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MATCH REPORTS 2012 (Click on the match to go directly to the report)

Nepotists v Highgate   (Report by Steve "Wezza" Werren)   29 Apr 2012

Nepotists v Harrow St. Mary's   (Report by Steve "Wezza" Werren)   06 May 2012

ISIS Tournament, Oxford   (Report by Steve "Wezza" Werren)   19 Aug 2012

Nepotists v Hillingdon Manor   (Report by Steve "Wezza" Werren)   16 Sep 2012
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Nepotists v Highgate   (Report by Steve "Wezza" Werren)   29 Apr 2012

Sunday's first match of the season against Highgate was unfortunately washed out. I was really quite surprised when their skipper told me why. I naturally thought it was because of a waterlogged pitch, so you can imagine my surprise when he informed me it was actually because of a re-enactment of the Titanic sinking 100 years ago that was taking place in Southampton, and went horribly wrong.

Apparently because of the copious amount of rain that has fallen in the past week, it had caused the refloated Titanic to veer off course (again) and follow the natural drainage of the land all the way up the hill to Highgate - bizarre! Unfortunately it found it's way into Highgate Woods through the trees and became lodged on the pitch. This has meant the cancellation of all matches at the ground for the next two month's while they wait on the huskies from the Alaskan 'Iditarod' to arrive to pull the damn thing out. The delay is caused by the dogs still being on their end of season tour to Scott's Antarctic Hut Resort & Spa - lucky mongrels. Expect a few hangovers.

The good news however is that it doesn't affect the Nepo's next game on Sunday against one of the biggest Atheist clubs in the UK, Harrow St Mary's. Preference for selection this week has been given to the players who missed out on the game against Highgate, and anyone who has twin sister's that are too poor to buy cloths and are prepared to umpire for both innings - which currently stands at 5 and 0 respectively - so there are spots to be filled.

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Nepotists v Harrow St. Mary's   (Report by Steve "Wezza" Werren)   06 May 2012

Under glorious dark grey skies and a balmy 8C, the Nepotists finally got onto the pitch, but unfortunately went down in a thrilling finish to Harrow St. Mary's in their first game of the season. With the skipper in full skiing attire, appropriate to the conditions, his efforts to convince the oppo to play a Zero/0 match fell on deaf ears. It was probably a match the Nepo's should have won, but because Harrow scored more runs then the Nepo's, they won, which is hardly fair. A new system will be looked at for future matches where the Nepo's win all games.

Star of the Nepo's batting and bowling innings was South Australian debutant Rob 'Bender' Jones, who stared in both innings, scoring 70 quick fire runs off 43 balls with the bat, and also taking 2-20 off 7 overs with the ball. Of course due to his lack of experience with Nepo tradition, Jonesy didn't realise that un-Nepotists like performances like that usually end up with you wearing a lovely pick and green jacket with matching hat in the bar after the game; which is exactly what happened, much to the delight of Nilesh Naidu who was a shoe-in for the jacket after being nominated by everybody in the team, and who were coming back for second nominations before it had to be closed.

Carl Hoar held the Nepo innings together with a necessary slow fire 64 off 100 balls, to get his season off to good start before he was given out in a most unusual manner. The oppo umpire had recalled Carl 'stiffing' him with a cab fare in the West End over the winter, and it was payback time. So out of the blue in the 36th over, and obviously not wanting to give Carl the pleasure of batting through the entire innings, the umpire sensationally gave Carl out 'handled the ball' after he had stuck his hand down his pants to adjust his 'box' in between overs. A protest was immediately lodged, but upon checking the MCC rule book, there was no definitive description of what constitutes a 'ball', and if in fact Carl had actually manipulated said ball that would result in an advantage being gained. It was a debatable point, but Carl had to 'cop it sweet' and leave the pitch. A protest has been lodged with the ICC, who have said they will come and do a personal inspection of Carl's anatomy, to see if regulation sizes have been adhered to.

As we all know the Nepo's have a strong tradition of making sure they drop at least 6 catches per match, and this game didn't disappoint, with about that many going down in the first over alone; including their star batsmen, who cracked 82 runs but was dropped on minus 5 and minus 2, and ended up being the difference between winning and losing. However it was all good fun in the field, with the oppo umpires in stitches all afternoon listening to the Nepo on-field banter for 40 odd overs, and resulted in them buying us a couple of jugs after the game for keeping them entertained all day.
(Scorecard)

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ISIS Tournament, Oxford   (Report by Steve "Wezza" Werren)   19 Aug 2012

TOUR DIARY
Nepotists CC retained the ISIS Trophy over the weekend despite the gruelling conditions of sun, beer, live music and no sleep. Memories are sketchy, but apparently we won the Semi Final on Saturday, which probably explains why we were in the Final on Sunday. This makes it the 5th win in the 10 years that the competition has been running, and the 4th in the past 5 years; which must mean we were crap in the first 5 years. The Nepo's politely requested of the organisers that 5 wins should be enough for the Nepo's to permanently keep the trophy. This was refused, so we accepted the fact that we really only own half of the trophy, so in the spirit of pro-rata-ism, a hack saw was quickly found and the trophy was duly sawn down the middle and shall remain at Nepo headquarters till the cops turn up.

