Last Sunday was a special day in the village. It had been in the planning for many many months. Our village cricket club is 150 years old this year and as part of the celebrations they are playing the mighty MCC. For those non cricket fans out there:
“Marylebone Cricket Club is a cricket club founded in 1787 and based since 1814 at Lord’s Cricket Ground, which it owns, in St John’s Wood, London. The club was formerly the governing body of cricket and still holds considerable global influence”
The team had played a league match on the Saturday in the boiling heat, tempers had been frayed and the opposition batted freely 🙈 but Sunday was the start of a new day….
Kirsty was picking me up at 10.15 as she was presenting the club with a special birthday cake. I had to be there at 10.30 to take photos of them all receiving their ‘caps’ as well as the cake. It was forecast to be mega hot once more 🥵…so an early morning cool walk was in order first.
As I walked down the street the moon was shining bright at it was making its descent in the west
…and as I reached the field a hare was sat
….watching the sun rise in the east
It was such a beautiful walk to start this special day and ended with a deer and me staring at each other.
Once home, showered and ready for the exciting day ahead, I had a couple of hours to get my brain in gear and go through my morning routine….black 10 on red Jack…….
It was to be a timed match but I’d yet to find out what that meant 🤔 as me and Kirsty headed up through the village to the cricket field. You could almost feel the excitement in the air; the expectation of something special.
The sun was already hot and it was only 10.15 🥵. When we reached the pitch, music was playing and everyone was relaxed getting everything ready
The ladies had their tombola stall all set up
…and gazebos lined the side of the field.
Then to the presentation of the cake to the team captain, Phil, by Kirsty
….then each player in turn received their special official cap. What I wasn’t aware of was that I was also getting one as suddenly Phil, the captain, told me to give my camera to someone else 😳
I was overwhelmed, truly overwhelmed and felt so happy to be apart of this lovely village team. It even has my initials on the side like all the others 🥰 Kirsty had been asked to get me there for 10.30, not for the cake photos but for me to get my cap at the same time as the rest of the team 😂🥰
The MCC team started to arrive, driving across the pitch to the back of the field to park their cars. All came booted and suited and looked very young and fit 🤣…they’d driven from all parts of the country to our little village pitch…
Jane from the Ginery also arrived as she was opening up her stall in the afternoon – and her dog was getting some breeze through the open car window.😍
The official toss of the coin happened on the wicket itself with Phil having to don his blazer
MCC were batting first but before all that, the all important team photo
It was then the dreaded message came up on my camera – No More Memory 😳…I’d put a spare battery in my pocket, but totally forgot about the memory card 🙈 so I wobbled back home to upload the first set of photos in order to delete everything and start again 🥴🥵
As I got back Walky were in the field and the MCC batting
I found out that ‘timed’ meant 2 hour stints with lunch and tea added in. So the first was 11.30 -13.30
At the beginning of the day, the team were all thinking, “would anyone turn up?”….but I had no doubts in my head. I knew the village would come good and as the day went on people came and went but the crowd increased and by the end of the day the three sides of the pitch were lined with brollys, rugs laid out on the parched grass and picnic chairs. Everyone enjoying a lazy afternoon. Villagers coming together to chat, eat , drink and support this wonderful occasion, showing the MCC what a wonderful community we have.
I’d never seen the guys play with such conviction and pride. Lee, mine and many others in the village, window cleaner being wicket keeper from the start
Two of our local heroes from the past were invited to take to the field, Ben and Ray. Ray had arrived wearing his original pale blue hat that he’d always been famous for wearing in his role as wicket keeper extraordinaire.
It was as though time had stood still for them both as they played with todays team as though they’d never left.
As lunch time was called, I headed back home to put one battery on to charge and a new one in my camera. Had a quick cuppa then headed back again, only for them to tell me there had been a space laid at the table for me 😳 but I’d forgotten 🙄……
More of Walkington fielding, the tannoy announcing the state of play each time a milestone was reached.
But at 256 the opposition declared leaving our team about 3 hours to bat. The heat was now intense and many drinks breaks were being taken on and off the field. Local businesses had come to lend their support, including the local real ale beer people – who had almost run out by the end.
Jane, who lives opposite the pond and owner of The Ginery, offering her delightful mixes.
The village bbq and tombola ladies raising money for cancer. And Abby, who owns Wally the sheep and all his friends who frequently appear in my photos, also owns Abbyo’s ice cream van and sells the most amazing ice cream
All were doing a roaring trade and how lovely that they were all local. A real Village affair…🥰
Our batsman did us proud
Alastair getting the highest score of 63…
Everyone just giving it their all
With the time running out and the last few overs being bowled, it became a real chance that we might win 😳….but in the end a draw was called. A fitting storyline for the most wonderful day posted later on the village Facebook page….you might spy me in my cap acting as first reserve 🤣
The team was buzzing, spectators clapping as the teams came off the pitch elated.
So just the final formalities left. The team were all asked to form a circle and I was invited to join them 🥰…Final thanks were made by an emotional Phil to all the spectators for coming to support them. How it turned out was beyond their wildest dreams and they all looked overjoyed, relieved and just overwhelmed at this dream of a day . The captain of the MCC said a few words of thanks and the match ball went to our very own James, given to him by one of the fabulous umpires, who’d also driven up for the day.
He then gave an MCC trophy to a beaming Phil to remember this special day
And all that remained was for the 2 teams to have their joint photo taken
As I finally left for home, totally exhausted but thoroughly on a high with a beaming smile, a man was walking ahead of me who just captured the essence of this lovely summers day spent watching cricket on the village green as everyone began to make their way back home…
As for me, well it was way past my time of brain switch off. I was like a Duracell bunny who needed plugging in to have her batteries recharged as they were now well and truly running on empty. But just one last task before switching off and staring aimlessly at the TV screen……my special team cap, given to me with so much love and kindness, now sat proudly on top of my Memory Box in my Memory room