the WhatsApp at 2.20pm, it won't come as a big surprise when I tell you that there was still no sign of the ever evasive Farhan "I tell the time using a sundial" Ali.
Robin "The Worm Potato" Paulett opened up the bowling and was straight onto a good line and length. He bowled extremely well today for the duration of his 7 overs. At the other end, we opened up with one of the Capel players, Rudy, who bowled well too and we thank him for standing in today. We could have opened with the other Capel player that had been loaned to us, James. He was supposed to be a very good bowler and definitely not a batsman. Unfortunately, Billy "not the best Billy at the club" Saunders, with his limited understanding of English, wasn't able to fully compute what he had been told and decided to play James as a batsman instead, a decision that had even Capel somewhat confused.
Liam "Mum needs to buy me some spikes" Wainscoat came on to replace Robin and also bowled well, narrowly missing out on a wicket when Courtenay "Mickelham's greatest fan" Mills watched the batsman with his foot out of the crease for a good few seconds before realising he could have had the easiest stumping in the World. Kyle "I was actually taller than Capel's shortest player" Campbell replaced Rudy and again, bowled pretty well. The only wicket to fall during the first four bowler spells was Rudy clean bowling their opener who had steadily been backing further and further away from a ball that had been bouncing like a tennis ball following a sprinkling of rain on the wicket. Capel have an absolutely superb new pavilion but they really need to do something about that god awful track.
Joe "I keep my conversation to a minimum" Quevedo came on for Liam and continued the pattern of the youngsters bowling well. Then came the game changer. Liam was in full sprint, running to field a ball from the boundary, when his feet went from under him, sliding on the wet grass. Unfortunately, without the slip preventing measures that spikes bring to the table, Liam took a tumble and had to be substituted for the remainder of the game. In true SNCC Sunday style, we found a substitute in the playground next to the pitch in the form of Billy "I'm also taller than Capel's shortest player" Hutchins.
With the arrival of the 10 year old, the fielding standards suddenly took a rapid increase, with 3 or 4 certain boundaries being cut off by the spritely youngster. A second wicket arrived with Billy "I'm never picking Mr Bowen again" Saunders taking a simple catch from Joe's bowling. Well deserved after an excellent spell. The players gathered into the post wicket huddle, high fiving Joe and reluctantly high fiving the skipper before realising that little Billy hadn't joined in. He was summoned to come and join the huddle and celebrate the wicket and, upon his arrival into the group, he proudly declared that the runs he had stopped already made him significantly better than Mr Bowen. A point that the rest of us had to concede. Huge laughter all around. Sometimes the funniest jokes are just the truthful observational ones.
Having watched Jim "Daddy Pig" Paulett turn his arm over for a few surprisingly decent overs and then Billy "What's a dot ball?" Saunders disappear literally everywhere, the captain finally made the sensible decision of turning to the 10 year old to bowl out the final over. No wickets for Billy "I'm definitely better than Mr B" Hutchins, but very few runs conceded and a genuinely good over.
So to tea, which in fairness to Capel, was right up there with SNCC standards and was interspersed with little Billy talking us through his awesome fielding and reminding us with regular frequency just how much more valuable he is to the Sundays than Mr B. A point I reckon he made at least 7 or 8 times but it seemed not to lose any humour with each mention of it.
With SNCC chasing around 190 for the win from 30 overs, Jim "Slower than Farhan between the wickets" Paulett opened up with Capel's bowling specialist, James. James departed for a duck which brought much laughter from his teammates and the final realisation from big Billy that he was, in fact, not a batsman. Rob "Upgrade" Wigley came in next and batted well. The only notable thing really during his partnership with Jim came from Eddie Quevedo who said "I didn't realise just how much Jim looks like Daddy Pig"! A new nickname for 2s skipper that we hope will stick.
Jim soon departed keeping up his circa 10 average which brought Jack "Ooooo how I wish it rain down, rain down on me" Bellars to the crease. Jack and Superior batted well and looked like they were going to put SNCC into a strong position before the inevitable SNCC collapse arrived. With wickets tumbling and Kyle "I think Billy's better than Mr Bowen too" Campbell offering the only resistance in a quality innings from the youngster, SNCC's hopes of winning the game were all but lost. That is, until Robin "Potato" Paulett and Billy "I'm better with the bat than Mr Bowen too" Hutchins came to the crease.
Billy faced his first ball and was clean bowled. A little paddy, bat thrown on the floor and a stamp of the foot was a nice reminder to us all that he is definitely Joleen's child but thankfully, with cries from both SNCC and Capel spectators alike for a no-ball, the umpire held out his arm and the delivery was ruled unfair. Then, getting his eye in with a couple of singles and Robin, knowing his role as the inferior batsman and making sure he put Billy back on strike, Billy then proceeded to hit a shot for 5 runs. With a 10 year old and a 12 year old between the wickets, SNCC has never seen running like that, certainly not on a Sunday! And of course, Billy was quick to remind us just how much faster he is between the wickets than Mr Bowen.
Billy and Robin both finished not out. Billy was fresh from 20 not out in the morning from his U10s match and with a further 10 not out in this match, he was inevitably awarded the Man Of The Match award by both SNCC and Capel. Again, he was very quick to remind us that he had scored more than Mr B had all season! A big nod to Capel who were excellent with him. Helmet of the Week went to Jack on account of his mood and for not winning us the game.
In the dressing room, little Billy was chosen to write the match report and so, due to his age, we decided that the best way to achieve this was by way of an interview, the transcript from which is as follows:
Q. How was your first adult match?
A. Good. I got ten runs when batting and I stopped 3 fours from going across the boundary I think.
Q. Were you out?
Q. Who do you think is the best player in the Sunday team?
A. Probably Jack.
Q. Who is the worst player in the Sunday team?
A. Errrm, Billy.
Q. Who do you think you should replace in the Sunday team?
A. Mr B.
Q. Why do you think you should replace Mr Bowen?
A. Because I'm better than him!
Q. What makes you better than Mr Bowen?
A. I've got more runs in a single game than he ever has in his whole career!!
Q. What was your favourite bit about the match?
Q. What was your worst bit about the match?
Q. Are you tired after all that running?
Q. So you're ready to play again?
Q. Do you want to play again?
Q. How much longer before you replace big Billy as the Sunday captain?
A. The Sunday after next Sunday.
That concludes the match report and interview. Well done all for making that special. That was exactly what Sundays are all about and was throughly enjoyable.