Fantasians vs Tusmore Park – 4th July 2015

On 4th July, the Fantasians travelled to Tusmore Park in Oxfordshire for the inaugural fixture against a side run by a Fantasian. After a warm up in the Muddy Duck, we kicked off a 40 over game at 1:30 having put ourselves in to bat. The opening partnership of 90 made by Roly Ingleby Mackenzie and George Ledger 40 and 50 (retired) respectively got us off to a good start. Other notable performances came from Alexander Ledger who had not played for 2 years (50 retired) and Simon Marsh (50 retired). We finished our overs having hit 264 and all players got to bat.

After a sumptuous tea, Nick Charlier and George Petrie opened the bowling. Alex ledger cameoed with the ball for one over and took a wicket and gracefully retired to the boundary where he dropped a pair. Tom Ledger, George Ledger, Guy VN all bowled well with George Ledger taking 4 catches. Wickets started to gently fall however the run rate did begin to sneak up due to a few of the Tusmore bats digging in. John Bullock joined the fray to throw down some hard to hit “military medium” in an attempt to keep the run rate down. Simon Marsh being a sporting chap was bowling at half pace due to a few young in the team but helped keep the run rate down. Mark Bradburn was injured to stood fast in the slips and we enjoyed much of his “banter” if you can call it that.

Despite our best efforts, the Tusmore Captain, Roger Yates came in at 10 and took the game away from us with an excellent knock. However cricket was the real winner – an excellent and most sporting day which will hopefully be repeated next year and in many years to come.

Fantasians vs Palmers Brewery – 17th July 2013

Thank you to 11 Fantasian heroes. In beating Palmers Brewery on Wednesday 17th July you gave me eight hours bragging rights against Cleeves Palmer at Lord’s the following day.

North Perrott is a glorious ground which we are lucky to enjoy. Although the batsmen gave us seven less runs than the 160 requested by the skipper there were some fine knocks from Jules Hill, Marcus Williams, and Banger. But it was in the field that we really excelled.

Rory McDonagh, Mike Chattey, and Mike Simon all contributed four overs for less than 18 runs apiece . Wickets were taken at regular intervals. Banger even spurning easy catches to claim the more lavish opportunities. Special mention must be made of Nico Macdonagh who kept wicket beautifully, stumping one off our opening bowler, his brother, and conceding perhaps one bye.

Palmers fought with brawn and keen eye to bring the match back into balance whenever we threatened to dominate. In a gripping last over we prevailed by a run to balance the series 3 all.

It was quite the best Fantasian team I have seen assembled. Congratulations to all and please give consideration to renewing this fixture at North Perrott next year.

Jules Hill, George Wissett-Warner, Mike Salmon, Andrew Younger, Marcus Williams, Rory Macdonagh, Nico Macdonagh, Charles O’Reilly, Peter Salmon, Tim Evans, Mike Chattey.

Fantasians vs Royal Armoured Corps – 21st July 2012

On officially the first “proper” day of summer, a youthful Fantasians side faced the Royal Armoured Core at Iwerne Minster. After some waiting (all Fants players were on time), the match began and we were put into bat. With some luck we had a team of specialist batsmen throughout the order. George Wissett-Warner and George Ledger opened the batting and did well to start the scoreboard off. George WW exhibited some masterful stroke play before retiring on 105 and Ollie Lintott did well on a sprained ankle to hit 45. There were surely some nerves in the RAC camp when looking at the scoreboard to see that we were 170-1 (rather better than the England score I might add). The middle order wore through the quick bowlers overs extremely well with the Wilson brothers and Stephen Blake batting well.

Towards the end of the innings, the RAC rather ran out of bowlers and after a change of wicket keeper for the last few overs, the obligatory “donkey droppers” came on to bowl allowing messrs Vere-Nicoll and Hope (who seem to be rather a regular pairing) to add 47 runs in the last 2 and a half overs. The Fantasians batted extremely well to finish the innings on 274 – 9.

Having assembled a strong batting line up, I was rather hoping that some could also bowl and I was not disappointed! Roly Ingleby-Mackenzie opened the bowling up the hill, unleashing some daemon late swingers in that “corridor of uncertainty”. Guy Vere-Nicoll opened also and due to his fitness issues was forced to bowl downhill…. to great effect I might add. Their opening batsmen were under pressure from the off, with chances in the air and some close LBW calls. After some missed chances, ball started going to hand, and staying in it and wickets began to fall. The Ledger brothers bowled extremely well taking wickets from either end and since it seemed like his day, George Wissett-Warner took a couple bowling some well flighted spin from the far end. Having not been so impressed with his keeping, Jamie Hope had a few overs and made up for his many wides by removing a middle stump and luckily took a 2nd through a Jonty Rhodes esque catch by Stephen Blake at mid on.

