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MATCH REPORTS 2014   (Click on the match to go directly to report)

Nepotists v Highgate                       Report by Steve Werren             Sun, 27 Apr 2014

Nepotists v Harrow St. Mary's       Report by Lukey Sparrow          Sun, 04 May 2014

Nepotists v Hampton Wick             Report by Carl Hoar                   Sun, 11 May 2014

Nepotists v Northwood                    Report by Lukey Sparrow          Sun, 18 May 2014

Nepotists v Kew                               Report by Steve Werren             Sun, 25 May 2014

Nepotists v Ealing Three Bridges   Report by Nilesh Thacker           Sun, 01 Jun 2014

Nepotists v Wilkinson Way             Report by Steve Werren             Sun, 08 Jun 2014

Nepotists v Barnes                          Report by Bomber Dale              Sun, 15 Jun 2014

Nepotists v British Airways             Report by Lukey Sparrow          Sun, 22 Jun 2014

Nepotists v Harrow Weald              Report by Brett Schwim              Sun, 29 Jun 2014

Nepotists v Royal Household          Report by Carl Hoar                   Sun, 06 Jul 2014

Nepotists v Teddington                    Report by Carl Hoar                   Sun, 13 Jul 2014
 
Nepotists v Edmonton                      Report by Ashish Nagre              Sun, 20 Jul 2014

Nepotists v Highgate                       Report by Nilesh Naidu               Sun, 27 Jul 2014

Nepotists v Wembley                       Report by Steve Werren             Sun, 03 Aug 2014

ISIS Tournament, Oxford                Report by Roly Monk & Bomber Dale   16/17 Aug 2014

Nepotists v Shepperton                    Report by Carl Hoar                   Sun, 24 Aug 2014

Nepotists v Edmonton                      Report by Carl Hoar                    Sun, 31 Aug 2014
__________________________________________________________________________________________

Nepotists v Highgate                       Report by Steve Werren             Sun, 27 Apr 2014

ANOTHER BRILLIANT START TO THE NEPO SEASON

The Nepo’s started their 2014 campaign, picking up where they left off last season. Highgate was glazed in glorious sunshine with temperatures in the mid 20’s, which was quite unusual for this time of year. With the area full of sightseers, tourists parading around the ground, and the nearby tennis courts in full swing, the scene was set for another Nepo march towards the trophy. Batting first after winning the toss, the lime green and magenta exceeded all expectations by posting a remarkable score of 450 runs off their 40 overs. After tea, the Nepo’s in highly aggressive mood were able to, get this, bowl Highgate out for just 12 runs off 8 overs, which included 11 extras! Quite incredible in any form of cricket.

Well....... that was the plan before play started. The reality though, is that it was a dreary afternoon after days of heavy rain with a damp popping wicket. The Nepo’s fell just 300 runs short of their predicted target and were bowled out for a grand total 150 runs in 28 overs, their lowest ‘all out’ score in 7 years when they were dismissed for 105 runs off 30.5 overs against Putney in the last game of the 2007 season. None of the current Nepotists team played in that game – so this is now our ‘Waterloo’. In reply, Highgate strolled past the Nepo score in just 24 overs losing only 3 wickets. Although it did take them three times as many overs to get the runs then we predicted in our alternative universe scenario described above.

So in summary, we were thumped!

    Sun 27 Apr   1.00 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   150 (28 overs)
    Highgate   151-3 (24.2 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Thacker 38 Sparrow 1-10 (4 ov)
    Khan 31 Tambling 1-17 (2 ov)
    Hoar 29 Khan 1-29 (5 ov)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (3/-/-)
    Werren 2, Stout
    NACA   Result  
    Sinha   Loss Scorecard

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__________________________________________________________________________________________

Nepotists v Harrow St. Mary's       Report by Lukey Sparrow          Sun, 04 May 2014

If every team we play this year looked at the Nepo's World Record 2013 scores batting first, there should be little chance of the Nepo's being asked to bat. Harrow St Mary's (HSM) internet either crashed or they simply erased our world record 353 from their scorebooks as they won the toss and elected to bowl. Bonus!

With the lateness (standard!) of Nilesh Thacker, and no other recognised top order batsman (by definition: 'has his own bat') present, Shahna Khan was asked to open with London's favourite cabbie and Nepo's stalwart opener Carl Hoar. 37 seconds later Shahna resigned his position to Sparrow. Being promoted from his comfortable #8, Shahna thought he might as well go all the way to the top so Sparrow went in at #1 with Carl and comfortable to take the first ball, which passed harmlessly, and wastefully, outside off stump. When the next ball went to the cover boundary the HSM Captain exclaimed, 'Here we go again!'

Another Nepo world record was in the mind of both teams but when Sparrow was given out LBW by Steve Werren for 26 with the score on 27. Only one thing was certain, it must have been plumb for Steve to raise his finger. With confidence Shahna swaggered to the middle and in typical closed eye, luck trusted swinging, helped himself to 42 off 30 before abandoning Carl who was in a sticky mood taking 30 balls to reach just 14. He was still there however and joined by Mick Stout whom set a common tone on the scorecard, being the first of 3 Nepo's to be dismissed for just 6 that kept a new world record at bay against HSM for another year at least.

At 3 for 95 the Nepo's never really fired with Carl eventually falling for a casual and un-Carl like 32. Ash Nagre nudged and edged his way to 6 before Paul McCubbin and Damien Tambling settled and ticked over 31 scores before big Paul was cleaned up for 15 allowing Brett Schwim to join his Zimbabwean compatriot. Knowing the tonking capabilities of these two, a 250+ score was not out of the question with 16 overs to bowl provided they didn't get out. A miserable 14 runs and 6 overs later Brett was in the shed (I think he needs his Panama hat back). 11 runs following, so too was Nilesh Naidu for a common 6 in his comeback match followed all too soon by Damien, padding-down for a slick 25.

With A penchant for hanging about, Captain Steve joined our omni-present opener and #10 Nilesh Thacker to see out the final 6 overs. Without even facing a ball, Steve painfully watched from the non-striker's end as Nilesh gifted the HSM opening bowler his 5th wicket without even troubling the scorer. The Nepos went to their 2nd early tea break for the season with a sad 181. If there was consolation, at least we lasted 36 overs! Following our 30 over debacle last week, we should knock off 40 overs next week at this rate. If that happens, we can expect the tea to be ready!!

In 2012 the Nepo's failed to defend 223 against HSM and even though last year we rolled HSM for 142 we had 353 runs to play with then, so it would have to be a solid all-round effort to defend 181 against a largely unchanged HSM side. The HSM tea-lady may have to change the menu next year as the Nepo's fired from the outset. Brett Schwim from the member's end removed the first opener to a great misjudged catch by Sparrow at 3rd man, whom opened the bowling from the non-member's end and cleaned up the next three batsmen including the threatening HSM top-scoring opener in a 6 over spell of 3-10. With the exception of #1 scoring 20, HSM's scorebook looked every bit a phone number with 0, 3, 0, 5, 5, 7, 5, 0, and 0, plus a lucky 15 by the #9 whom must have over-grown in confidence charging for a 2nd run that was there on anyone else's arm but Damien's.

A magnificent chase, slide, turn, and throw, Damien had the ball in Steve's gloves over the bails with the batsman barely halfway down the pitch. Well, he was out by just a yard but it may as well have been half a pitch with the swiftness of the fielding. Brilliant effort. This run brought about a rapid close to the match with HSM losing three wickets in three balls for a great team hat-trick, and leaving Mick Stout with a hat-trick chance next week at Hampton Wick.

Seemingly barely having started, HSM was all out for 78 in the 24th over. It wasn't a world record, but it was close, as this was the 2nd lowest score the Nepo's had rolled an opposition falling short by 4 runs. The record would have been achieved had the ever and sometimes over excitable and all too powerful Brett Schwim not contributed 15 with a combination of waist-high no-balls, wides, overthrows, and wayward deliveries that reached the boundary after barely touching grass.

With only one dropped half-chance at 1st slip, the Nepo's can stand tall after a great fielding effort that was rewarded by a drinks break this year. In 2013 we were too pleased having 8 HSM wickets in the shed after 20 overs we forgot the break in lieu of mopping up the tail. Very thirsty, we finally did so in the 40th over, so this year even though HSM were 8 wickets down the Nepo's had a sip after 21 overs before briskly finishing the task 3 overs later to achieve a season record of our 1st 100+ run victory for 2014, and remaining undefeated at home, with every bowler having a crack; Brett ending 1-12, Damien 1-16, 'Bomber' Naidu 2-12, Ash 0-5, and Mick 2-9.

It's always a great day at HSM Field and even though we don't always come away with a win, we always come away with the best 12 umpire's stones on the fixtures' list.

Well played Nepo's!!​

    Sun 04 May 1.00 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   181 (36 overs)
    Harrow St. Mary's 78 (24 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Khan 42 Sparrow 3-10 (6 ov)
    Hoar 32 Stout 2-9   (2 ov)
    Sparrow 26 Naidu 2-12 (4 ov)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (5/-/1)
    Sparrow, McCubbin, Werren, Schwim, Khan/-/Tambling
    NACA   Result  
    Khan   Win Scorecard

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__________________________________________________________________________________________

Nepotists v Hampton Wick             Report by Carl Hoar                   Sun, 11 May 2014

I was shocked to get a call from Steve Werren Monday night to pick him up from Northwick Park hospital. Apparently he'd gone into anaphylactic shock after drinking bitter at the St. Mary's match. After being intravenously feed with Castlemain and Fosters overnight Steve’s condition stabilised. He told me, "mate it was really touch and go, I nearly saw the funny side of losing!" "No!" I said. Steve replied, "yeah mate, I nearly turned in to a Pom".

At this point the irritating Aussie inflection to his accent returned, so I knew we hadn't lost him. My sense of relief turned to shock when as opposed to his place in Wembley, he asked me to drive him to Madame Jo Jo's in Soho. Along with this he asked me to skipper the Hampton Wick game. "Why mate" I asked. Steve replied, " too busy with music for the tranny floor show fella".

After losing the toss Nepos were asked to bat on a bowler friendly pitch. Sparrow couldn't repeat his heroics from last week and was bowled after playing a rather agricultural stroke for 7. Nilesh Thacker looked to flick one to leg and was trapped lbw for 6. After Shahna Khan was clean bowled for 9, team Nepos were wobbling until a partial revival led by the Zimbo pair Tambling 37 and Schwim 52, 200 plus looked on the cards until Brett was run out taking a chancy second run. Red faced and with steam gushing from his ears, Brett claimed to his team mates that Damien had done it deliberately as revenge for Brett spaying Ralgex on his jockstrap during a school match when they both attended Cecil Rhodes high. Apparently this was true, but Brett did nick Damien's "Graham Hick 405 Duncan Fernley" bat. Tit for tat never works people!!

