At last they've got more staff in at work and tonight I was able to come home at a reasonable time! Which meant that what with it being sunny and bright although a bit windy I was able to get out on the field with a couple of stumps and give the Leg Breaks a try out - could I still do it?
I came home via the field and found that the gate had been locked up using a couple of bike locks. Now I don't really know what had prompted that - because it's obviously not meant to deter people from going over there because the fence has got something like 6 - 8 holes in it on three sides of the field and there's been no attempt as yet to fix that problem. Initially I thought that maybe it was a reaction against my mowing exploits and that by locking the gate maybe it was deemed that I might not be able to get the mower onto the field? Maybe they know about this blog and they're aware that I've got a roller and they don't want me rolling the field? Where the roller is concerned they have virtually made that impossible, but I can't see that the lock will be there that long - this is Essex not Surrey! But the other probable reason is that they want to stop Motorbikes from getting on there? Towards the end of the summer on a couple of ocassions there were a couple of kids that turned up with a motorbike and road around the field on it - hopefully that's the rationale?
Anyway getting home early meant that I was able to get over there and have half an hour. So just using a single stump at each end I bowled at that. Unfortunately within a matter of seconds of starting a van pulled into the field and for a moment the bloke pulled up against the edge of the field and seemed to just sit there watching me. What with the sudden locking of the gate I felt uneasy about being there and kind of felt that I might be looking at a confrontation with this bloke along the lines of "Can't you see we don't want you on the field practicing and playing cricket & what do you know about the grass being cut - have you got anything to do with it"? Kind of thing. It didn't happen as it was the boxing crowd, but I kind of felt a bit paranoid as each one turned up in their cars and what with my mind being focussed on that it may have affected my bowling?
So not being able to focus 100% as advised by Peter Philpott the session was nowhere near as productive as the one on Saturday. I suppose I should be happy because the majority of the balls were either straight or small Leg Breaks with the rare one that I did manage to rip properly and they obviously turned wider. What I did notice was that in the 90 or so balls that I did throw several of them did the thing that I hear so many people talking about - I dragged it down trying really hard to impart the spin. After doing this a few times I stood back and took stock of what I was doing and it was the fact that I wasn't concentrating. I wasn't leading with the high arm, I wasn't following through with step over action and none of it was relaxed, as soon as I adopted this approach all aspects came together - line, length and spin, but it does require the total concentration. So all in all despite being nowhere near as good as the Saturday experience - I was bowling Leg Breaks - 80% of them turned albeit in a very small way, but this is only Oct 1st and I've got all of Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb and March to get it right, so I just need to be patient.