Cranbrook Town
Lynxes win
No report available.

Lynxes v. Old Suttonians
Cranbrook Lynxes 229-6, Old Suttonians 233-4
Lynxes lose

When played in this spirit, at this venue, on a day when you win the toss and the sun blazes down you've got to believe that cricket is the best game around. That's certainly what I thought when we clapped in a very contented opposition.

The match statistics do little to represent the tension that was present throughout the Sutton Valence innings. Having chosen to bat against game but never penetrating bowling the Lynxes found scoring initially difficult especially at 16-3 with debutant Beasley, Sorrenson and Lawson all back in the hutch. As the break approached Campbell and Marshall encountered few problems as they set the stage for the post lunch acceleration.

Luckily Marshall (unlike his contemporaries) dug into the cold baked beans as well as the buffet in the sun and he and Campbell put on, 90 and 70 respectively before Sutton were able to make further inroads. In addition Reuter and Wallace added useful runs before a declaration was set at 230- 7.

The benign pitch meant that Lynxes had to work extremely hard for any reward and with Scotty seemingly poised for a 'quick' ton the boys were on the back foot. Despite a nosebleed for the other opening bat, Campbell enticing Scottie to an ill judged sweep and Pete Towner returning two batsmen in quick succession to the pavilion Sutton kept up with the run rate throughout.

Its probable that one additional breakthrough would have seen Lynxes notch another win but 'Woodie' and Steve Sunnocks did enough to keep the scoreboard ticking over until the latter was able to send the first two balls of the last over consecutively to the boundary.

In reflection the lack of an eleventh man proved costly whilst fielding, of course Sutton thought the declaration fair (57 against 56 overs) they won, long term we probably had enough fire power to put the game out of their reach. Perhaps a day when cricket triumphed?

Champagne moment. Towner claiming two quick wickets on debut and exhibiting cool control.

Hugo Youngman

Lynxes v. Fleet Street Exiles
Lynxes 243-7, Fleet Street Exiles 190
Lynxes win

Big Side, 11.40am: six men, dressed in white, are engaged in a deadly serious game of French Cricket. One leaps to avoid a ball thrown at his feet, another dives to claim a catch. A split-second of celebration, then he's lunging for the bat and gets a heel in the face. Grabbing the handle, you can see the sweat coursing down his forearms. The other Lynxes gather tighter around him, vultures around carrion, waiting, concentrating. Out on the cricket pitch, the opposition captain glances nervously towards the boundary. The knocking of his knees can be heard in Staplehurst.

Lynxes' skipper Chuter had cleverly lost the toss and been asked to bat. The nancys on the boundary were his batsmen. What looked like catastrophe got worse when one of our three actual batsmen, Barron, failed to turn up until well into the French Cricket.

Consequently, Marshall G. - fresh from 36 holes of golf, a half-marathon and the Tour de France that morning - opened the Lynxes innings with Thompson J. A quick look at the batting order revealed the quality to come.

3. Lawson J.: good strokemaker
4. Barron J.: good hitter in the 'V'
5. Crookall C.: good leave
6. Trueman, D.: good trousers
7. Addis W.: good posture
8. Hillier R.: good legs
9. Young M.: last spotted adjusting his helmet for a trip to the shops
10. Blaydon O.: good grief.

Chuter needn't have worried. With a canny mixture of boundaries and edges, Thompson and Marshall laid the innings' foundation in an excellent partnership of 70-odd before James hit a full-toss at Eddie Stearns, who swallowed it like a lovely doughnut. This was fortunate for Eddie, who was taunted by his O.C. 'friends' in the pavilion as he spun and dived like an Olympic gymnast on the boundary. Eddie would later become the central figure in a macabre end-of-match drama. Gary continued to look classy after Lawson joined him and, despite some decent change bowling from the Exiles, the pair left Lynxes in a strong position on 110-1 at lunch.

Resuming the innings, they punished loose balls on a slow, low wicket, until they were both out in quick succession, Gary for an impressive 56 and Jez for 33. The captain's momentary blind panic was banished by Dr.Barron's calming bedside manner at the crease and a nice story. As the indomitable Crookall and Baz shared anecdotes between overs and congratulated each other on their shots or sisters, Lynxes moved ever closer to a massive total. Crookall was out after one too many 'signature pull-shots', and Trueman hit and missed the ball alarmingly hard until it took revenge by bowling him. Baz was still at the crease - and running out of partners - as he tried again and again to lift his huge bat above his waist.

The situation was made for Will Addis, who strode confidently out to the wicket with a thigh pad strapped to his chest. Puzzled by the sniggers of the fielders, Will swung his bat and missed. The nasty hard ball hit his unprotected thigh. Rubbing the tender area made him lose his concentration and he was out soon after, dreaming of matron. This brought in Hillier, who added some vital zest to the innings with 18 of the quickest and most ambitious runs you will see in Lynxes cricket. By this stage, the heat and chips had taken their toll on the Exiles, who began to look tired in the field. Hillier was out at about 3.30 and Chuter decided to go 3 more overs until declaration, which meant he got a bat. He and Baz plundered runs until the Doctor got his highly deserved 50, and the Lynxes' innings closed on 243-7dec. - a monumental total.

From the first few overs of the Exiles' reply, it was apparent that runs would be tough to get. The openers scratched around against some high quality pace bowling from Blaydon at the top end and Thompson's unrelenting probing from the bottom. Growling, spitting, and wielding his limbs at improbable angles, Blaydon looked every inch the fast bowler as he consistently beat the bat. But it was Thompson's accuracy that made the vital first breakthrough, and after that, the pressure never let up.