After a fantastic day at Iwerne Minster, the Fantasians took the final wicket with the RAC requiring 155 runs to win – so a great victory and a big thank you to everybody that played. Also a big thank you to Mary Ledger, Lesley Wright and Lucy Lintott for a delicious tea.

Team Sheet: George Wissett-Warner, George Ledger, Ollie Lintott, Archie Wilson, Stephen Blake, Henry Wilson, Tom Ledger, Guy Vere Nicoll, Roly Ingleby-Mackenzie, Jamie Hope

Hampshire Hogs vs Fantasians – 30th June 2012

Once again we had another great day at our fixture at the Hampshire Hogs and we miraculously managed to squeeze a full days cricket into what has been an unfortunately wet summer up until that point.

A last minute injury meant at the start of play the Fantasians were put into bat with only 10 men on the team sheet. An early wicket meant that Andrew Broderick was was joined at the crease early on by Mo Verjee. The two batsmen put a sturdy partnership before A. Broderick was bowled for 26. M. Verjee then carried his bat with what can only be deemed as fairly intermittent support from the rest of the Fantasians battling line up, with everyone playing cameos around what was a fine knock of 65.

A special mentioned must go to David Reid who on arriving just after lunch on a spectators ticket promptly found himself donning some whites and making up our eleventh man. His 3 minutes at the crease and score of 1 does not give justice to his enthusiasm to help the Fantstians in their moment of need.

The Hogs bowled tightly and although we fought hard we were eventually all bowled out for a not insurmountable 155.

The Fantasians were not however dead in the water and came out to bowl determined to make a game of it. James Allen opened the bowling and came steaming down the hill for what turned out to be a very productive spell. By the 7th over J. Allen had taken 3 wickets for 14 runs and we had the Hogs reeling at 33-3 at tea. Our early wicket taker was ably supported by the very accurate and elusive off spin on a Fantasians first timer, Charlie Yerburgh (cousin of the now, Mrs Broderick). He finished on excellent figures of 9 overs, 29 runs and 1 wicket, which went some way to defending what was as expected, a very reachable total.

Unfortunately with another 50 runs on the board we could have applied a little more pressure on their subsequent batsmen. But for all our efforts our total was not great enough. Always lively and attentive in the field the Fantasians were unable to take any more wickets. The Hogs won the game by 6 wickets.

Thanks for everyone who played and we look forward to an improved performance next year.

Team sheet: A. Broderick, C. Wilders, M. Verjee, C.Yerburgh, A. Bell, J. Allen, D. Merrifield, O. Leach, D. Mackay, A. Josephides, D. Reid

Andrew Bell

Palmers 1st June

A win takes us to two all in the series. A famous victory, chasing 160 to win, was completed with more than an over to spare.

It is always a joy to play on such a good ground even though it is a considerable drive for many of us. This year Palmers kindly returned the compliment and bought us supper after the game so we had a very jolly evening. Not least amongst the clamour was a call for a further 20/20 match in June. RAC at Bovington? Blandford Flies? Although last night’s fixture is not yet in the scorebook we hope to prise the details from the Palmers scorebook.

A bit like Gordon Greenidge Banger is more dangerous on one leg. Opening the bowling with Mike Chattey they kept things under control without looking like running through a decent side on a good track. We then had six overs of spin most notably Tim Evans’ left armers restricting the opposition. Charlie Leach gave us the four quickest overs at the end and we kept them down to 159. This was a par score on such a large ground and was kept in check with some notable fielding from George Wissett-Warner, Dante O’Reilly and Robin Leach.

One pretty rapid opening bowler was seen off by Jules Hill and the retiring Robin Leach (30 n.o.) and by the seventh over the run rate was up to 7. A quick fire 24 from Charlie Leach left us with 9 an over through the last six. No momentum was lost by Charles O’Reilly, Antony Earp, Andrew Younger and most importantly Tim Evans. The sight of a fully padded Brookie and Mike Chattey were enough to encourage our batsmen and discourage the opposition.

This is a great fixture but we do need to be at our best and youngest to win so last night’s win was a very notable performance against an experienced side who have pre season nets and play 20 odd 20/20 fixtures. Well done everybody

Charles O’Reilly

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Fants 6 a-side Competition

This was the third year that we have held the Fantasian 6 a-side competition and the first time that we had managed to get 4 teams (just). We changed the venue to the delightful ground at Buckhorn Weston with an even better pub and it resulted in probably the most even and competitive of the tournaments thus far.

