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June 2005

June 28, 2005

Cobbler Swings Chigwell into Contention (North Park 26/6/2005)

It was a race against time: would I work out how to fasten the seatbelt in Nick's "classic" style Rover 3500 before we arrived at Woodford Wells? No. In the end I just held the infuriatingly counter intuitive pieces of steel together and hoped that my grip would prove sufficient to prevent me flying through the windscreen in the event of a head on collision. Nick and I arrived at a half-filled Wells car park and soon discovered that, with North Park vs. Chigwell the only game scheduled at the Wells that day, we had been promoted from the "Postage Stamp" to the recently re-laid main pitch. This made the subsequent winning of the toss less important, but made the decision of whether to bat or field more difficult. I had, and still have, no idea how many runs represent a good declaration on the batsmen's blank cheque that is the postage stamp. Their skipper told me that in Wells cricket week Woodford Wells had scored 378 runs their allotted 45 overs, and North Park in response had ended 3 runs short of victory! The new square in the main arena was a different kettle of fish, and I took the safe option of bowling first to get a look at how it would perform. Word was that it was keeping low, and word was correct! Dom and Rob bowled their customary tidy spells, highlighted by Dom dismissing their opener. There was a chance early on to run out the North Park No.3, but the skipper missed the stumps from 5 yards. This was to prove expensive, as was the earlier dropped catch at backward square by Brad, although to give him his due he did well to get under it. Both batsmen went on to record scores in the 70s, the remaining opener taking a particular liking to the Orange pies served up by the skipper. Eventually Ritchie and Nick restored order, taking 9 wickets between them. Ritchie in particular bowled magnificently, probably as well as I have ever seen him, and finished with 5 wickets - including both half-centurions - in addition to only going for around 3 runs per over. The last 8 wickets fell for about 50 runs and North Park posted a total of 209. Special mention should, and indeed does, go to Tim Mitzman for his excellent keeping on a very difficult pitch. Tim Mitzman's batting however does not warrant special mention on this occasion, as our classiest wielder of the willow found himself taking an early shower after playing round a straight one for 4 runs. Rob and I dug in for a while, trying to remember our mantra for the innings; "Get forward to anything straight, it's keeping low". Still, after playing with an almost unprecedentedly straight bat for 10 overs or so, my other mantra of; "swish across the line; paddle it behind square on the leg side" won the internal battle and I was bowled by one that kept horribly low. Dom replaced me and all too soon holed out to mid-wicket from a top edged pull. Phil accumulated 5 runs before departing (I missed how he was out, being in the shower at the time), and the last hour arrived with Olly and Rob A needing 7 or more an over for a Chigwell win. Some lusty blows were struck, mostly by Olly, but once he had gone it became increasingly unlikely we would pull it off. Rob perished going for glory after a grafting 77, Brad tried to keep the dream alive, but perished for not very many, and in the end Nick and Owen steered the good ship Chigwell safely into draw harbour. Not one of the more glorious finishes, but the day will be remembered for the superb recovery in our fielding innings, led by Cobbler and Plant, and for a fine knock by Rallum, bettered only by his post match performance, following buying his jug of Stella with buying a massive round in the Nightingale. Marvellous.

June 20, 2005

Hairy Love Monster the Hero as Chigwell Pull Off Yet Another Dramatic and Magnificent Victory! (South Woodford 19/6/2005)

Brad Davis, Captain of Vice, reports from the top of the world:

I arrived at the ground which was bathed in glorious sunshine to contemplate whether I could risk batting first with what looked like a rather weaker team than usual with 11 players unavailable! I had been advised by Rallum, Nick and the president that I should not take the risk and had to bowl first even in these conditions for the sake of the match although the rest of my team did not seem to agree! However, their skipper successfully called tails and inevitably chose to bat much to the delight and excitement of some of his teammates.

I opened the bowling with Dom and Rallum but there was no early breakthrough as two difficult chances went begging. Dom as always bowled fast and with a lot of heart and was once again unfortunate to only take 1 wicket when his spell deserved 3 or 4. Rallum as ever bowled a tight and accurate spell, which was extremely long especially in the conditions, but my options were limited and he did finish with 2 wickets.

