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That's Fine!

posted 3 Jun 2016, 02:10 by Mike Madden
Well what on earth is going on? We've been fined twice for only playing with ten men, we have spent many hours scrabbling around for players, but after three games the seconds are unbeaten and sit just outside the promotion places. Surely it can't last. And the firsts, despite their captain disappearing at incredibly short notice, have won back to back games and are now in the top half of the league. The Under 15s beat Birch Vale with just six men, though admittedly they only had eight don't tell the league - we'll both end up bankrupt) and they very sportingly gave us two of their players to field to even things up a bit, and the Under 17s are in the quarter final of the Compstall Cup. The Under 13s and Under 11s are certainly under strength, and as Ben McIlveen succinctly put it, I will listen to Gibbo when he can run a lap around the pitch, without walking at all.

However, its not all fine and dandy. We have somehow accumulated over £90 in fines. So lets have a look at them. Two £5 fines for fielding 10 men. We tried very hard to get an 11th man. In days gone by we would have called on very young kids to fill in, but we are not allowed to do that any more (and for good reason). However, and I have suggested this before, it doesn't really help the club by taking money off them for this offence that really only helps the opposition. So perhaps the league should consider deducting points where it hurts (at the league's discretion) so that, for instance, the first team captain might think twice about leaving his counterpart in the seconds short of players. We got fined for not fielding a team in second team in the cup, We were never going to be able to. The league have agreed that they will look at the format of the cup at the end of this season. And about time too, but rules are rules and I guess we have to take that one. Late league sheet. Yes - definitely take that one. A lot of people are keen to see the statistics every week, and it makes the job of the league and the statisticians impossible if league sheets aren't in on time and completed correctly. Failing to fulfil a junior fixture - Under 13s. Hmm, I will leave that one for now. Gibbo reckons its all a misunderstanding. But then again, someone once said 'never start a sentence with Gibbo reckons...'. Gibbo also said that Hawk Green asked to switch a fixture to our ground as theirs was unplayable. Hmmm - in light of what follows the cynical side of me suggests that we should have accepted that they failed to fulfil a fixture - perhaps its a good job that I'm not cynical - and we switched the game to our ground (and ultimately it was rained off). Failure to fulfil a fixture - Under 17s. Absolutely no way should this be a fine. Let me explain. The original fixture was due to be played on a Thursday night at the start of May, to avoid a clash with the Bank Holiday. Actually, the Bank Holiday is logistically easier to get people up to the ground, so I suggested to the opposing captain (from Hawk Green) that we switch, and he agreed that it was a good idea. Then it rained. Meanwhile, the Under 17s football team, most of which are also the Under 17s cricket team (funny that), had a title deciding fixture added to their schedule for the Thursday night. They clearly opted to play that rather than cricket. So we asked Hawk Green to switch to Friday. They said No, as they are well within their rights to do. So we lost the game by forfeit, and got fined into the bargain. But hold on a minute. We switched the game and this was notified to the league. The Under 17s are not allowed to rearrange games that are rained off. So I look forward to getting our fine revoked and the points being shared (I will take my tongue out of my cheek in a minute).

As I said earlier, many people look forward to the stats coming out, which is why it is important for results to be recorded correctly. On closer inspection of the stats I noticed that a few of our batsmen have no recorded average. This is clearly an error. Not sure whether we will be fined for it, or whether the league will be. I will let you know.

And so back to the cup that needs a revamp. Well actually, I believe the format of local cricket needs a revamp, and I am not alone. We've only got ten men, do you fancy playing for us and being away from your friends, family, tv for 7 hours on Saturday? Err, no thanks. We could cut the games to say 35 overs a side, but how about experimenting with this in the 4th division....

Turn it into a T20 league, but with the home team playing 2 games. For instance, in week one Whaley could play Dove Holes and Hadfield. Dove Holes starting at 1 and Hadfield starting at 4. The travelling teams only need to consider around 2 and a half hours play, with minimal break between innings. The home team could play a completely different team in the two games, so any make ups would only need to be involved for 2 and a half hours. It would ultimately mean more games being played. Quicker games to accommodate the attention span of the X-Box generation, and the opportunity for more bye weeks. I am convinced that as bye weeks get more prevalent people may actually start to plan around them. Sounds crazy? Thats what five pints of Peroni does for you.

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