The Valley Of Peace Cricket Club Inc.

Christchurch, New Zealand

Category: Match Reports (page 1 of 6)

Valley of Peace Presidents XI vs Captains XI, 3rd April 2022

The President’s XI Perspective

As the calendar moves into April, scheduling cricket can be a fraught proposition but the 22 Valley of Peace members who arrived to play the annual intra-club Presidents XI vs Captains XI fixture were greeted to a magnificent late summers day, hardly a breath of wind and although the track was a little damp to the eye, it was clear that a magnificent day of cricket lay ahead.  40 overs a side, max of 6 per bowler, batters retire at 40 the agreed terms and conditions.

After an initial visit to peruse the pitch, Tom Music was greeted with the news that he would have the honour and privilege of captaining Scott Cartwright’s President’s XI against the might of Jesse Tritschler’s Captain’s XI.  My losing record clearly not enough of a deterrent.  The teams were named in front of the watering hole and in his first success of the day, Music called correctly and chose to field.
One of the amazing aspects of the day was that of the 22 players named on Thursday to play that 20 were at the ground on Sunday – a pretty good strike rate in these Covid times.  Coincidently, the two players added, Ben Breitmeyer and Ray Steele were the opening bowler and batsman for ball one.  In the third over it would be Breitmeyer who would break the calm silence with the sound of leather hitting stumps with a peach of a delivery.  That success would be followed in the seventh over where Ollie Dugdale would pull in a fantastic diving catch to dismiss the dangerous Tom Byrne, setting the standard for a great fielding day for the Presidents selection.   Tim Fulton survived through the opening spell and was joined by Paul Bateman giving good support, enjoying good battles against Chris House, Nick Johnston and reliving old memories of the 1980s vs Tony Gray.   38 for 2 after 16 overs, match poised.

It would be the change to young Alex Fulton, fresh from his recent Glentunnel outing vs the Deans XI, that would bring immediate success, a nice stumping from Jim Smith to dismiss the positive Bateman for 12.  He had another wicket dismissing Anderson Junior while Wade Millar at the other end grabbed the wicket of George Ritchie who had struck 3 boundaries early.   In amongst all this, a piece of fielding will live long in the memory and perhaps Valley folklore.  Breitmeyer throwing in from the western boundary-breaking the stumps at the bowler’s end –  and by breaking I literally mean breaking – the direct hit leading to two pieces of stump catapulting through the air luckily not impaling Millar and the onrushing (not out) batsman.

The even younger Angus Fulton took over the bowling duties with Michael Kirkland.  Justin Dove and Tim Fulton (still there) mixing watchful defence and good strokeplay, Dove 2 “sixes’ impressive but the bowling of the young left-armer impressed the veteran bowlers in attendance.   At 93 for 5 in the 32nd over, things had progressed steadily but unusually when Music captains, bowling changes brought success with Gray, House, Breitmeyer, Millar and  Alex Fulton all enjoying success in short second spells (including a priceless father /son wicket removing Tim Fulton for a hard-fought 27) the innings would end at 114 all out in the 38th over.   The bowling figures make for excellent reading, Alex’s 4 wickets for 14 off 5 being the highlight, although Tony Gray’s 5 overs 4 maidens 1 for 1 were spectacular until his skipper gave him another over when Captain Jesse dispatched him for a “six” and 7 in total.

A beautiful lunch served up by Messrs Cartwright and David Hearn was appreciated by all and plans were set in place to chase down the total on the tricky but drying wicket, Ollie Dugdale and Nick Johnston were entrusted with the opening spots.  It would be George Ritchie that would impress early with the ball, bowling Dugdale and not conceding a run until his third over.  From there Music enjoyed the show as the powerful Johnston went about hitting six 6’s and four 4’s on his way to retiring on 41 with the score at 53 in the 11th over.  Anderson Junior (6-0-22-1) was bowling with good flight and extracting some turn, a quicker one accounting for Kirkland bringing schoolmate Breitmeyer to the crease.  Eight overs later, he retired on 40  (6 x 6’s, 6 x 4’s), a brutal knock with excellent strokeplay, then the gathered crowd told Music to depart on 27 to allow a re-creation of many a backyard battle with Alex and Angus Fulton facing up to the “googly king” and father Tim to see the lads home from 111 for 2. Tritschler would snare a Fulton wicket but success was reached in the 20th over, the President’s XI doing Scotty proud.

A great day had by all I believe, and as well as the toss and the match, a raffle win rounded off a pretty good trifecta personally.  The camaraderie during the match, with no small measure of banter and some excellent pieces of cricket, was wonderful to be a part of.  We welcomed Eddie Parsons as a Valley debutant, hopefully joining us for many games in the future.   With the Fultons and the slightly older Christ’s College lads that played, the future seemed assured.

From a member’s perspective, this game is a pleasure to play but I will also take this opportunity to offer a vote of thanks to our President and Captain for the work they do.  The behind-the-scenes efforts of Scott and Jesse make our Sundays at the Valley an awesome event.  To them and their committees, helpers, of course, our groundsman Ant and everyone involved, our sincere thanks.

And finally to Scott, happy to give you bragging rights over Jesse for another year!

Winter well everyone.

Tom Music
Valley of Peace Presidents XI Captain for the day

Short Scoreboard

Captains XI  114 all out in 38 overs
T. Fulton 27, Extras 29, Alex Fulton 4 for 14, B. Breitmeyer 2 for 7, W. Millar 2 for 10

Presidents XI 115 for 3 off 19.3 overs
N. Johnston 41 (ret), B Breitmeyer 40 (ret), T Music 27 (ret)

Presidents XI won by 7 wickets

 

 

Valley of Peace (Fultons) XI vs Deans XI, 20th Mar 2022

For most of us weekend cricketers, the problem is that we’re never out there long enough to find out whether we’re any good. This dilemma hung heavy above the dew at Glenntunnel Domain when a Fulton team representing Valley of Peace played the Deans XI on Sunday, March 20th 2022.

