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Blog headlines

  • 14 Sep AVCC v Huddersfield YMCA
    22 May 2020

    The weather forecasters say that Autumn officially starts 01 September.

  • 8 Sep Urchfont v AVCC
    22 May 2020

    On a glorious sunny September day, we came to the end of our season against Wiltshire opponents

  • 1 Sep AVCC v Collingbourne
    22 May 2020

    With the sun still shining, and thoughts of winter still long away, AVCC entered the final stretch of the season at home against local rivals and friends, Collingbourne.

  • 20 Jun AVCC v Collingbourne
    22 May 2020

    Returning to our home ground of Garston Field, we were greeted with hard rain, chill winds, and a most un-summer-like evening to play cricket.

  • 11 Aug Wilton v AVCC
    22 May 2020

    A strong squad was assembled for this match which had a little edge to it stemming from a minor altercation from earlier in the season.

  • 25 Jul Bishops Canning v AVCC
    22 May 2020

    Not a huge amount to say as we lost fairly convincingly.

  • 16 Jun Shrewton v AVCC
    22 May 2020

    After a morning full of showers, rain and wind, our seniors graced the pitch in warm sunlight where our juniors had gleefully played in the morning (yes, Collingbourne and Avon Valley U-11s beat Steeple Langford at Shrewton in the morning).

  • 9 Jun AVCC v Wilcot
    22 May 2020

    The return match! The re-match of warring village titans and local rivals…with Wilcot visiting our home ground at Garston Fields.

  • 2 Jun Avebury v AVCC
    22 May 2020

    This last Sunday we entered June to typical British weather….cold winds, driving rain, grey skies…..

  • 30 May Collingbourne v AVCC
    22 May 2020

    We turned up with a scratch 11 hastily assembled and completed with 30 minutes notice at Collingbourne - in many ways our sister club as our youth are combined as a team

  • 26 May Chitterne v AVCC
    22 May 2020

    We made our annual pilgrimage to the good gentleman and good friends at Chitterne on a rainy, overcast Bank Holiday weekend

  • 15 May Wilcot v AVCC
    22 May 2020

    We turned up on a beautiful sunny evening on the well prepared track of Wilcot (thanks to their Peter Williams for doing so), to play a strong Wilcot team with several 1st teamers in the line up and the local vicar leading the batting and bowling.

  • 12 May AVCC v Marden
    12 May 2019

    Good win today against Marden to win back the Richard Cox Cup

  • 1 May FOSS v AVCC
    1 May 2019

    Our usual season curtain raiser…and played on the plateau of Amesbury, with the charms of the usual biting wind even though the evening was largely sunny and mild.

 
 
Friday, 22 May 2020

8 Sep Urchfont v AVCC

On a glorious sunny September day, we came to the end of our season against Wiltshire opponents

