Monthly Archives: September 2015

President’s XI continue winning run

Whalers Captain XI Vs President’s XI – 8th August 2015

After a seasons hiatus the Captains XI v President’s XI was back for its 6th outing. It was a fine Saturday morning when the team gathered at Kings house to pay homage to the gods of Cricket. A fruitful ashes series had got the team fired up and the Whalers pavilions were erected with much mirth. Owing to late injuries we were down to 21 men but as the sorting hat spoke it’s piece it soon became apparent that the president had the stronger batting line-up and the captains’ (headed by Channa) had the stronger bowling line-up.

After losing the vital toss captain Channa saw the president make the all-important decision to bat first.

First to the crease was Pip English and JT. The captain’s side got the early breakthrough when ‘one-game-a-season’ Gould dashed in with some sharp fielding removing both openers with two good run outs. This brought ‘one-game-a-season’ Emmerson and ‘daddy’ Albery to the crease. The Captains bowling was sharp but both batsmen soon got into a rhythm, i.e. Toby hitting the ball for four and Kev rotating the strike to Toby. Toby retired after a well-made 50, leaving the President’s cruising at 106 for 2 from 19. A few overs later Both Dickenson and replacement Richard Dawson were back in the pavilion courtesy of wickets from Giles and Terrell. Paul Mildon, next in, steadied the ship, helping Albery to his 50 in fine style. Reuben Mildon, in his first match for the Whale replaced the retired Albery (who promptly had to change a nappy). Reuben will go down in the history books as the first Whalers colt, though as pointed out by Giles it wouldn’t be the first father son paring at a Whalers Fixture (see English and English Vs Judd St Tigers circa 2013).

Reuben faced down some furious bowling from Gould making a fine pairing with Mildon Snr before Gould made the break through, removing the young colt with a nasty in swinging yorker. The presidents were in a good position with 162 for 5 from 27. Lucas was next to the crease and together with Mildon took the president’s XI to 190 from 31 before Lucas was bowled by an injury free Nicholls and Mildon bowled for a decent 24 of Howes. The president called Toby Emmerson back into the fray to support Luckett, who had started to smack the ball around. Luckett was eventually caught behind, bringing Albery back to the crease. With just two overs left the captains XI battened down the hatches, however it wasn’t enough with the last three overs going for 33 runs. The president’s XI had posted a very respectable 229 for 8 of 35, with Albery not out on 60 and Emmerson not out for 67. Pick of the bowlers for the presidents was certainly not Channa, however Nick had picked up two for 18 from 6 overs.

By this point a substantial crowd had gathered to watch the game. The number over attendees has recently seen an upward surge with the introduction of a dozen new mini whales (or whalies if you like). Much mingling and fun was had by all, while the music blared haphazardly in the background.

The entries into this year’s Cake Competition were as excellent as always. Madam president getting an honourable mention for her jammy scones and Mrs Terrell winning the coveted best cake prize for her cricket ball cake.

Back to the cricket as the Captains XI took to the field. Terrell and Nicholls opened the game, knowing they needed 6.5 runs an over. Matt Lucas and Paul Luckett opened the bowling a well-conceived plan that yielded a result in the second over; when Nicholls was caught behind of Luckett’s bowling (much to the latter’s delight  and the formers utter dismay). Gould next in helped stead the ship and it wasn’t till the 9th over and the bowling change that Terrell was caught by Luckett for 12. 62 for 2 of 9.

Peacock and Kirkness came and went with Pip picking up his second and Paul Mildon his first. The ship was rolling at 73 for 4 of 13. Giles was next to the crease and thus followed a period of rebuilding. The run rate improved drastically as Gould got to his Fifty and retired much to the delight of the President’s XI. Replacement Dan, sent to build on his excellent season was caught by Luckett of the President’s bowling, with Gilo following soon after (stumped of The presidents bowling) for 29. Channa followed thanks to a some medium pace from Pip and the Captains XI were once again struggling on 171 for 7 from 27. Geoff and Nick came in and didn’t hang around, pounding the bowling all around the ground. It was Nick who fell first, with an excellent 23 to his name leaving the Captains XI on a very healthy looking 216 of 31 overs. With four overs left and 10 runs needed it was suddenly looking all the more possible. Back in came Gouldy. Unfortunately Geoff, who was on a fantastic 41, was out in the next over after missing a straight one of Kev. 218 for 9 (playing with 10) needing 7 runs of 2 overs to win the game. Was it going to happen after all? In short no. Gouldy was out a few balls later. Final score was 220 of 34 overs, a close tense match that could have gone either way.