The covers teemed with activity as Hillier and Crookall squeezed the life out of batsmen with outstanding long barriers and whippet-like speed. Trueman rumbled menacingly in the outfield like a rhino, and Addis bravely donned the Helmet of Death at short leg. Young was immaculate behind the stumps, although he was forced to reveal to the slip cordon that his mum still buys all his clothes. Chuter generously brought himself on to bowl and spent half an hour congratulating himself on taking 3 quick wickets. Marshall then replaced Thompson at the bottom end and began to dazzle the batsmen with his spinner's wiles as the ball dropped out of the sun.

With four Exiles gone - and one stubborn opener still in - Lynxes had to decide whether to 'make a game of it' or not. The team's mind was made up: go for the win; take no prisoners. So, after Gary had taken another wicket, Hillier and Lawson came into the attack. After struggling initially to find line and length, Jez soon had the ball bouncing two or three times before it reached the batsman. Often, on the second bounce, he would apologise, and one batsman even had time to forgive him before hitting it for four. From the other end, Rob bowled accurately and consistently and was unfortunate not to get a wicket.

The Exiles began to pick up their scoring rate, but would never be in a position to win. As the overs drew in and the sun came down, there was a messy run-out and Blaydon finally had the opener caught at fly-slip for 80 with 10 overs to go. Marshall and Chuter took another wicket each and the scent of victory hung heavy in the evening air. Only one man stood in the way… Eddie Stearns.

His first ball was an unfortunate beamer from Chuter that flew out of the sun and destroyed his thumb. "You will all be very amused to hear that I have been told I will need an operation on my thumb which involves putting a pin in it and having it in plaster for a few weeks. Proves I really took the pain like a man at the time", said Eddie, a week and 14 Happy Meals later. Despite this horrific injury, Eddie batted gamely on until he was bowled by Thompson to seal a memorable victory.
The Exiles had succumbed for 190 and an icky thumb - another famous Lynxes' triumph, and a true team effort. A great day, and one to look forward to next year.

Will Chuter

Lynxes v. Bluemantles
Bluemantles 174 Lynxes 175-4
Lynxes win

The Lynxes recorded their 4th straight win over the Bluemantles - the side based in Tunbridge Wells - by 6 wickets. The wonderful mid-August weather continued, and a sweltering day saw the Lynxes skipper disappointed to lose the toss, thereby condemning his side to some hard graft in the field.

The Bluemantles have many good players at their disposal, and they invariably bring some decent batsmen along to Big Side. We have had the good fortune to dismiss these players cheaply in the past, and early strikes by Spelling and Blaydon saw that trend continue. Anthonisz and Chuter continued the good work before lunch, and the visitors' scoring slowed to a trickle, with just 65 runs scored by the interval from 24 overs.

An effort to open things up after a port-filled lunch met with stony resistance from the Bluemantles middle order. The carrot was dangled with an all-spin attack, and an attacking field, but the opponents seemed keener on demonstrating their defensive repertoires, rather than on setting a challenging declaration. By the time Spelling returned to the attack to pick up 3 further wickets, the score had reached just 174, the redoubtable Rex Roberts being the final Lynx victim as he aimed his renowned cut shot at a ball on middle stump.

Surely this total would be well within the compass of this strong home batting line-up? For a while the result seemed a formality. Barrett (41) and S.Drake (29) timed the ball beautifully to rattle the score to 71-1 in no time. A rash of three quick wickets caused temporary panic in the home dressing room before Pink and G. Marshall came together. By carefully selecting the right balls to hit, and placing the ball well into the gaps, their partnership gradually rose, until the total was reached with nearly four overs to spare. The batsmen finished 2 and 3 runs short of their respective half-centuries.

Tom Allen

Lynxes v. Old Georgians
Match abandoned.

Lynxes v. Scorpians
Lynxes 194, Scorpians 195-3
Lynxes lose

It was a stinking hot day for the final game of the week against the Scorpions and with the home team still suffering the effects of the night before it was a vital toss to win. Luckily the coin came down correctly and a relieved Lynxes bowling attack looked forward to watching the batsman post a good score. Realising his team were going to have to field in the 30 degree heat for four hours the opposition skipper summed it up perfectly by simply saying 'b******s'.

Despite losing an early wicket the Lynxes made steady progress before lunch, closing on 65-1 due to good batting from Jez Lawson and Hugo Youngman. The most notable moment of the morning came when Jez reached the 1000 run mark for the Lynxes (a fine achievement which he was pleased to say had taken a mere 12 years).

After lunch the scoring rate was increased and both Hugo and Jez went on to excellent half centuries leaving the innings well set at around 150-3. Unfortunately due to some good opposition bowling nobody else managed to get going (such as Colin Barrett) and we ended up on 194 which was slightly under par but still competitive on a slow pitch.

The opposition got off to a shaky start and should have been a wicket down when James Thompson lured the opener into edging one to James Barron behind the stumps. Sadly it went to ground prompting James into a fit of toy throwing and the rest of us shrug it off and hope the batsman didn't go on to get a hundred. Baz made up for his drop soon after, catching the other opener, leaving the Scorps at 15-1.

That was about as good as it got in the field. The batsman rode their luck and gave several chances but none were caught - not surprising really as Will Chuter attempted to take one catch using only his knees. Despite the bowlers bowling with plenty of passion, especially Chutes who had loads left over from the previous nights dessert, this was not enough to stop the Scorps reaching their target of 195 for the loss of only three wickets. They reached there target with the opener smashing two huge sixes to end up unbeaten on 104.

A defeat then to end the week but a very enjoyable day none the less. As ever an excellent week in the sun up on Bigside and thank-you to every one who made running the Saturday game so easy for me. See you all next year.

Stephen Drake
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