Far from the MCC

~ Est. in 1998 ~

 

 

“New Sleep Study Shocks Scientific World
As Mad Put an End to OUP Domination”

 

 

Match:  04 / 084

Won by 44 runs

 

 

Team

 

Total

FFTMCCC

174 - 8

I. Howarth  52,  N. Hebbes  38

 

Oxford University Press

130

N. Hebbes  4 - 17

 

 

 

 

In surprising news today, boffins the world over have turned their furrowed brows in the direction of the drowsy English midlands town of Oxford, where the results of a new sleep deprivation study are sending shockwaves through the scientific hierarchy and threatening to overturn the accepted wisdom concerning sleep and its function in the brain. Said Professor J. Obscure of the Oxford University Department of Napping and Dozing, “What we’ve seen here is nothing short of remarkable. We sent two healthy young men out on a Saturday evening with £150 in their pockets under instructions to drink as much as they could for as long as possible and actively pursue cheap women for as long as they were able to focus more than twelve inches in front of their faces. Furthermore, we requested that on arriving home, having struck out on the woman front due to their total and utter inebriation, they stay awake until 8.00 the next morning, and then, that they sleep in their rumpled and stinky clothes with the rumpled stinky cat on the back lawn for a period of no longer than two hours. From 10 a.m. on the Sunday, we studied their behaviour to see what effect this lack of sleep might have on them. The result? The two young chaps appeared normal in all respects, being able to compete at a high level for a local cricket team, one as opening batsmen, the other as Captain, and then carry on drinking afterwards as though they’d both been to bed at 8.30 the previous evening! This must surely prove once and for all that heavy drinking and lack of sleep are beneficial in all respects under all conditions. My thanks go to the two young men involved, this is bound to lead to at least a Nobel Prize for me and maybe some cheap degrading sex in a motel room please don’t tell my wife I said that. Unless of course it’s her I have the cheap and degrading sex with.”

 

It was a long time since The Mad had beaten OUP, so long in fact that it had never happened. Four or five games over the years had seen one or two close affairs and a couple of drubbings, but each time it had been OUP victorious, which meant The Mad had two battles to win on the field at Jordan Hill: one on the field (at Jordan Hill), the other in the mind. If they were good enough, then winning the latter would see them victorious in the former, but were the latter to be lost, then no matter good enough or bad, the former would not be won. You see how that works?

 

 

oup002

 

A tired I. Howarth (left) sits with rock stars J. Hotson and H. Jones (right).

 

Nursing a hangover the size of an extremely large bowl of baked beans, two sausages, two rashers of bacon and a slice of toast, implacable Mad captain J. Hoskins won the toss with his usual aplomb and chose to bat on the hard and fast Jordan Hill track. Not so much nursing as admitting to the ICU of the John Radcliffe his own frankly fuck-off massive hangover hardly at all alleviated by eight cans of Coke and the smallest pair of hands in cricketing history, Mad’s premier batsman I. Howarth took the field with new opening partner J. Hotson, who much to admiration of all was looking more and more like a 1970s pop star every day. As usual Hotson achieved that delicate balance of being last to the game but still on time, and it was also no surprise when, in a carbon-copy of the previous week’s unique opening stand, the pair put on a defiant yet insouciant 73, with Howarth contributing only 52 between naps at the crease while Hotson chipped in with a methodically pleasing 6. T. Smith (7) in his first outing of the season, and appearing refreshed and chipper after retiring to bed at 8.30 the previous evening in stark contrast etc etc, went early looking to score a home run, but then N. Hebbes quite possibly ran Hotson out to bring to an end his sheet anchor role, although in such situations with so many variables at work can blame ever be properly apportioned when the guilty party won’t own up?

 

H. Jones, making a welcome return to the Mad after several years in the wilderness, went to an unwelcome third ball for a duck, after which G. Bridges also departed for a less-than-welcome 1. That left N. Hebbes (38) to impress with some fine stroke play as he steadied the rocking ship with the elegant J. Harris (7), also in his first innings of the season. S. Dobner’s unfortunate departure for a single saw M. Bullock waiting at the other end yet to score, and with 137 on the board and only two wickets left, a promising start was slipping towards no more than a total well within the range of the strong OUP line-up. But batting at nine and ten, Bullock (16 n.o.) and A. Mann (18 n.o) were having none of it, no sir. Some stray bowling on leg saw Mann break his personal record of sixes by hitting one, and Bullock hoiked the OUP captain back over his head for successive boundaries as he once again reproduced the violent and dismissive form so often shown in the nets. In the process, The Mad record for the ninth wicket was broken, and a defendable target set.

 

 

2004may23a

 

Jordan Hill clubhouse under rich blue skies.

