Saturday, April 30, 2011
There's definitely some work to do still and the aspect that I've observed which is evident in these images is that the back foot which pushes the weight forwards on to the rotation foot, then kicks up and around and is the leading foot into the follow through - still swings round more than 180 degrees.
The images below are an approximation of my footfall during the 'Explosion through the crease' aspect of the bowling action. The mantra of many people - Philpott, Warne, Jenner et al is that you keep the body going straight directing the energy fowards at the batsman, which then would suggest that this diagram below would probably be the optimum bowling action as the feet follow a straight line towards the batsman. The only potential issue is the position and angle of foot R1. Coming out of the bound I plant my foot as sideways as I can get it, as this put my body into a side on position ready to rotate around the pivot foot L2. In the diagram L2 is pointing forwards, but as R1 is kicked up in the rotation, foot L2 (Pivoting) twists on the ball of the foot see images below (To be continued).
I almost didn't get to bat with only one over to go, but 9th batsman was dismissed on 2nd form last ball of the penultimate over. So I face one ball and survived as it was wide enough to leave. The first ball of the last over and the No.10 was bowled clean, so I was a 'Not Out'. But their captain said 'Bowl the over as last man standing'. It turned out that I was facing G-Man and his first ball was a bit leg-side and I managed one of those little deft touches that took it through the position where the bloke at 45 would be and it almost ran for 4. Another through the off-side I ran it low again, with a faint little touch that got it through the keeper and slips and again that nearly ran for 4. Shame really as the runs didn't count and I played 2 good balls! I'd had a bit of a warm up earlier with Keith West who'd come over to see me bowl, so maybe that had made some difference or maybe my Stac bat? I suppose we'll see next time, as long as I don't have to face an Off-Spinner.
In the first innings as far as I was aware there hadn't been any spin, and if there had been it had been innocuous, as no-one had come back talking about it, so it didn't bode well for me or anyone else that was going to be spinning the ball.
After tea, we went into the field and I got put at Mid off and Mid on and was initially worried about the amount of running I might have had to do, what with my bad knee. In the end I needed to do very little running at all, so that worked out okay. As it was a 35 over match, drinks came out at 18 overs and I bowled after drinks. Although it was sunny it was very blustery and the wicket is set up so that it runs East to West, so I had the advantage of bowling into the wind and with the sun relatively low in the sky directly behind me!
I'd gone into this game with no idea of how well or poorly I was going to bowl, whether because of my knee I was going to walk in off of a couple of steps or bowl with the bound. The bound as yet is still a pretty un-natural bowling action for me and one that I'm not fully at ease with, so initially I set out with the 2 or 3 step walk in. The first ball up was slow and really took the batsman by surprise almost bouncing twice, but he got the bat on it and guided it down the towards 3rd man and got a run. As I recall the field was set primarily by 'JB' the captain, but asking me what I wanted to do with the bloke at No.8 (Mid Wicket) who I positioned slightly closer to Square Leg than I would normally do, leaving a gap between Mid Wicket and Mid On trying to get the batsmen to swing across the line and against the spin. I was hoping if they played cross bat shots there may have been some scope for mistakes to be made? Well, that's my story anyway, but to be honest both of the batsmen were new at the crease and I hadn't been able to get a look at them to see what they were about.
All the balls were delivered over the wicket pitching on or around the stumps, none of them went down the Leg-Side which is always a good thing, even though JB did have a bloke at 45 and in hind-sight he could have come up to a position - backward of square leg, mid-way and the bloke at square leg could have pushed back to deep square leg, and the mid-wicket fielder could have gone deep mid wicket where by the end of my three overs I'd lost a lot of runs to fours through there. The little diagram above illustrates my bowling line and I kept to that all through the 3 overs. The bloke at the other end L. Dutton (Lee maybe)? Was bowling well, not sure what kind of bowling and he even shrugged his shoulders to indicate that he didn't know what kind of bowling it was, so maybe it was just Dibbly Dobbly slow? But he took 3 wickets off four overs and only went for 12 runs, so we had the most succesful bowling partnership between us, which was good - combined strike rate of 6.4 - nearly a wicket an over.