Saturday's Semi was a nail biting affair with the game going down to the last over. With Nevill Holt requiring 8 runs an over off the last 10 overs and plenty of wickets in hand, it was always going to be a tight finish, but the Nepo's were able to keep their heads, forcing the oppo to crack 16 runs off the last over, which fortunately never happened, so the Nepo's make the Final with 12 runs to spare. Obvious Man of the Match was Ashish Nagre with a tremendous 65 runs backed up by 3 wickets in the second innings.

I'd write something about Sat night, but there is a complete blackout on my part of events that occurred, which I'm told has something to with my mate Mr Beam I believe.

Sunday morning dawned and with temperatures in the late 20's like the previous day, the battle between the heat and Paracetamol began. Losing the toss, the Nepo's elected to let the oppo chose what they would like to do - 'bat' was their reply - a loud 'f*ck' was the reply from all the Nepo's, which contributed even more to their nightclub hangovers. But this may have been the answer, with the Nepo pacemen going berserk and actually knocking the stumps over 4 times. Star of the bowling innings was undoubtedly that man Lukey Sparrow who completely destroyed the top order of the Nine Bar batsmen, picking up 3 wickets along the way and only conceding a miserly 13 runs - top shelf bowling. Brett Schwim, our Zimbabwean import, took a different approach, he just decided to destroy the batsmen by scaring the living daylights out of them with 90 mile an hour balls about 6 foot above ankle height. Top contributions by Kunal 'KFC' Vora and Nilesh Naidu picking up 2 wickets each, made sure that the Nepo's had one hand on the trophy by Lunch.

After a solid lunch of hot water soup and salt & pepper sandwiches (there is a recession on), the Nepo's went out the knock off the 116 runs required for victory. Unfortunately most of the team missed the winning runs being scored as they were all passed out asleep in front of the pavilion through most of the innings. But I can report, what they missed was one of the great Nepo innings that had the 2016 Great Britain rowers practicing on the nearby ISIS river ducking for cover. We now know that Brett Schwim, our powerhouse opening bowler is also a powerhouse crazy MaFa with the bat.

Coming in at number 3 with the game cruising along to it's obvious conclusion, suddenly Brett had a brain spasm and went absolutely bonkers with the bat, cracking 49 runs not out off only 15 balls and ending the game in about 20 min after his arrival at the crease. Hitting five 6's and three 4's, it was one of the most entertaining innings seen for quite a while by a Nepotists, and certainly made the day for the local fisherman nearby as every second ball flying over the boundary hit the river with such force, it resulted in a pile of dead fish floating to the top; which saved the fish freaks loads of dosh in bait and gave them more time to go home and beat up their wives.

Almost in the background, Carl Hoar (34no) and Nilesh Thacker (32) set the innings up for the Zany Zimbo's assault later on; and once again the Nepo's are champions of the world.

Scorecard (Semi Final)
Scorecard (Final)
Photos

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Nepotists v Hillingdon Manor   (Report by Steve "Wezza" Werren)   16 Sep 2012

HIGH DRAMA ON THE LAST DAY OF THE SEASON
The Nepotists finished off their season on Sunday with a comfortable win against Hillingdon Manor on a pleasant afternoon in West London. Batting first the Nepo's clocked up their third highest score of the season of 248, this time winning. Stars with the bat were Nilesh Thacker (Ind) continuing his late season form with a stylish 76 not out, backed up by Mick Stout (Eng) with a hard hitting 42 off only 18 balls, and Paul McCubbin (Aus) continuing his consistent year with the bat putting together a composed 35. The Nepo's then bowled out Hillingdon Manor for 196 to cap off a 10-7 win-loss ratio for the year, which was quite an achievement considering the strength of the opposition faced.

But the real interest in the match was to see who would end up as 2012 Club Champion. With only a few points separating Carl Hoar (Eng) and Nilesh Naidu (Nz) going into the game, it was going to come down to wire. Carl had elected not to play this game in lieu of a family holiday - what's that all about in cricket season? It was generally recognised that Nilesh had to pick up at least 4 wickets bowling his left arm spin, or score a lot of runs. Well the runs didn't come, so he needed to rely on his bowling to get over the line.