The game was followed by an excellent night out, beers and fun galore. Awards were presented to bowler of the day Nick Howes for his 2 for 18 of 6 and best batsman went to Toby for his 67 not out.

Bring on next year!

Whalers 2015 season ends on a high

Whalers CC vs Beamers CC 13th September 2015
King George’s Playing Field, Morden.

Whalers 103/5 (30.3) beat Beamers 101 (32.4) by 5 wickets

Whalers made the long journey down to Morden for the last game of the season. After last years timed game where Whalers lost a bit of concentration and ultimately the game we were glad to be in our more familiar 35 over a side habitat.

Winning the toss and bowling after sensing some mischief in the pitch all the talk was of the seasons leading wicket taker award with Geoff, Kamal and despite his protestations, Dan all in with a chance. A grumpy Nick opened and bowled a leg side full toss which was sent on its way first ball. He improved his accuracy after that though and with some variable bounce in the pitch the Believers openers made slow progress though we struggled to find abreakthrough. A couple of tough chances going down (more accurately through) first slip. Dan took the new (Duke’s!) ball from the other end as the first of the title contenders on show. He is a hard man to satisfy and was visibly frustrated by his bowling though he was not doing a lot wrong. After 8 overs we had our first look at Kiwi and hobbit Jiff, very keen to claim some silverware in his first season back in the UK as our Aussie overseas player. The three pace magic worked almost instantly, inducing an edge that was dropped first ball and then fourth ball having their opener well caught by Nick at mid-on. After Dan (1-20) had bowled out it was a straight head to head between Jiff and Special for the wickets award. Bowling in tandem they took control of the game but as well as he performed Jiff could not find another wicket and Kamal began to rip the guts out of the Believers batting. Listening tothem talk about his bowling in the pub one would be forgiven for thinking there was some truth in the rumour that he is Murali’s secret uncle. In fact half his wickets came from full tosses but such is his cunning that the batsmen missed them completely. Figures of 7-1-32-4 ensured that he retained the coveted trophy and that the Believers were struggling to make 100. Rich bowled tidily with trademark belly swing and took 2-14 (3 drops too). Jiff finished with 1-16 and a sharp run outfrom Roland meant that Tariq only bowled 4 balls. Believers had been dismissed for 101. It was a decent performance in the field (heartfelt thanks to the oppo for lending us a fielder) despite several drops. The outfield was slow but we felt that we should chase down the total.

Last year’s defeat had plenty to do with the 6 or 7 wickets opposition skipper Mathew took so it was understandable that Dario and Al took a safety first approach to facing both him and the other opening bowler. After 10 overs both were still in place though the total was struggling to keep up with the overs bowled. Al (7) played well in defence to see off the opening bowler but will perhaps rue his decision to send spinner Giles back over his head which resulted in a straightforward catch shortly after his introduction. Once Giles had also removed Dario (15) lbw and Roland first ball caught and bowled we were in some trouble at 24/3 after 11 overs. A steady partnership of 53 between Rich and Tariq steadied the nerves though, with no time pressure they both played watchfully waiting for bad balls to put away. Both made 34 but disappointingly neither could hang around long enough to see us home. There was some excitement at the prospect of a promoted Special hitting the winning runs but in the end it fell to Nick who crashed his first ball through the covers for 4.

A really good performance from all the team and an enjoyable way to end the season. Thanks to the Believers for a good mannered game. Most of us retired to the pub after to reminisce another great Whalers season.

MOM: Richard Giles 34 and 2-14

Champagne Moment: Nick’s catch for first wicket

Muppet: Nick for fielding with his @rse

Le Invagination Tour: Whalers en France 2015 (with photos)

As the late arrivals to Cannes turned up at Friday nights restaurant ‘Le Tube’ even later thanks to BA it was apparent that the early arrivals had been enjoying themselves as Ed and Gilo looked half cut, there were stories of Pete being invaginated and everyone had a pink drink that looked like some sort of Campari based cocktail. The late arrivals were thus compelled to drink copious amounts of wine to ‘catch up’ before we retired to a bar to take part in the weekend’s main leisure activities of scoring the local talent and playing 21’s or 5’s. The group including the author’s evening was then finished off by being accosted/groped by a hooker outside their hotel.


