Getting the game on volume two, is a blog by Jamie Thistleton the No 2 to James Brown (No 1). A few digs and a few laughs in this latest blog from the team at Folkton Fixton CC.
So, as I’m writing this its Friday night before the first weekend of the much-delayed season, I’ve spent every spare minute this week grafting to get the ground ready like I imagine 99 % of groundsmen right now.
Some of us Getting the Game on
However, no1 (groundsman) has spent all his spare time this week drinking sangria and lager on a Spanish beach.
Normally this is about the time he goes with the family for a couple of weeks but normally we are half way through a season by then and my confidence at doing the ground is a bit higher. This year though with the delay it has meant that I’m doing it on my own with everyone in my ear, not least the tosser sat on a beach a thousand miles away!
We’ve been lucky enough as a club that our junior coach and manager all rolled into one has arranged for a Yorkshire coach to come through to give juniors some training and have a net with the senior players as well.
This however meant we needed to get a practice wicket ready, now No1 was not even slightly a fan of this idea to say the least, but at least he kept that to himself and absolutely anyone else who would listen! Its been a good few session but has meant a fair bit of graft to be done around my day job.
In at the Deep End!
Skip to this week and that we’ve got until the 18th before our first league game for the firsts at home leaving me to prepare a wicket completely by myself which will sound easy to a lot of people and so far has gone well even though it has absolutely shedded it down most of the week here, best efforts have been made to get it rolled most days in breaks in the weather
However, having the sheets clipped to the covers to protect the practice wicket and the covers over the new one so it still dries while covered, has meant it’s been a right pain in the arse!
Also having never prepared a wicket on the front pitch myself knowing that no1 will come back and point out if somethings even the slightest bit wrong is a fairly stressful going on.
Not only was the wicket needing doing, but the sight screens needed sheeting up again and the boundary rope needed pulling out. This led to me informing no1 that he’s the worst person I have ever known after he decided to put it in the away changing room at the end of last season in a manor, I can only imagine involved a f… it attitude.
Never witnessed before in human history, to say it was a big job to untangle it would be an understatement! In the end I managed to get it out and in place again and the ground looks all the better for it.
Next job tomorrow is to mark out the wicket which again I’ve only done once before on my own (again while no1 was on yet another holiday in cricket season. quite the common occurrence) and this leads to another stressful going on.
Marking out of Wickets!
No1 could not be anymore obsessed with marking out, he’s been heard several times to say its his favourite part of making a wicket. Whereas with me painting of any kind is definitely something I would rather pay someone all of my money to do, rather than do myself. So, I imagine tomorrow my phone will be going non-stop from the Spanish contingent about how to do it perfectly.
Now as no1 mentioned in volume one of getting the game on we may not have any loam currently, as I may have got a bit giddy making my wickets on the back pitch that we use for junior and third teams.
I’ve got a special interest in that as I captain the thirds as well as help out on the grounds so obviously want it to be the best it can be.
This week we had a meeting about starting the season and what were going to do, teams we’re putting out etc
So, I mentioned this, that we desperately need some loam and a couple of other bits I need a hand with to get the place ready in time. The biggest issue to others was a new fridge for behind the bloody bar! I’ve handed the issue over the Spaniard to sort now, while I worry about the other bits to do.
Business as Usual-Kind of !
All said and done I can’t wait to get the season going now and no doubt get a golden duck at some point and many beers afterwards. No doubt as no1 gets back mid-afternoon of the 18th he will probably be pulling up just as I get castled while swinging towards cow corner! That would be just my luck!
Thankfully we both have the same mentality of the ground looking perfect for the start of the match so hopefully he won’t have much to moan about in that respect.
As much as I hate to admit it, learning how to do the ground from him has genuinely been great even though he can moan and complain like no other person I’ve known since my ex!
It’s normally a good laugh doing the ground, so I’m just keeping my fingers crossed that I’ve done a good enough job while he’s been away!
So, from Folkton and Flixtons no2 I’ll sign off wishing everyone the best of luck and health for the season coming and hand you back over to the boy from Mallorca for the next blog!
Getting the Game on Volume Two by Jamie Thistleton
To see the blog written by James Brown a week or so prior to this , hit the link below.