I replaced Dom with Nick but things did not go according to plan as by now their overseas paid player was at the crease and hit him for 4 huge sixes. Nick was not happy but there was little I could do to protect him and I asked him to persevere, he was finally rewarded with a wicket. I kept Rob toiling at the other end whilst I considered my options. I contemplated both Owen and Olly before deciding to try my own luck. It proved to be a good decision for me as I firstly managed to get the only LBW of the day before grabbing 3 clean bowled including the danger man as they increased the tempo and looked to reach 250 before the close. I replaced Nick with Mitzy and Dom volunteered to go behind the timbers. Mitzy also received the treatment and was replaced by Rob for what proved to be the penultimate over. I thought Dom kept really well only conceding one bye. The Chigwell fielding was excellent and we kept on going right until the end for almost 3 hours never wilting in the searing heat. There were also 2 catches for Owen, one of them at short mid on! They finished on 231 for 8, which we could achieve, but it required runs from the top six and a solid start.

With this in mind I decided to open with Mitzy and Nick. The start could not have been better as they built an opening partnership of just over 100 in very good time. Nick batted really well and very positively scoring 39 at a run a ball before being bowled going for a big shot. Mitzy hung around and played some glorious shots to put us in a strong position to hit 75 off 60 odd balls before going to a catch. Last week's hero Dom had been promoted to number 3 and was looking good for his 15 before playing the same shot as Mitzy and perishing in the same fashion. Rob had been dropped down to 4 as he was batting with a fractured hand. He showed tremendous grit and bravery whilst in great pain as he nudged and nurdled the ball around like Javed Miandad for 21. Rob did manage to hit two 4's that were pure timing, and avoided a third attack on the pavilion window and disturbing the dancing teenagers who were oblivious to the building tension outside.

When Rob was out Olly came to the wicket and when Tim H followed cheaply I came out to join Olly with 30 required at about 5 or 6 an over with 8 overs left. We took the score to within 8 or 9 of victory when Olly was caught at slip for a cameo, quick fire 18, but we had a big over before his dismissal with Olly hitting his 2nd and 3rd boundaries before his demise, runs that were to prove crucial in the final analysis as we were almost home.

With Olly gone we now needed 7 runs from 11 balls but we had some unknown batsmen to come and time was running out. I was surprised and relieved to see Owen coming to join me, who had volunteered to bat at number 11 to allow his 2 friends to come in before him. However, as the most experienced batsman left Owen had taken an executive decision to come in next and what a good one it was to prove to be.

We reached the last over needing 3 to win and with me on strike. We ran a sharp single off the 1st ball leaving 2 runs required off 5. Owen failed to connect with the next one but then played a glorious leg glance off his glove as we scampered home for 2 and a memorable victory!

Special thanks go to Reobyn and Dave for turning out at such short notice and fielding really well in the true Chigwell spirit, I hope we will see you both again, also to Steve Drabwell who on his first outing this season managed to get in the way of anything that came anywhere near him and almost held on to what would have been a top catch early on.

Also, to our twelfth man in the form of the guys and groupie girls who roared Owen and myself to victory from the boundary edge. In true AC DC style for those about to win we salute you!

It was an absolute pleasure to skipper you guys today for this great club and I can't wait for the next opportunity, I thank every one of you for making it a memorable day.

May strength and honour go with you!

June 17, 2005


The Dominator Gives the Chigwell Version of the East Brighton Park Massacre: T'was a grey and overcast afternoon upon arrival at East Brighton Park but the usual annoying cross wind funneled up from the South coast was, I'm happy to report, not evident. Also not evident were the Beamers team, however after a few minutes mulling around in the spartan changing rooms a shouldered cricket bag came into view so I made my way outside to introduce myself as Chigwell skipper for the day.

'Pleased to meet you, I'm Frank' said the Beamer. 'shall we go and choose a wicket for todays game' he continued. Slightly taken aback that we had a CHOICE of tracks I agreed and followed Frank out to the middle. The wickets were a carbon copy of each other except one was approximately half a nautical mile form the other so I plumped for the one positioned nearest the pavillion to allow the predicted large crowd the best vantage point to watch the days play. Niall, the Beamers skipper, arrived as Frank and I were walking off the pitch and as time was pressing on a coin was hastily tossed landing on my call of heads so I chose to insert the Beamers.