Expectation was fragrant and happiness and handshakes abounded as Fultons and friends assembled.

A team member, Bob Masefield (cousin Bob), noted that the Fultons were not as young as the opposition. Just wait until our 15-year-old and 12-year old arrives, I told him.

In fairness, the Fultons’ fortunes were always going to rely on the performance of our single (current) Premier grade cricketer, David.

People soon murmured: ‘So where’s the tall one today?’ Captain Tim smiled happily back at them as if the answer was standing before them, but no one took the hint.

The Fultons won the toss and chose to bat; cousin Sam and I (seven of us were Fultons so please indulge the lack of surname) opened the innings. Sam reckoned he last played cricket when Donald Trump won office but this big lump of a lad from the Military Police – HQ Burnham – soon settled. By this time, Tim was gone, wrapped on the pads and caught behind.

Brother John of Methven started to show his form of the ’90s at Swannanoa Domain before an untimely chip to field. His son George (15) quickly showed the excellent cricket tuition at CBHS, joining Big Sammie, then his uncle Dave, who increasingly wore the heavy expression of a man who knew he needed a 100.

Run-rate at the 20 over break was hovering around a mild 3 per over but while there was Dave (and Young George), there was hope.

Unfortunately, as per the game of cricket, something happened. George was dismissed, to be replaced by our other youth academy player, Angus. Straight off the mark with a single pushed to cover – well done, son.

Dave and Angus were soon locked in a heady contest with the craftiness of Andrew Nuttall, though it was Phil who made a critical breakthrough. A ball leapt at Dave’s defences, took an edge and was pouched by the keeper in a smart piece of work.

Well played Dave – a good start but how we needed that 100 from him.

Next, it was Gordon to the crease. After first posing for multiple pitch-side photos with his grandson, Gordon and Angus pursued the challenge of facing down Nuttall. It’s hard to know what advice is shared between players 60-odd years apart in age, but it must have been a good conversation – and a delight to see.

Angus straight batted for a few overs before being done, as so many have been, by a Nuttall variation of flight. Well played, son.

By now, as you may have gathered by the lack of commentary on scoring shots, we were struggling for runs and starting to lose wickets at an alarming rate. But we did see other magic moments, like Gordon batting with his cousins – firstly John, then Bob.

Gordon saw off a few partners by the end of it. As we threatened to compile 100 runs (team score, not Dave score) our Swannanoa Cricket Club bastions Lance Ryan and Geoff Olsen set about doing better than Fultons and Masefields. With Nuttall wreaking havoc among the tail, we finished with a muted 94.

Lunch – brought our own and the Deans brought some too. Sunshine and a 40-minute break to catch up with family and friends. Terrific.

Now, back to the heroic task of defending our 94.

After a warm-up on the Section 4 wicket, it was clear that we were missing a 2nd fast bowler to complement Geoff. So, in the style of Martin Crowe at World Cup 1992, captain Tim turned not to Dipak Patel but a left-arm spinner in the form of young Angus.

Not only did this bold opening move placate the fears of his mother, Fiona, who worried he wouldn’t get a go, it surely confounded the opposition. Twirling in from the southern end, Angus bowled two very respectable overs. For comparison, they were certainly more respectable than his father who came in at first change from the other end.

After Tim made it clear that, personally, he deserved no more than two overs of punishment, he called on Big Sammie from the northern end. Now, as described earlier, Sam is quite the ‘unit’. Loves his weights, does a bit of speed work and has a great appetite for work. And boy, did we work him…

After only a couple of looseners, it was clear that Sam had steam in his belly. He crashed back the stumps with one delivery and we all got excited. Big Sammie was puffing, but getting more and more excited as we called for more metaphorical blood at Glentunnel Domain.

Let me make it clear, it was too much to ask Sammie to bowl out the Deans, who in truth were smashing most of us to all parts, but well-bowled Cuz.

As the Deans’ innings exploded onward, it became vitally important for all of the Fulton XI to get a bowl before it was all over.

In all, the bowlers were John of Methven, Bob of Akaroa, John of Goughs Bay, Gordon of Swannanoa, Geoff and Lance of The City, George of Fendalton, Sam of Lincoln and Angus and Tim of West Eyreton. Only Dave of St Albans missed out on a bowl, but we had to punish him somehow for not scoring a 100.

After an exciting 20 over in the field, the Deans’ declared their winning innings closed – 15 runs ahead.

It was truly a magical day of cricket, that in some ways was not about cricket at all, though it must be said, the Deans XI were far too good for us on the day.

For some of us Fultons, result aside, this was the realisation of a dream that appeared to stand little chance until it happened. Thank you so much to the Valley of Peace and the Deans XI for indulging us in this fixture. Particular thanks to VOP’s Scott for his pre-match liaison and support; equally, Jo and team for mustering the Deans squad and Peter Williams, our umpire for the day.

And of course, a mighty thanks to everyone who played and came along to support. Blood is obviously thicker than water.

Match Day Captain (but not the head of the family), Tim Fulton

 

 

St Andrews Old Boys vs Christs College Old Boys, 13th Mar 2022

Success at the Valley of Peace, in this captain’s mind, revolves heavily around the toss. To be able to secure the rights to propping up the bar for the second half of the day is gold dust. And so it came to pass that this vital decision went the way of Christs College Old Boys. What followed was a champagne performance in the field.