There was a fine blend of youth and veterans (old knackers) with everyone contributing. The three teams were based around the families: Hussey, Howard and Malcolm (with Sandy monitoring from Baghdad through an American satellite). The fourth team was Sandpiper focused run by Anthony Hughes Onslow. Each team included a few talented young special guests (or ringers). It proved to be a very exhausting but satisfying day: all teams playing each other twice with 5 overs an innings. The result was decided at about 8pm with the Husseys defeating the Howards in the final match. This meant both teams ended level on points and honours even.

And what of the highlights? George Weyman scored more runs (86) and more sixes (6) than anyone else, but Max Austin Little (4), Chris Getty (3), Ed Hussey (3) and Robin Malcolm (3) struck some awesome blows. Max Austin Little, Roly Edwards and the veteran Hussey all took 4 wickets. There was one remarkable and unplayable over from Andrew Hussey when he moved it both ways off the seam. Jono Mills swooped around the outfield and was employed by more than one team. The champagne moment however was eventually getting Simon Ball to the wicket to bat where he was promptly run out without facing a ball. From the statistics below it was unusual that the old knackers performed better with the ball than with the bat but then all needed extended use of a pysio the next day.

The key performances are summarised below:


*Most Runs: Best Average*

G Weyman 86
R Edwards 68
C T-S 70
M Austin-Little 58
R Edwards 68
C Getty 64
R Malcolm 63
E Hussey 62
M A-Little 58
F Lowe 53
G Weyman 43
C Getty 32
E Hussey 31

Never out: F Ball and T Malcolm


*Most Wickets:

4 – M Austin-Little, A Hussey, R Edwards
3 – C T-S, J McPherson
2- T Malcolm, J Mills, J Howard, K Pelham, G Lintott, T Hussey

Best Average:
M A-Little 7.5
G Weyman 9
A Hussey 10.75
C T-S 17.7
R Edwards 18.25
J McPherson 23.3
J Howard 23.5
K Pelham 25.5
T Hussey 26

Hampshire Hogs Match – 3rd July 2010

Firstly thanks must go to match manager Andrew Broderick for his expert organization skills in delivering, by 10:30am, 11 fit and fully functioning Fantasians to the heart of Hampshire for this years outing against the Hogs.

Unfortunately Andrew had failed to notify the opposition of his plan to start their match at an earlier time to what had been officially planned. Therefore we found ourselves congregating in the centre of the pitch without any opposition in sight, scratching our heads and wondering whether we had the right date.

If anything it put us in good stead because as the opposition turned up in drips in drabs we put on rather an excellent front as an organized team with focus, poise and deadly potential!!

Play started at 11:30am on a gloriously hot day and I successfully lost the toss and we were subjected to the full force of the warming day. We were gifted however with an excellent opening bowling partnership of Mo Verjee and Jonny Howarth who started with promise, applying pressure and creating chances. It may well have been the loss of an extra hour in bed or the searing heat but catching was not our forte in the morning session and apologies must go to Mr Verjee for a number of drop catches in the field at the start. There were only so many fielders we could place in the slips unfortunately!

Wickets started to fall with the introduction at first change of Rory Crawford who with deadly accuracy commenced the fall of wickets. Along with his all-important 2 for 26 off 12 overs he was ably supported by Mo Verjee who eventually gave up with entrusting help form his team mates and took the first of his 2 wickets with an LBW that left their batsmen with a broken toe! Singular but equally important wickets came from match manager Broderick and Callum Clark respectively, leaving Jonny Howarth duly rewarded for his intelligent bowling with the team’s best figures of 4 for 39 off 12 overs.

There was some spirited batting from the opposition and the middle order held their own for periods but our bowling never really faltered and the pressure would eventually leave them with an all out total of 185 just before tea.

As with many a Fantasian game we could bat all the way down to 11 which is always encouraging when chasing a total. It is just as well because it turned out we needed the strength in depth. An explosive start from James Close-Smith was exactly what we were after. However none of his batting partners felt like hanging around with him too long until James Allan (35) steadied the ship and with an excellent partnership with Dave Merrifield (32). However we lost both of them in quick succession we found ourselves 7 wickets down after tea with still another 60 or so runs needed for victory. We fell back on those who had bowled so tirelessly in the field. Jonny Howarth (23) and Rory Crawford (31) saw to it that we came home safely only losing one more wicket at the death that saw Mo Verjee clinching victory for us.

Thanks very much to all who played. It was a great day and we look forward to continuing our winning streak next year.

Team sheet: J Close-Smith, A Yorke, N Francis, J Allan, A Bell (c), A Broderick,
D Merrifield, J Howarth, R Crawford, M Verjee, Callum Clarke

Hurlingham Match – 8th August 2010

Rain threatened to disrupt our yearly outing at the Hurlingham club. With the horrible prospect of the Fantasians having to take to the field in the rain we opted to bat first and also take on what was rumoured a much improved Hurlingham side head on. What we subsequently found was a very strong bowling attack which I doubt many of us who played, come across during a season. Their best bowler came on first change and bowled 16 consecutive overs and their off-spinner was playing his 22nd match of the season!