I will digress slightly here and give you the back story to this heart rendering tale. Nilesh was born in the Auckland slums 30 years ago. He had no choice on his birth place as the whole country is basically a slum, so resigned himself to a life of bad weather, earthquakes, big brother syndromes of their cocky neighbour Australia, and following losing sports teams. (Rugby doesn't count anymore as it's now a Pacific Islands team.) When he was born, his father Howdbeingdatone Naidu, being a mad cricket fanatic had dedicated his new sons birth to a life of poverty (cultural thing) and one day becoming Nepotists CC Club Champion. So from an early age Nilesh's future was set in stone so as to avoid an arranged marriage to some bush pig from Southern India.

Nilesh did all the normal things that Kiwi's do (ie) purchase a Zephyr and follow the All Blacks; be able to recite 'Once Were Warriors' word for word and pretend that 'Jake the Muss' is a real person; hang out at Onehunga Pub in suburban Auckland to learn how to speak proper 'Inzidish' and how to break a guitar over someone's head like his cousie's the Maoris' do, followed by a quickly spoken 'sorry bro' in a high voice; learn the art of tricking a sheep into getting their head stuck in a barbed wire fence and then shag the damn thing without feeling any remorse for the spouse of the sheep (gender irrelevant).

The only real Kiwi thing that Nilesh struggled to master was being able to do a half decent Hake. (Those on the Nepo night out in Piccadilly Circus last week will lay testament to that!). It was conceded that people of Indian decent (via Fiji), being a very sedate race, just didn't have the feel for this rare form of epilepsy. So after his training in the Land of the Long White Cloud, Nilesh set up base in London and managed to force his way into the Nepotists first eleven 4 years ago, and has been a first choice regular in the team whenever less then eleven players were available.

Anyway back to the game. Nilesh came on the 22nd over to commence his allotted 8 overs. You could feel the tension in the air which could be cut with a 4 poster bed (probably not a good analogy). Picking up a wicket in his second and third overs meant that Nilesh was on target to reach his dream, but went wicket less for the next four overs. This meant that two wickets were required in his last over - a lot of pressure - especially with the thought of marrying some ugly woman always in the back of his mind. Four balls bowled, still no wicket, then bang a wicket on his second last ball, the ball had bizarrely hit the bat then bounced onto the batsmen foot, then hit the wicket without dislodging the bails and flew out to 'Long On' to be caught just in front of the sight screen - remarkable!

So three wickets now in the book, one ball left, one wicket required to be Club Champion - surely not! Was this going to be the crowning glory of a lifetime's work. Twice stuttering on his run up and having to start again, were nerves going to get the better of the young Kiwi? The ball left his hand and landed a few inches outside of leg stump on a full length, the batsman shuffled forward slightly out of his crease, preparing for a regulation leg glance. But the ball missed the bat and headed towards the wicketkeeper down the leg side. Was this the big moment? Time suddenly stopped! In the fraction of a second that the ball took to reach the skipper behind the stumps, so many thoughts went through my head realising that I held the fate of either Carl or Nilesh in my hands.

On the one hand their was Carl, long time Nepo, vice captain, a fellow Pom since my new UK passport arrived this week, but more importantly my free late night lift home in his black cab from London's West End after a big night out. Then there was Nilesh, regular player for four season's, not vice captain, maybe he'll give me poker tips for the Nepo end of season card night this Sat, but then again unfortunately he's still a Kiwi. What do I do? Maybe I could just not include Carl in this email and hopefully he won't check the website; besides he's already won the award twice. Not being able to decide, I did the democratic thing and threw myself up into the air - heads Nilesh, toes Carl. I came down on my head, wiped off the blood and promptly whipped off the bails - out!

So I can now report that Nilesh Naidu from that small Auckland suburb of Kickapaki is the 2012 Nepotists Club Champion; that last wicket being just enough to put him over the line. So congratulations to Nilesh, it certainly was a thrilling way to top off the season. (Click here to see the final 'Club Champion' table. The website is also now up to date. Could the players please check their individual stats for mistakes.)

A quick note. I have also done the Club Champions retrospectively going back to 2000 as presented at this years AGM in April. I will email the winners to everyone else on the mailing list in the next week or two.

And so ends another top season. Thanks to all the players for their great support, the headaches, the practical jokes (oh, that was me), the after match festivities (really good this year), the team night outs, Tour attendance, the pyjama parties, and finally and most importantly, keeping the spirit of the original Nepotists back in 1980 alive and kicking. Nepotists CC lives on to fight another day. See you all next year.

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