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Friday 3rd May. Tichborne Park.
Ten Superstars arrived at the beautiful Tichborne Park ground ready for a game against the young and eager looking Tichborne Park side. Meanwhile our 11th player, Steve Meyler, was predictably late and lost and spent most of the first innings driving randomly around the Winchester area. The match itself bought an amazing moment when BARRY WON THE TOSS. Superstars inserted TP having been suitably intimidated by their youth.
Alok and Vijay opened the bowling and kept the handy looking openers relatively quiet. They both retired (32 and 31). The honour of first wicket of tour was bestowed on Ian - caught and bowled. Rob Fox meanwhile was cursing two relatively easy drops (the names of the players have been withheld for their own safety). Tichborne had been relatively consistently batting at around 7 an over and despite efforts from Jason (1 wicket) and Matt C (2 wickets) they finished on 140-4. We'd stuck at it and it felt like TP had taken it a little easy, presumably mainly using the match for practice ahead of league games over the weekend.
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Superstars pretty much went at 5 or 6 an over thoughout our innings - Will (fluent), Matt (aggressive) and Paul (determined) got starts in the top 3 but no one really took control of the innings. Tichborne Park used nine bowlers but Vijay boosted the total to 120 with some typical attacking batsmanship - reaching 29. We were all out off the penultimate ball of the innings.
So a respectable effort by Superstars against good opposition possibly playing slightly within themselves. The highlight of the match for many was the cracking barbecue put on by our hosts which many of the playing and non-playing squad tucked into before heading to the hotel. Obviously those Superstars who are professional headed for a light post match run and an early night. All the others hung around the hotel bar, drinking and playing cards late into the night. Rumours are Steve Meyler was the card victor but clearly all felt they were "even at least".
Saturday 4th May. Plums and Racqueteers 1515 Tournament.
Sore heads and fatigue were on the menu on Saturday morning but the tour fixture list was unforgiving, with a midday start for a 3 team tournament. The schedule was rather confusing with all 3 first innings taking place before the 3 second innings but once we got going it did seem quite logical and meant people never had too long a wait for cricket. The matches were 15 overs a side with no retirements. The location was a Leisure Centre in Winchester Town Centre - handy for players needing food or drink or fans need cakes and warmth. It appears the Gaught-Allen credit card took a slight hammering.
After the instructions from our hosts Barry returned to form by losing the toss - we would BOWL FIRST VERSUS PLUMS. Superstars opened up excellently with Alok (3-2-3-0) and Simon G (3-1-6-3) doing some proper damage. Plums were 13-3 off 6 overs. However our hosts now cameback with Ian and newly arrived Mike 'Scarecrow' struggling. Mike was possibly intimidated as he was watched by the whole family. Rob and Vijay bowled the final three overs tidyly and Plums ended on 83.
Next up Superstars BATTED AGAINST THE RACQUETEERS. In a disappointing display we never really got going. Will took a horrible top edge into his top lip and although Neil P accumulated 14 and Steve thrusted 12 we only made a paultry 67-7 in the 15 overs, with two ducks (Gundry and Conway).
After a break for Plums to play Racqueteers we returned to BAT AGAINST PLUMS. Unfortunately Adam was out early but the Dodgers' pairing of Neil and Phil gently accumulated runs. A couple of good overs meant we were ahead of the rate. Unfortunately as we neared the finishing tape Phil (24), Jim (run out in ridiculous fashion) and Neil (42) were dismissed. Matt and Vijay got us home to the 84 needed and Superstars had won the first game of the tournament.
So this time we were IN THE FIELD AGAINST THE RACQUETEERS and if we defended 67 we would win the tournament. This unlikely ask seemed to flicker for longer than we expected with Simon (3-3-0-0) and Alok (3-0-13-1) keeping us in the game. Unfortunately we were unable to get the key wicket of opener Fowkes and he went on to calmly despatch the bowling of Ian (who did take a wicket, a well deserved catch for "part time" keeper Jim), Rob and Mike to win with over two overs to spare. The Racqueteers then went on to beat Plums despite a valiant batting effort from the tournament hosts.
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So another respectable performance from the Superstars although frustrating that one bad innings of batting cost us a trophy. Racqueteers were justified winners though and it was a great tournament organised by Plums. We headed to the Hyde Tavern for beers and hot dogs after the match but left relatively sharply as many Superstars were eager to hit the bright lights of Petersfield or Alton.
Saturday 4th May. Tony's 65th birthday.
Unfortunately every single taxi company in East Hampshire was busy so the Superstars were trapped at the hotel miles away from civilisation (if the Black Sheep on a Saturday evening is civilisation). Luckily there was plenty of entertainment provided by our new friend Tony, who was celebrating his 65th birthday, and Rod Stewart who was providing the enterainment. The highlights were the Sambuca exploits of messers Gundry and Taylor (naturally instigated by Jim Bowen), the four man YMCA team of Barry, Jim, Steve and a person unknown (Rob? Mike?) and Tony almost taking out Rod with his new mobility scooter. The Superstars retired not quite as late as the night before, but later than most professionals would suggest ensures prime performance.
Sunday 5th May. East Meon.
After a good lunch and/or drink pre match in the Izaak Walton pub in the beautiful village of East Meon the players and loyal fans took the short walk to the picturesque ground with a relatively new pavillion. Amazingly BARRY WON A SECOND TOSS OF TOUR and inserted the opposition in a timed game. Our strength looked in our batting.
