Match Reports

Extraordinary Compton Slays Compton!

Oakley park has witnessed some extraordinary hitting in its long history, but few players at the club have been more extraordinary than Brad Compton-Bearne who, in a manner one could only describe as unorthodox, clubs the ball with such ferocity, even his mistimed haymakers sail over the boundary.

The Oaks were in trouble yesterday as after a great early start with wickets for Brad (yes him again) andGeorge Lethaby, the impetus was lost when the Compton number 3 took advantage of a dropped catch and punished the latter innings bowling with some fine stroke making.

The total of 168 could have been worse, but 4 late wickets for Will Bentley at least curtailed Compton and halted a late charge at 200. Pick of the bowlers was you know who, with 1-18 off 10.

Chasing the target, the Oaks were 0-2 then 2 for 3 before Jack Brundle and Kalum Sappumannagesteadied the ship, aiding the score somewhat painfully to 48-3 in the face of some excellent tight bowling.

When Kalum went LBW, the stage was set for a Brad innings as the Oaks were well behind the run rate on48 after 25 Overs. There was a feeling around the ground that we were about to witness a golden duck, or utter carnage.

BANG…SIX…BANG…SIX…BANG…SIX! That’s right, we were witnessing the latter, as Brad, so well supported by Jack at the other end, unleashed hell on the Compton players who had assumed they were on a stroll in the park and on their way to a comfortable victory.

Kalum, our new Sri Lankan player, who had shown class and text book technique in his innings of 24, looked on in utter bemusement as six after six flew over the fence with such ferocity it beggared belief.“Who is this maniac?” he appeared to be thinking to himself.

The only surprise at the one ‘chance’ that did come Compton’s way was when the ball screamed into the chest of their fielder, it didn’t go through his ribcage and come out of the other side ‘Tom & Jerry’ style.


King of Carnage: Brad Compton-Bearne

It was fitting that with two needed for victory Brad was on 98, a point at which no one was in doubt that Brad would club it to the boundary. He did of course, completing an astonishing century that stunned Compton into silence when just half an hour earlier they assumed they were cruising to victory.

So after being on 48 off 25 Overs, suddenly we had reached 170 off 37 Overs in an innings that took 38 balls and included 12 sixes; you could barely make that story up.

When he walked off, Brad shrugged his shoulders and said, “I suppose that was the only way we were going to win.” 

He is one strange bloke is Brad, but we love him all the same.

A special mention to Jack Brundle, who battled through for a chanceless 34 not-out, carrying his bat to make Brad’s innings possible.

Incredible stuff.


Dique’s Ton Not Enough to Inspire Oaks!

A wonderful knock by Gerry Dique, who carried his bat in an innings of 120 not-out, was not enough to inspire the Oaks to a defendable total at much fancied Odiham yesterday.

Batting first on a good wicket, the Oaks knew a defendable score would be around the 250 mark and whenGerry and Dan Sumner (32) put on a first wicket stand of 70 the omens look good.

Odiham & Greywell I v Oakley I-1

All Ton in Vain: Gerry’s 120 was not enough to inspire an Oaks victory

However, Clive Welsman (16) was the only other batsman to get into double figures as the innings stalled just when it needed impetus and 208 was always going to be a low total to defend.

The Odiham openers got off to a flyer and despite some decent bowling from the Oaks, the game was quickly racing away from them under a barrage of boundaries.

Dan Sumner (2) Clive Welsman, Tom Holbroook and Alex Brundle, picked up consolation wickets but Odiham reached the target without too much distress in just 33 Overs, emphasising the realistic target the Oaks had needed to set.

The boys must dust themselves down and go again and somehow look for a batting formula that will build on the foundations set by the openers to start winning matches in a competitive league.

Up the Oaks!

Oaks Relish Long Hot Sumner

When you play cricket, every now and then comes along an occasion to relish, admire and applaud.

On this particular day, it could have been Bob Lethaby’s  stunning 2 for 8 as he tore through the tail of Waverley CC when they required just 70 off 2 Overs, but even that fantastic achievement was eclipsed by his former pupil, Dan Sumner.

Dan faced the first and last balls of a 40 over match and ended with an innings of 137 not-out that was almost faultless, with early patience turning into shot making and then outright aggression in what was a fabulous knock.

