An early start (8.30) for Pleasure who were due to play top of the table Leopards. The Bashers consisted of established Pleasure players, some from Business and some from Leisure; some with experience and some new to the club.
A must mention here is for the ever reliable and ever enthusiastic Silver Bullet who was in Shanghai on business but never hesitated to offer to play when the chance arose! This chance came when Tucker had to pull out due to a broken nose during football practice the previous day. There was some doubt, as many a reliable cricketer has missed a Sunday morning start because of ….. well, Saturday night. But all that doubt immediately stopped when Tucker posted the proof on the game’s wee-chat group (below). What a snap! Most made the bus in time except for Grilla and Hardon who could not contacted ……..
• Skid Row
• Shit Shoes
• Tucker / Silver Bullet
……… But eventually were contacted and informed us they were on their way. The day was very hot, as per normal, for this time of year but with one strange difference- a bright blue sky and clouds. G20 blue, this colour had been called, by the Shanghai press (in case you’re going to a quiz soon).
Captain Skidders lost the toss and we fielded first; Square Root doing a club captains role fielding for the first over. Grilla turned up and quick got ready to enter the game. Hardon strolled into the ground, slowly got changed into the kit he had just picked up from the Camel whilst chatting to the Leopard team and the game got underway.
The first 15 overs were tough going and expensive for us! The definite stats are not available but in the total innings there were 43 extras against and it’s safe to say that the majority of those were before drinks. There were some definite positives, such as Bambi becoming faster and more accurate and Mancow have the uncanny knack of getting wickets. And we were sharp in the field and hard working. So we went in at drinks with their total at 93-3.
The second 15 over is a stranger tale because it was just as expensive although the bowling was much tighter. Shoes, Friutbox and Skidders were accurate and the umpire was less busy giving extras. However, the batsmen for Leopards were prepared to slog the ball and there were many boundaries but also many a fine catch. Catches win matches. Catches from behind (Korean), high catches (Friutbox and Grilla), boundary catches (Bambi) and leopards all out for 182. Catches win matches!
Not, unfortunately, if you are 51 all out. The batting performance was obviously a huge disappointment. Sometimes you just have to put your hand up and say ‘they were the better team.’ That day anyway! The second notable mention for Silver Bullet- I’m sure he will be only too happy to tell you that his 3 runs outscored half his teammates.
But was that the end of the day? No way! Did the game ruin our day? No way! We’re Bashers! We were joined by Square Root early who fielded for an over because Girlla and Hardon were late. We were joined by Paps, back fresh from a holiday who wanted to pad up as we were all out so soon; then on to the bus for road beers and fines; then to the camel for buckets of beer and more fine. There we were joined by Swoop and Bada Bing and then on to YK to a bar called the HOP Project. There we joined by 3 Canadian backpackers whom were named Hot Chick 1, 2 and 3. We were joined by Spanner for a couple and a photographer too. We were joined by and couple (Chinese girl, American man). And a great afternoon party atmosphere was born! Singing songs about a Chicago department store and drinking craft beers, ciders and of course, shots!
And there we have it. Not the action packed, statistically driven Lumberjack I am used to writing. Cricket playing only a part but I hope the description of the day confirms without doubt that the Basher are the finest cricket club with the finest traditions in the world!