9 August 2020 v Heretics

Eton Ramblers v Heretics

Played on Upper Club on Sunday 9 August 2020

 The weather put on a glorious show on Sunday morning; whether the same can be said for the Rambler Umpire who failed to produce a new ball (of which more later) or a scoresheet could lead to some debate. Neither side had a scorer, inducing a Vice President of Redbourn Cricket Club to stay and score rather and watch a County final of the National Village Competition at Langleybury (of which more later!).

Glorious summer days and a beautiful Upper Club wicket are not designed for Mickey Mouse cricket but with a 1.30 start it was agreed to play a 40 over match instead of a game of cricket. To be fair to Henry Hayes the Rambler captain it was not his choice, or that of his side. In addition, for the first time this season, those well known players Makeshift and Ringer appeared for the Ramblers.

Henry Hayes, having shown all the hideous scars on his shoulder rendering him unfit to bowl, won the toss and then hung around for four overs for 2 before driving without care and attention to short extra cover. Tom Lytle then made a poor choice of fielder, falling to a very smart catch leaving the Ramblers 14 for 2. Fred Butler, serenely, and Will Earle, aggressively, restored things by adding 128 in 20 overs before Butler (38) was run out and Earle (79) holed out in four balls. 

Shekhar Mathur, Jamie Roy, Harry Metherall and, of all people, Toby Joy gave support to the Makeshift enabling the Ramblers to end up 227 for 7 off 40 overs.

The Heretics innings got off to an interesting start when Ringer conceded 5 wides and 5 no balls in 11 deliveries and had to be withdrawn for the attack. This had the advantage of bringing Harry Merriman into the attack earlier than anticipated with very considerable success, removing three of the top four for 18 runs. His removal from the attack led to a considerable recovery until Toby Joy came on to bowl and the whole nonsense of limited overs cricket was demonstrated by his being allowed to have six men on the boundary edge. The Heretics skipper promptly tried one shot too many off Mathur and was caught by the Rambler skipper.

There was time for a further twist in the tale when Jamie Roy dislocated a finger going for a catch, meaning that the Rambler scorer had to abandon his position and field; while searching for his boots he found the spare new ball which he always carries around for circumstances such as today!


Christian and Butler took the last four wickets leaving the Ramblers victorious by 59 runs. Afterwards Henry Hayes, who has run the fixture admirably since inception, but has played less and less Rambler cricket in the years since his defiant 83 in defeat as captain at Lord’s in his third years in 2012 (in 2011 he took five cheap wickets in a win – the 2010 match is best forgotten) asked for assistance from the younger generation who play more Rambler cricket and know more current Ramblers. Messrs Lytle and Mathur, agreed on behalf of the younger generation to assist him running the match next year to prevent the dreaded Makeshift and Ringer playing again – at least in this fixture.

For the record Redbourn beat Langleybury leaving the Ramblers scorer/player delighted at the day’s results.