Of course, a great knock needs partners and after a middle-order collapse featuring yet another vintageBob ‘through the gate’ Lethaby dismissal, Dan was grateful for the valuable support of Alex Brundle (26) Nathan Rabley (18) and Tom Barnes (19 not out) as the Oaks amassed 214.

Chasing the target, Waverley never really got going despite some resilient stuff from their opener, who made 57 before falling to the raw pace of Bob Lethaby, steaming in from the Trenchard Lane End like a man running through quicksand in hobnail boots with a piano strapped to his back.

Other wickets came for 14 year-old debutant Matt Jones, his brother Dan, Brad Compton Bearne andTom Barnes, as Waverley fell well short of the target.

However, all the plaudits go to Dan Sumner who played wonderfully in one of the classiest innings that Oakley Park has witnessed in recent years.

Well done Dan and well done Brad, who experienced his first Sunday win as Oakley skipper.

Up the Oaks!

Batting Calamity Wrecks Oakley Victory Charge!

A batting collapse on a par with an episode of Laurel & Hardy, had the Oakley One’s cursing themselves for throwing away a certain victory before eventually scrambling a tie with the scores locked on 158.

Bowling first, Jimmy Bright and Tommy Holbrook were in fine shape, pinning down the Whitchurch attack with some excellent bowling and when the breakthrough was made, courtesy of a spectacular catch byMichael ‘Woody, Woodman, Woodstock’ Wood, it was the least the Oaks deserved.

Even with wickets hard to come by, the Oaks were well on top as the scoreboard stagnated, with Clive Welsman once again causing problems for scoring batsmen with outstanding figures of 1 for 19 off 10 overs.

Other wickets went to Mark Potter, Jimmy Bright and Alex Brundle, who was excellent late on with a vital 3 for 23.

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Great Start: The Oaks bowled and fielded exceptionally well

Chasing 158, the Oaks dug in with Dan Sumner and Gerry Dique looking comfortable as they put on a solid opening 50 partnership. However, when Gerry departed with Woody going soon afterwards, it began to look like the game would not be all plain sailing.

Paddy Saines steadied the ship in a 35 run partnership with Dan, who remained steadfast as he passed 50, an excellent knock on a tough pitch. However, when both went in quick succession, chaos ensued with wickets falling like dominoes on the leaning tower of Pisa.

A collapse featuring more ducks than a village pond then saw the Oaks go from 124-3 to 134-9, leaving a bemused looking Alex Brundle and Clive Welsman at the crease with 25 needed and the game looking done.

However, in another twist, they hung on, ticking the scoreboard along, and when Alex pumped a six in the last over, it looked like a victory from the jaws of an inexplicable defeat. With one ball left and two needed, Alex miscued and the game seemed up, however, a no-ball saved him and tied the score.

With the extra ball, Alex missed and just failed to complete his heroic innings but he had still rescued the Oaks with 17 runs as the number 11, helping them to at least avoid a humiliating defeat.

Looking at the first team line-up, it is full of players who can bat well, but in cricket, on a tough pitch, you have to earn your runs and too many players failed to do that, an issue that needs addressing in training.

MOM: Dan Sumner – An outstanding half-century on a tough pitch

Up the Oaks!

Sunday Oaks Master the Art of Batting Ineptitude!

A vomit inducing batting display by the Sunday Oaks was the catalyst for a disastrous and thumping defeat at the hands of local rivals, Farleigh, on a scorching Sunday where temperatures hit 25 centigrade.

Batting first, the Oaks looked pretty safe with Michael Wood and Alex Brundle getting off to a steady start. However, when AB holed out and was followed by the daft run-out of Woody, it was only Matt Vickerssteadying the ship.

Bob Lethaby came in at four, impersonated an epileptic cat break dancing on a hot tin roof before departing for a calamitous one, and was soon followed by Brett King and George Lethaby, who chopped on as he attempted to cut Andy Woodgate.

When Matt Vickers went for an excellent 43, wickets tumbled with Brad Compton-Bearne getting cleaned up going for an obligatory haymaker at thin air and Dan Sumner being a tad unfortunate to go to a flying catch.

When Perry King went for a duck it left Mark Potter abandoned without scoring and Oakley with an awful total 117 off 26 allocated Overs.

