Baston welcomed big-town bullies Stamford to the Shrine on Saturday, looking to build upon a crushing win at Billingborough the week before.
Billingborough posted a respectable 177 all out. Mick Stanley (46), Josh Scott (48), and Nathan Garfoot (golden duck) were the key men for the home side. For Baston, skipper Tim Dyer claimed a wonderfully expensive 6-fer, with spin-twins Lamin and Grumps chipping in with two rather more respectable wickets each.
on the right: Aaron Pullum (character Kenneth) from Benidorm
Did Garfoot know he was going to get a golden when he got dressed that morning?
The highlight of the day though was a huge 141 run partnership between run-machine Jon Howard and Gold Cup contender Guy Cunningham. The pair helped Baston knock off the 178 runs needed in less than 33 overs. Guy finished 98 not out, after good sport and all-round nice bloke Garfoot stuck everyone on the boundary with Guy needing 3 for his century, but with just one run required to win. Guy naturally tried to smash the ball into next week, but only skied it straight to the delighted bowler. Garfoot dropped the snipper of a catch, but being the moron he is, Guy trotted through for a single anyway, finishing two short of a rapid ton.
Jon (65) and Guy (98*)
Back to the Stamford game, where Baston again fielded a strong side. Guy dropped out due to being too good after last week, to be replaced by Sporty Scotty. Doug (wonky finger) and Big Dave (GFAS) remained unavailable. Tim won the toss, and with his bezzer Neil Williams absent, stuck Stamford in.
There was some serious confusion as the game began, when BEEEEEEEEEEF joined Pecker in opening the batting. Several of the Baston players wondered if they had been given a 6 wicket handicap? As it happened, BEEEEEEEEEEEF really was going to open the batting! #unbelievablejeff
Sensing early wickets, Adam and Grumps won a fight between every Baston player to get their hands on the new ball. Amazingly, it was seasoned opener Peck who fell first, castled after going back to a Grumps delivery (error!). At the other end, Beef was slowly accumulating runs off the edge of his bat. He eventually fell to a cracking sprawling catch by Scotty for 20 of the queens runs.
Baston thought they had a third wicket when Adam rapped Jon Morley on the pads, only for Pat MaDonkey to wave away the appeal. The third wicket did fall soon after though, the same bowler succeeding with another lbw shout, this time against a small boy. Lloydie was delighted, after the little squirt described his pitch as “like batting on bubble wrap.” Better than a council pitch in Luton, Lloyd! Tim’s other best-mate Phil Holland was next in, and was greeted with a face-high beamer from super-aggressive Adam. The point here is clear….there’s nothing clever about being cack-handed.
Obviously roughed up from the other end, Big Phil swung out against Grumps, and was caught by another excellent Sporty effort. Stamford were struggling on 67-4. Unfortunately, Jono and Smiler hadn’t been reading “Sporty Scotty’s How to Catch” (available from a couple of shoddy libraries in BEDFORD). Morley progressed to a good fifty when Jono dropped a simple catch on the boundary. Not only dropped, but threw over the rope for six too.
At the other end, Dave Liam Jnr was also cashing in, Dyer in particular getting some harsh punishment. The runs continued to flow for Stamford, thanks in large part to some fielding that even Felix would have been ashamed of. Smiler was next to drop Morley, making brilliant ground, only to shell the catch. Wakey wakey VSM! SATURDAY! CRICKET!
Lamin volunteered to be taken off after bowling 7 wicketless overs, saying he thought Scotty was far more likely to take a wicket. Tim also hauled himself off after 7 overs of biffage, replaced by Felix. The move almost paid off when Morley once again picked out Jono on the boundary. Unfortunately, Jon was still hammered from drinking all night, and once again shelled the simple catch. Some buffet bowling from Sporty allowed Morley to bring up his second ever century, before he was dropped for the fourth time. Young Dave/Liam reached a very stylish 50, without giving a single catching chance to the Baston fielders. Just as well really, as they would probably have dropped it. #dropsy
Mature knock from youngster Henry Martin (64*)
After scoring just 70-ish runs in the first half of their innings, Stamford had biffed their way to 220-4 by tea. The break brought little respite, Smiler and Jono dropping three plates and two mugs between them.
W&*khands #1 got the Baston chase off to a rapid start in partnership with Liam, the pair racing to 68 before Boring Boring Birchy made the breakthrough, pinning Liam (42) leg before. It’s well known fact that Liam has never been correctly given out (Himself, 2013). So it was no surprise that a little gigantic tantrum followed. It just wasn’t Liam’s day, and he only reached 3rd spot in the Baston bat-toss competition, some way short of Jon Howard and Michael Troops.
Jono (32) soon followed, nicking off for Birchy’s second wicket. Sensing a famous Baston collapse, Stamford brought BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEF on to give them some respite. The move backfired though, Lloydie (1) becoming another lbw victim.
Drinks brought the opportunity for a hilarious “nice jugs” gag, avec photo. But with the players walking off, disaster stuck! Ben couldn’t find his camera in his bag!! Keen to help their friend out, the Baston boys soon found the camera, after dispersing all Ben’s kit into the nearby bushes. Liam was still in a grump.
Top teas as usual from Sue and the gang
With Smiler and Lamin at the crease, Baston were still in with a good chance of chasing down the 221 needed for victory. Lamin and his doppelganger Jamie Bones obviously did a cheeky switch at drinks. Whoever the Lamin look-a-like was, they started some very uncharacteristic biffing, even hitting Birch for 6!! Liam was still in a grump.
The key moment of the chase came when under 13s starlet Smiler (17) pulled a short ball straight to Dave Liam Jnr. The stumping of Bonesy (25) triggered the fabled Baston Collapse, falling from 127-4 to 154 all out, with 7 to 11 contributing just 8 runs. Boring Boring Birchy picked up an extremely tedious 7-fer. The sombre mood was lifted a little, when Felix shouldered arms to Birch first ball, and promptly watched his middle stump flatten. Liam had gone home.
Chris Birch claims 7-30 in another match-winning performance against Baston this year
Baston will be hoping for an improved fielding display against Thomas Cook next week. Win or lose, getting the game over and done with ASAP will be a priority, so we don’t have to spend all afternoon in the company of prize prat Sam Spears.