A couple more rules... and equipment

Although the above w/u is a masterful description of an icon of Australian and New Zealand upbringing, I thought I would add a couple of rules that I know of, and add a variation that I witnessed for the first time at a recent New Years game.

I was a participant in this game even though the only person at the party who I actually knew was the person  I arrived at the party with. This, as already mentioned is one way to 'get a game'.

Spill the stubbie and you're out.

  • PROBLEM: Ball hitting stubbie causes stubbie to fall over, beverage spillage and tears. 
  • SOLUTION: Apply the "Spill the stubbie and you're out" rule and hopefully the incidence of the "crying over spilt beverages" is reduced.

This rule is very similar to the "Over the fence on the full is six and out" rule mentioned in the preceding writeup. As discussed earlier, various beverages tend to be dispersed around the fielders during the game. However, as I will explain, for the more competitive and athletic participants this can lead to possible disaster.

Picture this...

...the current master batsman who has been in for four overs (far too long) blasts a ball inches off the turf, four feet off your starboard bow. 

What ensues is the reason that the 'stubbie' rule is a good one to apply... 

...Forgetting all time and space (and the stubbie in his hand) the fieldsman launches full length at this projectile, taking an absolute screamer, one handed, low down. 

...The applause is rapturous until it's drowned out by another form of screaming. Those unmistakable shrill cries of agony, the source of which is revealed as all eyes come to rest upon the aforementioned stubbie... lodged in a rather unfortunate (and improper) place

Let's leave that one there. To rectify this situation the answer you say is simple - put your stubbie on the ground.

Hit the garden gnome and you're out.

  • PROBLEM: Ball hitting garden gnome leads to smashed concrete, recriminations and tears.
  • SOLUTION: Apply the "Hit the garden gnome and you're out" rule and hopefully the incidence of the "paying for things you don't want" is reduced.

Ok, so I realise that I am just adding more ways to get out. However, in backyard cricket, that really is the idea: to keep the wickets turning over. This rule, as the previous, is fairly self-explanatory. If you hit the garden gnome (which is, of course, strategically placed) either on the full or on the bounce you are out.  You can happily apply the variation you wish depending on how quickly you would like the wickets, and gnomes, to fall.

In the recent New Year's game I mentioned earlier, this is the rule which was applied. The backyard was particularly minuscule and yet more than one garden gnome was dispersed around it. And they had a striking resemblance to the Seven Dwarfs... ok, so they were the Seven Dwarfs, which I guess means that they weren't actually gnomes. Oh well. This meant an extremely high turnover of batters and much jubilation from the fielders - although I'm not sure if the jubilation could be entirely accredited to the batters getting out - see 'beverages'.

CAUTION: Use inexpensive garden gnomes.  Do not use garden gnomes which belong to a set. Most particularly, don't use your special set of 'Seven Dwarf Garden Gnome ' gnomes. I say this with the benefit of personal experience

...After a glorious, powerfully hit stroke, the ball was heading out to square leg. I heard the spine tingling 'clunk' and turned to see poor little Sleepy resting his lovely, sleepy head on the concrete as the rest of his body stood firm and resolute in the fielding position in which he had been placed. 

You know the funny thing? This illustrates the intense camaraderie that exists in backyard cricket: I was not in the slightest bit of trouble for it despite being a complete stranger before the game had commenced...