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The Oaks were well beaten at a scorching Oakley Park

Defending the score, the Oaks bowled well enough with wickets for Mark Potter and Perry King early on, but Darrel Dimond arrived at he crease and began to dig in with grit and determination.

Darrel, the Oaks first team captain, thrives on pressure and the stick he was taking in the field was meat and drink as he dead batted everything that was thrown at him.

Watching the early part of a Darrel Dimond innings is about as appealing as an afternoon in a hot tub with Anne Widdicombe, but he gets the job done and he was an immovable rock in an innings where few chances were created against him.

Darrel’s eventual 50 came with some unique flamboyance and when he hit Dan Sumner for a six, Alex Brundle nearly started the walk home he had promised in the event of this rare occurrence.

Fair play to Darrel, it was an inning some of the Oaks players could learn from, as just by batting out their allocated Overs they could have made a game of it courtesy of an additional 50 or so runs on the board.

Well done to Farleigh, they were deserved winners against an Oakley side that, on paper, should do far better than the batting omnishambles that they displayed yesterday.

Up the Oaks!


Depleted Seconds Well Beaten!

A depleted second string were well beaten by a very strong Silchester side at a balmy Oakley Park yesterday. In an eclectic age range in a team that featured a 13 year-old and a 65 year-old, it could be argued that all that was missing was a corpse and an embryo.

Bowling first, George Lethaby and Lance Van Dyk grafted hard in the strong sunshine and if a few half-chances had stuck, things may have been a tighter.

However, Silchester got on top and piled on the runs but the effort of the Oaks fielders can’t be faulted and a fine catch (think Salmon taking the first Mayfly of Spring) by Bob Lethaby and an excellent stumping bySteve Savage, briefly lifted spirits on what was a tough afternoon where Silchester amassed 267.

The wickets were shared between Dan Jones, Perry King and Tom Barnes.

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Depleted Oaks: The second string worked hard on a tough afternoon at Oakley Park 

Chasing respectability rather than the target, the Oaks lost Steve Savage early but Dan Jones dug in andDan Beckell scored 20 in a decent knock. When Dan went, George Lethaby came in and looked in great nick mixing solid defence with attack, before being on the receiving end of a fast daisy cutter he couldn’t dig out and he exited for 21.

Bob Lethaby entered the fray and looked really good taking his guard, but that was about it, and he departed, done all ends up for a well constructed gold one.

Dan Jones continued to play with maturity and it was great to see Jack Brundle construct his highest score for the Oaks, but the game ended with a flurry of wickets to condemn the Oaks to a heavy defeat as they ended on 122.

There were positives, one being the determination of the fielders not to give up and the other being the batting of both Dan’s, George and Jack, which will offer hope of better days ahead; it is unlikely they will come across a better team than Silchester in that league.

Well done to all the lads who fought hard for the team and never gave up.

Up the Oaks!

First 11 Cruise to Victory

A strong first 11 made reasonably light work of their trip to Ashford Hill with Clive Welsman (7 wickets)  and Gerry Dique the stars of the show.

Bowling first, an early Tom Holbrook wicket got the Oaks of to a good start but Ashford Hill re-grouped and at 90-1 looked set for a decent target.

However, veteran Welsman, maturing like cheddar in the business end of a students fridge, started where he left off last Sunday and a cocktail of slow, quite slow, and ludicrously slow bowling ripped through the Ashford Hill attack.


Welsman: Seven wickets from the veteran

Further wickets from Alex Brundle and Gerry Dique helped see Ashford Hill off for just 136.

Chasing the target, Gerry Dique and Dan Sumner looked comfortable but when Dan went, somewhat unluckily, to an LBW appeal by Pete Newton who even appeals when he gets hit for six, Oakley stuttered a little.

However, an imperious 60 from Gerry Dique and several minor contributions saw Oakley home and it was left to Brad Compton-Bearne to complete the job with towering six.

An ideal start for an Oakley ream looking to challenge for promotion come August.

Up the Oaks!