Sporting a Sergio Aguero hair cut (which he was quite rightly naca nominated for) debutant Sam played a cavalier innings eventually falling for 11. Mick stout looked in good touch until like Nilesh Thacker fell lbw flicking to leg. Stand in skipper Carl Hoar was dismissed 2nd ball after being harshly given out caught behind by sparrow. All was forgiving afterwards in the bar as Sparrow explained that the authentic woody sound was made by his dodgy shoulder as he sneezed during the delivery stride ......probably ..

Fortunately Steve Werren 11 not out and a composed 12 from debutant Adi Khanna wagged the tail as Nepos ended up 185 all out in 32.2 overs. A sealed bid system was instituted to select the opening bowlers in an attempt to supplement the skippers ailing cab income. It came as no surprise to the captain that the Antipodean contingent fared badly in this process with it being more likely to be able to plat sawdust than to get a tip from this lot.

Adi Khanna swung the ball with nagging accuracy and was unlucky to end his spell wicket less. Again Brett Schwim was the pick of the bowlers taking 2 for 28 off 7 overs without the aid of hand grenades or fishing line. Damien Tambling bowled a steady spell, but the Hampton Wick batmen continued to work the ball with ease. With the threat of being sent to teach in an inner city comprehensive, Mick Stout was ordered to take a wicket. Nepos seemed back in the game as Mick struck in his first over.

Nilesh Naidu created a chance or two but nothing went to hand. Sparrow couldn't find his length and took a bit of tap from two "in" batters before Shahna Khan was introduced to the attack. The luckless Shahna was struck for three 6s in a row before he threatened to throw a chair at the batsman who intelligently retired hurt. Always knew hanging out watching "Goodfellas " with Steve Werren was bad for his development!

Damien was rightly NACA'd for going AWOL and rolling a fag before drinks. The game was lost but the Nepos won the hearts of the oppo with good banter, cheer, lashings of lager, and Sparrows walnut cracking act with his dodgy shoulder!

The Nepos march on !!

    Sun 11 May 1.00 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   185 (36.2 overs)
    Hampton Wick
186-3
(32.2 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
   
Schwim
52 Schwim 2-28 (7.2 ov)
   
Tambling
37 Stout 1-29 (5 ov)
   
Stout
17 Tambling 0-14 (4 ov)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (1/-/-)
    Tambling
    NACA   Result  
    Tambling   Loss Scorecard

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__________________________________________________________________________________________

Nepotists v Northwood                   Report by Lukey Sparrow          Sun, 08 May 2014

I can't say I'm not disappointed with Sunday's result or overly thrilled at writing this match report. If nothing else, it gives me a much better appreciation of Steve's efforts trying to be enthused about Nepo losses while he has been in (perfect) control.

Early setbacks due to late withdrawals, regardless of the soft reasons given (work, anniversary, birthday) didn't hamper my enthusiasm to skipper the Nepos for their 2nd win for the season.

Losing the toss and being asked to bowl echoed my preference and the day was off to a positive start. Without the competent batting of Nilesh Thacker (anniversary), Brett Schwim (birthday), Nilesh Naidu (work), and Mick Stout (heart or other bodily injury), our depleted batting line up heightened my want to bowl, believing our attack would stand even taller with James Culley back in the line-up after time out in Kabul, and for 38 overs it did just that.

Courtesy of Northwood, thinking they are akin to the MCC at Lord's competing on a sloped field, the pitch wrecking flood that washed downhill from the adjacent Royal Reservoir in the days earlier left the pitch a bit soppy, slow, low, and undulating and the Nepo's took advantage of this.

Dropping a catch in the first over off James' dynamic swinging and cutting spell was a setback, however runs didn't come. With Damian Tambling at the other end keeping everything tight, the over rate was slick, bowling changes regular and fielding exceptional, only conceding two cheeky byes and a couple of leg-byes. The guys backed-up the bowlers, threw straight, put their bodies behind the ball and got the ball in quickly. It was great to see.

Though grassing only one, I'd love to say we held all our catches, however we only dismissed 6 batsmen bowled or LBW, because the bowling was straight and difficult; good problem to present! As such after 35 overs Northwood were only 6-148 and we were looking to restrict the home side to 180. Alas, Northwood had recruited AB De Villiers estranged twin brother CD whom went bat-shit.

The Nepo's bled 55 runs (TBC) off the last 5 overs with old-mate CD notching up 45 putting any ball anywhere he wanted with unorthodox (for Nepo's) shots and plain arse-ness. In defence of Amit and James that bowled 3 of the last 5, it was my 2 overs that cost. Believing my first spell of 3 overs 1-5 would be mirrored, CD hit sixes off balls that would york and bowl others and I went for 28. In hindsight, game over, but the game wasn't over just yet as we believed we could knock off the 203 (amended to 201 after the break)!

Opening with debutant Arni, whom scored a swift 10 before holing out, Big Carl (back at the top after his hiatus at 8 last week) still wasn't his fluent self, but pushed a comfortable 20, followed by Shyam WOW with 18, Adsman with 12, and Shahna Khan 12 before collapsing with cramp or something that resulted in his retirement for treatment that meant sitting on the side lines watching the Nepo's fall in a heap. Ash Nagre 0, Steve Werren 13, and Damian's almost flawless 51 before an untimely demise brought Shahna back into the game quicker than he'd like. It wasn't the end of Damo's game with Northwood allowing Shahna to keep the fastest Nepo alive to do what Shahna hates doing.

With James Culley 6 and Amit Sinha 11 too falling to the ever present pies of Northwood's 'Bomber' Modi, giving him 4 for the match, the Nepos needed 21 off two overs with one wicket in hand. With Shahna typically swinging his guts out with one six and allowing myself to run 8 with Damien, the pressure was back on Northwood, with the Nepo's now needing only 7 to win off 7 balls.

Not wanting to deny Shahna the ease of smashing the ball to the rope and getting the job done, I bolted for a single off the last ball of the penultimate over as soon as the ball was released endeavouring to keep Shahna on strike for the last over. Shahna however failed to connect and already halfway down the pitch sneaking the bye, the keeper hurled the ball for a direct hit and I simply kept running leaving the hosts victors by 6 runs and I felt shithouse.

Being captain and contributing is one thing, but being captain and losing because of one's own poor form, is the poorest of form and not something I cherish, especially then having to write about the bastard. I tried to manufacture a win post game when inspecting the scorecards I was briefly excited to not only first learn that Northwood only scored 195 (by their scorebook!) but our scorebook too was awry. Disappointingly it was also to the negative and the Nepo's only hitting 189 didn't help my cause either. The Nepo's face Kew next week only 1 and 3 and not looking a shade on the 2013 form that we thought might come back to bite us with the opposition fielding much stronger sides, albeit with the inclusion of 1 or 2 1st class or international ring-ins. If we can take positives from Northwood, it's the first time we have batted 39 overs this season, and 195 is our highest score for 2014 so we are definitely on the improve. Alas, so are the teams we play!

Thank you guys for what was a great effort with ball and bat, and I apologise for not getting the Nepo's home.

Captain Sparrow

    Sun 18 May 2.00 pm 40 overs a side
    Northwood   201-6 (40 overs)
    Nepotists   195 (39 overs
    Batting   Bowling  
    Tambling 51 Singha 3-29 (6 ov)
    Khan 31 no Tambling 1-26 (8 ov)
    Hoar 20 Sparrow 1-33 (5 ov)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (-/-/-)
     
    NACA   Result  
    Das   Loss Scorecard

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__________________________________________________________________________________________

Nepotists v Kew                               Report by Steve Werren             Sun, 25 May 2014

After disappointing early season results, the Nepotists got back to their brutal best with a comprehensive victory over Kew on Sunday which was reminiscent of their 2013 form. But there were two other major events of the day. Number one being this year’s first ‘Nepo World Record’, which I’ll elaborate on below, but even bigger news occurred after the match when rumours started to spread around that jugs of beer were going for only £12.50 in the Kew clubhouse. This is almost half the price the Nepo’s pay at other grounds and puts it on par with Hampstead jugs. So after complete silence had enveloped the Nepo’s upon hearing this news, along with nodding of heads and smurky grins, the players not wishing to miss an opportunity and worried that this was a time limited offer, set themselves to drink the bar dry.

But before they could get their orders in, suddenly there was mass panic when tourists from nearby Kew Gardens heard of the news and were falling over each other to get into the bar. It was an ugly sight replicating a scene from the news reporters battle in ‘Anchorman’ with arms, legs and pitchforks flying everywhere. There was one unfortunate incident of a Kew player having his eyes gouged out by Shahna Khan (Ind), who was still on a feeding frenzy from tea, removing an ice pick that was mounted on the wall (a Kew tribute to Sharon Stone’s role in ‘Basic Instinct’) and digging the eyeballs out of the oppo skippers sockets and devouring them with parmesan cheese and Tabasco sauce (on rye) – looked quite tasty actually. When it all calmed down, servility resumed and the Nepo players combined to fork out for 5 (or was it 6) jugs of the UK’s finest lager. Unfortunately not being able to procure a ‘fine’ UK lager, went with what they were offering, which kept the lads there till well after 10pm, with ‘carriages’ time a bit sketchy. Eventually a lovely evening was had by all after the clubhouse was rebuilt.

Anyway back to the cricket – got a bit carried away there. The Nepo’s lost the toss and were sent in to bat with regular openers Carl Hoar (Eng) and Nilesh Thacker (Ind) struggling on the once again slow soft pitch. With two wickets down and just 35 runs on the board after 10 overs it looked like it was going to be another tough afternoon for the Nepo batsmen. But at the crease now were two guys who without doubt played there best ever Nepo innings. Colin Bull (Eng) on debut hitting up a magnificent 83 runs, (which was definitely his best innings), and Damian Tambling (Zim) cracking his third century for the Nepo’s, which is not bad considering he only joined the club in the second half of last season, ending on a brilliant 143no.

The two Nepo’s put on partnership of 191 runs in 23 overs at a run rate of 8.3 runs per over, and in one foul swoop took the game away from Kew – extraordinary to watch. The partnership wasn’t without controversy though with Colin and Damian getting a bit ‘cocky’ and halfway through their time at the crease decided to forgo using bats, instead deducing that a well endowed penis (enhanced by browsing through the latest edition of ‘Kew Gardens Hottest Azaleas’) could do exactly the same job – which they did with interest. It wasn’t a pretty sight in the dressing room later, but fortunately we were able to sneak some good pics for the website, but will need to get the camera’s repaired first as they weren’t shockproof lenses. The Nepo’s were eventually able to post 288 runs off their 40 overs for the loss of just 6 wickets, which was always going to be a hill too far for the Kew batsmen.

Tea was the usual fare of pushing and shoving with the Nepo’s squirreling down the nosh (including the plates, table and groundsman) quicker than you say, (hmm can’t think of an anything at the moment, to quote Henry Blofeld), resulting in National Geographic sending out a team of researchers for their upcoming documentary “Is possible to Live Without A Brain”.

