On Having Given Up Cricket

Extending the theme of Laskey’s poem, ‘alert in the heavenly deep, beyond the boundary of sleep,’ one might imagine that there is a pitch that needs rolling so that the angels can trust the bounce playing back.  And so it was, on a Saturday morning in August, that the old roller coaxed once again into life by Richard with his soothing, persistent words of encouragement, made its final trip around the boundary.  Nobody can quite pin a date on when she arrived, but the considered opinion on that Saturday was that it must have been shortly after Messrs Watt and Boulton conceived of the latent power stored in steam.  It was a time when things were measured differently with the worlds of metrology and cricket colliding to give us the chain-length that she had to rumble along, ponderously smoothing ripples of turf.  She had done her duty, and passed the baton to the lighter, modern replacement with her new-fangled ‘power steering’ and working alternator.

The unseasonal weather put paid to a number of matches.  All the League Teams find themselves heading into the twilight of the season in the mid-table hinterland, so the Club turned to fun games.

Ethan Dobing eschews all popular philosophy around cricket being a game of the feet and models himself, instead, around Vitruvian Man. August saw him break the barrier of 50 finally – despatching the local constabulary to all parts with the view of ‘if it’s in my arc, it goes’.  Walsham, wisely, ensured a close-run match against the Police landed on the side of the law in the end.

Another disciple of Dobing, Ashley Forbes, spends a considerable amount of time slaying bowling.  Reunited with alumnus, the scuttling Steve Owston, Forbes scored a Walsham Wonder of 128*, a third Sunday hundred, in the win against league-leaders Waldringfield.  Forbes measures his power-output on the Gutenberg–Richter scale. 

For the Juniors, the annual Old-Uns versus Young-Uns reversed the tide, with the parent’s pulling the series back to 1-1.  Jack Campbell will remember it as the first of many future dismissals of his father. Not coincidently, a Ned is an Old English measure of ‘talked-up runs’.

As a final thought, and as the young would say you can ‘do the math’, it turns out that the calculated speed required for a Mark Rothon slower-ball yorker to carve out its parabola is 115447 furlongs per fortnight.


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