 

In the field, the Mad looked sharp. Sleepy, but sharp. There was no collapse by OUP, just a series of promising partnerships broken at regular intervals by good pressure and better fielding. Bowling with what looked, felt and soon cracked like a toffee apple, A. Mann (1-13) still contrived to break through early, then N. Hebbes (4-17) at first change well and truly took over, for starters bagging what in retrospect was the prize wicket of OUP opener C. Heron (32) who until then had looked comfortable if not downright bored. Heron fell to a fine catch by I. Howarth in the gully, who thought the ball flying towards him was a ninth can of coke, and grabbed it with glee. J. Harris (0-31) could have had a wicket first ball, J. Hoskins (0-13) was his usual parsimonious self, S. Dobner (1-39) bagged one too. Then, just as OUP were setting themselves for the chase, A. Mann and J. Hoskins combined for the long-distance run out which broke the back of the middle order. Several balls later, J. Harris sent down the fierce leaping delivery which broke the finger of M. Bullock standing behind the stumps, but by then, OUP were 6 down, and all that remained was for their captain to eke out a handful more runs as the lower order departed around him. He was last to fall, for 25, bowled by H. Jones who in returning 2-10 not only took wickets but also showed glimpses of his old fire, pacey control and customary glee in smashing the stumps into matchwood. With somewhat fewer runs on the board than The Mad and no wickets left to speak of, OUP were defeated.

 

Ding-dong, the witch is dead.

 

Sometimes, believing in self-belief is the hardest thing to do, believe me, but I believe it can be done. And now, so do OUP.

 

 

‘Blocker

 

 

 

 

 

*

 

 

Statto Scorecards

 

 

 

Far from the Madding Crowd CC versus Oxford University Press

Played at Jordan Hill, 23 May 2004

 

Far from the Madding Crowd CC won the toss and elected to bat

Far from the Madding Crowd CC won by 44 runs

 

Far from the MCC debuts:  none

 

 

04 / 084

 

 

 

 

 

40 over match

 

 

 

Team

Far from the Madding Crowd CC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Batsman

How Out

Total

Balls

4s

6s

FOW

1

I. Howarth

c Gibson b Glenister

52

(56)

9

-

1-73

2

J. Hotson

run out

6

(52)

-

-

3-87

3

T. P. W. Smith

b B. Boon

7

(14)

-

-

2-81

4

N. J. Hebbes

c Heron b Lawrence

38

(46)

5

-

7-137

5

H. Jones

b B. Boon

0

(3)

-

-

4-88

6

G. Bridges

b Lawrence

1

(5)

-

-

5-102

7

J. Harris

b Lawrence

8

(29)

1

-

6-113

8

S. L. Dobner

lbw b Walsh

1

(6)

-

-

8-137

9

M. Bullock +

not out

16

(15)

2

-

-

10

A. G. Mann

not out

18

(15)

1

1

-

11

J. D. Hoskins *

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Extras

(NB1, W19, B4, LB3)

27

 

 

 

 

 

TOTAL

(for 8 wickets, 40 overs)

174

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Bowler

Overs

Maidens

Runs

Wkts

 

1

Gibson

8

2

17

0

 

2

M. Boon

4

0

31

0

 

3

Glenister

8

2

26

1

 

4

B. Boon

8

0

29

2

 

5

Lawrence

8

0

30

3

 

6

Walsh

4

0

34

1

 

 

 

 

Team

Oxford University Press

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Batsman

How Out

Total

Balls

4s

6s

FOW

1

R. Mann

b Mann

6

 

 

 

1-23

2

C. Heron

c Howarth b Hebbes

32

 

 

 

3-69

3

R. Halsey

c Hoskins b Hebbes

13

 

 

 

2-45

4

J. Walsh

c Harris b Dobner

20

 

 

 

5-95

5

I. Hall

b Hebbes

0

 

 

 

4-74

6

S. Lawrence

b Jones

25

 

 

 

9-130

7

S. Gibson

run out (Mann/Hoskins)

6

 

 

 

6-106

8

M. Boon

c Harris b Jones

1

 

 

 

7-110

9

B. Boon

c and b Hebbes

0

 

 

 

8-115

10

S. Glenister

not out

6

 

 

 

-

11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Extras

(NB2, W12, B6)

20

 

 

 

 

 

TOTAL

(all out, 35.5 overs)

130

 

 

 

 

 

 

#

 

Bowler

Overs

Maidens

Runs

Wkts

 

1

Mann

7

3

13

1

 

2

Dobner

8

0

39

1

 

3

Hebbes

8

1

17

4

 

4

Harris

6

1

31

0

 

5

Hoskins

3

0

13

0

 

6

Jones

3.5

0

10

2

 

 

 

 

 

MOTM:  N. Hebbes

Champagne Moment:  I. Howarth’s sharp catch at gully to remove C. Heron

Buffet Award:  J. Harris’ treacle tart and syrup (generous portion)

 

 

Opposition:  V019 / 15

Ground:  G013 / 05

Captain:  C006 / 17