TRCC vs. Stokenchurch - August 31st 2014

Youth.

It comes with various advantages.

For example, being able to run and throw.

When combined with the canniness of people who've very much, been there done that, in village cricket terms, it creates a seemingly formidable cricket team.

Formidable, Twyford? Surely not.

Well, perhaps that's an overstatement, but our Sunday side has definitely improved considerably and having the likes of Joe and Tom Downes, Ed Farrar, Manan and Oscar playing regularly has undoubtedly enhanced the side.

And it proved to be the case again on Sunday.

Conference fixtures are always a trip into the unknown.

You can either come up against a fearsome array of superstars, or a motley crew of pensioners and 11-year-olds.

This, on first sight was like we'd arrived in a school trip, as Stokenchurch presented us with a team featuring nine under 16s.

Never a team to assume superiority, we instantly assumed we were playing the Buckinghamshire under-16s and would be blasted out and hit all over the ground.

However, that wasn't the case and a thoroughly decent gamefollowed.

I lost the toss and we were inserted.

Ed Farrar seemed to have left his new-found batting class in the car as he was out straight away.

To the crease marched Joe Downes, and to the boundary flew the ball, repeatedly.

While somewhat fortunate, the ball hitting the stumps and not dislodging the bail at one point, Downes jr hit his second 50 of the week, ending up on 79, a personal best.

The rest of us chipped in and we finished on 202, despite a comical run-out involving Nic Downes, which in true management-style, he placed entirely in the hands of poor old Yasser, who was standing minding his own business having completed what he thought was an easy single.

The poor chap look rather shocked to see a bespectacled giant standing next to him yelling "TWOOOOOO" as the ball was gently rolled to the keeper.

A magnificent tea followed, with some tense looks around the rest of the side as Tom Downes appeared to put all of it on his plate.

We rolled out to field with many players complaining of having eaten too much.

Funnily enough, Tom Downes' initial bowling resembled that of a man whose centre of gravity had suddenly altered, producing plenty of wides and full tosses.

Still, he did produce a pretty ropey leg-side delivery their rather handy left-handed bat flicked hard at yours truly at square leg, and I caught it, rather well if you'll allow some small self-promotion.

Wickets continued to fall with Joe Downes proving a particularly fine rabbit hunter.

After their skipper fell to another remarkably good catch, by me, again.

It was not easy, I had numerous concerns including running backwards, the sun, umpire in the way, poor eyesight, large stomach, lack of ability, political worries at home and abroad, you name it, but it was held.

It was a 40-over game, and we were well ahead.

What followed was somewhat frustrating, as we bowled and bowled and bowled, unable to dismiss their last man.

Had it been the time game, we'd have had a highly irritating draw, but as it was overs, them finishing on about 160 odd for nine meant we won, even though we had an annoying extra hour of fielding or so.

All was well, and we're very much hoping to add this pleasant bunch of lads, who've got a bit of talent, to our fixture list in the future (mainly because of the tea)

There's four games left, we've won SEVEN this year, can we get to the magical double figures? Probably not, but we're doing pretty well as it stands.

Good work lads.
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