The Whalers made there way to the hotel reception the following morning on timeish from a variety of cafes and boulangerie’s clutching a variety of baguettes/croissants/anything that would rehydrate them. We then attempted to the find the bus station which wasn’t that clearly marked on a map and had also moved due to roadworks. By luck rather than judgement we made it with a minute to spare and then spent the next 50 minutes sweating out last nights alcohol on the 50 minute public bus journey to Grasse. Cue another scramble for baguettes/croissants/anything that would rehydrate us before being driven the rest of the way to the ground in St Vallier de Thiey by 4 of the opposition for the day, Riviera Cricket Club.


It was our drivers first game for the club so he was equally as surprised as us when we turned up for to find the ground cover by a couple of thousand sheep and their associated droppings. Apparently the field is occasionally used for grazing by the local shepherd who luckily wasn’t very far away and was able to clear the sheep in around half an hour. The droppings were another matter and one of the oppo had the pleasant task of brushing it off the strip with an old fashioned straw broom. The rest were avoided where possible and thankfully no one had the pleasure of diving into any!


Tour organiser Matt skippered the first game and we were invited to bat first. Al and Gilo strode confidently to the crease past a blow up doll version of Kev who unfortunately couldn’t make the tour. They both made the most of anything loose on the astroturf wicket and the small boundaries meant that scoring was quick until Gilo slapped a rank wide long hop straight back to the bowler. That bought Pip to the crease and the quick scoring continued, helped by 2 runs from a hook shot by Pip onto his helmet. Pip’s innings didn’t last very long before he was trapped in front. That bought Pete to the crease fresh from an array of injuries (his recent invagination) and playing his first game for 9 months. The lack of game time/fitness meant that he chose to mainly score in boundaries and along with Al took us to 100-2 at drinks. Al was out shortly after and Pete then became the 2nd Whaler to be hit on the head in the innings and he missed a pull shot and took the ball on the chin. Those on the boundaries thought the noise sounded woody and assumed he had got a bat on it but the non-striker Channa was fare more concerned and shouted/instructed Pete to ‘STAY DOWN’. There was only a small graze so Pete carried on however he was out for a top scoring 60 shortly after. Cue a typical Whalers collapse as Channa was bowled and the Powerhorse middle order of Kev and the Dragonslayer failed to trouble the scorers between them (to be repeated the following day).


Dan settled the ship and after Matt joined the list of ducks looking to pull one that didn’t bounce was joined by Nick and they proceeded to get the runs flowing again. After Dan managed to hit a ball from their spinner into his own face to become the 3rd Whaler to be hit above the shoulder in the innings (this was not a reflection of the speed of the opposition bowlers) he then set about forcing Nick to run off his hangover with a number of quick 2’s and the Whalers finished on 203-8 from their 35 overs. A good score but on a small ground definitely gettable.


After a great tea of baguettes, beer, cheese and ham and an incredibly long piss by Nick the Whalers opened up with a much lighter Nick and Special K. Both bowled well and Kamal soon had the first wicket when opener Jules was caught by Al in the covers. Cue a fantastic spell of bowling by Nick when he had the other opener caught behind by a fantastic one handed catch by Ed and then bowled the debutant with a Yorker first ball (not the best way to thanks him for driving 3 of us to the game). In his next over he produced the ball of the match with a sharply rising delivering of a perfect line and length drawing the edge from their captain giving Ed a second and much simpler catch behind the stumps. Kamal chipped in with another wicket and Riviera were 5 down with only 30 on the board. That bought about a double bowling change with Matt and the Dragonslayer bowling in tandem for 8 overs. The bowling was tight but neither could make a breakthrough. Giles was next to be thrown the ball and he removed the dangerous Samnath. A sharp run out from Matt removed Irfan and it was then down to the most experienced Whalers of all Dan and Al to finish off the tail. Dan took 1-2 from his 2 overs and Al improved his already impressive strike rate with 2-9 from 1.5 overs. Riviera CC this finished on 95 all out a 108 run win for the Whalers to get the tour off to a good start.