The Christ’s opening bowling duo of Hugo Davison and James Thomson began well. The pitch showed good bounce and carry, and the ball hooped both ways under the guile of the pair. The first wicket came about when Simon Irving shouldered arms to a ball that swung viciously and wrapped him on the pads. The second came moments later when Fraser Offwood tamely drove uppishly to mid-on. With the openers removed Christ’s felt firmly in the driver’s seat.

A change at both ends saw the entry of our very own apostle of Warney, Nic Kyle, who with a Voltaren laced carcass bowled with flight, turn and rat cunning to stem the runs. At the other end a svelte Michael Davidson, bowling seam up, entered the fray by picking up his bunny Sandy McLeod with a rank half-tracker that surprised him with a genuine lack of pace causing him to spoon a catch to the safe hands of ‘The Paediatrician’ at square leg. The need for further therapy for Sandy is abundantly clear.

Both bowlers continued well without further luck, but with the sustained pressure building on both Jesse Tritschler and Scott Kilday to get a move on and the insertion of the Patron Saint of Ecdysiasts, Henry Holderness, something had to give.

A gentle push square of the wicket, a “yes”, a “no”, a “Dear God NOOO” and Jesse was ‘on his bike’ after a first-class piece of fielding from Nuts Rutherford swooping in and throwing the stumps down. Drinks were taken in the 22nd over with STAC at 72/4. Christ’s forwent the offer of water and set their sights on the first beers of the day feeling very much in control.

Post drinks, St Andrew’s Old Boys came out firing with Kilday and Dalman finding the boundary regularly until Dalman missed a straight one and was adjudged LBW. Hugo Davison struck again with Alex Toohey also ‘believing in the leave’, as the ball crashed into his foot on the middle stump. The return of James ‘doing it both ways’ Thomson saw 2 more scalps, bowled and LBW and Scott Kilday who had batted superbly was obviously becoming acutely aware that he was running low on partners.

Nic Kyle returned and picked up Kilday’s coveted scalp for 48 finishing himself with figures of 1-22 off his 8 overs. Tristan ‘The Paediatrician’ Petit squeezed in one over before Woody Anderson finished off the STAC innings with a series of bouncers at Ollie Dugdale, caught Jono Davidson. Ben Patton’s mercurial keeping kept everyone guessing throughout the day with some exceptional stops and some regulation misses. Bring more darts next time, Lego!

STAC had amassed a paltry 139 all out. Lunch was taken and as usual, the Valley spread was outstanding, tasting particularly good to the Christ’s lads.

The opening pair of Patton and Woody Anderson went straight to work, Patton being the early aggressor cutting and driving with vigour. Ben fell for 22 runs and the team on 43 and cruising. What followed was a mini-collapse as Jono Davidson fell for 3 caught on the ropes then Dr Petit for 4.

Enter Jim Blakely.

Calm as a Hindu cow, Jim played some superb shots all around the wicket while Woody continued quietly accumulating from the other end. Woody finally fell for a well made 27 with the team on 90.
Michael Davidson walked out oozing hostility and went straight to work dispatching the shell shocked STAC bowlers all over the place. The two made short work of the remaining runs required, Jim finishing with 43 and Michael a breezy 23. The match was all wrapped up by Christ’s College Old Boys in the 26th over.

Many post-match libations were had and we were served brilliantly throughout the day by David Hearn and Phil Smith in the morning and Rev. Cameron Pickering and Scott Cartwright in the afternoon.

Many thanks to the Valley of Peace for the wonderful hospitality, the ground was picturesque and the deck played beautifully throughout the day, an absolute credit to the groundsman Tony Polson.

Christ’s College captain, Hugo Davison

Valley of Peace vs Sydenham Cardinals, 20th Feb 2022

The day dawned fine and sunny after a deluge of rain on Saturday night, with all the cricket missed with the recent rain some players were apprehensive that we may not get a game in against the Sydenham Cardinals.

But sterling work from Ant had the covers off early revealing a very dry flat looking pitch and a somewhat wetter outfield.

The 2 captains agreed then to delay the game by half an hour and play a 40-over game, this suited the Cardinals as they normally play 20/20 cricket on Saturdays, and 50 overs may have been a stretch.

Having won the toss we elected to bat first, figuring the still slightly wet outfield might prove challenging for their bowlers. The Cardinals then proceeded to use their normal bowling strategy of taking a bowler off if they had runs scored off their over or did not get a wicket. This saw 10 different bowlers bowl one over spells before the process started again, in fact, it was not until over 15 that we lost a wicket so finally normal bowling spells could resume.

Our openers then got us off to a very solid start then, Craig Gibbs with a hard hit 40 retired and Tony Penny supporting him well with 23, with those 2 gone we struggled to keep the momentum going and apart from Richard Breitmeyer with a breezy 20 we paused somewhat in the 90s before a rearguard resurgence saw us through to 139, Lance Ryan ending with 25not out the mainstay.

Apart from Geoff Olsen, all our bowlers were of the slow variety and while Geoff’s opening spell of 5 overs for 6 runs was superb, and Craig Gibbs also bowled 7 overs of very tight off-spin, 3 of their first 4 batsmen were brutal on our other bowlers.

There certainly appeared to be more 6’s than 4’s hit and we could simply not stem their onslaught. There was however one nice little highlight just prior to the end of the game when Bert Walker cleaned bowled their Skip, Ben Larter, that wicket only slightly slowed their progress as they eased past our total in the 26th over.

So a well-deserved win to the Sydenham Cardinals and a great team to play, very enthusiastic and full of energy on the field and I am sure they all enjoyed their day at the Valley.