As was expected, for Kew to chase down the Nepo target, they needed a strong start or someone to doctor the scorebook, with the Nepo’s being the foremost experts in that field. But alas after a valiant effort, which resulted in them just falling short of the Nepo total by a mere 148 runs, plus the unfortunate sight of their scorer falling asleep, were eventually dismissed for 140 runs off 38.2 overs (yes it was slow), which would have almost earned them a draw in a ‘Time’ game. That’s why we don’t play them!

The wickets were shared between 4 bowlers with Damian Tambling doing the double and picking up 4-8 off 7.2 overs (another remarkable performance for the day), Nilesh Naidu (Nz) with 3-25 off 6 overs, Graham Bull (Eng) on his comeback match and bowling through a toenail polish crisis 2-18 off 8 overs, and Shahna Khan (Ind) 1-33 off 7 overs.

Damian Tambling’s double now becomes what we believe is the first Nepo World Record of the season, that being ‘Highest Club Champion Points for a Single Match’ with a total of 221.4 points for the match (143 pts batting, 78.4 pts bowling); surpassing Bruce Jackson’s (Aus) record day back in 2005 where he scored 196 runs and took 1 stumping against Frensham, total 208 points. (See Note at end of report) Quite an incredible performance from Damian which deservedly won him the NACA jacket after the match, and lands him in a commanding position for the Club Champion trophy, having almost 3 times as many points as his nearest competitor at this stage, and puts him in striking range of Shahna Khan’s World Record points haul of 984 set just last season, and is also on target to win all major batting and bowling awards at this stage. Can anyone catch him?

So all in all a great day on Kew Green, with the Nepo season now back on track and looking to kick on from here.

Yours in Nepotism
Steve

Note: Damian Tambling’s World Record needs to be verified, but short of going through all the score books, if anyone believes there was a Nepo performance that could have rivalled this one then get back to me with a name and match (or approximate year) and I’ll look into it. To beat this record, you will need to have scored around 100 runs and taken 7 wickets in a single match (or a higher hundred with less wickets). I know Basher Balden (Eng) took 9 wickets for 21 runs in a match, but we are not sure of the match or indeed the year. This would get him 180 points for the wickets less 4.2 points for runs conceded, totalling 175.8 points. So Basher would need to have scored 46 runs not out or 53 dismissed in the same game as his 9 wickets to overtake Damian’s points tally. Catches 8 pts, run out’s 8 pts and stumpings 12 pts also earn points.

    Sun 25 May 1.30 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   288-6 (40 overs)
    Kew   140 (38.2 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Tambling 143 no Tambling 4-8 (7.2 ov)
    Bull, C 83 Naidu 3-25 (6 overs)
    Thacker 13 Bull, G 2-18 (8 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (3/1/-)
    Werren 1/1, Hoar, Khanna
    NACA   Result  
    Tambling   Win Scorecard

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__________________________________________________________________________________________

Nepotists v Ealing Three Bridges        Report by Nilesh Thacker              Sun, 01 Jun 2014

It was a nice sunny and a promising day as the Nepos walked towards the club house.... The opposition team were all waiting with about 20 odd more rough looking people too.... We were really overwhelmed and could foresee a warm welcome, but as we came closer and put our hands out for a handshake they shoved us all aside looking past us trying to find someone... After the last Nepo was hurled aside the oppo skipper squeaked, "so where's BRETT?"

When they learned that Brett wasn't playing today he ordered the gang to take the ‘equipment ’away as they won't need to 'use' them. The folks opened up the blankets revealing guns, swords, grenades, shot guns and all sorts...... The oppo skipper had mentioned something along the lines of being "well prepared for Brett" this time.

The skipper had big plans for Steve to partner Big Carl as the opening pair, but just like all men getting married… as they are about to take their vows... Steve got cold feet too!!!

On the way to the middle for the toss the oppo skipper suggested a 30 or a 35 over game..... Being an Indian I saw an opportunity to haggle and pitched high saying we only play 50 over matches.... Things were starting to heat up when the "peace maker" Steve had to step in and settled it for a 40 over game.... "Happy days"

After losing the toss the Nepos were made to wait as the oppo team stripped off their whites and put on their smart tuxedos, ties, black polished shoes and went in to the tea room, shut the doors, gathered around a big round conference table, and pulled a big white projector screen as they got involved in a very highly debated board meeting..... The Nepo’s, who had all dozed off were suddenly woken up when the doors were flung open as the oppo came out stripping their tuxedos off and getting back into their whites and said "we'll bowl first".

As Steve had turned down the offer to open, it was passed round to Sanjay. So Carl and Sanjay made a solid start for the Nepo innings. With the pitch playing up in the beginning, staying low and outfield very slow, the boundaries were hard to come by, but the opening pair ran hard and put up a good solid 59 before Sanjay parted for a well made 20. Riding on high expectations from his feats from last week, in came Damian Tambling at no.3 but didn't last very long and ran himself out (the way he was batting I guess that would have been the only way to get him out). Also the voodoo dolls and the pins by the Legends worked.

At no. 4 walked in Shahna Khan who started belting the ball round the park. As the oppo team had already named him a "tennis ball player" last year, they improvised and renamed him "wild swinger". (We are a bit curious now about his new name next year.) And Shahna swung and slashed his way to a flamboyant 66, before he was caught. Big Carl made a classy 54 before attempting a six and being caught right on the edge of the boundary.

From there on every Nepo contributed with Mick Stout making a magnificent 50, which included quality cricketing shots and 2 massive sixes. Luke Sparrow added the cherry on the cake with a hurricane innings and got 24 runs of just 11 balls, and the Nepo’s finally ended on 7-263 off their 40 overs.

Tea was a smart move by the oppo… they fed us some real stodgy lunch and got us watching IPL finals – starting to feel drowsy, and then kicked us out onto the field.

Luke Sparrow and Aditya Khanna opened the proceedings for the Nepo’s and bowled a tidy opening spell. Damian, Shahna and Shyam were at their best on the field. The pitch had improved considerably and the oppo were middling the ball well when Nilesh Naidu came in and slowed it down in his first over. The well settled batsmen were surprised at the pace and eventually waited and played 10 different shots mentally by the time the ball left Nils hand and reached the batsman, but when it finally got there they had to defend as still unable to decide.

Then there was one long hop which was smacked towards the deep midwicket boundary where Shahna was eyeing up a lady sitting nearby. Normally he would have dropped it, but he managed to jump back... took a one handed catch and instead of falling back he managed to turn around mid air and squatted as soon as he landed facing the lady trying to get some tan and do a bit of yoga. He stayed in that position for about a minute scanning her hideously. She got a hint of his perverted intensions, grabbed the blanket and covered every part of exposed skin. She then reached out for her phone to call 999. That's when all the Nepo’s came over, picked him up and took him to the other side of the field. Steve kept like a real acrobat. .. He was like a wall behind the wickets. .. Nothing went past. .. He also attempted a lightning stumping. .. fastest I'd seen so far.

This was followed by this one unbelievable moment where a cracking shot from their well set batsman was dived full stretch and saved. All the Nepo’s were applauding, expecting it to be Damian (which is just standard for him), but when he got up, the Nepos fell over in shock… can it be…??? No I mean really???? Nepo’s stood there gawping with open mouths and tongues hanging out when they realised - it was Nilesh Naidu....!!!! The Nepos were down on their knees praying for Nils to come back to normality. ... and it happened.... He dropped a couple of catches and misfielded and the Nepo’s were thankful their prayers were answered - the good old Nils was back. (Well it happened reversely but this sounds better!)

The match was nearing the end and their left handed opening bat already being on 134no, was on course to take the hosts home when Sanjay came in and bowled tight to add pressure on the batsmen, later… Damian delivered a magical one that cleaned up the left hander. .. From then on the Nepos had it in the bag, and won a good close game after Shahna took the ball and cleared the rest, eventually bowling out them out for 249 runs off the last ball of the innings – great game.

As per the Nepo tradition there were a few nominees for the NACA which Lukey had apparently won it unanimously. ...until the Nepos remembered “The all blonde Nilesh Naidu moment” from last week... The NACA outfit was quickly stripped off Lukey and forced onto Naidu.

Meanwhile the cops turned up at the field responding to the 999 phonecall from the lady, and they ran towards Shahna who was standing under a tree enjoying his pint, he nearly pissed himself, but they ran past him and climbed the tree behind him and captured a monkey from the top branch saying " he fits the lady’s description perfectly”. All in all that was pretty much everything we had in store for the day. .. A good win for the Nepo’s followed by a few hundred drinks – before we all strolled back home – waiting for the next game!

Nilesh

    Sun 01 Jun   1.30 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   263-7 (40 overs)
    Ealing Three Bridges 249 (40 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Khan 66 Khan 4-35 (8 overs)
    Hoar 54 Thakker 1-19 (4 overs)
    Stout 50 Naidu 1-35 (5 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (3/-/1)
    Khan 2, Khanna (1/-/0.5), Werren  (-/-/0.5)
    NACA   Result  
    Sparrow/Naidu Win Scorecard

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Nepotists v Wilkinson Way             Report by Steve Werren             Sun, 08 Jun 2014

Great sporting stories are often prefaced by the term “they were just a one man team”. Well I can confirm that yesterday’s quickly organised match against Wilkinson Way after Hampstead’s late cancellation on Thu, truly was about a one man team – their team. I’ve never played in a game that was so dominated by one single player, with the others members of the team being so ordinary.

The day started in glorious sunshine, and as the players walked into the Trailfinders Sports Club they thought they’d taken a wrong turn and accidentally turned up at the Taj Mahal. It certainly was a spectacular venue with a pitch and outfield that would match any County Cricket ground, a brand new clubhouse, and 72 virgins waiting on the sideline for the drinks break. Yes, this certainly was going to be a day to savour – or was it?

Unfortunately it was ultimately going to be a day of controversy with the first one occurring before the match even started. After losing the toss the Nepo’s were asked to bowl first. The oppo then wished to inspect our match ball which they said wasn’t up to scratch for the standard they play, and produced a nice shiny new ‘Dukes A Grade Test’ match ball for us to use. These are quite expensive, and designed to last for 80+ overs and hold it’s seam – so bonus for us.

Naturally the word was already floating around the Nepo team about upcoming NACA nominations with Lukey Sparrow’s name being bandied about for bringing the Nepo brand into disrepute and providing 20 dodgy balls for this season from his beautiful Bangladesh apartment by the 'goatside'. Anyway, 7 overs into the match the oppo were complaining about the condition of the ball (their ball), claiming it had gone out of shape and that a substitute ball was required. Having a quiet chuckle to ourselves we produced one of our Bangladeshi specials which lasted for the rest of the match no problem. Strike one to the Nepo’s and a reprieve for Sparrow.

With Chris Ellegard (Nz) opening the bowling and producing two maidens to start with (making that 74 virgins now for the drinks break) and debutant Dennis McIntyre (Guyana) opening at the other end in very Brett Schwim–ish style, picked up a wicket in his first over as well as a team run out, so the Nepo’s couldn’t have hoped for a better start at 2-2 off 2 overs as Richie would say. In at number 3 comes there overseas Indian player who competes in the ‘Home Counties Premier Cricket League’ on a Sat, which is a higher standard than even the 'Middlesex Premier League' where a lot of our opposition come from. He was cautious at the start because of wickets falling all around him with the Nepo’s at one stage having them 5-64. It was certainly looking like a wrought was in the offing.