Yes, we have Huddersfield next Saturday….but this was the end of the season Wiltshire village cricket as we have come to know and love for 2019. It was a day of much history setting, legends and daring-do. You would have wished to be there. Indeed, we had our own crowd thanks to Michael Rae’s family and support from as far away as Harare. Not many Wiltshire Clubs can boast such enthusiastic and travelling support. So much happened, so new many landmarks made, you have to read to the very end…..get the kettle on folks….. We assembled all 11 AVCC players before the allotted time and before the home team had 3 in the hutch….I cannot ever remember that happening before. So, we did what all good village teams do…we had a team beer before the match (excluding Bruce) as it was felt it should be a celebration, and for the younger players, a more than adequate warm up to take on the mighty Urchfont. We had played them twice this season already in 20/20 formats and were drawing 1-1. This was the “Big One”. We welcomed Jeremy Richards back for the second time this season. Good to see him. We also welcomed Ed Olley for the first time, who was also clearly pleased to be playing for Avon Valley rather than Jo Wookey’s WANC whom we beat earlier in the season. Graham decided to bat, as the pitch was looking good…nice and green and hard, and on the right side of the square. Since Jeremy Richards had confessed (whilst drinking beer before the game) to Graham that is now more of a batsman (we heard that some years ago, and so he always opened the bowling for us), we sent Jeremy in to open with our incorrigible stalwart Tim Gent - Wiltshire’s version of Geoffrey Boycott. Tim had driven to the ground in a rather nice classic (antique) Jag, which he confessed was as old as he is….(60 years old). Nice smell of leather and automobile….and the Jag smelt nice too :) They started steadily, resolutely, and with great determination against a good opening attack led by the ominous sounding JPS and their captain Stewart Davies. Well the guys did us proud. 172 they put on without loss, and then Jeremy retired on 102 not out. His second century of the season for us……and I’m finally glad to say I was there to see it this time. Absolutely brilliant and chanceless…..15 well struck 4’s. 172 is our best ever opening partnership. Well done guys. Also historic that we have had centuries this season from Jeremy (twice - 1st time the same player has scored 2 tons in a season, and indeed in the only 2 games he has played…100% record), Michael Rae and Joe Wookey….4 in a season.. when we had only ever struck 3 in the previous 5 years. And yet our match totals have generally been lower than the last 2 years….it’s a funny old world…but amazing innings have been played this year. Michael Rae, straining at the leash, as we only 3.1 overs left, then went in. Blasted his first ball for a tremendous straight 4 off their opening bowler (returned to the fray); cue crowd erupting. Unfortunately, he was then caught by Tony Foxx on the boundary next ball (the 7th ball of the innings due to umpiring error). 176-1. David Battison went in next and set about their bowling with good intent before being bowled by JPS in the 29th over for 7 with the score 189-2. Ed Olley went in for his debut and scored a marvellous hard hit 4 with his first ball. Last over, Tim was out LBW (to a 9 year old) for a creditable, hard fought 45. Have to note that Shane, now umpire, had his finger up before the ball struck Tim, but it was a fun game, fun day……and we could then fine Tim for “50 avoidance”. BTW - Tim bought a jug of beer in the pub for such fine….a praiseworthy event and one some of our other players might take note of and action at some time (some jugs still required for centuries….you know who you are…and even a hat-trick…..Bean). So we finished with Stephen Flowers (1 n.o) and Ed Olley (4 n.o) in, unbeaten, and a score of 195-3. Extras scored high at 32. Good batting effort. 6.5 runs per over target set. Slightly less than last year and so we did not go into tea feeling we had this in the bag as we knew the Urchfont batting line up can be quite formidable, and we hadn’t got even half their team out in recent years……. We opened up the bowling with Ed Olley and Michael Rae as felt we needed early inroads. Wow…they both bowled very hot, and fast. Bruce Carter was having a torrid time behind the stumps…..keeping well but frequently taking his gloves off with throbbing fingers. Ed looked very lively with good, dangerous bounce, and Michael worried the other batsman continuously. Both bowlers kept the runs below target rate….just 14 off the first 5 overs. Lots of chances…we put down 4 as the batsmen wafted. The breakthrough came in the 10th over by Michael Rae courtesy of a stunning diving (at least falling) catch by Stephen Flowers. Great cricket. We bowled the opening pair through and they had great figures……Ed a strong 0-16 off 6 overs, Michael 1-17 and the score on 40-1 after 12 overs. The pressure was on. Their no 3 (Cottrell) came in with murderous intent and starting slugging the ball around with great speed and strength, and the field started to get deeper to contain the attack. The 2nd wicket went to David Battison caught brilliantly by Shane Williams in the deep, near “Cow Corner" off probably the worst full toss that David had bowled….but hey….they all count. With their supremo Tony Foxx partnering the marauding Cottrell, we were under pressure as the runs were beginning to flow. They were always behind the rate, but always looked to be able to accelerate and potentially overwhelm us. But the fielding was brilliant. Great chase downs by Ed Olley, Dave Battison and Stephen Flowers, and some great stops from Jeremy, Bruce and Greg Caswell all helped keep them below target so that at 20 overs they were on 91-2 - requiring 105 from 10 overs. Our bowling was tight too; Stephen Flowers had 4 tidy overs for 0-21 until his hamstring started tightening, Matt Dancey bowled tremendously with 0-22 off 3, and Jeremy came on and took 1-28 off 5 overs. The crucial moment came in the 24th over, when Cornell was caught well by Bruce Carter behind the stumps off Jeremy’s in-swinger. He looked the batsman who could take it away from us. 121-3, needing 75 off 6.1 overs (37 balls). Graham pushed the field deep as we were content to let them have singles, but we knew they could not blow us away from this point even though their batsmen looked very solid and in control. Well in control until Shane Williams bowled in the 29th over and bowled Foxx with the last ball of his over; cue for the wildest, most excited, happy celebration witnessed by Avon Valley as Shane ran and jumped around the pitch in sheer joy, before hugging Foxx and helping him from the wicket. Pure delight. Priceless. Unmissable. 150-4. 1 over to go, 46 required….. Urchfont finished on 156-4 courtesy of 6 extras in the last over, but by then, it was all over. A fine win by Avon Valley by 40 runs. This was well celebrated by the team down at The Lamb afterwards, and with the accompaniment of quiche and chips which were wolfed down hungrily. A great end of season Wiltshire Village cricket match (not forgetting playing Yorkshire Wanderers/Terriers next week). And for those of you who had the patience of reading thus far, we created more history too. This is the first season in our 6 years history where we have not lost a Sunday game. 10 wins, 1 abandoned, and a few called off. Absolutely marvellous. That is a considerable achievement. And indeed, we also won the Richard Cox Trophy vs Marden. Overall, a great season and good to see so many players contribute when needed. Our history makers on the day were Greg Caswell (always viewed as Greg Chappell by me), Ed Olley, Tim Gent, Bruce Carter (wkt), Jeremy Richards, Michael Rae, Matt Dancey, Dave Battison, Shane Williams, Stephen Flowers and Graham Newland (captain). Graham would not tell the team before the match that history was in the offing and so was mightily relieved and delighted when all came through and right. Looking forward to next Summer already. I’ll have my bus pass by then and so no stopping me :)