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Archive: 2012 News & Reports


Take a stroll down memory lane with club news and match reports from the Jesters CC 2012 season.

Updates appear in reverse chronological order...

18th December - New book featuring a Jesters history

During 2013 a collective history of wandering cricket clubs will be published by Chance To Shine and Fairfield Books and will include a piece on the Jesters written by Andrew Short. Members will have a chance to buy copies nearer publication

17th December - Nick Mumby takes charge

Simon Cleobury is still living in New York and has stepped down as Hon Sec, feeling the role should really be UK-based. Many thanks Simon for all your hard work as Hon Sec, and before that as Fixture Secretary, We hope to see you back in the UK before too long.

Fortunately the club has an ideal replacement in Nick Mumby who took over at the 2012 AGM. Good luck Nick.

16th December - AGM, Dinner and Annual Awards

The annual dinner was again a really enjoyable occasion. Only 28 Jesters and guests made it along this year but that didn’t seem to diminish the fun.

At the AGM Club President Robin Atkins announced his decision to stand down after the end of next season after 16 years as President and 50 years’ membership of the club. Well done Robin and many thanks! He made a short speech which is reproduced here:

“My 4 year term of office comes to an end at the next AGM in 2013. At that time I would have been president for 16 years ,which will be second longest in the club’s history ( Sir Pelham Warner managed 35 years).

“I first played for Jesters in 1963 so that will make a round 50 years of involvement : as a player until 1992 and then as a part time umpire.

“The club's affairs are in good order with 130 members in the card of which I guess 40/50,a good fixture list of 25+ games, a reliable administrative set up and adequate finances with assets of c.£4000. I would like to pay a special tribute to Andrew Short and John Murphy for their good work over a large number of years,

“My only negative comment is that the club's history needs to be done for the period post 1975 before we all forget the key and enjoyable experiences . I ask the committee to tackle this project.”

Eight committee members were re-elected - Nick Mumby, John Murphy, Jonny Bridcut, Ollie Doward, Simon Rawson, Matt Williamson, Robbie Hudson, Andrew Short - and the Committee retains the right to co-opt others. Simon Cleobury is still living in New York and has stood down from the committee, with Nick Mumby stepping into his shoes as Hon Sec.

The club’s finances remain in a good state, with one slightly curious result of the wet summer being a particularly healthy financial surplus. Perhaps we should play even less in future...

The annual awards were presented at the dinner to:

Arnold Woods Trophy (best performance of the season) to DJ Chak for his century against a strong Lord Gnome’s XI (and also taking a stunning boundary catch in the same game).

Commended were Mike Palmer for his century at Sawbridgeworth and Louis Harris for his 120 from 112 balls at Maidenhead & Bray. Either of these would have won the award in another season.

Jester of the Year: the award for the “most Jester-like” performance went to Matt Williamson - to be known ever after as “The Juggler” - for a truly spectacular piece of, well, juggling at second slip at Jesus College, Cambridge.

Michael Meyer Award for big-hitting went to Simon Butler for launching a six onto the roof of the clubhouse at Hurlingham.

5th October - AGM and Dinner

The 2012 AGM and Annual Dinner will take place at the same restaurant as last year - now rebranded as a Brasserie Blanc - on Friday 16 November. Full details and how to book your place are here. See you there.

19th September - Fine win at Barnes Common

We ended the season with a 66 run victory against Barnes Common always strong opponents.

Jesters: 173 all out (34.2 overs)

A. Smith 40, Chak 37, S. Douse 33, Mohammed 29

Barnes Common: 107 all out (31.2 overs)

C. Smith 7-5-10-3, Murphy 7-0-32-3, Chak 5-2-5-2, Berry 7-1-29-1, Harris 1.2-0-5-1, Mohammed 4-1-16-0

It was particularly good to see Chris Smith back in action after missing most of the season with a foot injury. His spell of 7 overs, 3 for 10 has drawn rave reviews from all who saw it.

Hopefully a longer account of the game will appear here soon.

4th September - Beaten by Bray

We lost by 6 wickets at Maidenhead & Bray but many congratulations to Louis Harris on his century.

Match manager Adnan Mohmammed takes up the story:

“Jesters arrived at Maidenhead & Bray on a cloudy Sunday afternoon with 10 players. But the balance was even as M&B also only had 10. The format was 40 overs per side with a maximum of 8 overs per bowler. Our bowling was somewhat depleted with the two intended openers both injured.

“The skipper won the toss and decided to bat first thinking it would tough to bat second in failing light. The Douse brothers, opened the batting, batting together for the first time since their colts days. They saw off the new ball and posted 58 in their opening partnership. The calling for runs was often telepathic. Simeon was the first to be dismissed, receiving a good ball that nipped away and popped.