But once their star player had settled in, he decided it was time to take the Nepo bowling to task, which he did in great style hitting up 177 runs not out, which may be the highest score by an oppo batsman against the Nepo’s – verification required. He was a class act and probably the best batsmen the team has faced. He hit balls at will wherever he liked, mainly from a standing start with the Nepo keeper up all day. It certainly was very impressive.

There was however one moment which will stick with the Nepo’s for quite a while. When their star batsman was on only 45 runs he appeared to be run out by quite a distance, bat in the air, well short of his ground. But their square leg umpire refused to raise his finger even though the batsmen was basically walking back to the pavilion knowing he hadn’t made his ground. An argument ensued with the Nepo players and with the square leg umpire for an obvious disregard of the rules, and from that point onwards the tone of the match went down. With him being the only decent oppo batsman (and a paid one at that) there was no way they were going to give him out unless all 6 stumps were knocked over, or an out of control helicopter took him out. That decision was the difference between bowling them out for less than 150 runs or them eventually finishing on 8-272 off 40 overs, with the latter proving true.

There wasn’t much mingling with the oppo during the lunch break, but the Nepo’s felt confident they could chase the runs down, having scored well in excess of 300 runs many times in the past couple of seasons, and with at least four Twenty20 specialists in the team, felt confident. The skipper, Steve Werren (Aus), asked the batsmen to look for around 120 runs off the first 20 overs and to push for 160 off the last 20. After 20 overs the Nepo’s were 2-114, so good enough at that stage with Carl Hoar (Eng) (eventually out for a fantastic uncharacteristic Big Bash type 83 runs) and Chris Ellegard (batting with his usual poise and precision) 48 runs, leading the charge.

But setting 280 odd runs and chasing 280 odd runs are two different things in cricket. Having to keep up with the run rate, and being under pressure after a quiet over or two is a lot harder than just going for broke not knowing what the target is. And this was the case yesterday, with the Nepo’s gradually losing wickets by being forced to go for big shots and eventually ending up on 9-220 runs off their 40 overs. At least they didn’t bowl us out.

But it was the attitude of the oppo players in the field that was the talking point during the Nepo innings. It was basically the game against Acton revisited from last year. Read the match report from 2013 here and it will fill in the rest of the this match report very closely. They complained about every wide, considering they called a wide for every ball down the leg side when we bowled, and generally played with a League mentality, sledging our players throughout the afternoon. Nilesh Naidu (Nz) wasn’t having any of it and while umpiring let loose at the oppo at every available opportunity. Although it’s not generally the Nepo way to lower ourselves to their standard, sometimes there’s a point where you just have to take a stand, which Nilesh did, and he continually reminded the oppo of his ‘Golden Gloves’ days back in the popular mid town Auckland hangout for people of Indian decent, the ‘SlapaPaki Bar & Grill’. We could hear him from the sideline, and had a giggle when he got so caught up in the moment that he forgot the batsmen were on our side.

So just like Acton, after the match we discussed not accepting another fixture off these guys if they offer us one, which was confirmed when we were told that the bar was closed before we even had one drink! Incidentally when I asked one of the oppo players where the name ‘Wilkinson Way’ comes from, I was told it is the name of a street in Acton where a lot of their players used to live about 25 years ago, which says it all. (There was also a very dodgy pub in that area as well!)

So we continue our search for like minded opponents.

Yours in Nepotism
Steve

    Sun 08 Jun   1.30 pm 40 overs a side
    Wilkinson Way 272-8 (40 overs)
    Nepotists   220-9 (40 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Hoar 83 Khan 2-38 (8 overs)
    Ellegard 48 Ellegard 2-46 (7 overs)
    Khanna 22 McIntyre 1-41 (7 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (4/-/-)
    Werren 2, Ellegard, Stout
    NACA   Result  
    McIntyre   Loss Scorecard

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Nepotists v Barnes                          Report by Bomber Dale              Sun, 15 Jun 2014

Well, not a lot to report, except for:

·       LGMM lose the un-lose-able game
·       RECORDS TUMBLE IN BATTING RUN FEAST – NEARLY 700 RUNS SCORED
·       SAD DAY FOR LGMM, AS LEGENDARY PART-TIME SKIPPER RESIGNS IN TEARS
·       LGMM “CLUB CAPTAIN” FLOPS. STANDARD
·       NACA BROUGHT INTO DISREPUTE BY VOTE RIGGING
·       BARNES HOUSE PRICES CRASH DUE TO BOMBARDMENT OF BANGLADESHI CRICKET BALLS
·       SHARES SOAR IN BANGLADESHI SWEAT SHOPS AFTER HUNDREDS OF BALLS LOST IN S-W LONDON
        BATTING CARNAGE
       __________________________________________________________________

       *LGMM cc (formerly known as the Nepotists CC): Lime Green and Magenta Muppets Cricket Club
       __________________________________________________________________

It was a day that had never been seen in the long and proud history of the LGMM. Never had there been so many runs scored, never had there been more 6s, never had a famous cricket team, formerly known as the NCC, scored so many runs to lose. And, never has an emergency legendary stand-in captain had to deal with so many Lime Green and Magenta Muppets…!

Now, this is not a Stevie W report from the far flung looney fringes of outer space. This actually happened. It was brutal, it was ugly (for bowlers) and it was tragic…

As we all know, repeated ICC psychologist reports forced what was the greatest team the world has ever seen, to boot the “Club Captain” from his match day role, and bring in a series of stand-in skippers. This has proved to be a disaster.

So, in total desperation, the NCC were forced to bring in their trump card, a former leading strike lolli-pop bowler, to steady the ship. And this was immediately achieved when he won the toss, elected to bat and immediately made some inspired decisions. First, where to hide the failed skippers? Where else but at the top of the order: 1 Hoar. 2 Werren. 3 Sparrow. Brilliant!

Immediate success was achieved after psycho Club Captain Stevie Werren made absolutely ZERO runs out of 341, being bowled 4th ball. Sparrow, a recent losing skipper, strode to the crease and put his first ball straight down the throat of square leg, who somehow coughed it up, going for 4 (like virtually every ball that hit the bat). It was so close to being another inspired leadership choice. Lukey then batted with great style for 44, his second highest score in all cricket. Big Carl, who in his appalling day of skippering when he went in to bat at 10, was promoted to 1. 87 glorious runs followed. This was part-time skippering at its best.

Runs, runs, runs. What more can I say: Shahna Khan 48, Brett “when we were Rhodesia” Schwim 36 off 2 balls. Actually, 14 balls to be honest, he’s a freak. Ash Nagre 21 and the big Aussie Paul McCubbin 44*, leading to an “insurmountable” 8-341 runs off 40 overs.

This is where any leading coach or skipper has to put his hands up and admit that he can only do as well as the cattle on the park. Tragically for the formerly known cricket club, the Nepotists, it was a bunch of muppets wearing lime green and magenta. Truly a recipe for a downfall of any leading part-time skipper.

And so it proved to be.

Approx 100 runs off the first 10 overs was not an ideal start, but at drinks with Sparrow and Shahna bowling tightly, the game was in the balance. But overs 20-30 were a disaster, with some bloke Barnes had brought in only an hour before the game, going to 100 and then 150 runs before you could say, gee, who is in charge of this mob?

Feeling like a general in the ‘Charge of the Light Brigade’ in Crimea, or at the Nek in Gallipoli, I had to sacrifice myself along with the muppets beneath me. I thought my 0-39 off 2 overs was a reasonable return. Yet, despite my heroics, we somehow lost the game with 2 overs to go and Barnes ending on 4-344 to win the match. This was not the way it was meant to be!

Then the fall out.

In scenes not witnessed since Kim Hughes resigned, the former NCC leading lolli-pop bowler tearfully confessed to his stunned group in the shed: “It had become all too much. Leading the Nepotists was a life-long dream. And while I have loved every second (well about 4 hours) of it, the pressure of the media, bitter former failed skippers, and trying to lead a bunch of muppets, has taken its toll. Time to leave at the top and head to the North Pole, where my cricketing leadership skills are appreciated”.

Farce followed, with myself being the fall guy, being voted totally unfairly and even without being nominated, for the NACA. A very forgettable, well actually a day we will never forget in the history of the former greatest cricket team the world has ever seen.

Long live the mighty Lime Green and Magenta Muppets!!

      -   Colin “Bomber” Dale,
           LPK. 1999 Nepo of the Year. Leading wicket taker, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005 (joint).
           Former stand-in skipper.

    Sun 15 Jun   1.30 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   341-8 (40 overs)
    Barnes   344-4 (38 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Hoar 87 Schwim 2-69 (8 overs)
    Khan 48 Thakker 1-31 (2 overs)
    Sparrow 44 Sparrow 1-58 (8 overs)
    McCubbin 42 no    
    Schwim 36    
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (4/-/-)
    McCubbin, Tambling, Nagre, Schwim
    NACA   Result  
    Dale   Loss Scorecard

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Nepotists v British Airways             Report by Lukey Sparrow          Sun, 22 Jun 2014

Redemption!

It was not the run-fest of Barnes with just 353 runs scored in the same 77-overs as last week, but at least the Nepo’s won and enjoyed celebrating a victory, as opposed to celebrating the loss and subsequent retirement of Bomber Dale as we did 7 days earlier.

After the weeks of unrelenting abuse piled onto the losing invitational skippers by Bomber, never was a loss more satisfying than last week’s, and made this week’s victory all the more sweet; a perfect follow-up to the embarrassment of Barnes.

The Nepo’s bowled well and even though some bowlers were hit well into the 30’s this week, (like Bomber was last week), at least they completed 7 or 8 overs, unlike Bomber whom only completed 2 overs for 39 last week.

The Nepo’s restricted BA to 176; a score close to what Bomber let one Barnes player hit last week. With a strong batting line up opened by Carl Hoar, whom remained not out with a perfect 62 runs and batting through the innings, the Nepos drifted home with 5 wickets and 2 overs spare. Much like Bomber let Barnes do last week, albeit with a casual 100% more runs on their board.

Every Nepo contributed with bat, ball, hands, or gloves and put the Nepos well back on the winner’s list after last week’s debacle under the reckless and careless Jihadist leadership of Bomber Dale, whom simply didn’t cop enough in the fall-out thereafter.

Redemption!

Captain Sparrow

PS: Did I mention Bomber’s performance against Barnes last week?