My two wickets were pleasing, because as I said I didn't have any expectations what with my knee and the fact that I haven't quite found a groove yet despite all the practice I've been putting in http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ZvLL9q-les My length was poor a lot of the time with several full tosses one of which was mistakenly called as a No-Ball at the start, they were dispatched for 4 almost without exception, but the balls that I did manage to get to bounce which was most of them did, turned exceptionally well. My first wicket was edged to slips and I think the keeper got his glove to it and sent it wider and the captain at slips still managed to get it, which was very commendable. The other was a nice wicket with the ball pitching around middle and leg and it turned and beat the bat hitting the off-stump.
Ball by ball recollection as best I can......The single and the no-ball I've already mentioned. The 4 in the first over was a full toss. The wicket was the one by the captain JB off the edge. The wide was one that was totally wrong - about 8 foot wide I released it wrong due to messing up my run in. The second over was my best taking Jack Farringtons wicket, which then brought on G-Man and he played cautiously playing forwards blocking the ball, negating the spin, the wide in this over I don't remember but it was down the off-side. Then in the last over 2 full tosses which were put away through mid-wicket or over his head and four good balls, some of which turned exceptionally well. I wish all the wickets I played on turned as much as the Rec did today, because it was as though I was even ripping the ball that much.
Oh yeah - we won. The exact figures I'm not 100% sure but we put up a total of around 170 all out off of 34 overs and the other team were all out for around 135 with several overs still in hand. Some of the younger blokes were joking 'Can we burn the stumps or something, that's the first win I've ever been involved in'! So a nice start and an invite to play Saturday next week for the 4ths I'm assuming?
Knee news: Thankfully the knees didn't get that much of a pounding and my fielding was backed up most of the time by a much younger bloke, further out and slightly wider than me, hardly anyone drove the ball straight through either mid-on/off and I was spared. I didn't bowl with the bound much, although I think the 2nd wicket was with the bound. For most part I couldn't get a rhythm going with my run in and reverted to the 2-3 step version. Again that helped with the knee. So by the time I got home just after six there was a little discomfort, so I got ice on it for 10 - 15 minutes and it feels fine now at 10.22 in the evening.
Note: I reproduced a facsimilie of the score sheet as it was in a bit of a mess, straight after the game my last over had been marked as L.Duttons over giving me 4 wickets.
Thursday, April 28, 2011
Here’s one of those scenarios where all the practice pays off. At Ben’s school (My older son) they’re into the Spring/Summer term now and they’ve moved from playing Rugby in PE to cricket and yesterday they had their first net session indoors. Somewhat surprisingly they started off with real balls, so Ben was champing at the bit to show his mates what he’s made of. Some of the kids that he goes to school with play a bit of cricket and no doubt there would have been a little bit of banter between them, some bravo…. “I’ll smack your bowling all over the park”, that kind of thing. Ben got to bowl 6 balls he said and all of them were on the money, the kid that is theoretically his rival in the ‘I’m better than you at cricket’ faced Ben’s bowling and Ben bounced one on him – a short delivery which hit the kids helmet and knocked it off his head! Next ball he hit the Off-stump just clipping the bails and another kid was scared of facing him and stepped away from the stumps rather than put bat to ball or block it with his body. His PE teacher commented ‘Blimey’!
So Ben’s been selected for the cricket trials and he’s doing that after school before his Training with B&PCC on Tuesday night. Ben in his usual style played it cool and seemed non-plussed by the whole thing.
Saturday, April 23, 2011
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
If we're not in the Paddock we're over at the old tennis courts playing in there with a rubber ball. Ben's bowling well, once he's a couple of looseners he's fast and accurate. Joe's bowling is up and down and he seems to do better when you focus his attention by saying 'Joe...4 good balls on the trot I want' and then he seems to bowl well. Some days he spins it some days it just goes straight and this week he's been bowling straight and fast, but seems to appreciate that he get more wickets when he bowls slow with the prospect of it turning. He's got a good Wrong Un that he can just turn to, but like me his Leg Break although good isn't as good as his Wrong Un, but saying that he's bowled a couple of people round the back of their legs a couple of times in the last couple of months.