“Louis Harris then strolled out full of confidence after his recent good form. He played, initially, within himself, pushing singles with James Douse supporting him shot for shot at the other end. James was unlucky to chop one on to his stumps and was out for 29.

Alex the “General” Smith joined Louis at the crease and the two starting running lightning singles and taking advantage of the gaps in the field.

“Louis began to open up and play his usual aggressive shots. His heart would have been in his mouth on 88 when he hit one straight back over the bowlers head and was dropped on the long-off boundary.

“Alex departed for 22 with three overs remaining and Matt Williamson manipulated the strike wonderfully to Louis. In the penultimate over Louis hit three boundaries in a row and ended with 120 off 112 balls and the team on 215-4. The Captain would have been happy with 180 so 215 looked very good.

“The first over bowled by the skipper was a maiden. The seamers plugged away with Matt Berry fighting injury to bowl 8 overs 1-44. Ben Shereen in his opening spell was unlucky bowling in the right spot – but the M&B opener proved too strong, playing through the line, making full use of the short boundary and hitting the ball extremely hard.

“Then our recent injury curse returned with a vengeance. Simeon Douse was struck violently on the shin at mid-wicket from a full blooded drive and had to leave the field. In the next over Matt Berry was hit hard on the arm while following through and also had to go off.

We were left with 8 fielders and the batsmen in the mood to score only in boundaries. After four overs desperately trying to plug the gaps both wounded soldiers returned to the field - well done boys!

“The onslaught continued with M&B now scoring comfortably at 7 per over. Nick Mumby wheeled away with no luck bowling 8 overs 0-55; the skipper bowled 8 overs 1-50. The only ray of light was Louis Harris whose first ball to turn significantly and had figures of 1-7 off 2 overs.

“The M&B opening bat reached 94 with 10 runs needed to win. Then their No 5 hit a boundary, leaving the young opener requiring 6 for his 100 and 6 to win. At which point the pressure told: Ben Shereen hit the top of middle stump and the bat slipped from the batsman’s grasp endeding up at the square leg umpire’s feet!

“M&B reached 216 for 4 off 33 overs. It was a well played game and we lost to a better team. Thanks to Maidenhead &Bray for once again providing a good game of cricket.”

29th August - Pitch the winner at Chobham

We beat Chobham by 75 runs on a difficult, wet wicket after storms the day before. Neither side looked comfortable on an incredibly slow surface that “popped” throughout the game.

Our 153 was mainly thanks to a 56 run opening stand between Louis Harris and Andrew Short, and a top score of 49 from DJ Chak.

In response they were 78 all out, with Adnan Mohammed unplayable as the wicket dried. A longer account will appear here soon.

23rd August - Ashtead game cancelled

Sadly Ashtead have cancelled their game with us on Sunday 9th September. Their charity match against a Surrey Masters XI that was rained-off earlier in the summer has been rearranged for that Sunday.

20th August - Great win at Middleton Stoney

A ten man Jesters side beat Middleton Stoney by 30 runs, a great result as it is always difficult to bowl sides out on their placid track.

Put in to bat, our total was based around a 105 run partnership for the fourth wicket between Tony Crockert (56) and Louis Harris (45). A slow track, slow outfield, slow bowling and carefully placed fields made scoring difficult, and most of the century partnership came in singles and twos, an exhausting effort in 30 degree temperatures.

At the fixed 4.30 tea we had made it to 172-6, a decent score on a wicket where 150 can be defendable.

However, our bowling options were very limited. Andy Harris had dropped out on Friday evening with a shoulder injury, Mike Palmer could only stand at slip after a groin strain batting, and early in their innings Louis Harris went off with what looked like a serious shoulder injury after a spectacular dive at long-on.

To the rescue came Adnan Mohammed who bowled unchanged through the entire innings with figures of 18.4 overs, 3 maidens, 4 for 60. DJ Chak’s return was even more impressive: 5 for 42 from 13 overs. Well done both.

The decisive moment was a double wicket maiden from Adnan to remove two of their best bats. With less than a hundred needed and only two wickets down Middleton Stoney had looked set to cruise home in comfort.

But suddenly the game had changed. Nick Gregori then persuaded their top scorer to top edge to fine leg, and DJ returned bowling rapid, inswinging yorkers.

We eventually bowled them out for 142 with a couple of overs to spare, Adnan teasing out the last two batsman with cunning flight. A remarkable feature of their innings was that eight wickets were clean bowled.

A great, hard-fought game played in exactly the right spirit. Thanks once again to Middleton Stoney for their superb hospitality and exactly the right attitude towards the game.

14th August - Narrow defeat at NPL

Rumours reach Jesters HQ of a last over defeat at NPL Teddington. Their website has the scores as Jesters 168-9, NPL 169-7 but with no other details. We await further news with interest.

10th August - Cuckfield

A young Jesters side drawing heavily on the resources of Brighton league club Preston Nomads lost by 60 runs to a strong Cuckfield team in their cricket week.