I opened the bowling with the tried and tested new ball pairing of Rob Allum and myself. The wicket was true to form of previous years providing a lot of assistance to the bowlers early on and it didn't take long for Rob to be rewarded with the first wicket. The next three wickets followed in suitably quick fashion and after 12 overs the Beamers looked unsteady on 30 for 4. I decided to take myself out of the attack and give the still relatively shiny & new ball to Richie to see if he could work his swing magic. Richie looked relatively happy at the prospect of bowling. I say relatively as Richie looked a little bemused to actually be on a cricket pitch in the first place with him still 3/4 pissed from the previous nights session. I think the other 1/4 of his brain was still waiting for a single malt at The Hilton Metropole bar. Neverthless he swerved in with gay abandon scorching the turf as he went with toxic vapour trails. After a slightly untidy start he overcame his double vision and took a couple of wickets in a rewarding spell. At the other end I continued with Rob Allum despite his claims of having a slight pull in one of his hamstrings, a neat trick I asssumed to be taken off bowling duties in the hope of attaining a lofty position in the batting order. The Beamers run rate continued to be restrained by tidy Chigs bowling and exceptional Chigs fielding, particularly from Oli Diggins who's 'body on the line' approach set a very high standard for the rest of us to match. Rob and Richie were eventually replaced in the attack by Nick and Brad with about 20 overs reamaining before tea. I felt sure this move would tempt the Beamers into more expansive stroke play and perhaps result in the fall of a few more wickets. The wickets did indeed fall; two for Nick and one for Brad (Brad unlucky not to bag a second after Mitzy's fresh air stumping attempt) and after a brief return spell for myself the Beamers finished their innings on 140-8. All in all a very disciplined bowling and fiedling performance. Well done Chigs!

So after a fine tea the target was set at 141 for victory. For those unfamiliar with East Brighton Park this may seem somewhat of a stroll in the pre-verbial park but the ever present WISDOM of Rob Allum assured me there was no such thing on this particular ground. Having taken his advice firmly onboard I stuck with the batting order I had in mind and sent Mitzy and Ross off to the middle to start our challenge. The wicket continued to provide a mixed bag of tricks and both Chigs openers had to be on their game to counter an early onslaught from the Beamers opening attack of Musset and Jeremy. There were a few play and miss shots from the pair but nothing more than a couple of half chances were offered up to the fielders. After a very controlled and applied spell of getting themselves in both Mitzy and Ross started to increase the scoring rate and over by over we approached the target. Mitzy was the first to tuck into his bag of tricks pulling and driving the bowling attack with ease. It was his his trademark pull shot that was his eventual undoing as he got onto one a bit qucikly and top edged a chance taken at slip. Neverthless he contributed to the cause magnificently with 62. Tim Hall replaced him at the crease and the inevitable waltz to victory was put on ice for a few overs as maiden followed nail biting maiden. Ross deservedly hit the winning runs and finished with an unbeaten 57, an excellent and hard earned knock which for me summed up the Chigs team performance. Well done fellas!

After the game, there was the constitutional visit to The Battle of Trafalgar where many a jug was sunk and points of view on the game were swapped. Here's to next year fixture and hopefully another victory!

CHAVWELL HELD..... WG 157-5 Chigs 154-6 Match drawn (30/5/05)

Skipper for the day Ritchie Charlton reports: Awoke to reasonable weather in Brighton but the prospect of a non-starting car was rather upsetting in my hungover state. However, Rallum called upthe RAC and they got us fixed up. Steamed down to Isfield in progressively worsening weather trying to call Nick on his mobile to see if we could procure some brunch - sugar/glucose was much needed! After a glass of the black doctor and steak & kidney pie, chips and vegetables I went to the ground for a recce. I arrived to find a man with a moustache and a lawnmower preparing grass and mud. Things didn't look good.