Phil Harris

Valley of Peace vs Peninsula Goat Herders, 6th March 2022

On a beautiful warm sunny morning, the Valley captain won the toss and invited the Peninsula Goat Herders to bat, but then things soon started to unravel! Star bowler Stan Wooliscroft only bowled 2 overs before eventually leaving the field and having to go home, feeling unwell, while Greg Jones bravely played, despite a groin strain (sustained on Friday night at touch rugby), but was unable to bowl his normally accurate mediums. And later another of our bowlers, Paul, wasn’t feeling well enough to bowl his full quota of overs.

And to compound this the captain dropped aggressive opener Richard Breitmeyer twice (one a sitter straight to him at mid-off), who needed no further invitation to cut loose even further against our depleted attack! Joined early on by his brother Mike, the two attacked in such fashion that 84 was up after just 10 overs! Eventually, when Richard retired and Mike was out after they’d enjoyed a swashbuckling 90 run partnership, we had a little bit of relief. But then skipper Ben Prain and Simon Whitherford both hit quick 20s, followed by Jamie Sumner smashing a rapid 38. So after 33 overs, the score was 200/4 – and with 12 overs still to go, we seemed to be staring down the barrel of a very big score of likely 270 or more.

But just after this Hamish Anderson junior bowled Sumner with a beautifully flighted ball, then the captain (only bowling because he’d run out of other choices!) had some unlikely success – helped by 2 very good catches by Ben Aveyard, both running in from the boundary. So we fought back very well in the field, to get their last 6 wickets for just 28 and keep them to 230 – with 4.2 overs unbowled. It was a hot tough day in the field, with 5 of our bowlers going for 7-8 an over, while easily the pick of them were our seamers Ben Aveyard (7 0 21 2) and Ben Larter – who had 3 catches dropped off him, beat the bat regularly but somehow couldn’t get a wicket?! While 6 of their wickets were bowled and Ben Aveyard caught the other 4 – one a c&b and the other 3 all very well judged outfield catches.

After the usual splendid lunch and with the temperature by now over 30 degrees, we obviously needed a good start – but their opening bowlers were accurate and penetrating, so at 35/3 we had a mountain to climb, However at this stage, Ben Larter joined young Nick Gibb and they both batted beautifully, to get us back into the game. Nick was eventually out for 47 (1 x 4 &16 x 2), after some very polished stroke play. While Ben, after taking his time to get himself in, cut loose in typically muscular style before retiring on 53 (9 x 4 & 4 x 2). And Hamish junior carried on the good work, getting to a very promising 29 and us into a most competitive position, now needing just over 60 runs off the last 10 overs.

But as the Goat Herders were perhaps starting to wilt a bit in the heat, and now with their own injury concerns – Bob Masefield sub fielding for big Bob Davidson (gone with a calf injury) and at least one other fielder limping badly – there came a turning point. Skipper Ben Prain was in the midst of a very accurate spell when Hamish drove him powerfully towards cover, where Jamie Sumner picked up a superb low diving catch, just off the grass! Greg (with 22) and our keeper Tony Danenberg (with 12) then batted bravely and tried hard, but the bowling and fielding had tightened up and the run rate climbed. And when they were eventually out to 2 good bits of fielding Graham Aveyard and the captain then both tried to hit out at everything, with mixed success. But with 13 eventually required off the last over it was always a long shot and Matt Hamett, who had earlier bowled very well, duly made sure of it. Matt finished with the best figures (7 1 25 3) while Ben (6 1 15 1) and Simon (7 0 27 1) also bowled particularly well.

So the Valley finished just 7 runs short at a valiant 223/8 in a terrifically enjoyable game played in all the best traditions of the Valley, the match was played in the best possible spirit, everyone got a bat and a bowl (who could!), 453 runs were scored on an excellent pitch and the game went to the last over. Accordingly all credit to (lead from the front captain) Ben Prain and his excellent Goat Herders team, always just the best and most enjoyable of opposition. And no day at the Valley would ever be complete without the also excellent team behind the bar – so in this case big thanks to Scotty, Ollie and Barry (king of the caterers!).

Short scoreboard:

Goat Herders 230 (R. Breitmeyer 54*, M. Breitmeyer 38, J. Sumner 38, B Walker 4-16, B. Aveyard 2-21 and 4 catches) beat
Valley of Peace 223/8 ( B; Later 54*, N Gibb 47, H. Falls-Anderson 29, M. Hammett 3-25) by 7 runs.

Bert Walker (losing Captain!)

Valley of Peace vs Waipuna Valley CC, 27th Feb 2022

The Valley of Peace faithful were greeted with less than Summer conditions for the fixture against the Waipuna Valley Cricket Club. Upon arrival to the ground, temperatures were hovering around the 12-degree mark, overcast, gloomy and perfect for bowling in what seemed English like conditions! A 45 over affair was agreed upon.

A quick inspection of the pitch and outfield confirmed that whoever won the toss surely would bowl first, much to the agreement of Hugo Davison! When the Waipuna Valley CC minivan pulled up, the immediate thought from several VOP players was ‘do you have anyone over the age of 30?‘ The navy blue, pinstripe blazers with Auckland Rugby coloured ties indicated these guys meant business!

For the geographical nuts out there, the Waipuna Valley CC is located in ‘Waerenga,’ almost halfway between Hamilton and Auckland. A quick glimpse of their webpage indicates they are also a rural cricket club promoting the summer game, aiming to have friendly matches and social events each year. They are currently developing their home ground and building changing rooms. One of the players was so proud of this, that he quickly pulled out his cell phone and proceeded to show the scorer photos on his phone!

The Wombats, as they are affectionately known, introduced themselves to the VOP players before the toss was made. Captain of the day Chris House making his inaugural debut as Captain of the Valley, headed out to the middle with Waipuna Captain Carl Schwarz. Interestingly, Carl had an uncanny look-alike to former Australian allrounder Shane Watson. After asking him what number he batted at, I was hoping he didn’t bat like him!