    Sun 22 Jun   1.30 pm 40 overs a side
    British Airways 176-8 (40 overs)
    Nepotists   177-5 (37.5 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Hoar 62 no Sparrow 3-36 (8 overs)
    Dattani 43 Khan 2-17 (6 overs)
    Thacker 31 Ellegard 1-24 (8 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (6/-/1)
    Ellegard 2, Schwim, Tambling, Pillay, Werren (1/-/1)
    NACA   Result  
    Sparrow   Win Scorecard

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Nepotists v Harrow Weald              Report by Brett Schwim              Sun, 29 Jun 2014

When I signed up for a chance to be Leader, Dictator and Emperor of the Mighty Nepotists, like everything else I do in life, I didn't quite think it through. So for the whole week leading up to this game I had sleepless nights thinking of the strategies, batting line up, fielding positions, who's going to bowl when and what, will it rain and so forth, the only thing that could sooth these tornado of thoughts going on in my head was knowing I couldn't possible do a Bomber Dale, losing the un-losable game. God only knows how he's sleeping these days, think he'll be having nightmares about that game for years to come.

Sunday Lunch time as our numbers began to swell at the HWCG, we looked set to take on Harrow Weald on what seemed like a very gloomy day for cricket, with rain forecast, the draw was ever present. While strolling out to the middle for the toss, I suggested to the Harrow Weald skipper why not vote on who wins the Toss. I explained simply we each state why we should win the toss and then we vote. After a short speech putting our points across we went to the ballots. Unbelievably we won 4373 votes to 1 (Mugabe must have had some doing in this result but hey, a win is a win.)

Having Won the Toss we Chose to Bat. On the front line were 'London's Favourite Cabbie' Carl Hoar and Viven 'Joe Cool' Pillay, both looking very solid, we set off to our predicted 500 run total. Unfortunately Carl popped up an easy catch to mid off for 22.

Coming in at number 3 was Shahna 'chuckerkhan' Khan, having the pressure of the whole world on his poor shoulders having scored 2 consecutive centuries against Harrow Weald, he was hoping for the Hat trick of Centuries, but that was not to be, as on the third ball of his innings he cut a wide popping ball straight to the hands of point for a Duck.

In at 4 was the worlds oldest kid Steve 'I could be Peter Pan' Werren who was looking in top nick, dodging all the bounces like the great Mohammed Ali. At Drinks we were 99 for 2.

Having told Viv to up the run rate I didn't quite expect him to tear out his brain and scoff it down like a starving Zimbabwean Street kid attacking a loaf of bread, and ultimately tried a big heave hoe off of middle stump, missing it by about 5 seconds and getting bowled middle stump for an impressive 47.

Next was Nilesh 'I'm always on time' Thacker who later informed us that Steve advised him to buckle down and see off the rest of the overs together because Steve thought we had just entered the great Nepotists collapse where we lose 5 or 6 quick wickets for about a dozen. Well it turned out that wasn't the case. By this stage Steve and Nilesh were ticking along rather nicely until Steve realised he was approaching his half century and got the mile stone jitters and took off wildly down the wicket trying to hurdle the stumps and ended up pulling his hamstring. Not wanting to spoil his average he Retired Hurt for a great knock of 44.

Ashish 'six or sticks' Nagre joined Nilesh in the middle and decided to do what he does best and try to hit the leather off the ball, but the next victim was Nilesh Thacker who got surprised with the extra bounce the pitch was putting out and edged it to the keeper for a great knock of 23. This brought Brett 'when we were Rhodesia' Schwim in who once again left his head at home and just went ape shit.

Ash trying to lose his third ball had a big swing at a straighter ball and missed it by an elephants trunk getting bowled for a swift 20. In next was Dennis 'the big man' McIntyre who didn't bother with a guard or checking field placing, but that didn't matter as he smashed his first ball for a massive 6, who then ended the innings on 11 Not Out, with Brett on 65 Not Out off 26 balls, bringing our total to 280 for 5 off 40 overs.

After stuffing our guts at tea we then realised we had to now go out and defend this target. Aditya 'the meerkat' Khanna started us off along with Luke 'Captain Jack' Sparrow who both tied the openers up, and getting the breakthrough with Sparrow in the sixth with some pinpoint bowling trapping the oppo skipper LBW. It was all downhill from there with a great fielding performance.

There was an excellent spell of bowling by Chucker Khan, bowling an Oppo around the back of his legs that turned a good two foot that Shane Warne would have been proud off. When Shahna took this wicket he must have thought he'd just scored the World Cup winning goal, or heard that a girl fancied him because he lost it, ripping off his shirt like Hulk Hogan, running and diving head first into the stumps at the other end. A few overs later while still ramped up after his wicket Chucker Khan manufactured a great runout, as the ball before slipped straight through his fingers leading the batsmen to think he was pretty shit in the field, (which we all think anyway), so when they hit the ball to Mr Khan again they thought it was an easy single, but unbelievably he actually picked the ball up like a swooping Fish Eagle and had it into the keepers hands while the batsmen was still halfway down the wicket for a great runout.

We continued to take regular wickets with Nilesh 'I wish I was an Aussie' Naidu taking 2 for 5 off 3 and eventually 'London's favourite cabbie' taking our last scalp in the 34th over with Harrow Weald only able to clock up 168.

And that is how you take the bunch of Muppets that Bomber Dale had and WIN!! I hope Bomber is taking notes.
Great job lads.

Brett

    Sun 29 Jun   1.30 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   280-5 (40 overs)
    Harrow Weald 168 (33.2 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Schwim 65 no Khan 3-43 (6 overs)
    Pillay 47 Naidu 2-5   (3 overs)
    Werren 44 rh Sparrow 1-14 (4 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (4/-/1)
    Schwim, Nagre, Hoar, Kahn (1/-/1)
    NACA   Result  
    Werren   Win Scorecard

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Nepotists v Royal Household          Report by Carl Hoar                   Sun, 06 Jul 2014

Nepotists CC (the greatest team the world had ever seen, says so in the song!) went to possibly the most beautiful setting for a days cricket, in the grounds of Windsor Castle to play the Royal Household last Sun. 45 Nepo players and wags watched on as skipper Stevie Werren lost the toss and was asked to field. (After the game Steve confessed that he was pleased at losing the toss as the ‘declaration’ game chapter in his schools MCC coaching book was destroyed in a bush fire in Newcastle in 1968.)

The Royal Household openers punished anything loose on a pitch that offered plenty of pace and bounce, until Brett Schwim had Sam Morris caught by Shahna Khan for 14. Luke Sparrow bowled a tidy spell only conceding 23 runs in 5 overs. Runs flowed and wickets tumbled as James Culley pulled off a sharp caught and bowled as he picked up 2 for 21 in 6. The umpire was left somewhat confused after Nilesh Naidu told him he was bowling "lift arm", he replied "is this some sort of new action son?" Nils only conceded 29 from 4 overs.

Shahna Khan spun the ball hard as he collected 1 for 22 but was left in a quandary about gifting Damian any more Club Championship points. This was until Dameo Brentford ('cos it reminds him of the Zambezi Tambling) whispered in Shahna’s ear that the bat is William Hills CEO. With that, the non drinking Indian (really dad) leggy pulls off catch of the summer as the host were reduced to 133 for 9. Like the Australians at Headingley 1981, Nepo’s toyed with beer match theories until the Royal Household’s Dan Dense 30 and Nick O’Neil 29 wagged the tail all the way to 185 all out, putting on 52 for the last wicket.

With good aggressive accurate pace from the hosts opening pair of Morris (3 for 23) and Allen turner (1 for 14 ), Carl Hoar and Nilesh Thacker dug in and were undefeated at tea. Having thought that they had both batted well the pair were shocked to see the skipper seething at the slow rate of scoring. In a closed dressing room Steve screamed "step it up!! or your Nepo contracts will be voided and you will get a free transfer to Vienna!! Remember what happened to Kinnon Brash!!!" A chill went down both men's spines!

Between overs Carl asked Nilesh if he thought Steve was serious about his threats. Nil's reply confirmed Carl's long held belief of Nil's Cadburys Caramel Bunny fixation, as he said and always says between overs "take it easy". Not fancying the schnitzel and froffy beer on offer in Vienna, Nil's 8 and Carl 17 hauled out going for glory! Paul (I love fielding on the longest side of the pitch) McCubbin made a start but was bowled for 9 playing a real champagne shot.

Ashish Nagre (Charlie to his mates in the fight game), steadied the ship cleverly using the pace to amass 28 in 25 balls. Damian Tambling was unluckily given out off his thigh pad down the leg side for 5, and Shahna Khan bagged his second blob in two weeks. (Chin up mate, be some buffet bowling somewhere soon.)

A Nepo revival seemed on as Brett Schwim struck an enormous six over long on, but the very next ball he decided to dispense with the use of a bat and see if he could punch a six. (Later Michelle told Nancy that he'd been watching Bruce Lee films all week after work.) Brett made 15 in 9 balls (we are awaiting a ruling from the slow scoring committee). After having a quick semaphore conversation with the oppo, Luke Sparrow got a great Yorker to send him back. James Culley resisted well until he too was yorked for 1.

Defeat seemed assured as pick of the bowlers Scot Ensom rattled through the visitors middle order with 6 for 32. Fine stroke play from the stylish ‘lift’ hander Nil's Naidu 29• and a typical terrier like 10 from Steve Werren put on 40 for the last wicket, leaving Nepo’s 35 short of victory .

Overall it was a fine days cricket in fabulous surroundings. Tea was good too. After long deliberations and a free vote (no stitch up this week, honest bomber!) James Culley won the NACA. This was for forgetting his Nepo shirt after receiving 50 emails regarding this - well deserved! Apparently James’ accurate bowling is attributed to a cricket net being laid at his base in Afghan. According to rumour he conned some American engineers into building it by saying it was as supper short runway for a real "hush hush" experimental harrier type Hercules transport the British military are developing ...

The Nepo’s were also pleased to see Legends Chris ‘Lec Lec’ Leckenby and Tim ‘Hannibal’ Hardy in attendance at the game... Always good to have legal representation to get the skipper bailed out just in case he goes walk about, as he did in 2005 with ‘Ralph the Wonder Dog’, before being confronted by the Windsor Castle security team.

Carl (Geeza!!)

    Sun 06 Jul   2.00 pm Time Game
    Royal Household 185 (30.3 overs)
    Nepotists   150 (41.2 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Naidu 29 no Tambling 4-23 (5 ov)
    Nagre 28 Culley 2-21 (6 overs)
    Hoar 17 Schwim 2-59 (6 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (7/-/-)
    Khan 2, Tambling 2, Hoar, McCubbin, Culley
    NACA   Result  
    Culley   Loss Scorecard

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Nepotists v Teddington                    Report by Carl Hoar                   Sun, 13 Jul 2014

Stand in Nepo skipper Carl Hoar was shocked to discover only 9 names available for their crunch match at Teddington. Fortunately when the sad realisation that the Socceroo’s hadn’t made the final of the World Cup, Sparrow and big Paul McCubbin put their names forward. Antipodean optimism, don't you just love it?

Deciding which team was going to bat first turned out to be a somewhat tortuous affair as both skippers argued which had the worst team. After being told Teddington were skittled for 62 the day before, Carl retorted with "we couldn’t defend 341 mate!!” In the end Nepos won the toss and decided to bat.

