Captain's Report 2016 by Tom Carmichael
In the days after the last game of the season a series of e-mails flowed between many of our players. These e-mails spoke of the feeling of real satisfaction after an excellent season and the desire to do it all again next year. No doubt a super Angus Graham-inspired win at Reigate Pilgrims helped fuel this feeling but it did reflect another hugely enjoyable year for the Society XI.
7 wins to set against only 2 defeats creates an impressive win/loss ratio. We were victorious at Forest Green, West Meon, Abinger, Newdigate, Broadhalfpenny Brigands, Petersfield and Reigate Pilgrims. We lost in the rain at Sparsholt and in a tight game at the Royal Household. Unfortunately, we couldn’t raise a team for Ventor, so our days of touring the Isle of Wight appear over. However, the Hampshire tour was a great success. We’re not sure when we last won 2 games on tour.
We were seldom short of runs and runs scored with class and power. Jason Fenn and Rob Humphreys maintained their quality contributions whilst Paul Spencer and Peter Hardy both scored consistently well. Few who witnessed Angus Graham’s maiden century at Rudgwick will forget it and he followed it up with a match winning display of batting, bowling and catching the following week. Opportunities were often limited for many of our batsmen, but several others contributed well when called upon.
On the bowling front, Harry Fenn continued to be hugely unlucky, bowling with real pace and venom. The old stagers Andy Sheldon, Paul Fielding and John Symons would readily admit that much of their success was due to Harry’s bowling at the other end. However, it would be wrong to take anything away from the remarkable bowling of these three.
The days when the team couldn’t catch a cold are in the past. We lost count of the number of outstanding catches over the course of the season. Peter Hardy took 8 catches with Angus Graham and Rob Humphreys 6 each. Tom Carmichael pouched 25 wicket keeping victims.
As ever we were well served by our umpires and Brenda Symons, Robin Burns and Denise Fielding were excellent scorers. Many thanks again from me to Rob Humphreys for his total support as Vice-Captain and to the match managers. We were supported wherever we went by our travelling band of wives, partners, children and others. Many of our opponents regard their game with us as one of the highlights of their season and our supporters are an undoubted factor in this.
Roll on 2017.