Waipuna won the toss and decided to have a bat. A strange decision, given the apparent juiciness of the Valley track. Captain House would have bowled anyway!

Some tight bowling in the first spell from Rumesh Warnakulasuriyage and Hugo Davison saw the visitors at 2 for 16 after the first ten overs. Rumesh doing the initial damage picking up 2 wickets in his first 3 overs. Both bowlers bowled with great pace and carry indicating batting could prove somewhat difficult. Hugo Davison got lots of chances in his spell but was unable to get the edge which he was threatening often.

First change bowler James Hoban came on and snared a wicket in his 3rd over putting the visitors at 3 for 43 after 18 overs. A 50-run partnership got the Wombats into a better position before Shane Watson’s look-alike Schwarz was caught off the bowling of Paul Dearsley. Paul ended up taking 2 for 17 off his 6 overs in a tidy spell.

Waipuna Valley all-rounder J Sullivan contributed with a well-timed 40, including 5 sixes and 6 fours. There was more tail-wagging than a labrador on steroids coming from the Waipuna Wombats which took their final score to 8 for 179. Bowling performance for the VOP went to Rumesh with an impressive 2 for 9 off 6 overs.

After a hearty lunch including the famous VOP curried eggs laid out in full glory by Barry and Scott, the VOP openers Paul Bateman and Jonty Dalziel did their best to weather the Waipuna Valley bowling attack which was accurate and threatening. Scoring was difficult, to say the least, with both openers back in the pavilion for an early refreshment and shower for 1 apiece. Things were not looking good at 2 for 6! After the first ten, the VOP was sitting similarly at 2 for 15 as the Wombats were.

Enter Mark Hume who came out and made a well-compiled 30. Hugo Davison was chomping at the bit to be the ‘anchor,’ that he does so well for the Valley. Hugo was looking very comfortable in the middle before being given lbw for 11. After this, the VOP unfortunately never got out of second gear with tight fielding and bowling from the Northern visitors.

Better late than never‘, Tim McConnell who was playing as a substitute player arrived just in the nick of time to make a well-compiled and aggressive 23, batting at 7. Captain House had a brain fade, toeing the ball to mid off for 7 thinking he could up the run chase. An injured Brian Plaskett, surely taking honours for the most elegant number 11 of all time, ran out of partners finishing with 5 n.o.

Despite some tight bowling from the Valley, restricting what was a formidable, young side for 179 off 45 overs, the visitors’ tight bowling and handy fielding eventually rolled the Valley for 108 off 33 overs. Time was definitely on the Valley’s side had we held our wickets and batted with our heads down.

Cricket was the eventual winner on the day as the Waipuna lads were top-notch and a pleasure to play against. The invitation was laid down from the Wombats for a potential rematch next season, including a possible trip to their domain. The 4-game South Island road trip came to a successful end for the Waipuna CC finishing 4 from 4. For the VOP, it’s back to the drawing board and a reset of tactics for the next fixture. See you all in the nets!

Thank you to Scott, Barry, Cameron and everyone who assisted on the day to make for a very enjoyable occasion yet again. It is safe to say the visitors were impressed and enjoyed their experience at the Valley.

Chris House, Captain for the day.

 

Paul Bateman taking guard

After-match at the Valley of Peace; is that Shane Watson?!

Valley of Peace vs Swannanoa Cricket Club, 30th Jan 2022

Arousing to the cicadas chirping early on game day Sunday is always a welcoming sign for a quality day of cricket. The scene was set and arriving at the Valley of Peace ground is always a sentimental moment. Picture perfect with blue sky, dappled sun across the pitch and the outfield lush, green and mowed to symmetrical perfection.

The fixture against the Swannanoa Cricket Club is always a challenge. Hardened Saturday players who fight to the end as valid competitors; we were not disappointed.

Winning the toss the Valley inserted Swannanoa CC, for no other tactical reason other than being closest to the bar for the afternoon session. We were a confident bowling squad who bowled deep. The original VoP team had been decimated for COVID 19 reasons losing five players on the Monday prior, following the new traffic light changes. Full credit to Hugo Davison for assisting in completing the team. Several players were on debut, including Jonty Dalziel, Jaime Havill (aka The West Coast Warrior) and Jacob Haley, a promising talent aged 12. Spirits were high after the Friday afternoon net session, even higher after the Friday night rehydration session, which was located in Cougar Town. Claims of future greatness flowed; the details best left on the road.

After a couple of early chances went to ground, Swannanoa were trucking at four (4) an over with plenty of wickets in hand. Full credit to Hugo Davison for an opening spell of ‘freight express’ and The West Coast Warrior, who bowled with flight, dip and bite, for creating early chances.

The first changes, Harry Peeters and Benji Andrews bowled quality line and length completing eight-over spells on the trot, restricting our competitors scoring with minimal reward. Alex Toohey came on as second change from the members end with a vengeance, bowling at pace with movement both ways off the pitch; a miserly spell producing fruit with final figures of 2/3 off 6. An equal foil at the northern end, Sam Sidey, produced a quality bowling performance, seeing his allotted 8 overs out with figures of 3/19 off 8. Jaime Havill came back on for his second spell from the member’s end to tidy up the tail finishing with figures of 4/24 off 7. Supporting final spells from Jacob Haley bowling well on debut.

Supported well in the field and holding our catches, our bowling attack contained Swannanoa to 124 all out in the 41st Over. Highlights for Swannanoa were Lindon Adonis scoring 27 and their Skipper John Whitcombe anchoring the innings with 26.