Vijay and Alok again opened the bowling and the 2012 Player of Year showed he's keen to retain his trophy with 3 early wickets, all bowled. Jason and Rob took up the reigns and as East Meon rebuilt kept things tight but only Rob took a solitary wicket (bowled). At this point Alok returned to the attack for a long spell taking 3 wickets, all bowled. Meanwhile at the other end Adam struggled with a few seamers however the introduction of occasional spin bowler (by which I mean the ball occasionally spins) Steve Meyler bought three wickets in a tailend collapse to 150 all out. The noteable feature of the innings was that ALL TEN WICKETS WERE OUT BOWLED - clearly the bowlers were not trusting our fielders.
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After a hearty tea Superstars took to the crease. After a slow but deliberate start it was clear that one of the top four needed to score around 50 that the middle order could bat around. Unfortunately Adam (10), Paul (10), James N (3) and Neil (22) were all dismissed relatively quickly leaving us 48-4. However we had plenty of middle order strength and Vijay and Barry rebuilt. However once Barry was dismissed a collapse ensued that got more and more rapid. This included losing the last three wickets (Jim, Jason, Alok) for no runs whatsoever and leaving us all out for 97 and 7 overs away from a draw. Poor poor batting throughout really. We hung our heads in shame and headed for the Izzak Walton for jugs and chips before heading to the Black Sheep for the full post mortem.
Monday 5th May. Hambledon.
And so, after a visit to the Bat and Ball and a special flight show, the Superstars arrived at the Cradle of Cricket to play Hambledon - a team who have beaten England 29 times (and not during the 1990s when England were naff). Another beautiful ground and pavillion including a hammock which was a favourite with the fans. Unbelievably BARRY WON THE TOSS FOR A THIRD TIME and suitably intimidated we elected to field.
Hambledon started well against the bowling of Simon and Vijay with the left handed opener particularly impressive. However Superstars persevered and Vijay bowled the other opener. Mike and Jason took on the bowling mantle and both bowled well, Mike gaining two wickets including impressive opener (caught by Jason) while Jason was unlucky not to get a wicket of his own. We were keeping Hambledon in relative check and Phil and Matt C continued the effort, Phil picking up a wicket caught by backward point specialist the Scarecrow. One batsman retired for 50 with 2 balls left and Hambledon had made 195-4 in their 40 overs - a very creditable effort by Superstars where they kept chipping away, bowled sensibly and fielded efficently.
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After another hearty tea we ventured out to chase 196 for a famous victory. Adam and Paul headed out and calmed any nerves with a solid but slow start (Adam taking 16 balls to get off the mark). Adam and Matt were then dismissed but Paul and Neil then combined for a promising partnership. Again a bit slow but just as the pace was increasing Gaught was caught for 28. Although everyone scored a few this caused a bit of a collapse as Neil (16), James (3), Phil (5), Barry (8) and Simon (4) made their way back to the pavillion. With over 9 overs left Mike and Vijay were left at 86-8 and we were hoping to reaching 100. What followed will go down in Superstars folklore as Vijay despatched the Hambledon bowlers (and there were 9 of them throughout the innings) all over and indeed out of the ground. Mike quietly and cleverly kept him company but Vijay scored 61 not out in 34 balls with 5 sixes - including one to bring up his 50. By the end we were 162-8, a record 9th wicket stand of 76 had been recorded and fantastic memories were ensured.
An encouraging performance, especially in the field and then from Vijay, Mike and Paul with the bat. I'm sure England were beaten by more than 33 runs by these guys.......
Tour Party
Playing: Barry Gigg (c) Paul Gaught, Matthew Conway, Richard Abigail, Vijay Anand, Rob Fox, Simon Gundry, Jason Marchant, Phil McBarron, Steve Meyler, Ian Moxon, James Nichols, Jim Owen, Alok Singh, Neil Priest, Adam Spencer, Mike Taylor, Will Walker.
Loyal Fans and junior side: Mary, Penny, Mitra (excellent camerawork), Aru, Sian (thanks for the umpiring), Anna, Sarah, Joleon, Benedict, Franca, Jo, Caspian and Byron.
Tour Awards.
Player of the Tour Champagne Moment
1st Vijay Anand 1st Vijay's 6 to bring up his 50 at Hambledon
2nd= Alok Singh 2nd= Tony almost taking out Rod in his new scooter
2nd= Steve Meyler 2nd= The YMCA
4th Simon Gundry 4th Beer Mat Jenga on Steve Meyler's face
5th= The barbecue at Tichborne Pk
5th= Rod Stewart's performance
5th= Steve Meyler's bowling at East Meon
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Related Links
2013 Results
2013 Season Report
2013 Stats
2013 Hampshire Tour Gallery
2013 AGM
2013 Awards Report
2013 Awards Gallery
2013 Ken Block Trophy
2013 Sports Day Report
Chris Mountain 2020 Bowling Record
Will Walker's 100no v Dodgers
Will Walker's 2nd 100no v Weasels
Vijay & Mike T Record 9th Wkt Stand
2013 History
Tichborne Park CC
Racqueteers on twitter
East Meon CC
Hambledon CC - The Cradle of Cricket
Other Tours
2013 Hampshire Tour
2012 Dampshire Tour
2011 Bedfordshire Tour
2009 Cotswolds Tour
2008 Hertfordshire Tour
2007 Cotswolds Tour
2006 Somerset Tour
2005 Somerset 'Hovel' Tour
2004 Yorkshire Tour
2003 Newcastle 'Corporate Games' Tour
2003 Hertfordshire Tour
2002 Kent Coast Tour
2001 Yorkshire Tour
2000 Wales Tour
1999 Worcestershire Tour
1998 North Devon Tour
1997 Yorkshire Tour
1996 Lancashire Tour