After a steady start Carl was trapped lbw for 10 soon followed by Nilesh Thacker for 13. A 90 run partnership between Damian Tambling 35 and Paul McCubbin 74 boosted the Nepo’s towards a decent total. Paul used his bottom hand ‘smeary' technique to perfection blasting the ball to all parts. Good on ye mate!

Sitting on a hat trick of ducks led Shahna Khan into studying videos of Boycott and Atherton’s batting style. After a careful start Shahna cut loose making 41. After sparrow lost his off stump going for none off his trade mark slog sweep, Dennis McIntyre joined Viv Pillay at the crease. Making a case for true all rounder status big Den smashed a whirlwind 28 not out. Viv remained 11 not out at the end. So the Nepo’s closed on 237 for 7 in 40 overs.

After tea, Nepotists were determined to defend a quite "gettable" total and finally lay to rest the ghosts of the notorious "Muppet" match. Teddington got off to a solid start until Dennis (1 for 38) broke through when the home side were on 50. Sanjay Thacker with 1 for 36 in 8 and Nilesh Naidu 1 for 24, really put the handbrake on the middle overs. After Shahna Khan went for 38 in 5, Sparrow was brought back returning 33 for 1 in 8. In tandem with a Damian Tambling 2 for 48 in 7, the Nepo’s ran out winners by 11 runs.

After a lengthy NACA deliberation Viv Pillay was duly presented with the lime green and magenta jacket for yawning repeatedly whilst batting in Nepo’s first innings and for having a bat called "Sidewinder".

The Nepos go marching on !!

Carl

    Sun 13  Jul   1.30 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   237-7 (40 overs)
    Teddington   226-6 (40 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    McCubbin 74 Tambling 2-48 (7 overs)
    Khan 41 Naidu 1-24 (5 overs)
    Tambling 35 Sparrow 1-33 (8 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (2/-/-)
    Khan, McIntyre
    NACA   Result  
    Pillay   Win Scorecard

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Nepotists v Edmonton                      Report by Ashish Nagre              Sun, 20 Jul 2014

I don't remember much of the weather or most of the match on Sunday. The loud and continuous Trinidadian 'soca' beats from the festival on the adjoining ground washed away all contents of my working memory replacing them with mind-numbing beats and Trini lyrics set to old Bollywood tunes.

To experience these gems
1) Please visit: www.youtube.com/watch?v=a9GWSXykBwc
2) Turn your speakers to max
3) Listen for 8 hours straight

As a consequence, what follows below may or may not have happened.

Sleep evaded me the night before as the demons of captaincy had started to haunt me. Did I want to be remembered as a Steve Werren or Brett Schwim (who btw, has a 100% win rate as captain), or did I want to be relegated and immortalised in the corner where Bomber Dale and his 685 runs stand alone (together)?

We entered the grounds and looked on at a magnificent field - flat run-up to the pitch, no weird slopes, normal boundary lengths and a reticent sun starting to peek out from behind the clouds. Oh yeah, what a day to captain the greatest wandering side in the world.

Fast forward to 30 min later. I met the oppo captain, who proceeded to walk me to a ground that was not the one we had been admiring. The main ground was reserved for an exhibition match. We will play on the 'second' ground. The main ground was for Trini celebrity cricketers, not you Sunday friendly mugs. Keep an eye on that space.

The oppo skipper looked a little checked out at the toss. Later events showed how prescient this was. Anyhow, we lost the toss, they decided to bat.

Their openers started well despite some fine and searching bowling from Sparrow and Dennis. Having encountered a pitch with bounce for the first time this season, Dennis channelled the same spirit that possessed Ishant at Lord's on the 5th day. Sparrow was his usual stingy self with a difficult line and perfect length.

The 1st wicket was a lucky breakthrough following some fine fielding from Dennis. There was a good 2nd wicket partnership before Sparrow begged, harangued and cajoled the umpire, following the longest appeal in the history of cricket that led to a spontaneous onset of asthma and a wicket for him. Siva Schweinsteiger in his debut game bowled a great initial spell with swing and pace that suggested he should stay with cricket rather than go back to football.

Nilesh Thacker repaid the faith the captain showed by taking out 2 wickets in quick succession, at which point we felt that this was going to be cakewalk. What proceeded to happen next was carnage, as their next bat carted us to all parts of the ground. There were moments in those 7 or 8 overs when I could feel Bomber trying to drag me to his corner of Nepo hell. The impressive Siva in his comeback spell got a bit of stick as the batsman took us for over 40 in 10 balls, before chancing his arm once too often and miscuing a catch to Sparrow off yours truly. But not before he got 76 of 20 odd deliveries.

Sparrow and Shahna cleaned up the rest of middle-order and tail clinically, as the rest of them folded quickly to set us a formidable 252 runs to get off our 40 overs.

The crazy bat did not help matters, as he sneered to Shahna 'I'M GONNA KNOCK YOU OUT' Khan, who had dropped him early in his innings, 'I think you've dropped the match, mate'.

Nepo’s started the chase well with Carl and Nilesh putting on a solid 72 at almost run a ball before Carl stepped out to one that he wasn't able to cover. Mainly just out of spite to Steve who confessed to telling one of the oppo how Carl always jumps out but never gets stumped.

Shahna and Nilesh then proceeded to take the game away from the oppo by putting on an unbroken 2nd wicket partnership of 182 runs, with Nilesh finishing on 121 not out and Shahna on 72 not out. Their stand leaving them only 8 runs short of the ‘Nepo World Record’ 2nd wicket partnership of 190 runs set in 2005 by Bruce Jackson and David Stocks. Shahna and Nilesh surely would have beaten this record with the form they were in, but unfortunately ran out of runs to chase. www.nepotists.co.uk/world_records.asp

Nepo’s won the game with 5 overs and 9 wickets to spare, batting game-fully through the rain and fading light, ending on 1-254 off 35 overs. But not before de-moralising the oppo captain, who when he came off during the rain break, refused to go back out and made no attempt to participate in the game when he did go out.

Meanwhile, Sparrow missed out on an opportunity to convert the Trini gathering into a walking ‘Bent Banani’ advert, Siva flashed a bit of skin to keep himself in the game, but got no love from the ladies. Though not so for Shyam Dattani, who was a honeypot for the large Trini matrons, much to the oppo skipper's chagrin as he threatened to take out a contract on Shyam for trying to take away his harem.

All in all a good day with everything you expect from a Nepo game. I dedicate our resounding team victory to Bomber Dale.

Ash

    Sun 20 Jul   1.30 pm 40 overs a side
    Edmonton   251 (40 overs)
    Nepotists   254-1 (35 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Thacker 121 no Sparrow 3-23 (8 overs)
    Khan 73 no Thacker 2-12 (2 overs)
    Hoar 21 Khan 2-40 (6 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (3/1/1)
    Sparrow 2, Thacker, Werren (-/1/-), McIntyre (-/-/1)
    NACA   Result  
    Subramaniar Win Scorecard

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______________________________________________________________________________

Nepotists v Highgate                       Report by Nilesh Naidu               Sun, 27 Jul 2014

The week began with Luke Sparrow’s friendly reminder to me that Bomber Dale was the last invitational skipper to lose. The pressure was on to keep this new tradition going and to heap more misery on Mr Dale.

Nepos arrived at the ground thinking we were at lords as it was impossible to tell the difference between the outfield and the pitch. The pitch was covered in grass and even had bunches of clover through the pitch. Looking at the pitch I was contemplating doing the unthinkable of bowling first, but after winning the toss I could see in the corner of my eye club captain Peter Pan making batting motions (well that’s what I thought Stevie was doing but I don’t think anyone knows what going on in his head). Hence I told the opposing captain to his great surprise and with the look that I must have escaped from a mental asylum that we will bat.

I gave the openers simple instruction to go out, have fun, and for Carl to only come back with 150 to his name. What transpired was some the best team batting performance I’ve seen in my 6 seasons with the Nepos. The Nepos forgot the colour of the wicket and just went for leather from start to finish.

The openers Nilesh Thacker and Carl Hoar set up the perfect platform with 113 runs in 16.4 overs for the first wicket. Thacker continued his great batting form and looked set for his 2nd consecutive hundred until Werren decided to raise the finger for LBW that even the bowler didn’t appeal for and was out for a stylish 41. Hoar continued the leather pasting, hitting 3 consecutive fours to bring up yet another hundred and then went completely mad and offered to retire to preserve his average. After my attempt to kill him for subordination, Hoar hit another 3 consecutive fours before holing out in the deep for a personal season high 114 runs.

The remaining Nepos all chipped in with quick solid contributions, with McCubbin 22, Khan 38, Pillay 51 not out, Stout 20, McIntyre 8 continuing his trend of hitting a six of his 1st ball and Ellegard 2 not out. Special mention to the unusual batting style of Viven Pillay of dead batting, yawning and hitting fours and sixes on his way to 51 not out from 32 balls. The Nepos finished with an impressive 335 for 6 of our 40 overs.

After a wonderful Thai tea the ever present Mr Khan reminded me of the Bomber Dale Barnes debacle. My only saving grace was that if Highgate did manage to overhaul our formidable total, this wouldn’t be worse than the Barnes loss where Mr Dale couldn’t defend 341.

In reality I had nothing to fear as a very disciplined bowling effort with regular wickets saw the Nepos win comfortably as Highgate was all out for 225 from 38.5 overs. All the bowlers did a fine job but special mentions goes to Ellegard (4-48 from 7.5 overs), Khan (2-20 from 6 overs) and McCubbin with his 1st ever bowl for the Nepos with career best figures of 2-23. Definitely McCubbin has been under bowled by the Nepos.

After the game there was always going to be one winner of the NACA, Mr Shahna Khan after numerous nominations.

Another great day for the Nepos and Bomber Dale remains the last invitational skipper to lose captaining the Nepos. There’s always next time Bomber.

Nilesh

    Sun 27 Jul   1.00 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   335-6 (40 overs)
    Highgate   225 (39.5 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Hoar 114 Ellegard 4-48 (7.5 overs)
    Pillay 51 Khan 2-20 (6 overs)
    Thacker 41 McCubbin 2-23 (4 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (6/-/-)
    Ellegard 2, Werren, Thacker, McCubbin, Pillay
    NACA   Result  
    Khan   Win Scorecard

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______________________________________________________________________________

Nepotists v Wembley                       Report by Steve Werren             Sun, 03 Aug 2014

When I woke up in the Emergency Room at Northwick Park Hospital on Sun morning the duty surgeon said “What the f*ck happened to you”, which I thought was very unprofessional from somebody I hadn’t met before. At first my mind was blank and I just couldn’t recall anything, but then the memories came flooding back as I viewed the cute nurse through the ‘Clothes Remover Goggles’ I bought on Ebay last week.

It all started on Sat night when I decided to go to bed early for a change as the clock ticked over to 3:10am. After my usual bed time snack of ‘Healthy Paws Puppy Treats’ washed down with a refreshing ‘Dogs Turd & Tonic’, I drifted off into slumbersville. Then it happened, my normal REM sleep had suddenly gone haywire and I found myself on some strange planet dressed in cricket whites – what was this all about? Then into my dream walks Bomber Dale!