A glorious Canterbury afternoon stretched out before us, we ate and drank like kings at lunch, perhaps too comfortable glowing in our success from the morning.

Swannanoa brought a consistent line and length and fielded well. Restricted scoring early meant we were under pressure from the outset. Brief partnerships in the top order were interrupted with regular wickets falling. The most significant partnership was built in the middle order with Hugo Davison and Sam Chamberlain. Willy Wonka bringing the chocolate and a pleasure to watch in the middle. Some additional flurries were supported early from Jonty Dalziel and Jim Blakely. At 90/6 with plenty of overs in hand we were positive we could get over the line. Full credit to Swannanoa for their bowling and fielding unit restricting runs.

As the pressure and the beating sun continued, Hugo anchored the innings defiantly, batting himself in and scoring late in the day. Runs from the lower order proved limited and partnerships were broken with regular wickets falling. The VoP was tentatively positioned at 108/9. Jacob Haley batted bravely, keeping out several deliveries. Hugo punished the loose balls clearing the boundary on several occasions and milked the strike effectively to have us 124/9. One to win leaving Jacob one ball to face before the end of the over to rotate the strike.

The game ended in a tie 124/10, leaving Hugo Davison 29 Not Out. As they say, cricket was the winner on the day.

The hosts for the game Scott, Barry, Cameron and Jesse had the bar prepped for an extended rehydration session due to the limited overs and low scoring game. Full credit to Swannanoa for their fielding and bowling attack, bowling line and length and fighting to the end.

A big thank you to the Valley hosts, The Valley groundsman and Swannanoa for a great game of cricket and a great day out.

 

Justin Hayley

 

Valley of Peace CC vs Swannanoa CC post-match presentation

Valley of Peace CC vs Swannanoa CC post-match presentation; check that scoreboard!

Valley of Peace vs Christchurch Police XI, 16th Jan 2022

After some reasonably heavy losses against the Christchurch Police XI over the last few years the Valley tried to field a team who could steady the ship. On arrival we were treated to a beautifully manicured outfield and block – one wonders if the presence of the Hagley Oval head groundsman in the Valley side put extra pressure on our own ground staff for this fixture?

The toss was won by the Police who decided to insert the Valley side. The openers made a watchful start, Jimmy Cannan hitting a couple of superb cuts before a dreadful mixup saw him standing next to the other opener in the 4th over asking who’s call the run really was. The Police bowlers really did hit their marks, and having former first-class cricketers coming on at first change is a sign of how accurate their openers really were. The Valley batting card shows a very slow run rate – from 10/1 after 4 overs to 31/2 after 15 overs. Ben Larter (35) and Simon Irving (15) helped to steady things putting on 50 for the third wicket before the Police brought Mike Kingston into the attack (5-17-8) who really started the wickets tumbling. At 91/7 the script for this Police fixture looked to be not straying too far from the usual, but Tom Byrne (17*) and Gareth Gibson (14) added what would become a match-winning 24 run partnership for the last wicket-taking us from 114/9 through to 138 all out.

Great lunch in the sun (thanks to Phil, John and Scott) and the Valley were not overly confident but did know they had something to bowl at. Nick Johnston looked dangerous early in his innings and so when Kurt Bayer’s (3-17-7) 11th delivery was lofted to Rupert Bool at mid-off it was a very important catch that was held safely. Gareth Gibson (2-14-4.5) was offered the new ball and the wind and took both up with some excellent pace, carry and line on offer. Ben Larter (4-21-8) came on and found the edge of the other opener and the Police were at 25/2 after 8 overs, certainly not behind the run rate at this stage. The Valley fielding effort was superb, with all of their top 6 batsmen being caught and no catches dropped – again, not something that we see every week in the Hoon Hay Valley.

The Police managed to lose regular wickets from here going from 44/3 through to 86/6. At this stage, young Hamish Falls-Anderson (0-19-7) came on with his off-spin into the wind and really managed to tie down that one end well. We had a bit of a scare with former Canterbury player Willie Lonsdale and their player of the day Mike Kingston putting on 40 for their 7th wicket, but after a sharp caught behind catch was held off Bool (1-10-4) 112/7 quickly became 115 all out.

So an excellent win for the Valley against an evergreen Police side, a match played in great spirit and we look forward to January 2023 to do it all again.

Short Scoreboard

Valley of Peace – 138 all out off 43.5 overs

Ben Larter 35
Paddy Sullivan 2-12-7.5
Mike Kingston 5-17-8
L Wolf 2-24-5

Christchurch Police XI – 115 all out off 36.5 overs

Dave Robertson 21
Gareth Gibson 2-14-5.5
Kurt Bayer 3-17-7
Ben Larter 4-21-8

Tom Byrne – VOP captain for the day
Jesse Tritschler – match report author

Valley of Peace vs Christchurch Golf Club XI, 12th Dec 2021

The story of this match starts well before the 11 am Sunday start. All the players and spectators are very grateful to Ant Polson who took the extra time and effort (and had the foresight) to cover the wicket from the Christchurch rain a couple of days out. That, along with Sunday morning cover assistant Jesse, meant we would start on time, the sky overcast, the heavy rain I’m told in rural Canterbury staying away and youthful Christchurch Golf Club XI team winning the toss with Captain Glenn Bongartz delighting in inviting the Valley to bat.  A 45-over match, 8 overs per bowler, was agreed.

