This was an eventful year for the OB cricket team. We drew Radley Rangers in the 1st round of the Cricketer Cup, playing them for the first time in the competition. After a confident start we made only 200 odd and with Hutton of Radley on 50 and going well we were delighted to snap him up the ball before tea. Perhaps surprised is a better word than delighted here since it was Chris Sweet (D. 1983-88), keeping wicket, who snaffled him. Nevertheless, Radley lost their way and the experience of the OBs saw us home.
The second round saw us play Lancing at home in a match which was memorable. Firstly for the fact that the OBs were the first side in the Cricketer Cup to field a lady in their team. Clare Connor (W. 1989-94) bowled with great control in her spell and returned figures of 8-0 and 16-0. Clare's appearance attracted a great deal of publicity and Nick Syrrett accompanied the victorious eleven to a couple of local hostelries, stating that he was as impressed with the OBs behaviour off the field as he was on it. Prior to Clare's fine debut, Russell Piper (B. 1972-77) had held our innings together with a super 100 until Michael Strong (L. 1987-92) put the Lancing attack to the sword with a cracking 93. This was a very good day for the OBs, winning by 150 runs.
Unfortunately, we committed Hari-Kari against Shrewsbury Saracens in a game which is better not reported. Julian Withers (H. 1976-81) is still not talking to the person who ran him out!
Cricket week, although not greatly successful in terms of results, was the most successful in terms of availability this year. All days were oversubscribed, and in the Sunday win against the Martlets, only two of the eleven were over 20 years of age. Many new faces appeared during the course of the week in which the highlights were a fine 145 by Strong, an even better 163 by Pranay Sanklecha (C/S. 1997-99) and Tom Burton's (R. 1997-02) fine all round performances. I would like to thank Peter Withers for his support in securing fixtures, Sam Chettleburgh in his first year as Cricketer Cup captain and Barney Stubbs (R. 1996-01) for a marvellous effort as "incredible wobbly man" on the Wednesday of cricket week (thanks to Bidders Junior also).
Finally, many thanks to everyone involved with Old Brightonian cricket and congratulations to Matthew Prior (R. 1995-00) on his maiden first-class 100 for Sussex.