Weekend Results and Cyril Thompson Shield

The Saturday League season ended as a bit of a damp squib this year with both teams, suffering from injuries and absence due to holidays and music festivals, suffering heavy defeats, with the only consolation being a maiden Oakley 50 for Will Bentley at Overton

In general, the season has been a success, with the two’s achieving back to back promotions and the ones maintaining their status in County 4, despite never really getting together a settled side due to some disruption, with potentially key players deciding to give this season a miss due to family and work commitments.

Sunday saw us attempting to defend The Shield, however, our plans were disrupted by the unfortunate recent injuries to Gerry Dique and Paddy Saines, who were both key players in our cup run and our opponents, Hook, were deserved winners in a game where the finer margins proved critical.

Oakley Cyril Thompson Plate Team-1

The Guy Jewell Finalists

The boys fielded really well and although the bowling was decent enough, Hook took advantage of any bad balls to put together a good, if not formidable total of 151. In reply we were in it still up until 10-12 Overs gone. However, Hook bowled tight lines and strangled the scoring and all that remained was a bit of fun for Darrell Dimond and Michael Wood, who challenged themselves to some ludicrous reverse sweep shots that made Nora Batty look attractive.

In general, the season has been a positive one, with the younger players continuing to learn and grow in confidence and several colts stepping up and enjoying men’s cricket. We have also had the bonus of the addition of strong new players coming in, with Gerry Dique and Paddy Saines in particular, adding experience and a touch of class in their relative positions.

As the chairman, I have been proud of everyone who has represented the club at all levels and in committee positions this year; we continue to be competitive and we are growing as club once again, but most importantly we realise what we are and what we can achieve at a place where everyone is welcome except prima donna’s. Gerry is walking example that you don’t have to be a bell-end to be a good cricketer.

The welcoming attitude at Oakley Park, from both the committee and the players has seen the Colts section grow stronger and new members flow into the club, but please remember folks, we must not sit back and think we are where we want to be yet, as there is always much to maintain and improve, particularly on he training pitch on Wednesday night’s.

Thank you all, it has been a pleasure.


Firsts Offer Little Resistance to Mottisfont

The first team, weakened by the absence of Tommy Holbrook, Paddy Saines, Steve Bown and Gerry Dique, went down without much of a fight against Mottisfont, despite a brave 50 from Clive Welsmanwho was carrying a nasty hand injury.


Clive was one of a few who offered resistance

The game was shaped by the Mottisfont number 3, who after a couple of early scares, nearly playing on twice to a couple of George Lethaby short and wide looseners, got his eye in and took control of the game with an innings that combined stern defence when required and agricultural hitting of anything loose.

Although a couple half-chances came and went and Clive slowed him down for a while, his excellent innings of 160 not-out was pivotal in a final total of 252.

If you don’t get players like that out early in their innings, you pay a hefty price, and none of the Oakley bowlers will want to see their figures.

In reply, apart from Clive’s excellent 50 and 25 from Scotty Bright, the Oaks offered limited resistance or appetite for a fight against the odds with ducks and single figures littering the score-card.

A bad day at the office.

Up the Oaks!

Big Brad Goes Mad!

An extraordinary day at Oakley Park on Saturday saw Brad Compton-Bearne smash the Oakley record books with an incredible innings of utter carnage during the victory versus Sparsholt.

Here are Brad’s stats:

180 not-out – Highest score recorded by an Oakley player in any format

21 sixes – Most amount of sixes by any player at Oakley in one game

100 off 34 Deliveries – Quickest Oakley century

101 – Highest ever Oakley 9th wicket partnership (with his step-brother Charlie Bearne).

335 for 8 – Highest ever Oakley score.


Onslaught: Brad Comton Bearne: 

Oakley have had some big hitters at the club in recent years, such as Adam Robinson, Tommy Holbrook and Bob Lethaby, but sustained and violent hitting like this has never been witnessed before at Oakley Park.

This is Brad’s first ever season playing league cricket and whilst he still has a lot to learn about the game, his potential, at just 21, is there for all to see, and when he gets his eye in, his batting is nearly as hard to control as his  extraordinary Tonic Bar dance moves.

Gordon Scott, another huge hitter who has been at the club since it was established in 1849, described one hit (that landed in the pair of oak trees in the farmers field)  as the longest six- hit he had ever seen, and Gordy knows a thing or two about a good length.

For good measure, Brad also took 4 wickets to take all the plaudits away from all the other poor buggers who actually played quite well too.