This was April 19th in the morning, warm and dry and I'd cut the wicket the day before and I'd lowered the blades a bit, but nowhere near their lowest setting. As I've said before, the wicket this year doesn't seems as good as it was last year in May, but it could be still I reckon with some rain. There are big cracks already appearing, but as yet not in the middle of the wicket.
From the bats end (Above).
Monday, April 18, 2011
Saturday, April 16, 2011
Ultimately, I'm after images of cricket either being played there or images of the ground, pavillion, teams that played there or scenic images shot there featuring the pitch. The best image would be of a game being played with the West Tilbury Church visible in the background shot by someone who was a bit handy with a camera (Black and white or colour).
I'm after information with regards who's home ground it was, what the team was called and their history. Ideally I'd like to be able to establish how long the pitch was there and whether its history is long and linked to the local community e.g. who's land it was and who leased it to the cricket team. If anyone has any anecdotal info about it please get in touch with me via the email address on this blog or email me direct at email@example.com
8th Feb 2012
I stumbled upon some old photos of Langdon Hills cricket teams and discovered that in addition to the de-commissioned pitch opposite the Crown Pub at the top of the hill there, there was another probably older pitch heading S/E towards Horndon on the Hill. About 50 yeards along the High Rd, is the junction of Dry Street and on that corner there's a field currently with a beacon in it and a small car park. This rather rectangular field was in fact a cricket pitch in the 1950's and no doubt earlier.
Enthused by the Langdon Hills pitch No.3 find, I set out to look to see if there was any more info on the Condovers pitch and came across this entry in Wikipedia - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/West_Tilbury and in the section on development and industry there's this note - Random surface destruction in the form of scattered gravel workings (‘ballast-holes’) either open or infilled, is evident in places, one of the 19th century quarries being now overgrown and serving as a pleasant scouting camp-ground. Which indicates that the cricket pitch is likely to be no older than around 100 years at the most? But, still no images and only one account by Allan Fullbrook at Thurrock Cricket Club (Formerly Grays and Chadwell Cricket Club) who prior to that were Tilbury CC and it was during that time I recall in the 196o's that Allan 'Fozzy' Fullbrook played at the ground. He remembers the pavillion, saying that it wasn't much more than two rooms to get changed in.
Check out my other blog here - this is all about Leg-spin bowling and nothing else. Double click on the image below.
Monday, April 11, 2011
So here's the paddock with the nets up viewed from the entrance, you can see where we've been using it the grass has already started to wear a bit
So the images here above were from the weekend and then today we went over and pruned the bushes behind the stumps for the camera to be set up behind the stumps and behind the fence with the the camera either looking through the links or just peeping over the top. While we were there one of my neighbours was out the front of his house remvong top-soil from a patch of garden and trying to dump it discreetly in the shrubs and council maintained patches of bushes and trees and I reallised it was good top soil that we could use on the wicket and to help maintain and level it. So I went over and offered my help in getting rid of the dirt by dumping it in the corner of the paddock and he was more than willing to take that as an option. We ended up loading full buckets and bins in the back of the car and driving up on to the verge and carrying the earth the last few yards to dump in the corner of the paddock. The other thing we did while we were over there was paint the crease lines as you can see below. Then later in the day as the sky clouded over, I realised that if I didn't siv the earth and it rained I'd have a problem with the earth being in a condition not ready to go on the wicket, so I sivved the earth and got myself a waste bin full of high quality top-soil ready for repairs and levelling. We then took the full bin back to the garage for strorage and the excess that was left on the paddock in the corner I started in-filling the dips at the bowlers end and a few other places knowing that we'd have rained later tonight and that would be a good start to get the fresh topsoil integrated with the existing earth and grass, see below.
The knee's been okay for the last couple of days and seems to be improving with the increase in activity. I'm a long way off of being able to run, but I've been bowling a lot today and carrying around big heavy buckets of earth and there's no apparent soreness, so that's quite promising.