After some negotiation it was decided that a 3 oclock start would be best (half an hour late). I returned to the pub, rounded up the troops and ongetting back to the gudges I won the toss and unsurprisingly inserted the opposition. We bowled like drains. We fielded like sieves. I think probably myself and Owen were the worst culprits. We were massively hungover. Mr. Loverman was clearly shaky over the dusty memories of distant conquests (victims) and I dropped two catches. Mind you at one point with Dom berating me for not chasing a ball to the cover boundary (I thought I'd put a fielder there!) I had delirious visions of the Palm House at Kew and a rather large sack of half bricks. We didn't gain any control until I put on the new spin twins even though for the previous year I'd been thinking that my tactic against WG would be to open with spin. Unfortunately I won the toss and convention dictated that I should put seamers on. Anyway with the opposition somewhere in the region of 80 for no wicket I had no choice but to call on our version of Laker and Lock or is it Rhamaddin and Valentine? Rob O bowled the opening batsman and that bought to the crease a certain hersuit assailant that kind of looked familiar! From this moment in the 24th over WG started thinking of the draw. We settled into a long period of reasonably dull cricket, covering the boundaries one end and surrounding the moustache at the other. This was quite nice for me as for the first time in the game I could relax. In my minds eye, my captaincy is usually full of aggression and self belief. ButI was so bloody hungover that I had no belief whatsoever and come to thinkof it, no self either! Eventually after 31 overs of quality spin from the dynamic duo I bought on Tim M from the top end for 2 overs of declaration bowling. With a fixed tea, this isn't usually necessary but we did it anyway!

Tea was the usual WG feast. There was a bit of a tear up when the dandy highwayman - who'd been slighltly unsettled all day - was spotted necking ham sandwiches and quaffing tea. Fortunately, at the moment he told the entire team to go forth and multiply, his girlfriend turned up and all was right with the world.

Elected to open with our previous sterling partnership - Mctagget andMitzman. After an early boundary Ross got a little bogged and was caught at the wicket. This bought in Diggins. Boris must have found something else in that broom cupboard because he now seems to want to sweep everything and a stumping seems to be the somewhat predictable result. Rallum came to the crease. Mitzman left the crease, I think succumbing to his favoured pullshot, for 33. Repeated patterns of behaviour being a somewhat repeated pattern on the day. The man of experience provided some much needed imputus with James. They had an excellent stand that got us right in the game. No one was really playing the leg spinner Bain with any certainty and it was generally felt on the boundary that he was gonna get the better of us. However, after he had taken James' wicket LBW for 23, they took him off as we piled on the pressure with the Dominator to the fore. There was then a period of seam bowling with all boundaries covered. This led unfortunately to rob being run out on 39, bringing Nick to the crease. On came the legspinner again and the dominator holed out after a quick fire 22. We needed 3 off the last 2 balls with Orange facing. But in a strange symmetry with the home game last year; Orange captain, Charlton batsmen; we just failed. And the match was drawn.

Really excellent second half of the first innings/batting performance and a pretty good day considering the horrible weather in the morning and the extent of the hangovers!

Maybe next year.....

June 16, 2005

Chigwell More Ruthless Than the Aussies! Report from a Scalded Scyld Berry (Newman International 12/6/2005)

Last Saturday the Australians played their first serious game of their tour, and thumped Leicestershire out of sight. Last Sunday the Chigwell All-Stars XI played Paul Newman's International No-Stars XI and thumped them out of sight. Both the Australians and Chigwell batted first and ran up totals above 300 in similar vein. Chigwell wobbled a little at 90-5 but the right-handed Dominic scored a century in partnership with the lefthanded Rob to take them past 300 without losing a further wicket. All the bowling came alike to Chigwell's sixth wicket pair - fast or slow, swing or spin, male or female, all the bowling was treated with growing disdain. The fielding of the Newman International No-Stars creaked a little. Once the practice had finished and play started, it creaked even more. Both Rob and Dominic were missed, but perhaps it was more surprising when a catch was taken, by Mr Philip Newman, a cousin of the impressario no less, who had not played cricket for 30 years. He took a good catch to dismiss opening batsman Tim, and did not appear to catch another ball cleanly all afternoon. This contrasted with the fielding of Pete Mitchell who caught everything except the early slip catch offered by Dominic, when Chigwell were reeling just before lunch. Cricket coaches might learn from the above experience. For better the man who only takes the important catch than all the super-fast fielders who stop everything except for the crucial chance. The No-Stars' pursuit of Chigwell's total was as vain as Leicestershire's and they never looked like coming close. It was virtually a two-and-a-half-man show. The portly Mitchell rolled back the years to make a very fine hundred (he was the one-and-a-half man), while his only support came from Richard Copeman with 65. In his more sylph-like prime Mitchell was the wicketkeeper-batsman for Cape Town University, and the class showed in the strokeplay off the back foot, none more so than his hook off the fiercesome paceman Johnny Wilkinson. Chigwell had the game won for certain with some ten overs to spare, if not long beforehand. When Ms Newman came in, her strokeplay was not to be readily distinguished from that of her father. Perhaps it was therefore a case of mistaken identity when the fielders crowded her bat and ran her out when taking a harmless single. The Australians would never have been quite so ruthless.

