Saturday, February 17, 2007

Net Practice 17th Feb

Post practice consensus is that we're improving with each practice and some of us are doing fairly well. Turn out was poor with some dodgey F*****s coming up with some pitiful excuses! In attendance was –

Nick Naughty
Thomas
Simon
Badger
Mark
Alex
Dave

Most of the excuses for people not being there were reasonable, but obviously the more people can turn up the better we’re going to be as a team unit and the more money we can get behind us. On that subject we’re now in credit by £75.00 which is pretty healthy considering we’ve only been going for a few weeks and that’s despite attendance not being that brilliant? There seems to be a core of 9 players including Richard and Rod who couldn’t be with us this week, so we’re looking for at least another 2 regulars. Simon and Alex have mates that have said they’d be up for it and Rod the Aussie has a mate who’s also up for it. Them along with Tom Dick, Steve Bone, Mark Benson and Carl Hodgson who have all either been once or have said that they will come once they’ve got time would make a big difference. In the short term if we could get a regular 10 blokes every week or even 12 that would make a big difference to the format of the practicing. Today we changed the game at the end of the practice session slightly with running between the stumps, this sets up a whole new aspect to the game in that fielding becomes more dynamic and so does the batting and having to communicate when going for runs between the stumps. Everybody agreed that it would be far more advantageous if we were able to play in teams and so much more could be gained from the practice sessions. So if we can get these 3 other blokes (Rod, Simon and Alex’s mates) as regulars the benefits would be substantial?

I've been thinking about this some more and realised how valuable these games would be. We've got 6 bowlers - Me, Thomas, Rod, Simon, Alex and Badger. If in the game these were split 50-50 and bowled exclusively we'd have a situation where we could start recording peoples bowling averages in a measurable way and it would focus the bowlers attention as you'd only have 24 balls per game in which you could accrue points. We could even start to do the things where not only would you be scoring the game but looking at how many runs would be made off of each bowlers over and working out the averages to see who was working out to be the most affective bowler? So it's almost essential that we start to get a minimum of 10 people at the practice sessions or even better 12.

I also reckon that the teams could be down to one bloke picking the team a la school playground style - but being aware that you need to ensure that Richard and Alex can't be on the same team as they're the wicket keepers?

We desperately need those other three blokes every week. We should also limit the initial practice in the nets to half an hour to give us an hour and half to play the match to see if we can play the full 24 overs (12 each) in the 90 minutes which is 3 mins 45 secs per over. More realistic would be to play the full 2 hour session as a game, that way it would be 5 minutes an over, which I still reckon would take some doing at less than a minute for each ball! I think playing a game increases the potential to learn so much more, several people have said that we need to practice fielding, I think people that don't watch a lot of cricket and are not aware of the some of the tactics, would gain a greater understanding of some of the more subtle intricasies of the game. Batsmen would be forced to keep the ball low and choose their shots more carefully bowlers would have to up their game a bit to improve thier stats over time, people would be made aware of how crap they are at catching and stuff, everyone would have to learn 'Between wicket communication', everyone would get the extra buzz and excitement of it being competitive, especially with the fact that runs can be made running bewteen stumps and I'm sure team cohesion would be improved. To me it sounds like a win win win situation!

People are buying bats! Alex has his bat, Simon’s on the verge of buying his own, Thomas is looking for one too – things are looking up as we get nearer the spring. Alex today took one of my balls so that he could throw it around in his local park and get some practice in during the time between net practices. If anyone else wants to do this, if you look on Ebay you’ll find that you can buy 12 balls quite often for as little as £20.

The weather was nice today and Simon was commenting on the lack of bounce you get from the sports hall floor and saying that once the weather gets better we should get out there as soon as possible and throw some balls on the good stuff. If someone wants to look into it maybe they could approach Welstead gardens and ask if we can use the outfield for practicing? Other than that just a mile or so from where we’re practicing there’s a large playing field that I often practice on that is dead flat and mown frequently. As far as I know it’s rarely used for football even in the football season. So possibly in April once the weather turns nice instead of going straight down the pub we could head over there for an hour or so and try it out for real. This would give people like Thomas the chance to whack the ball and see if he really is getting the distance we’re going to need to decimate Sports Science? I know I would prefer to bowl on grass as I know I bowl so much better on grass, whether this is a psychological thing or the fact that I’ve got cricket shoes and that they grip or something I don’t know, but I can’t wait to go up against someone on the real stuff! So I’d be out there in March if it were warm and sunny! I'll try and get a few pictures of the field in the next few weeks. Again like my own private field it's relatively secluded with trees on all four sides and a working mans club in the corner!

Today despite being indoors I did better, although I’m still fairly inconsistent with the width. But I did feel better and I got a few wickets (2 in the game at the end).

One final thing – we need more opponents. I don’t want to play just Sports Science. I quite fancy the idea of playing Seevic, so much so I’d even invite some of the sports science blokes to play with us if we were short of blokes (Although after the 'Welstead Gardens Tri -series)? So Richard if you're reading this get your arse in gear and start sorting some matches out - Seevic and your Aussie mates?

Dave