There was brave rearguard stand by James Broderick (49) and a master class in playing fast bowling from David Reid that allowed us to mount a modest total of 143. The rain came and heavily. We were still very keen to give it a game even though it seemed that the opposition were less enthusiastic. Maybe their season, much like the current county circuit is too full which leads to lack of free Saturday afternoons!

We bowled with gusto and although they were obviously a far superior side we put our all into our bowling and fielding. Mo Verjee had an excellent 9 over spell and was rewarded with the wicket of their most aggressive batsman. Mention should also go to Simon Staverly-Smith who bowling his trade mark leg spin, took a fine wicket asking the batsman to defend forward only for the ball to turn dramatically, flummoxing the batsman into knicking behind to the keeper.

In the end with 4 wickets down Hurlingham secured the victory. We played valiantly and graciously in front of obviously superior talents and look forward to next year.

Team sheet: A Broderick, M Verjee, J Broderick, A Bell (c), J Allan, J Hope, C Whigham, D Merrifield, D Reid, I Picton, S Staverly-Smith.

Dumped by Dumplings 25th June 2010

The bible tells of one story from the perspective of several witnesses. A similar compendium was composed for the Devon Tour

Old codger at Hatherleigh; Thirty years ago this side might have been worth playing. They are more deluded than fantasists

The bar maid; Stop talking bollocks and go to bed, none of you stand a chance even if you did know your malt from your rum

The bowler; One of the finest line ups assembled for the Fantasians on pitch which offered nothing, yet was more helpful than the fielders.

The batsmen; Must book in next year and lose some more of their balls. How come our bowlers couldn’t pinch one wicket while their bowlers stole six wickets of ours?

The opposition; Bring ’em on

A Fantasian; Last time I had a Dumpling was at school when I would also have eaten this lot

Request to the opposition; please can we play this teams parents, preferably their mothers

The waitress; You can always tell a man by his friends. I am not working for Andrew Younger any more

The weather expert; the sun was that hot that the following morning not only were there faces red, but also their eyes

Bovey Castle caddie on Sunday; They must be good cricketers; the balls went flying over extra cover and midwicket

Special thanks to Captain Morgan for his 55, his stalwart opening partner Robin Leach, Ollie Lintott and Tom Hussey in the middle order who were also our bait in the bar. Andrew H for his all round performance, Tony, the Australian batsmen and keeper (not sure it’s still cool to be an Aussie after the last few games/tournaments/series). Banger as an all-rounder on and off the field. Our specialist bowling attack; Peter Catarinella who must be adopted by the Fantasians, Mike Chattey a straight eight overs in overseas conditions and Brookie, so confident in our batting that he left at 6.30

For the record their two opening bats retired after scoring over 100 apiece. Both chanceless and we never became ragged or slowed below a good over rate. Peter Catarinella always gave us hope with his movement and bowled 8 overs for 35 (don’t work out the scoring rate of the others in comparison because it did not reflect their performance). The first chance came in the 37th over when two catches were put down and they cantered to 313 for none in 40 overs. Not, I believe, significantly over par. Despite the score it was a good bowling performance on a true track which only offered a little swing in the first ten. Our reply started with a 50 partnership and saw off the swing. The middle order saw some very profitable overs interspersed with some very dull ones (mostly bowled by their only player over 23) and there was too much left to do. Curiously we closed with a 50 partnership of Harrow drives and Rambler correctness and fell short by 71 runs

A very big thank you to everyone, especially Andrew Younger, it was a tour that made a few reputations and broke a couple

Charles O’Reilly

Palmers Brewery 2nd June

A great win last night on a good wicket with a jolly night at The Countryman where Robin Leach was awarded the Bowl for ’09 to much applause.

Palmers uncharacteristically dropped 6 six catches but bowled tidily and reasonably fast and straight. Those who triumphed against them were Charlie Leach, retired on 30, Andrew Younger 29 n.o., Dante O’Reilly 26, Freddie Strange 23. Three of them adding up to the age of the fourth. A good total of 150. However despite some athletic fielding, esp Freddie Strange, and twice as many catches held as dropped it was the arm of experience that did the damage; Chattey 4 overs, 1 maiden, 2 for 13, Brookie 4:1;28 (and it could have been more wickets) Tim Evans 3 3;13 Andrew Younger 3:27:2. Despite a not out 50 from Charlie Middle they fell at the end of the 18th over for 131

Thank you to all who played, spectated and drank

Next year North Perrott again and we had better play at half term!

3rd June 2010