The first of what is going to now be an annual ‘end of season’ Bails Bash was held at a sun-kissed, if breezy, Kensham Park on the second Saturday of September.
To say the day was a massive success would be an understatement! Fittingly, given that the day’s action was staged in honour of the true Bradninch Cricket Club legend that is Simon Bailey, it was won by a team skippered by the club captain Dan Hardy.
The action got underway at 11am and the final came to its dramatic conclusion at 4.55pm when, with Exmouth skipper (and of course another of our great friends at Kensham Park), Gary Chappell, faced the final delivery bowled by the BCC skipper with eight runs required for victory! Chaps, got a single and so Dan Hardy’s team, who played under the title of ‘We ain’t got no name’ had defeated ‘Sorry’ (Chaps’ lot) in the final of a splendid day of 6-1-side cricket played under the same rules that are used for the world famous Hong Kong 6s.
The day began with the first match being between Will Birley (skipper of the club’s Under-17s, and otherwise known theses days as Little Biggles), with his team named ‘Wait’ taking on Luke Wrightson’s team (made entirely of non-cricketing players – himself apart of course – drawn from his work place at Gregory’s and playing under the title of ‘Here 4 the beer’. The youngsters won – just, but there were some impressive shows from players in the works team.
Game two saw the first action for Sorry (Gary Chappell and co) and Yid Army, the latter a team put together by Chris Acton that also saw a return to Kensham Park for his son Eliot who was later to get the wildcard entry into the winning team – as both finalists needed an extra player to become 6-a-side units a boat race was held – rather than the more usual method of tossing a coin!
Yid Army bagged the win and the third game saw the youngsters (Will Birley’s lot) back on the square, this time against Dan Hardy’s team – ‘We ain’t got no name’ – and the senior side won that one in some comfort after they plundered a huge score.
During this match Will Birley, when told to be respectful of the batter he was bowling to (Dan Hardy) as he was the club skipper, answered: “He ain’t my skipper today!”
Game four saw Here 4 the Beer take on ‘Sorry’ (Chaps’ lot) and the win there fell to Sorry. Game 5 was Yid Army against ‘We ain’t got no name’ and the latter won that before game six saw the youngsters play their third and final game – and what a cracker this was as Eliot Acton was the last surviving batsman and he scored the winning runs off the penultimate ball of a classic encounter.
This all left game seven which saw ‘Sorry’ playing ‘Here 4 the Beer’ and needing to get two bonus points (the days points were 5 for a win and one extra for each catch and if two wickets were taken in the same over).
Dave, ‘Here 4 the beer’ took two superb catches at long-on to see the back of Gary Chappell and Tim Piper, but ‘Sorry’ claimed two wickets in an over no fewer than three times and also held a catch which gave them four bonus points and that left the table, at the end of the group games.
|2.||We ain’t got no name||2||12|
|5.||Here for the Beer||3||2|
This took the tournament to the final which was contested between ‘Sorry’ and ‘We ain’t got no name’. ‘We ain’t got no name’ batted first and scored 69, ‘Sorry’ made a good fist of the reply and the contest was not decided until the final two deliveries – a fitting end to a terrific day with ‘We ain’t got no name’ comprising of Dan Hardy, Will Greig, Parksey, Neil Hardy and Greg Nott (together with Eliot Acton) were presented with the trophy by BCC president Roy Nott.
So what a day, what a special day. BCC vice chairman Paul Nott conducted the post match speeches when he updated everyone on the sad situation regarding our dear friend Simon ‘Bails’ Bailey. The great man is bed-ridden in a Yorkshire hospital and he is in such a state now that a hoist is required to lift him from his bed so that his beloved Mum can wheel him around in a wheelchair.
Thanks for a TERRIFIC first Bails Bash – and let’s make it clear that obviously, its currently run IN HONOUR OF Bails – goes to Steve Birley for organising and umpiring, to Paul Nott, without whom the logistical side of a special day would NOT have been possible – to Jill for her FANTASTIC effort in the kitchen – to Julie and Alan Dowrick who, not for the first time, stepped in to assist as and where required – to Rick Bailey who simply ALWAYS makes himself available for the countless tasks that generally get missed (but not by him) – thanks to the players for turning out – how good was it to see the mercurial Gary Chappell back at Kensham Park (come home soon Chaps – please) – and thanks to the folk who supported such a VERY SPECIAL DAY.