The weekend was fast approaching… Cricket was on the horizon, and one keen bean in particular was looking forward to the first outing back on a Saturday since his honeymoon, and very much looking forward to being with ‘The Boys’! (I will await the divorce papers once she has read this!)… Let me set the scene. Friday afternoon. In Sainsburys. What do I want for tea tomorrow? I know, I will make the famous Mabbs Manwich!


German Smoked Ham German Sausage (Bratwurst or Frankfurter… either are acceptable) German Salami / Garlic Sausage Smoked Cheese Mayo Mustard Pickles Tomato (for health) Large Sourdough loaf Lashings of Butter


Slice the sourdough loaf in half and scoop out some of the interior and save for nibbling on later! Layer the ingredients on the bottom of the loaf and alternately layer mustard and mayo between each individual section. Add extra butter to the top slice of bread (for moisture) and finish by slicing into 3 very large manwiches. Wrap back up and place in the fridge to settle.

With tea sorted, I packed my bag with my new WGCC towel and box pants, and got into bed excited for the game. It was 5:30pm!

When Saturday eventually arrived, I picked up the Umpire from my father’s house. From now on it would be ‘Sir’ until after the match. We got to Lincoln College ground at 12:00 only to find the gates locked! But it wasn’t too long until we were allowed in and we could set about destroying the top of the league East Oxford… they had only lost once this year, to us!

Skip probably lost the toss… he doesn’t say anymore! And we were bowling. It was hot and sweaty, just as we like it, and I took the first over with the slope helping to take the ball away. Mr William Harvey took up at the other end, and soon had their opener spooning a catch to Skip in the second over. Out for a Duck!

Four overs later Harvester had S.Sadiq pinned LBW out for 10. And again next over had A.Hamid C&B for 20 and finally A.Butt caught at slip for a quacker! Meanwhile, I was sweating my arse off at the other end, getting good swing, beating the edge and not getting anything. Classic!

With the score about 40-4, Skip decided to take me off and put Chief on instead. This didn’t quite go to plan as Chief went for a bit of tap. Liam took over at Harvey’s end and was bowling wheels, but also couldn’t get a wicket, as the East Oxford pair of A.Shahid and M.Shakoor played some nice shots and building a big partnership. I would like to pause here to say that Skip dropped A.Shahid off my bowling when he was on maybe 10?!?! He went on to score 88 and was only halted when Tweeky, who bowled very well, persuaded him to hit one down to long-off where Skip caught it easily… maybe it says something about what skip thinks of me… oh well.

Harvester came back on and this time took some tap. It was getting toward the last 10 overs of the innings, and we were trying to hold back any runs at all. Mr Harvey took exception to a fielding change, having just been hit for consecutive 6s, and had a short strop before proving everyone right by actually bowling a ball outside the off stump. Nonetheless, it was entertaining enough to be remembered for Pigs Ear which he won comfortably.

I came back on, switching ends to Harvey’s end, and having been dispatched for two 4s down the ground, thought it could be a long four over spell! Plugging away I managed to get three quick wickets, two bowled and one caught very well by LiDogg down at long on. LiDizzle also managed to pick up his first wicket of the season (which as he is now 18, is definitely a JUG!!!)

East Oxford finished on 210-9 off 47 Overs. All in all, not bad really. There was also a fair amount of poor fielding from us, but im going to put this down to the heat…it was sweaty!

J.Mabbett 10,1,40,3 W.Harvey 12,2,62,4 O.Haine 6,0,35,0 L.Turnbull 9,0,24,1 T.Weekes 10,0,43,1

Tea was excellent! The Manwich had matured excellently in the fridge and I was very happy. Sharing a slice with Liam and BBG was a good choice because it was too much meat for one person to take…

On to the batting.

Colin and Liam opened up and looked very comfortable, ticking along nicely, and getting the score to 66 at drinks. Hold on to your hats kids, because the famous wantage collapse was about to strike! Colin and then Liam were bowled for 22 and 33 respectively, and then Spenny joined them back in the pavilion after scoring 1. TPL and BBG stuck around for a bit, until ‘Sir’, Mabbett Senior, gave Bhu out LBW, out for 0. Binners guided one to slip, out for 2, and Skip walked out to steady the ship and managed to halt the fall of wickets alongside TPL. After TPL, who had been around for a while, finally departed for 21 off 45 balls, this brought me to the crease…

Watching the first over very closely, there was a lot of chat around the ground about us not putting up much of a fight, “why don’t you just get out now so we can all go home”, and “this lad has a big swing, let’s see if he will play any shots”. I get it, draw cricket is rubbish…unless you are the ones to inflict the unfortunate situation on the other team. I loved it, I loved the crap chat, the stupid appeals, the sledging. There was no way I was getting out. Skip too dug in and was very happy to block out and not give anything away. Sadly, this couldn’t last forever, and Skip was eventually caught behind for 5 off 51… yes a strike rate of 9.803! Super. Harvey came in, to depart two balls later swinging wildly and missing a straight one. This left Mr ‘No Average’ Haine and Me to bat out the last three overs. We did it comfortably, with Chief leaving superbly and me snicking through the slips for 2 off the penultimate ball and then powering a 4 down the ground final ball. Chief, 0* off 7, Mabbs ended on 23* off 28. Our final score was… not important! We got a Draw!

In 2 games against the top of the league, we have won one, drawn one. Pretty good, I think!

We retired to the pub to do awards:

· Pigs Ear, as already discussed, went to William ‘don’t change my field’ Harvey for his tiny little strop. Which again, I would like to qualify, paid off immediately as his next ball was fielded by Col, where Harvey had put him back. Still….it was funny.

· Champagne Moment went to Skip for his catch of A.Shahid off Tweekey.

· Man of the Match, mistakenly went to me… that’s why you have this terrible match report. For my 23* and 3for40…

Next week we go back to Win/Lose Cricket, so that’s a relief.  

Up the Tage! Greeeeeeeeen Arrrmay!!!  

Mabbs Out