The seconds first game back at headquarters involved a potentially tricky tie against newly promoted Stainton who had had an excellent result the previous week against Staffield where they knocked up a 200+ total and then proceeded to bowl out the opposition for less than 100. The seconds were bolstered by the welcome return of 2 very good players who were making comebacks at different ends of their playing days!! Dean Platten a young all rounder of great talent who could and should become a key member of the 1st team in the months and years ahead and the evergreen and effervescent John Drake a member of the victorious 2006 North Lancashire Premier League winning team.
The seconds lost the toss and the Stainton Captain obviously buoyed and seduced by his team’s performance batting first the previous week elected to have a bat, much to the surprise of El Capitan! This was a decision he came to rue! Dean Platen with his very first comeback ball produced a snorter which pitched on off stuff and took middle stump, bowling ironically the Stainton Captain. After setting this standard the baton was picked up by Matthew Hodgson from the other end who yet again after last weeks excellent spell of left arm medium continued to bowl a disciplined line and length frustrating the opposition batsmen. This pressure had to give one way or another and it eventually did to the benefit of the fielding team as wickets started to tumble. The introduction of Mark ‘are we having a cuppa?’ Bowen only added to the woes of the opposition and when he was replaced by the twin spin attack of Todhunter and Spiers the writing was on the wall for the hapless Stainton lower order. The final total of 64 only caused panic in the kitchen as the tea ladies scurried around getting the now legendary Sandair tea ready.
The Cockermouth reply was based around the swashbuckling opening pair of Mason junior and Chambers very senior!! Without any fuss or complications the Stainton bowlers were dispatched in a clinical and at times stylish manner, whilst Chambers bored the crowd at the other end! Mark Bowen was heard to say through slurps of his favourite leafed beverage that test cricket had missed out on one of its potentially greatest possible exponents and that one of the cockermouth openers should have been born in the era of boat journeys to the colonies to play unrestricted test matches!! One can only begin to imagine if Jack Mason even knew what Mark was going on about!!!
The fines committee led by the hanging Judge Mason served as usual stiff penalties on all and sundry and as if to ensure there are no family loyalties when this man dons the wig and robes and meets out justice with a flick of his gavel Mason Senior was the most heavily fined of all!! Although justice was served as his jokes were beyond funny! indeed one of them was just beyond everyone full stop!
There was however a late twist in court as Chambers appealed an earlier decision and by employing his own barrister in the form of Drake QC had his initial guilty decision overturned thus winning what will become in the annals of the Cockermouth Justice system a landmark case i.e. the only appeal ever to be upheld!!
An excellent start to our home fixtures and a fully deserved maximum points to kick start the season.