Wednesday, 12 January 2011

I don't like cricket ~ I love it ?

The watercolour above is a sketch of Lee Bay near Damage Barton, North Devon. While Alex and Jac our cocker spaniel went playing and hunting through rock pools I sat and daubed with watercolour on cartridge paper. It is a lovely little bay and hamlet. We have seen this part of the coast from both sides having sailed across the Bristol Channel and also visited Lundy Island.

Today I sat and watched England and Australia playing cricket for a couple of hours. It was far too dark to paint, conveniently.

I am not a great cricketer but I do like watching the odd game.

I was once asked, no begged to make up an eleven to play the fire brigade at cricket. I agreed, as it was only a friendly. My side was batting and I sat quietly drinking tea and listening to the “thwack” of leather on willow. It was all very friendly and leisurely until a new bowler appeared. He started to walk towards the boundary ropes before turning and sprinting in like a demon. He demolished the wicket and the batsman came back to the pavilion. I was told it was my turn. I nervously walked to the wicket and asked the umpire if my bat was in the right place. The next sight I saw was of the demon bowler running at me. Fortunately I managed to lift my bat and let him hit my wicket. I was out and still in one piece.

All went well when we fielded they put me on the boundary and other than running for the odd ball everything was peaceful. I was then told it was my turn to bowl. This was a surprise. I duly ran up and let go of the ball, which was caught by a fielder over to my right. That would have been good but it had been nowhere near the batsman.

When I let go of my next ball it landed at my feet. Two balls gone two wides. The batsmen were in stitches; I was getting pretty ugly looks from my friends who had begged me to play. I had a third go and somehow took out the batsman’s wicket. He was out.

I then did what no self-respecting cricketer should do. I bowled under arm. I believe the rules prevent it now but then it was legal. There was uproar, particularly from the firemen. The problem is it is difficult to hit a ball very far when it is rolling along the ground.

After the (friendly) game things became so heated in the pavilion I had my tea outside.

You will not be surprised that I have never been asked to make up a team for cricket again.

After watching the test match today I finished my still life and touched up a painting of Tretower. I tried to photograph them but the light was insufficient.

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