“Ah... excuse me buddy” I said to Bomber, “this is my dream pal, so bugger off. Anyway what are you doing here?”, I asked quizzically, slightly bemused by the fact that Bomber had somehow developed a ‘Transformer’ like body with everyone around calling him Optimus Prime. As he walked along, his brain kept shedding tissue, falling by the wayside as his numbskull matter renewed at an incredible pace. How is this possible from somebody who holds the Guinness Book of Records for having the smallest brain in the known universe which can only barely be seen by a Level 1++ scientist with perfect 20:20 vision using 16 atomic microscopes lined up in series? How can a single celled organism multiply at such a rapid pace, or just maybe the Creationists have got it right. This dream was slowly turning into a Category 1 nightmare!

Luckily there was some Irish geeza walking along with an ‘Information’ placard physically implanted through the top of his head and coming directly out of his orse, making it very difficult to walk, especially as he was one of those upside down midget leprechauns – very rare outside of dreams. Luckily I was able to get his attention as everybody else was busy bowing and scraping to Bomber as he was moseying along towards what look like a massive stadium of some kind.

The Irish chap informed me they were there to cheer on their exalted noble leader (Bomber), who had a week off from his North Pole duties, and was skippering an ‘Intergalactic AfterWorld Eleven’ featuring famous dead cricketers from the past (obviously) against a combined ‘God/Allah/Buddha Eleven’ during the ceasefire, and were favourites to win. (Note: There were no famous dead cricketers from India in the team as they were too busy being reincarnated into goldfish and after 10 sec couldn’t remember who’s side they were on when they did briefly make it back.)

At this point I knew it was time to exit stage right and get the hell out of the this dream to avoid the ignominy of seeing Bomber Dale actually be successful at a sporting event apart from being the best male sportsman in his household - just - but 10 year old Greg is getting better.

But how do you get out of a dream of this magnitude? I tried everything at first; punching myself in the face, pouring hydrochloric acid on my balls, and jumping off the Eiffel Tower (which I introduced as a alternate setting in my dream). Nothing seemed to be working and it was getting close the first over. Then suddenly I remembered that my Uncle Draculii (he was a twin) was once the number one vampire on the ‘FBI’s Most Wanted Mythical Beings’ list, and had explained to me as a young werewolf how to euthanise him if he ever caught a ‘hot’ - maybe this was my way out.

So I went into the kitchen and grabbed the silver tipped meat cleaver I always kept in the drawer in case of an emergency, and plunged it straight into my willy – which bloody hurt, even in a dream – maybe I got it wrong! Realising that this was probably not the right technique, I gabbed my ‘How To Get Out Of A Bomber Dale Nightmare Without Sticking A Silver Tipped Kitchen Meat Clever Directly Into Your Willy’ user guide, and decided the best approach was to plunge it directly through the heart with my eyes closed. Unfortunately I lost all sense of direction (dreams are like that) and somehow managed to chop my head off – this was getting painful and not going well. Eventually after several goes I was able to kill myself and get out of this damn nightmare; which leaves me back where we started with this match report - in Northwick Park hospital.

After I finished telling the fascinated ‘ER’ staff at the hospital about my dream, I was moved to a private dumpster hidden round the back of the amputation clinic. It was a bad start to the day, but was only going to get worse as I realised in a few hours time I was intending to perpetrate one of the great lies in Nepotists history.

This was the situation leading into the game: Wembley wanted to play a ‘Time’ game, we didn’t. After last year's ‘Time’ game debacle against Wembley, I knew if I advertised such a match, I would get zero players willing to turn up. I guess I could have just not booked the fixture in the first place, but there we numerous reasons I wanted to play at Wembley. Mainly a noble cause to reduce global warming and not use up too much fuel in my gas guzzler car. So naturally a game 1 minute from my house and 1 minute from the Nepo’s favourite restaurant, the Karahi King, was a way to help the world. I assumed that everyone else would walk to the game.

So this was the plan, which was unbeknown the either the other Nepo’s or Wembley CC – only I knew. We would play a ‘Time’ game and a ‘40 over a side’ game at the same time! Critical to my plan was that we win the toss. If so, we would declare right on 40 overs. The Nepo players and Wembley would just think it was a normal tea break and leave the field – so far so good. When Wembley batted, whatever their score was after 40 overs, that’s what I would register as the result and the last 5-10 overs would mean nothing, except to Wembley. Everyone’s a winner.

There were of course ways this plan could go arse-up. Firstly the Nepo players may complain when they see the Wembley bowlers having more than the allowable 8 overs each as we normally play, or using the same ball in both innings. I could easily explain this away by telling the lads that because Wembley is on the boundary of two counties, Middlesex & Inverness, (after all Antipodeans have no idea what a county is anyway), and that we were playing hybrid rules where each bowler is allowed a maximum of 20 overs each, and only one ball is used for the whole season. First problem out the way.

Next problem could occur in the second innings when Wembley has batted up to 40 overs and keep on batting as they hadn’t yet passed our score. What would I say to the oppo skipper when our players start walking off the field singing the Nepo victory song? I guess I could just say that we thought they were ‘declaring”; apologise and then tell my guys that the bar staff weren’t at the ground yet, so we may as well keep playing till they arrive to fill in time.

On the other hand if Wembley bat first, we could note their score at the 40 overs mark and that is the target we would chase. Of course if we only get to face say 35 overs in the our batting innings we could just use a reverse ‘Duckworth/Lewis’ calculation. I didn’t say this would be easy!

Yes, lots to ponder as I set my mobile phone alarm in the 5 star dumpster to 12.45pm and tried a few nibblies which the kind hospital staff seemed to have left out for me wrapped in plastic bags, which tasted like chicken.

Anyway we lost the toss, bowled first, Wembley batted for 43 overs then declared on 7-239, we had 36 overs to get the runs. Carl Hoar (82) and Shahna Khan (124) put on a ‘Nepo World Record Partnership’ of 210 runs for the 2nd wicket beating Bruce Jackson (62) and David Stocks (147*) World Record of 190 runs set in 2005 against RNVR. We got the runs in 35 overs and won both the ‘40 over’ game and the ‘Time’ game, and no-one was any the wiser – until now! And that concludes my match report.

Steve

    Sun 03 Aug 1.30 pm Time Game
    Wembley   239-7 (43 overs)
    Nepotists   241-5 (34.5 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Khan 124 Thakker 2-30 (7 overs)
    Hoar 83 Tambling 1-14 (8 overs)
    Ellegard 18 no Nagre 1-31 (6 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (4-/-2)
    Thakker, Pillay, Khan, Nagre
    Cook (-/-/0.5), Ellegard (-/-/0.5), Tambling (-/-1)
    NACA   Result  
    Cook   Win Scorecard

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ISIS Tournament, Oxford                Report by Roly Monk & Bomber Dale   16/17 Aug 2014

TOUR DIARY         (Saturday Semi Final report by Andrew 'Roly' Monk)

I had been so honoured to have been given the lime green and magenta armband for the first leg of the prestigious ISIS Trophy weekend, but now the day had arrived the pre-match butterflies were building. It is never easy playing a semi-final as it is the worst possible game to lose: the cup is within touching distance, yet who remembers the teams that fail to take the last step and fall short of the final?

With these pressures on my shoulders, along with a magnificent Bent Banani creation, I re-read the statistical print out provided by the Nepo back room staff. The colour coded batting and bowling abilities assessed each players strengths in the game's key departments; shame the printer ink seemed to have run out when filling in Bomber Dale's areas of expertise. I would just have to go with my gut feeling, as any fat spinner should do.

On arrival at the magnificent ISIS facility I managed to draw the main arena for our semi final game which would be against the hosts, the Post Modernists. This team was packed full of experience. So experienced in fact that eight of them would be receiving their bus pass at their next birthday! However, three thin athletic looking chaps lurked at the periphery of their team huddle; they could be trouble.

'Heads' proved the correct call and I had no hesitation in deciding to bat on what looked a bouncy belter of a track. The pleasure boats were starting to arrive and the boat house balconies, that double up on ISIS weekend as corporate viewing facilities, started to fill with hoards of adoring young female fans. Always the case when the Nepos are in town.

It is twenty seven years since I first strapped on the pads for Lime Green and Magenta’s and, as captain and with no Jacko to accommodate, I decided to open alongside current hero, Carl. This proved an error.

The young athletic type opened the bowling with a certain rapidity that had Carl dodging and weaving as the bowlers length began to resemble that of Ishant Sharma at Lord's. With the score on 6 I managed to slash hard at one, got the planned edge for four but, unbelievably, Ox took a fine catch at slip.

After ten overs of Carl and academy product Paul McCubbin, the score was 32-1. Surely we were not going to be restricted to 128 off forty? We had all read of 300 plus scores in this new era of big heavy bats and ramp shots, when was the carnage going to begin?

The batters had similar thoughts and smoothly slipped through the gears taking eight an over off the next set of ten with McCubbin passing fifty as lunch approached before nicking off to the Ox to allow Shahna a nervous five minutes at the crease before the interval. 122-1 quickly became 122-2 as another edge did for young Shahna, Chris Ellegard raced out to join Hoar and the pre lunch run rate continued into the afternoon before Ellegard became the fourth victim of the safe PM hands behind the timbers. Fortunately Tim Hardy steadied things a little and batted beautifully despite Hoar's best efforts to run him out. This would bring a NACA nomination latter as Tim threatened to out play Carl before an unlucky bottom edge dribbled onto the stumps and he departed for 14 with the score approaching 200. The Thacker family were placed in the batting engine room to provide the power at the business end of the innings. This they did to superb effect whilst Carl moved to three figures with a sublime cover drive. Sanjay's lightening speed between the wickets gave way to Nilesh's languid power, hitting his first ball almost into the tennis courts for six. The innings closed on 255-6, fifteen more than I had asked for, but did the PM's have a batting superstar lurking in their ranks?

The answer to this was 'no'.

Ten overs were scheduled before tea and I asked the team to be sitting down to their sarnies and buns with three wickets taken and no more than 28 on the board. Ellegard and Lukey Sparrow provided a hostile start and each picked up a scalp, Chris with a vicious swinging Yorkers and Lukey via an outstanding catch at gulley by Sanjay, just as he did in the 2013 series. One over at each end before the break from Nilesh Naidu and that man Bomber Dale saw two more wickets tumble and the PM shoulders slump. The writing was not just on the wall, but it was writ large in a Banksy like masterpiece. Tea taken at 22-4.

The Nepos were going to finals day once more.

Fine post tea spells from LPK and Nilesh x 2 saw the PM's crumble into the dust for an Indian-esque 55 to secure a place in the 2014 ISIS Trophy final. Cricket was coming home.

The NACA vote seemed to have an air of inevitability about it! Surely Carl's chaotic calling to Tim would get it? Or Lukey's plane spotting mid over? Or Bomber for being Bomber? Or Shanan for nearly walking because he "edged it a little bit"!? But no, it was awarded to yours truly for, it seemed, taking Bomber out of the attack. How times have changed!