M-O-M – Pete, 60 runs and a good catch

Champagne – Ed’s one-handed catch off Nick’s bowling

Muppett – Channa ‘marking the boundary’ and then dropping a catch (after it had just been remarked as to how well we were catching)


Notable mentions–

Dan being hit in the face

Pete being hit on the chin

Pip being hit in face

Lucketts golden duck

1000 sheep on pitch

Gilos easy soft dismissal



Drinks were had on the field post game and it was then time for the journey back to Cannes which went much more smoothly than the journey up. The night activities weren’t as well subscribed as the previous night with quite a few Whalers (including the author sneaking off early). I can’t comment on what happened post midnight but everyone was pretty much on time the next morning for the drive across to Provence for the second game against Entrecasteaux CC. Vehicle number 1 contained the Dragonslayer and his access to Spotify meaning he could play ‘any song in the universe’. Cue power ballads galore for the 90 minute journey to the game.


We arrived to a beautiful ground in the shadow of a chateau and alongside a stream which would be used by some the Whalers after the game to cool off (there are pictures which are not for the faint hearted). Also there were no sheep and as we had to leave fairly sharpish for Ed/Nick to get to the airport we agreed on a prompt start. Captain for the day Channa was otherwise engaged so Matt went out for the toss which was won and we were batting again.


Channa decided to mix things up and it was Dan and Pip who strode purposefully to the middle to try and give the Whalers and almost unprecedented 2 from 2 record on tour. We got off to a solid if unspectacular start with an opening stand of 56 in 13 overs before Pip was out for 18. Dan quickly followed so it was up to Al and Pete to get things moving. Al seemed unable to score anything higher than a single but Pete again found the boundary regularly (despite the invagination) and the two of them took the score to 148 off 26 overs before Al was bowled for 26. Pete continued to score well but without much support especially from the duck twins Ed and the Dragonslayer who had the ignominious feat of scoring a grand total of 0 from their combined 4 innings and earned the combined nickname the ‘Luckness Monster’. Pete was out for an excellent 61 and the Whalers ended up being all out for 182 from 34 overs. Again a decent total but definitely achievable.


Another fantastic tea followed with the welcome addition of the local rose wine which seemed to be a very popular choice for the opposition during and after the game. Nick and Matt opened the bowling and Matt soon had opener Howarth back in the hutch for 5 with a smart catch from Al at mid-wicket. The other opener Ed was scoring freely however the same can’t be said of his partner Gaisford who struck 3 from 44 balls until he was out caught by Channa off one of the Dragonslayer’s heavy balls. The score was now 46 for 2 from 19 overs and meant Entrecasteaux were now well behind the rate. The new batsmen Perera looked much handier with the bat however and it didn’t take him long to start dispatching the bowling to the boundary. 43 runs were added in the next 6 overs before Ed was out for 32. Perera was clearly the danger man and even though wickets fell at the other end while he was there an unlikely victory was still possible. Matt returned in the 30th over and bowled Perera for a quick 44 and the Whalers could breathe a little easier. Morrissey soon followed LBW to the same bowler and Nick also took the wicket of Harland for 16. The Whalers couldn’t quite finish them off but at the end of 35 overs Entrecasteaux were 157-8 giving the Whalers their second victory of the tour by 25 runs. This was also the first Sunday tour victory in living memory.


M-O-M – Pete again, 61 runs

Champagne – Matt bowling their best batsman

Muppett – The Luckness Monster (Ed and Dragonslayer’s double double ducks)


Notable mentions-

River escapades – Gilo appearing to be naked

Channa missing toss

Al wide wide widest

Channa’s field placement

Gilos stained whites in river

Gilo/channa Failure to add 2 and 2



It was a very hot day and as mentioned previously some of the Whalers decided to cool off in the nearby stream in their pants. Multiple photos were taken mostly with Gilo trying to pull down other peoples pants and Kamal showing off his physique. We were then given instructions to find the nearby bar for a post match drink however no one was really listening as it took 15 minutes to find and we were just about to give up when we spotted one of the oppo. The bar had clearly had a busy day as they had run out of beer and glasses which meant us passing round carafes of rose wine to quench our thirst. Still on a high from his top scoring innings Pete managed to acquire a bottle for the return journey and cue more power ballads (poor driver).


Back in Cannes Ed and Nick headed to the airport while the rest of us headed into town for mountains of small fish and to dissect the tour and plan next years (from memory Al was tasked with looking into Porto). Again there was much scoring of the local talent (Channa is a very hard man to please) and much drinking of rose wine. Later on there were stories of Pip trying to order a baileys and being refused but this can’t be verified.



Words by Matt

Photos by Kamal