The Dreaded Bowl Out – AGAIN !!!
And we do know our North from our South
As all you cricketers and supporters know this past weekend was spent either watching it rain or freezing to death. Oh to be in England now that summers here. The Mount suffered from the Ray Taylor version of Jack Duckworth’s rules for rain affected matches just losing narrowly in the end. Number One Son blasted off at the end of the Mount’s run chase in 25 overs but got out with two balls left and 7 runs needed. I missed this event and have had to rely on his description as I accompanied Sophie to Old Trafford for the Girls Indoor League. She gave a performance summing up our great game – she retired in the first innings of her match and got a golden in the second.
Yesterday (Sunday) the heavens opened just before the start of the Mount’s Lancashire Cup match against local rivals Elton – and the heavens continued to tip down for several hours afterwards. This meant one thing and one thing only – the dreaded bowl out. Now over the years this has happened before and has left the Mount with the unenviable record of never winning a bowl out – that was until yesterday. The agreed time of 4.45 had to be brought forward as the artificial wicket, the venue for said bowl out, was beginning to submerge. Everything was done quite properly and the final score of 4 to Greenmount and 3 to Elton meant that the Mount will now play the mighty Leigh in the next round. It was a pity this had to be the way of resolving the game as the Greenmount legend, John Ashworth, was captain of the Elton team.
In a strange twist I had spent a day at Leigh Cricket Club earlier last week. This is the period of Assessments and Trials for County Age Group teams and the Under 15 Final Trial was held in beautiful sunshine at this supportive club last Tuesday. At the conclusion of this trial we sat down and selected two teams for the Annual North Lancashire and South Lancashire fixture at this age group. I say “annual” as apart from a few years during the War this fixture has been part of the LSCA Programme since the 1930’s. There will be many cricketers, current and ex-, who will remember this fixture. Up until four years ago the venue had always been Old Trafford. For a good many years the match was sponsored by the Manchester Evening News and all participants received special caps for the occasion. The Evening News printed a souvenir programme and special guests were invited. The pomp and ceremony began to disappear after the Evening News withdrew its support but we have retained the title for now. When I first became part of LSCA there were actually two separate selection committees and the county was zoned off into North and South. Great rivalry existed between the two camps. Tempus fugit however and with the unavailability of Old Trafford during re-development and the change of emphasis within the age group this game is really the final, final trial before the team is selected for the first Under 15 County game. We did begin to take liberties a few years ago in terms of the geography of the county attempting to ensure teams were balanced. The two teams chosen for the game on Tuesday May 21st are nicely balanced but geographically unsafe – where in fact it might appear we do not know our north from our south – or vice versa. Whatever we have two teams prepared to do battle at Blackpool Cricket Club, a fine county setting. Why not have a trip to the seaside and look at the future talent for Lancashire – the match starts at 11.00am and will be played to the Yorkshire Bank ECB 50 overs rules.
Although we are suffering this week from a return to winter the couple of weeks just past have seen drier weather and we have made pretty good progress with the earlier rounds of our Inter-School Competitions. My good friend Mr Warne is the maestro in control of the Under12, 13 and 14 Comps and I have received regular updates from him. Brian Woodhead has the task of getting the Under 15 20/20 Competition through to Lancashire Finals by the end of June and is well in control of that at the moment. The Under 17 Inter-School 20/20 is also bowling along nicely. What we do not want is a couple of weeks of dodgy weather although this week’s forecast is far from good.
I have had a few emails about our celebrated Excellence Intranet. This is used by members of our Excellence system to let us know about performances away from County matches. Unfortunately we have been trying to make this Intranet more user friendly for players and parents, including data entry from mobiles, and more intuitive for coaches and managers i.e. more useful. The problem we have is that I need to maintain a database at home to register all players including the many new ones from the Development Squads, but the database used to enter performances is sited elsewhere. I am hoping there will be a resolution soon – my being away with the Queen has not helped. Young players please keep a record of your scores and as soon as we overcome our problems then there will be an announcement on the website and we will ask managers to inform you by email.
All the County Performances will be recorded via Total Cricket Scorer and then be automatically posted on the ECB Play Cricket Website. In fact for the ECB Cup matches once the system is up and running parents and friends unable to attend these matches will be able to go online and follow a ball by ball score.
Well the weather has struck again. Sophie was due to start her county season at Read Cricket Club tomorrow but alas the news has just filtered through that the game is off. I was going to wax lyrical about the football events of the weekend especially the success of Wigan Athletic but that latest news sets the worry beads going. Surely we must have a better summer this year.
Time for a TM
PS I still have a few books to sell
PPS No, I have a lot of books to sell
PPPS Make me an offer