The traditional Mr Freeze and golf ball frivolities continued way past the end of the BBQ and excellent firkin of Brakespears. But Oxford does not shut at 11pm, in fact it seemed to still be rocking at 4am when I eventually stumbled into the Southern Cross. What a day; a semi- final negotiated, a NACA worn, a kebab consumed, a hangover just beginning!
Great days indeed.

Roly

    Sat 16 Aug   12.00 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   255-6 (40 overs)
    Post Modernists 55 (26.5 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Hoar 114 no Naidu 3-3   (3 overs)
    McCubbin 60 Thacker. N 2-1   (3 overs)
    Hardy 14 Dale 2-15 (5 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (4/1/-)
    Thakker, Khan, Sparrow, Thacker, Mcubbin (-/1-)
    NACA   Result  
    Monk   Win Scorecard


TOUR DIARY
         (Sunday Final report by Colin 'Bomber' Dale)

Glory, Glory Nepotists … Lime Green and Magenta Magicians* Claim ISIS title

·       LGMM CRICKET CLUB FORTUNES TURNED ON ITS HEAD
·       RECORD 8TH OXFORD TROPHY FOR THE LGMM
.       FOUR TITLES ON THE TROT TO THE MAGNIFICENT LGMM MACHINE
·       FORMER DISGRACED LGMM INVITATIONAL SKIPPER RETURNS IN TRIUMPH
.       GREATEST CRICKET TURN AROUND SINCE COOK LEAD HIS MUPPETS TO WIN AT OVAL ON SAME DAY
·       NACA AGAIN BROUGHT INTO DISREPUTE BY VOTE RIGGING
        _______________________________________________________________

        *LGMM cc (formerly known as the Lime Green and Magenta Muppets Cricket Club, also formerly known as Nepotists CC
        _______________________________________________________________

Cricket has never seen anything like it. From the depths of despair after an unlucky loss at Barnes Recreational Ground (soon to be turned into an Asda car park), the Mighty Lime Green and Magenta Magicians were on the top of the cricketing universe with a stunning 8th title win at Oxford.

Has the world of sport ever witnessed such a leadership performance as well – under incredibly immense pressure - as that by your lolli-pop chucking, former disgraced invitational skipper?? They say one has to go to depths of sporting tragedy to be able to reach its heights, and so it proved at the Queens College Ground in the ISIS Trophy Final.

After what seemed like a lifetime in exile in the cricketing wilderness at the North Pole, I had no choice but to answer our looney-tuned club captain’s call, to return to the Lime Green and Magenta and lead the LGMM CC in this most crucial and highly acclaimed match. And I had to do what every other fine leader has done in this pressure cooker situation and that was simply cheat … by copying the actions of the previous winning invitational skipper, Mr Roly Monk, in the ISIS semi-final the day before.

If his team could win by exactly 200 runs, then simple, I will do exactly the same I thought. All was going well, until unlike Roly’s winning call of heads, I lost the toss and we were sent in.

King Carlos, the newly crowned 2013 NOTY, flopped by only getting 70. Lucky I put in fellow opener, Kiwi Rupesh Patel on debut, to support Carl. Rupesh, who made the school boy error of going after a magnificently flighted lolli-pop the day previous while playing for the oppo in the semi, seemed a lot happier with the ball coming onto the bat and made a stylish 31 as the LGMM made a solid start.

Big Paul McCubbin, surely the finest keeper the LGMM has ever known, continued his fine weekend form with a solid 38. But we needed quick runs and quickly. And who better than that crazy little Indian Shahna “I never walk” Khan, still running strong on Carlsberg Pils, to provide the answer. This little bloke swings the bat with such amazing speed, you would swear he was facing a tennis ball. In fact, until only a few years ago, that is all he had ever faced (dinkum). So please, no-one let on that the red thing is actually pretty hard and hurts when it hits you. Anyway Shahna did not have to walk, being bowled on the very last ball of the innings for a terrific lightening 42. His bat naturally bounced a few times off the pitch as he trudged off. Perhaps he thought his weapon of mass destruction was a tennis ball…?

5-217 was always going to be a tough target for Nine Bar to chase (not for the LGMM boys the night before in Oxford, who lost count after 11 bars). And so it proved. It was a fine team effort by the 8 LGMM bowlers used (except for one forgettable over of lolli-pops). And especially by that man Shahna. Desperate for club championship points and with Carlsberg still flowing through his veins, he bowled 8 overs straight for bugger all runs, but also bugger all wickets, having gone wicketless in the semi. Perhaps next year he should drink stronger lager.

Anyway, eventually the 9 bar were rolled for 168 in the 38th and victory had never tasted so sweet.

The prestigious trophy presentation was sadly marred by yours truly having to again wear “red velvet” for some pathetic nomination about my inspirational team talks. Some players will never know the true meaning of great leadership.

So from the depths of Barnes, the might LGMM not only have another ISIS in the cabinet, they are just two wins away from breaking the world record winning streak.

Long live the mighty Lime Green and Magenta Magicians. By far the greatest team, the world has even seen!!

- Colin “Bomber” Dale,

LPK. 1999 Nepo of the Year. Leading wicket taker, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005 (joint).
Trophy-winning, invitational skipper.

    Sun 17 Aug 12.00 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   217-5 (40 overs)
    Nine Bar    (ISIS Trophy Final) 166 (34.5 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Hoar 70 Ellegard 2-6   (5 overs)
    Khan 42 Sparrow 2-17 (5.5 overs)
    McCubbin 38 Nagre 2-23 (4 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (6/1/2)
    Thacker 2, Mcubbin (2/-/0.5), Hoar, Ellegard, Khan (-/-/1)
    Nagre (-/-/0.5),     
    NACA   Result  
    Dale   Win Scorecard

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Nepotists v Shepperton                    Report by Carl Hoar                   Sun, 24 Aug 2014

After a successful tour of Oxford last week that saw bomber finally get that monkey off his back. (Far too cold for him at the North Pole apparently, not sure if he was made of brass, but he had developed a wonderful soprano voice.)

Nepo’s went to Shepperton on the hunt for more silverware, won the toss and batted first. Wickets tumbled early as Carl Hoar and Paul McCubbin were both dismissed without score. Nilesh Thacker was on course for another big score till he fell lbw for a well made 33. Sanjay Thakker mastered the tricky bounce by rolling his wrists in his stroke play making a valuable 41. Nilesh Naidu hauled out going for glory for 4, after Viv Pillay was unluckily run out from a direct hit for 0. The Nepo spirits were given a huge boast when the young Thacker brothers came to the crease. Both boys played some great shots and weren't overawed by playing men’s cricket in the slightest. Hinesh Patel ended up on 6 not out as the Nepo’s were dismissed for an under par score of 102.

After enjoying a fabulous tea Patel steamed in and made life very difficult with some quick in-swing bowling, taking 1 for 27 off 8. The ever versatile Nilesh Thacker took 1 for 20 from the other end but was shocked when he was asked for double match fees as he'd also opened the batting. After some hard core negotiating he agreed to pay a fee and a half on the condition he's known from now on as Jacques Kallis!! Viv (it's grim up north) Pillay beat the bat with his cheeky wobblers and was unlucky to end wicketless. Complaints from Nilesh Naidu that he was being brought on to bowl with only 22 runs required was backed up by a reassuringly bullish "I'll finish it mate". This turned out to be an empty promise as he went for 19 in his first and only over.

Shepperton romped home to win by 8 wickets.

If you hear reports of a black cab with caterpillar tracks and skis, that will be me at "base camp Bomber". PX25 ...over and out ...

Cabbie Carl

    Sun 24 Aug 1.00 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   102 (31.3 overs)
    Shepperton   103-2 (17 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Thakker 41 Thacker 1-20 (5 overs)
    Thacker 33 Patel 1-27 (8 overs)
    Naidu 4 Pillay 0-29 (3 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (1/-/-)
    Pillay      
    NACA   Result  
    Naidu   Loss Scorecard

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Nepotists v Edmonton                      Report by Carl Hoar                    Sun, 31 Aug 2014

After late night phone calls between Stevie Werren and (you'll win nothin’ with kids ) Allan Hanson, Steve decided to go with an experienced line up at Edmonton. After battling their way through the Spurs v Liverpool related traffic, Nepos were invited to bat on Edmonton's newly laid reserve pitch.

Hoar and Thacker went well until Carl got a grubber, sending him back for 15. After Damian was bowled for 2 going for a slog sweep, Nilesh Thacker held the innings together before he spooned up a ball that stopped on him, for 18. With the ball swinging wildly, Shyam was sent back first ball to an unplayable delivery, memories of Mike Gatting there mate! (Chelsea won yesterday, chin up eh?)
Debutant Birsha played solidly until he tried to force the pace and was bowled for 5.

The highlight, and with a glittering Nepo career in front of him (once we can agree personal terms on his contract), was Rupesh Patel. He mastered the dry crumbly pitch to top score with 25 as the visitors were rolled out for 95.

Feelings of disappointment dissipated as the boys tucked into a top tea. Onion bhaji, spring rolls and pizza!! Best feed of the year!

Dennis McIntyre steamed in and found the edge several times and was unlucky to end his spell wicketless. After going for 10 in his first over, Damian mastered the length required on this tricky pitch to return an impressive 2 for 20 in 7 overs. Viv ‘Pukka Pies’ Pillay made the pitch talk with his swingers.

Without the bowling skills of Bomber, stand in skipper Carl hoar tossed the ball to the next best thing, Nilesh Naidu. After taking a moderate ‘bit of tap’ and with the game slipping away, Nilesh produced what he calls his ‘Moon Ball’ to dismiss Edmonton's star bat, Ali. Apparently Nil’s learnt this new delivery on the Oxford tour from Bomber. It's a new generation of stealth deliveries that disguise themselves as the worst balls in history, and works for both Nil’s and the ‘Southern Cross Wanderer’!

Edmonton strolled to a 7 wicket victory as the sun set over the great Cambridge Road.

Nilesh Naidu bagged the NACA for the second week in a row for asking Sanjay to fix the vote so he would get it - Nacamandering!! Will never be tolerated mate!!!!

Fortunately for Shyam, he wasn't seen lowering the soft top on his Mercedes sports car with a remote before the NACA vote. Early nomination for being double flash next season fella!!

That's all for this season folks.

Carl ..aka Bessy of ‘Ice Station Zebra’ North Pole .......

    Sun 31 Aug 1.30 pm 40 overs a side
    Nepotists   95 (31.1 overs)
    Edmonton   97-3 (21.4 overs)
    Batting   Bowling  
    Patel, R 25 Tambling 2-20 (7 overs)
    Thacker 18 Naidu 1-18 (3 overs)
    Hoar 15 Thakker 0-6   (2 overs)
    Catches/Stumpings/Run Outs:  (-/-/-)
           
    NACA   Result  
    Naidu   Loss Scorecard

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