Music and Mario Williams were well contained early by Mika MacDonald and Fraser Mearns, the latter in his first CGC vs Valley match, making a double breakthrough in his fourth over, having Williams neatly caught and trapping Jono Collins LBW.  Terry O’Loughlin came in and solidified matters, Valley working hard to get to drinks at 57 for 1 after 25 overs. Drinks often brings wickets and it would be Steve McLeod that would dismiss O’Loughlin (12), and then Valley debutant David Lloyd (0), in the first over after the break. Tony Penny would be another victim two overs later, 67 for 5 in the 28th; not a great position. Some positive batting from Hamish Falls-Anderson (Junior) with 11 which then brought East Shirley legend Tony Gray to join Music at the crease, who had been toiling away at the other end against some good bowling and an absolute deluge of commentary from most of the CGC XI,  all in very good humour, of course, his past time at the club meaning this match was akin to the Ashes test for him (as was his strike rate).

Gray with a breezy 20 not out, Music ending the innings carrying his bat and the total would be 146 for 6, and some fine death bowling from Callum Cameron making things difficult and the pace a vast change from the leg-spin wonders of Bongartz and chief selector Callum MacAlpine.  The CGC bowled well, most of the bowlers improving as their spells went on. McLeod the pick of the bowlers with his 3 wickets, the Valley probably 15 or so below par (to steal a golfing phrase).

Golf Club started with an aggressive mindset against seamers Graham Aveyard and Chris House in reply, their 48 off 14 overs being twice the score of the VOP in comparison.   The better news was 3 wickets had been snared, veteran spin twins Gray and Stan Wooliscroft having one each, Stan accounting for the talented Cameron LBW for 26. However, this would pair Gareth Sanders with CGC MVP Warren Wisneski, (the difference in this match, three years running)  the battle with my spin twins being a fascinating watch for 16 overs. My third spin option, Falls-Anderson (only about one-quarter of the age of the other two)  then dismissed both dangermen LBW to leave CGC 91 for 5 after 30 overs.  Hamish bowled very well, also taking Bongartz LBW and having McLeod caught by  Music to end his spell with 4 for 24.   House returned to dismiss MacDonald, the catch diving forward at backward point by the Ginger Lloyd should go down in Valley history.  It was a beauty! 118 for 8 after 39 overs,   29 off 6 required.

The Valley team had caught well but unfortunately, we missed a couple of skyers, but we hung in there, Mearns and MacAlpine taking CGC to 138 with an over to go.  The real story would become the three boundaries (one “6”) by MacAlpine in the 45th over to bring his team home with one ball to spare. Our bowlers found it hard to bowl to many of the batsmen whose golfing and hand-eye ability shone through and no more than Callum in that over where he iced the game, just as I as Valley captain dared to dream we could cause the upset. The 28 run 9th wicket partnership dashed those dreams.

My six bowlers all did well, but we couldn’t get across the line although I will point out the improvement from the consecutive 5 wicket, 113 runs and 40 run losses over the last three encounters.

After the game, we thanked Andrew Levenger and David Eathorne for their fine hosting (with awesome assistance from apprentice Josh House).  Glenn and I have named the trophy I regularly hand over the D Eathorne Trophy, a fine member of both clubs. Again to Ant and the club committee, thanks for the support, and to the Golf Club team, hope you enjoyed the day and I look forward to the 2022 battle.

Short Scoreboard

Valley of Peace   146 for 6 off 45 overs

Music 66 not out, Gray 20 not out, McLeod 3 for 13, Mearns 2 for 10

Christchurch Golf Club 147 for 8 off 44.5 overs

Wisneski 26, Cameron 26, Falls-Anderson 4 for 24

Golf Club won by 2 wickets with one ball to spare.

Tom Music
Captain for the Day

 

Valley of Peace vs Tait Communications XI, Fri 19th Nov 2021

On arriving at the ground, I have never in my very privileged time of over 40 years playing at The Valley seen it looking better! While our Valley team included 3 Bens – “young” Ben Aveyard, “middle” Ben Rogers and “Big” Ben Larter.

On a lovely warm sunny day Ellery won the toss for the Tait Communications XI and elected to bat, and after being 9/2 Ellery himself and Les Humphries started taking advantage of the excellent true pitch with good bounce, and fast outfield, to start scoring freely. They had taken the score to 56 when Big Ben took a terrific running catch at long-on to remove Ellery, off Jamie Livingstone (having his first bowl since February, a good one). But this brought Sean Stagg in, all-round scourge of our team in last year’s close battle, and he and Les had rattled the score on up to 107/3 at drinks after 20 overs, at an impressive nearly 5.5 an over.

After drinks though our 2 spinners Wade Millar and Paul Dearsley both bowled well in tandem and pegged the scoring rate back, then after Les then Sean had both retired for very well made 40’s, Wade made further inroads with a double-wicket over. Middle Ben chipped in with 2 wickets in a valuable little spell and we had done well to have them 168/9 before the 2 retired batsmen returned. They rattled on another 22 before Big Ben capped an extremely good all-round performance by bowling Sean – Ben ended up with 2-13, THE catch and a run-out. Jonathan Davidson also got a run-out with a great side-on throw and overall our fielding was of a very high standard, with only 1 hard chance missed. Tony Danenberg kept very well, holding 2 good catches.

Following an excellent afternoon tea, our openers were soon into their work, and when Simon Carter was out in the 10th over after a good innings of 23 the score was already 53. Our other opener, young Ben batted superbly well and Mark Hume also hit the ball beautifully, both ended up retiring after an excellent partnership and at drinks, we were well on track at 125/1. Jonathan Davidson added to his consistently good record at the ground with 25, including 2 absolutely massive 6s, and Big Ben also hit 2 huge 6’s in his innings, before being caught on the boundary for 16. All the while middle Ben was batting very steadily and well, eventually finishing on 26* as we reached 192/3 with 5 overs to spare – a tribute to the top quality of the pitch.