June 08, 2005

Strength And Honour Sends Strollers Into Submission

(Ditchling Strollers 28/05/05)

The opening game of our annual tour to Brighton literally had everything, writes Brad Davis. I won the toss and chose to bat. We were playing on a different ground to last year and I anticipated a much harder battle than our stroll to a convincing victory a year earlier, especially without Newers my secret weapon of a strike bowler! I expected the opposition to be stronger and fight a lot harder and the batting conditions were extremely difficult as we were playing in a gale force wind. However, we were going for our 1st ever 100% tour and that was the target.

The plan was for quick runs and a generous declaration allowing everyone to get into the game and still come out victorious, with this in mind I elected to open with Ross and Rallum. They started well enough putting on around 40 until Rob was dismissed. Thereafter apart from a gallant 39 from Ross only Ollie was able to hit the dizzy heights of the 20's and as wickets steadily began to fall I found the team in the dubious position of 125 for 8 as I came out to bat at number 10 with about 45 minutes still to go. I said to Nick that 170 would be a challenging score and that's what I was after. Nick suggested that we take it in small targets at 10 runs a piece and make sure we use the time - wise words indeed. Nick and I somehow managed to conjure up a partnership of 43, although I was dropped very early on, all the more remarkable as we scored 12 and 11 respectively! I eventually swung across the line of a straight one and was bowled in the last over and Ritchie perished the same way 1st ball for a tour golden grill - surely worth a jug! So 170 it was and I hoped that our partnership would prove valuable.

After the usual scrumptious tea of cranberry and brie we set out to defend our total. Dom bowled his usual aggressive spell but once again went unrewarded. I paired Dom with Nigel who was managing to swing the ball miles from outside the leg stump and bagged the opener in his 3rd over. I replaced Nigel with Ritchie who although bowling very well was taken a particular liking to by one of their batsmen. At 85 for 1 in swift time I reluctantly had to take him off and called upon the wizard of experience in the form of Rallum to replace him, having opened the batting Rob was only to be used in an emergency but the Chigwell Samaritan phones were ringing off the wall! Rob bowled a quite magnificent spell of guile and control especially considering the extremely windy conditions and only conceded 16 runs in his 10 overs taking 3 wickets.

When I removed my wicket less genuine strike bowler from the attack he remarked to me that we had been ambushed, but I never lost faith and suspected that if we could remove these two then they may not have that much more to offer and that we had every chance if I could stem the run rate and keep us in the game.

Dom was replaced by Nick who obliged by removing both batsmen as Rob piled on the pressure at the other end. There was now some hope but a Chiggers victory still looked no more than a speck of light at the back of the skipper's mind. The strollers needed 38 runs to win with 7 wickets in hand at less than 3 an over.

Suddenly wickets began to tumble as Nick wheeled away working his magic. The fielding was tight and fast and the batsmen suddenly seemed under pressure. We held all our catches taken by Mitzy behind the sticks, Ollie, a caught and bowled for Nick and of course Rob superglue Orange.

With just 3 balls remaining and Rob bowling the last over all results were still possible with 12 runs required and 8 wickets down a Chigwell victory still looked as likely as a sane person with more than 2 brain cells entering the big brother house. With a boundary needed to keep the strollers in the hunt the ball went straight to a fielder but both batsmen set off like two straight guys realizing they had entered Madam Jo Jo's on the wrong night and the lightning run out was executed by Tim chicken Kebab Hall. The penultimate ball was bang on its target by Rob but the batsman just kept it out.

As Rob ran in to deliver the final ball of the match I allowed myself to wonder whether history could repeat itself and Chigwell could repeat our most famous victory when Ritchie took a magnificent caught and bowled at WG to win the final game a few years ago. As the Chigwell fielders gathered around the batsman like vultures I thought maybe he will dolly it up to me, nooooooo, I will probably drop it and ruin the tour. I need not have worried as the ball honed in on its target catching the edge and shattering the stumps!!!!!! Chigwell went into a huddle around Rob after a famous victory that will live in the memories forever.

Ironically it was their GC who was the villain whilst our very own BGC was rightly the hero of the hour!