Cuckfield’s 272-6 was a typical score on this fast scoring ground. We played on the edge of the square and the short, downhill boundary towards the pavilion was particularly difficult to defend.

Best Jesters bowling came in a spell either side of lunch from Will Taylor, playing his first game in Jesters colours for several years. Bowling left arm round at a nippy medium pace he took 3 wickets and kept the scoring rate under control. He was well supported by Toby Glover’s off-breaks at the other end.

Our reply was built around an excellent 80-odd from 15 year old Ollie Deme opening the innings. Elegant driving was the most notable feature of his mature knock. We needed just 5 1/2 an over from the final 20 with 7 wickets remaining, but unfortunately the innings unravelled from that point. Both opening bowlers were recalled - one of them Cuckfield’s overseas pro - and wickets tumbled. We were eventually 212 all out, comfortably beaten but not disgraced.

Many thanks to Cuckfield once again for their splendid hospitality. And it was great to see so many youngsters enjoying Jesters cricket.

(n.b. statistics in this report may be modified when we remember to get a copy of the scorecard from Cuckfield)

5th August - Rickling rained off

A heavy local downpour on the morning of the match led to the cancellation of our game with Rickling Ramblers.

29th July - Not a victory but a triumph

Sutton: 235/6 dec

Jesters: 215 all out (Louis Harris 83)

Lost by 20 runs

Thanks to the Olympic Road Race that was weaving its way through Surrey this weekend, thereby ensuring a week's break in the league calendar, Sutton had kindly invited us to play against a composite side of all their Saturday teams, which we soon discovered included two of their Premiership 1st XI players.

Losing the toss on a sunny afternoon, we took to the field with the prospect of up to 55 overs of chasing leather (we were playing the Surrey league format - 100 overs in the day, side batting first can use up to 55 overs, and then the side batting second takes the remainder (min 45 overs)).

A couple of early strikes put us firmly in the contest, though we would have been in a far stronger position had Sean Oliver not overstepped when he had their best batsman caught behind by Dave Hancock.

With four league hundreds to his name already this summer, their number three continued to work the bowling around effortlessly, until he climbed into a vicious John Murphy short ball only to find an athletic Dhananjaya Chak on the midwicket boundary, who pouched an astonishing low catch in front of the faithful home supporters.

A Nick Gregori lbw and a sharp run out courtesy of Sean pegged the hosts back to 160/5, though from there their captain was ably supported by their wicketkeeper and they eeked out the runs to ensure they could set us a challenging total of 236 from 53 overs. A particular mention must go to Nick Mumby, whose 17 over spell for 57 runs kept us in the game on what was a flat track.

Our chase got off to a terrific start with a half century opening stand by DJ and Nick M, who both enjoyed peppering the off side. The platform had been laid for Louis Harris to remind us all of his caged talent as he thrived off the home side's youthful seamers, reaching his fifty off 47 balls. Louis was ably supported by James Williams and James Douse, and at 188/6 with 9 overs remaining we looked favourites.

However, the combination of their returning opening bowler and their wily leg spinner (who winters in Australia) was good enough to stem our flow of runs and ultimately our victory charge, despite the best efforts of John Murphy and Dave H in what was a gripping finish as we fell short by 20 runs.

Many thanks indeed to Sutton for a wonderful first fixture and we look forward to hopefully returning in 2013.

Thanks to match manager Jonny Bridcut for this report.

27th July - Horsham 80th anniversary game

Jesters v Horsham is the longest standing uninterrupted fixture for both clubs. 2012 is the 80th anniversary and we celebrated with a good 5 wicket win over a strong Horsham side.

You can see the scorecard here. Top Jesters performance came from James Silk, guesting from Preston Nomads, who bowled his leg-breaks beautifully and then stroked a confident 71 opening the innings. It turned into a classic chase with us needing six an over from the last 20, with sixes and wickets as Horsham kept the spinners on. We eventually made it home in the penultimate over.

Many thanks to Horsham for 80 years of good cricket.

24th July - Roehampton walloped

We bowled Roehampton out for 63 and cruised to a 7 wicket victory. Further details soon.

18th July - Dorset tour and Gemini

The weather seems to get worse. We managed to play a T20 game on tour with Canford Cygnets, losing by 10 runs. But the games with Bryanston Butterflies and Hampshire Hogs were both rained off - as was the match the following Saturday with Gemini at Sunningdale School.

3rd July - Good victory over Lord Gnome XI

We beat Lord Gnome’s XI by 13 runs in an exciting 35 over game. We made 176-9 and they replied with 163-8. Star of the show was DJ Chak who scored a rapid 102* and took three catches. Congratulations DJ!.

More on this game to follow soon...

18th June - Club Day this Sunday

STOP PRESS: Sadly Club Day is cancelled as the square is waterlogged after heavy overnight rain.