Friday, 7 July 2017

Something completely different

Posted by Tony Hutton

Thursday 6th July was not finished when the games at Weetwood ended as it was the penultimate week of the Headingley Evening League matches and two teams with whom I have been connected Kirkstall Educational and Adel cricket clubs were doing battle at Queenswood Drive. The previous day I had spoken to the Kirkstall President and groundsman, Dave Hodgson, who told me that they only had six players and four of them were ukulele players.  This was due to the fact that a whole host of ukulele players were to be in action at a concert in the cricket club later that evening. I thought he was joking!
Kirkstall Educatonal cricket club, Queenswood Drive, Leeds.

I was a little late in arriving, due to having to fit in an evening meal somewhere along the line, and to my amazement found that the score was 11-7 already. Dave Hodgson had not been joking, although they did have eleven men of sorts, but there were ukulele players arriving by the minute instruments slung over their shoulders and a packed crowd already in situ in the bar totally ignoring events on the field of play.

Before I sat down it had become 11-8 with the impeccable scorer Hilary Oliver as up to date as ever.
Somehow the number ten batsman Matthew Hallas managed two fours, one a snick through the slips and the ninth wicket pair also acquired six extras for the top partnership of the innings of 14.
The ninth wicket fell on 25 and number eleven had not troubled the scorer when he was clean bowled. Kirkstall Educational 25 all out in 11.3 overs.

Adel now faced the daunting task of scoring 26 to win in 20 overs. As you may imagine they did not need them all. In fact they needed just one over. Opening batsman Zeeshan Siraj, a renowned hitter, was just the man for the occasion hitting two sixes and a four, one ball went for four leg byes and another for six wides. So in just one over Adel had won by ten wickets - could this be a world record I wonder?

By this time a six girl ukulele band were in full voice and events on the cricket field were soon forgotten. Dave Hodgson, looking remarkably smart for once, far different from his normal groundsman's attire, was obviously going to be top of the bill much later in the evening as he needed a few pints to warm up. Certainly an evening with a difference enjoyed by everyone except I suspect the eleven men of Kirkstall.

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