This will make you laugh. If you saw my father, you'd be surprised as all hell to think that he would be playing cricket with me on a Saturday. Considering he's been doing nothing but scoring for the past 5 years, and he hasn't pulled pads on for nearly 40, you'd think we'd have to rustle up someone else. But no.
Last week we fielded, and he did quite well for a 48-year-old. He nearly pulled off a catch, and he's got a great throwing arm. This week everything happened. We got a few overs to bat with last week, because the other team declared at 3/387 (a shocking score! We let one guy get 154 and another one get 196! Mainly because we only had 8 players, and not enough strike bowlers, to wipe them out, but also because they had all day and they used it). We slumped to 4/55 that day, but stayed in as long as we could the next day. Which turned out to take us to 162.
I batted 10th, and my father 11th. Typically, when my first partner went out he came in. Another brilliant father-son combination. I had taken him to the nets last Sunday, and he actually bats well. He hits them down, he's got a powerful stroke, and if he keeps those odd little ones down he's OK.
But he didn't. I smacked one over the bowler's head, and I called for two runs. I looked back and saw that there was only going to be one in it. He's not the best of runners. He hit the next one hard at midwicket, but unlike last week, the fielder caught it. We were all out, and I was on 1 not out.
Fielding after that was uneventful. Batting again after they'd declared again was disastrous. I went in earlier and made a duck. The other team have three really good bowlers: one fast, one medium but with a lethal swing, and one with a wrong'un that is pretty difficult to pick. And I went out to the swinger.
Now picture this: When I next look at the game after storming off the field (How could THAT have been LBW?) there's two guys batting, and neither of them have played for at least 20 years. I think. So they're out there, blocking, and I can't believe it. I watch them for a bit, and suddenly my father, in a valiant attempt to get off strike, smacks the ball. It goes all the way to the boundary. A four in debut. I didn't hit a four for a couple of YEARS!
They stay in and stay in, getting the odd few runs. The two strike bowlers are on, and trying to flummox the
codgers two of them. The captain has a go later, and the spin bowler. And they just stay in. Eventually, though, the spinner bowls his wrong'un and bowls one of them out. (Not my father, thank goodness.) And that's the end of the match, with one over left. We've lost, but who gives a shit? We had fun.