A Corner of my mind. By Ian Hoggan (Fly)

Whitkirk vs Carlton

The year Merrydown cider was £2.99 for 4 (from Rothwell Morissons underground department!)

Loaded up the cider into my rucksack for an afternoons entertainment at Whitkirk. They had a strong outfit in those days but Carlton also was a good unit. The day started badly for us with David Cooper turning up with his right arm in a pot. Paul Garner, who feared David, grinned like a Cheshire Cat expecting David not to play. But Carlton lads are not soft and he took to the field with the rest.

I commenced imbibing on commencement of play, sat near the sight screen near the church in glorious sunshine with Mrs Fairburn by my side, an afternoon of friendly rivalry in front of me was expected! But wait....

Captain Paul Stanyard came on to bowl after Whitkirk had a tremendous start, trying to stem the run rate Paul positioned his field carefully as usual. He summoned Melvin Tasker to silly mid on, and sillier and sillier until Melvin was nearly touching the bat! Paul ran into bowl and then... "POW!" Melvin had been shot by a 410 rifle - oh no just the ball had hit him! He went off in a state of shock looking for a cigarette! The skipper Paul summoned me to the field. "Shit, I've only had 4 cans", I thought immediately, "Am I refreshed and hydrated enough?"

Borrowing kit from Keith Sampson, I took to the arena at mid on, taking a catch soon after off David Cooper. The skipper had slowed the run rate enough to place me at deep square leg. "Shit" I thought, "how am I going to reach my cans?" Mid on was OK - only 10 yards away - but over by the tennis courts was impossible. To the rescue came Sue Fairburn bringing me a few over to keep me hydrated in the tremendous heat of battle, watching 2 young fillies having a knock about on the tennis courts. I was startled by a shout of "Ian it's yours!" Turning round to face the field of play I was shocked to see 3 cricket balls raining down on me, no time for "eenie, meenie, miney, mo" so I clutched at the middle one and.... it stuck somewhere between my forearms and thighs! Result - John Martin out for 72, me thirsty again.

Tea came and I was expelling my hydration fluid in the gents when in walked John Martin. He saw me holding onto the gents down pipe, shook his head and walked out - unbelievable!

Carlton won the game and I was voted, wait for it, never to play for the first team again! Pity that, a bit more hydration could have taken me places I've never seen. Never got a nick name that I've heard anyway. Not like the spin twins "Razzyma" and "Pilau", the King of swing "The Doctor", match winner "Rovers", "Sparky" and "Zippy" and numerous others. Great times were had, great people I met and thanks to Carlton Cricket Club, Poole Captain Tracey Mahoney bought me 3 pints of Strongbow to keep me quiet up to tea! "CHEERS!".