So for this skipper strength and honour and spirit had prevailed as we headed to East Brighton Park on an absolute high to deliver to Beamers their ultimate humility!

June 01, 2005

'Rudderless' Beamers hit rock bottom (Brighton Beamers 29/5/05)

Match report from Niall 'Grandpa Potts' Chafey...

The Beamers juggernaut, possessed of huge momentum from the unbeaten start to the season, jack-knifed horribly on Sunday against Chigwell CC, shedding its load of London Pride and Mr Kipling's Country Slices all over East Brighton Park.

After hours of post-match analysis over their tear-diluted pints the elders of the Beamers Jedi Council concluded that we hadn't score enough runs or taken enough wickets. This nugget of wisdom was later whittled down to: it was a bad toss to lose. Well, in the immortal words of Professor Yaffle, 'Fiddlesticks and flapdoodle!' We were well and truly chiggered, outplayed in every area of the game, and only clawed back a modicum of pride through a nice tea and some quality quaffing in the Battle afterwards. Toss, schmoss - the better team won. In a most un-Beameresque manner there was mutinous talk from some quarters that the skipper had left the Beamers ship of state 'rudderless'. It might have been kinder, perhaps, to say that the rudder sheared off in the skipper's hand as he tried to steer HMS Beamer away from the rocks of a 9-wicket defeat. A loss of such magnitude cannot be blamed on the limitations of one man.

The Chiggers bossed the game from the outset. A combination of hostility from the Dominator and guile from Rob 'The Beat' Allum was more than a match for the Beamers top order and by the first change we were reeling on 30-odd for 4. But the skipper had made plans for such a contingency in the stately, plump form of Frank 'Insurance' Rigby being held back at number 6. He was the Beamers Praetorian Guard, charged with the task of stemming the haemorrhage of wickets. While those around him lost their heads he stood firm, his bat and armguard metamorphosing into an impenetrable Frankish shield. Alas, only Siddo, resolute in defence, dashing in attack and suicidal in running between the wickets, was able to prosper alongside Frank. So thornlike was Siddo's resistance in the booze-soaked side of the Chiggers that the Dominator had to bring himself back on and resort to attempted murder with a bouncer. Eventually, tea came and HMS Beamer, with her mainmast blown away but with Frank still standing on the burning deck 57 not out, limped into port at 140-8.

Quick wickets were the order of the day if the Beamers were to have any hope of victory and so it was that Musso and J were let loose with a cordon of slips and gullies to make the first incisions. But the breakthrough proved elusive, not just for the opening pair but for every other bowler who followed in their wake.

Richard Mussett has, no doubt, been called many things in his time but 'Muss the Toothless Dragon' will surely rankle with him. Jeremy Cakeheart provided plenty of sponge but the icing and the cherry on top were sadly lacking. There followed a succession of puff pastries, fondant fancies and fairy cakes from the Beamers bowling attack all of which Ross and Tim, the Chigwell openers, tucked into like a couple of third-formers on an afternoon exeat to a village teashop. Nothing seemed to go the Beamers' way. Everyone seemed to bowl all right and there was plenty of playing and missing, but the three half chances went begging, the runs mounted up and as the first hour ended without a wicket we entered the Bowldrums. It all went eerily quiet, what little banter and sledging there had been dried up, and the Beamer mariners huddled together in their ragged whites on the Raft of the Medusa, lips parched, delirious through lack of wickets:

Chiggers, Chiggers everywhere
And all the Beamers think,
Chiggers, Chiggers everywhere
I really need a drink

When the wicket eventually came it was sadly symptomatic of the whole afternoon. A weary long hop from the skipper, an attempted pull by the tiring batsman and a dilly-dolly-dandy dollydrop to Dave at slip, who had time to tuck a red gingham napkin into his whites and rub his hands together before completing the catch. Celebrations were as muted as the Beamers had been all day. After that, Siddo managed to put some decent overs together as Ross inexplicably refused to perform the coup de grace, but it fell to Tim, that stout yeoman of East Coker, to finally put the Beamers out of their misery.

After a few pints, it didn't seem that bad, but Monday morning brought both headache and heartache as the enormity of the Chigwell victory sank deep taproots into the skipper's brain. In Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Grandad philosophises that 'From the ashes of disaster grow the roses of success'. It remains to be seen whether this captain will be there to smell them.