Quokkas v Park Hotel – 3 November 2013 saw the opening salvo in the Pub Cricket League. With a mere blip on the BDNO and recent Adelaide travails better left unspoken about, The Quokkas were keen to regain some pride. Or something.
Turning up to the newly completed Ramsden Oval club rooms (the ones only ‘real’ cricketers are allowed to use. Hence we weren’t) it became clear the conditions were to play a part. A few of us bowled at Curto, occasionally involving the pitch, in the nets before the heavens opened up. A quick plan B was devised which mainly involved the warm confines of the Park Hotel Beer Garden but alas the rain cleared, the sun shone and the Game was underway. At least it was whilst we all watched Emu arrive not unlike Peter Hudson at Waverley Park (sans helicopter) and put his pants on one leg at a time.
I was keen to retain my 100% winning captaincy record and yet decided to open the bowling with Curto and JRod. My memories of Curto’s bowling, or was it Curto talking about himself bowling(?), had me visualising a lively spell. Keen to keep it tight this dynamic duo (who are also the only Quokkas to consistently talk about themselves in the third person) did not disappoint; four overs later score 0-45.
This situation called for drastic action, some might say self-delusion, thus I threw myself the ball and combined with the steam-from-nostrils-edition-
At drinks the Park Hotel were looking rather too comfortable on 3/93.
Morts sent down some crackers but the same wind and his fringe also playing havoc with his dipping, zipping leggies 1/19 off 2. Rev was finally called upon, mainly to shut him up about his fielding position, and managed to combine the tailwind with his trademarked change-up bouncer to deliver some normal-paced deliveries. Rainsey, Rev’s last minute emergency fill in and the Quokka’s first cross-dresser, sent down some handy pills but alas combined with BigDog to help the Park’s total along and ensure Pup, Ed and JRod were kept busy on the legside boundary.
Emu returned and got a wicket maiden, Dutchy (see how Im now speaking about myself in the third person?!) got a wicket and Morty finished off with the alst three overs encapsulating 2/9.
Dutchy decided to regale the team with a story obviously about another game in which only one catch was dropped; upon reflection (and Curto laughing a tad too hard) the captain did vaguely recall, through his haze of positive thinking, that there may have been another four muffed chances along the journey. 6 for 211. A rather large chase for the quokkas but the ground was hard with runs a plenty in it. Onwards to a spiffing BBQ break with a spliffing group of guitar-hero accompaniments from the Park Hotel was enjoyed by all.
The chase started somewhat ‘solidly’ by Ed, who despatched the first ball for four to cover point. For the rest of the match the Park had a sweeper there who choked up the runs; possibly something to note for future Quokka captains. Ed and Pup proceeded to be ‘more solid’ if not Tavare-ish but soon the tempo was picked up. By this stage Rev was noted with scorebook in hand telling everyone in earshot just how attractive Pup’s inning was. This covetous display was not helped when Pup, now in his 30’s and needing to see out the over, put the Ball over the cones and the fence for good measure; 36 off 20.
JRod wandered to the crease and awoke the ‘holding an end down’ Ed by holding his own end down whilst Ed plundered his own 35 off 39. JRod proceeded to relive his Adelaide Six, which up until now not many had heard about…, by playing the same stroke to the mid wicket boundary. Only problem was the ball was consistently passing him on the offside. At the drinks break JRod was most appreciative that every Quokka and a passing jogger offered batting advice. Amazingly it worked as JRod returned to the middle and inversed his innings to finally fall for 21 off 31.
Kurt made a brief appearance and Curto, having given advice freely from the boundary about scoring rate compiled 9 valuable runs; off 12 balls. Big Dog’s stumps were splayed. Rainsy, who by now had developed a disturbing case of ‘these-jocks-don’t-fit-it is’ and Morts got a handful each. Meanwhile Dutchy (see how I did that third person thing again?!) gathered 37 off 25. The innings whimpered to a close and the Quokkas had compiled 144.
Not a bad effort, just not good enough to beat a good team in the Park Hotel who are consistent BDNO finalists. On the positive side*, we didn’t repeat the Adelaidian batting collapse, Pup batted and bowled like a Dog; one who probably should be referred to as the larger canine of his family now(?), Tendulkar’s bat continues to make Ed look like a batsman, Emu bowled like a man possessed, Rev’s son is still claiming any male who walks past as his dad, and we have expanded the Quokka skillset to cross-dressing (Special thanks to Rainsy).
*Whomever made the rule that the captain can’t give himself votes sucks. That Dutchy bloke had highest score and best bowling figures!
Finally, some food for thought, or Dutchy brings ‘Money Ball’ and my baseball perspective to the Quokkas
Scoring shots (slugging Rate), allowing for extras and wickets:
Quokkas = 73 scoring shots from a possible 150 deliveries to score 141 = 1.93/shot
Park = 92 scoring shots from a possible 150 deliveries to score 206 = 2.24/shot
QED more shots at higher slugging rate Beats less shots at lower slugging rate plus at least four dropped catches. Simples.
Serving suggestion; Bowl tighter, bat harder, drop less catches.