TRCC vs. Falkland - August 17th 2014

We never expect very much from our annual fixture against Falkland.

Put simply, they usually thrash us.

Yesterday, however, was a different day, a glorious day and certainly one of the most extraordinary days of cricket I've ever seen.

First, I won the toss, unusual in itself and put them in.

I noticed a bit of sniggering from some of their players when they heard of this decision,  but it was very much us who had the last laugh.

Cometh the hour, cometh the man, and in this case, a long-haired, chain-smoking, beer drinking, tea-eating man.

Hackett had been on the sauce the night before, and we have now made sure this becomes part of his regular training routine as he produced an astonishing performance.

Falkland's openers had put on a stand of more than 200 just weeks before, but Hackett sent them packing in a whirlwind of a spell.

I wouldn't say it was lightning quick, but straight, oh so straight, and a valuable lesson to our young (and old) bowlers - a shocking revelation that bowling the ball at the stumps sometimes hits them.

The man was on fire, batsman after batsman fell, stumps cartwheeled, catches were held.

And then it came, three-in-a-row, for the first time in a 25-year career featuring enormous amounts of fags, booze and malt loaf.

It was a remarkable achievement.

The man Hackett stole the show with figures of 5-2-5-6, but was ably assisted by Yasser Khan and the lad Max who the oppo lent us due to an unexpected no-show.

He turned out to be a distinctly handy left-armer who got a couple of wickets.

The final wicket fell in hilarious fashion.

The bowler, Max, dug a bouncer in at the batsman, his brother, who produced a fabulous hook shot.

So fabulous was it, that he not only sent the ball rocketing the to the boundary, he also hooked his stumps with devastating effect.

End of innings, 34 all out.

For those of you with ageing eyes, that's 34 all out.

Incredible stuff.

Twyford knocked off the runs with one wicket lost, Woodman the man to return.

Farrar junior and Tom Downes reached the total in rather brutal fashion for the nine wicket win.

The game lasted less than two hours and there were some looks of total bemusement.

We finished so early that we were able to fit in a 20/20 in, in which Ed Farrar hit an excellent 50. (Scorecard is available in this page).

But we lost, mainly due to most of the team not really caring having already won.

Tom Downes became furious at this perceived lack of interest, which led to the highlight of the second match, him sprinting to the boundary having just bowled to prove a point to an unnamed fielder about an apparent lack of effort.

The fielder (early sixties, grey hair, writes books, strong views, club chairman) seemed rather surprised when the bowler raced past him after the ball.

But (as the wise old heads knew) it  was to no avail, and the openers showed what they could do by getting to the second total with an over or two to spare.

Still, we won the one what mattered.

An interesting stat from the game was that Paul doubled his season's wicket tally in the game, which gives us strong evidence that
A) those of us there will be the only people ever to walk this earth that will witness a Hackett hat-trick.
B) It was well jammy.

Joking aside, well done to Paul for the achievement and to the rest of us for very ably standing and watching it all unfold.