For the Tait XI Ellery bowled well and economically and Les followed up his terrific batting with the best bowling figures, while they were handicapped by Sean (the destroyer of our middle order last year in a 6 run loss) being injured. Although he still mustered impressive pace a couple of times from just a 2 yard run up! And their opening bowler Tanya was accurate, after earlier hitting a couple of impressive boundaries. But the stand out in their effort was Khasi – who had the misfortune to have his first 2 balls both snicked at catchable height through the slips, then next over dropping a hard caught and bowled that injured his hand. But he stayed on and later took an extremely well-judged catch, off an enormous skier from Jonathan, just in front of the bar.

As always many thanks are due to our fine and friendly hosts on the day, Phil and John. Thanks too to Graham Aveyard for umpiring all of the 1st innings, though naturally, he didn’t want to umpire the 2nd innings as his son was opening! While our 3 Bens were responsible for 92 of our runs and 6 of the dismissals in the field – so echoing the captain’s pre-match comment, they definitely did help ensure we BENt the Tait XI to our will 🙂 And finally, we were pleased to record the first win in 3 games against the Tait XI, in a game played totally in the best spirit of the Valley – with the perfect weather and ground conditions making the day an absolute pleasure 🙂

Scores:

Tait XI – 190 (L. Humphries 53*, S, Stagg 48, B. Larter 2-13, B. Rogers 2-14, W. Millar 2-32.

Valley of Peace – 192/3 (B. Aveyard 41 retired, M. Hume 41 retired, B. Rogers 26*, J. Davidson 25, S. Carter 23, L. Humphries 2-26)

Bert Walker
Valley of Peace Captain

Christ’s College Old Boys vs Christ’s College 1st XI, Sun 14th Nov 2021

On a beautiful morning with an uncertain forecast, the Christ’s College XI assembled to challenge a team of Christ’s College Old Boys of mixed ages. The Old Boys captain Tom McClean advised the College team that the Old Boys would have first use of a hard and fast pitch. Lachie Harper and Tom McClean saw their team through to 50 in the 10th over, but at 103 for 5 in the 23rd over it was anyone’s game. Harper went through to make a well compiled and classy 110, and when a shower of rain stopped play in the 43rd over the Old Boys declared at 224 for the loss of 8 wickets. The College bowling had been steady, and the fielding had been outstanding.

The College XI never really got going with the bat. Troubled by Hugo Davison and James Thomson from the start and then by Harrison Lund, assisted by some very good catching and fielding, only Sam Idiens the captain looked comfortable, and the side was dismissed for 120.

A very good match played in good spirit in front of an appreciative crowd of supporters. Our thanks to both teams, Stephen Dods, Andrew Levenger, Hugo Davison, and the Valley of Peace led

by Scott and Tina Cartwright, and Derek Banks.

Derek Banks

Gathering of the two Christs College teams

Valley of Peace vs Army Officer’s XI, 7th Nov 2021

The day began with a very light drizzle and mist over much of the city – but the groundsman Ant Polson was on the phone early saying that the block had been covered and we should be OK. By our 11am start time things had brightened up a little but a persistent wind from the Pavillon end kept up most of the day.

The Valley was very excited to be welcoming back our Army Officer’s XI cricketing rivals after a many year hiatus in this fixture – the result of Major Jimmy Martin and our very own Ollie Dugdale (Flt Lt ret.) putting their heads together in the offseason.

The Army team were the consummate Valley guests – incredibly punctual, well dressed and very keen on the cricket field. Further, Capt Waaka Parkinson’s ability to find lost cricket balls in the long grass by a mixture of trigonometry, dead reckoning and semaphore type signals saved us a lot of time (and a fair few balls) during the first innings.

The day began with an excellent speech by Club Captain Jesse Tritschler as he reminded everyone of the proud history between the cricket club and the Army. It also served to introduce the prize for the winning side – the GOC’s ‘War and Peace’ trophy which had not been contested since the mid-1990s. From there a 50 over match was agreed upon and the Valley won the toss and elected to bat first. It is still undetermined whether having 7/8 Captains on the cricket field at once is a new experience for Valley members or not!

Sandy MacLeod and Charlie Due opened the innings getting through to 59 before we lost Sandy (30) and then Tom Music (0) in quick succession. At the other end, Charlie saw off an excellent opening spell from Army XI Captain, Capt Dougal Munro. Josh Blackmore (41) came to the crease and kept the runs flowing and we got through to 106/2 at drinks. Afterwards, Charlie kept swinging and ended with a very fine 102* – the Valley total getting through to 239/6 after 50 overs. The Army XI showed true team spirit in using 9 bowlers on the day and having across the board fitness and a spare fielder or two on rotation made for great viewing from the scorer’s box.

Thanks to Tina and Scott for a lovely lunch in the sun (it did appear during the break) and the chase was on.

Kurt Bayer (0-7-20) – channelling Richard Hadlee with a hint of Movember – took the new ball downwind and bowled good lines with some pace to keep the Army openers in check. Maj Alex Bowyer and Capt Dougal Munro both looking good early doors with some technically excellent boundaries being hit. Chris House into the wind was successful in his second over – delivering a wicket maiden in what became the start of a very good day at the office for him – 6 wickets from his 7.2 overs conceding 31 runs. George Ritchie (2-4-4) and Charlie Due (1-3-7) came on to relieve the hard-working opening bowlers. Some excellent catching was on display (not always the case for Valley sides) with 6 catches being taken and none dropped – the highlight being Kurt leaping up with his left hand to grab Chris’s 5th wicket. The Army were eventually dismissed for 62 after 21.2 overs.

It was a great occasion and the Valley could not have asked for better visitors – an excellent day and we truly hope the Army will be back next summer to try and win ‘War and Peace’ off us.

Sandy MacLeod – Valley Capt for the day

 

Older posts