However, Saturday was all about Brad, and as the football commentator, Andy Gray, used to say (before he got hilariously sacked for overt sexism).

“Tek a boo son, tek a boo!”

Up the Oaks!

Faultless Oaks Cruise to Final!

Darrel Dimond’s 20/20 outfit put on an impressive display last night to cruise into the final of the Cyril Thompson Plate (formerly the Guy Jewell Cup) for the second consecutive year.

Bowling first, Jimmy Bright and George Lethaby were excellent with the ball, putting an instant stranglehold on the Rotherwick attack and setting the precedent for a great all-round fielding performance.

This was followed up by excellent spells from Steve Bown and Alex Brundle who both took some pace off the ball to create chances and wickets which were shared between Bownie, Dan Sumner, Brighty and Alex.

This left the Oaks with just 83 to chase and this was completed with ease with another excellent Dan Sumner 50 that was well supported by an obdurate knock of 21 by Paddy Saines, with both players remaining unbeaten.


Hot Sumner: Dan was in great touch v Rotherwick

The Oaks will contest the final at the Mays Bounty on Sunday 30th August at 12:00 pm against eitherChineham or Hook B.

up the Oaks.

Two’s Come Up Agonisingly Short!

The Oakley second string came up agonisingly short in a thrilling encounter against Hartley Wintney at a warm and sunny Oakley Park yesterday afternoon.

Batting first Hartley go off to a flier with their opening bat obviously punching well below his weight as he plundered runs whilst well supported at the other end by the other opener who eventually got cleaned up by Brad Compton-Bearne.

The Oaks then got a bit of luck with an inexplicable LBW decision that was the first of three wickets forClive Welsman but they were leaking far too many extras of all forms in the field; errors that were going to cost them dearly later in the game.

The Hartley middle ordered also batted well and when the opener eventually went, run out for 95, andJames McCleester picked up a late wicket, it all seemed like scant consolation as heads dropped and concentration lapsed. Hartley finished on 222 or as Richie Benaud would say, choo, choo, choo.

In reply, the Oaks opened with Clive Welsman and Bob Lethaby due to them both having to attend family functions and whilst Clive took advantage of his situation, clumping the ball to all parts of the ground with nonchalant ferocity, Bob resembled something akin to of a cat on a scorched tin roof.

After several escapes, including an edged single, a pulled shoulder muscle from a wild swing and a chaotic near miss from a run-out, Bob eventually and mercifully went for one, playing a shot that resembled a one armed man trying to kill a snake in a phone box; it has to go down as one of the most hideously inept innings in the 166 year history of the club.

In fairness, as Clive continued his assault, Gordon Scott and Michael Wood both attempted to emulate Bob, both getting out to ugly shots they would rather forget and it was left to Alex Brundle to join Clive, who by now, was adding to the bizarre nature of this game by frantically trying to get himself out as he had to exit the ground before his wife, Martine, came and slit his throat.


Because of Clive’s nature, he refused to retire, preferring to be out by legitimate means; however, as his attempts became more ludicrous, he nearly ran Alex out about six times before eventually gettingcaught for 63 and fortunately, Alex lived to fight on and was joined by Brad Compton-Bearne, who hit two fours before playing one of his more unsavoury shots which involves hurling his bat across the square when he is bowled.

Will Bentley joined Alex at the crease after Jack Brundle exited in a fury after making 11, and Will batted really well for his 21 before holing out and leaving Alex to keep the chase going as he coasted past 50 for the third time this summer. Unfortunately Alex went LBW for a brilliant 60 which left it to the tail to see the Oaks home but sadly after small but vital contributions from Ben Farragher andPete Holcroft, James McCleester was out caught and bowled and the Oaks fell short by six agonising runs.

If anything, this was a defeat that taught the Oaks that concentrating on fielding up until the last ball of the opposition innings is vital if you want to win cricket matches.

Up the Oaks

Depleted First’s Go Down Fighting!

The first team, bereft of their opening partnership of Dan Sumner and Gerry Dique, who have, rather selfishly, gone on holiday, put up a brave fight in defeat at Dinton yesterday.

Batting first, despite decent bowling from the Oaks, in particular Jimmy Bright, Dinton started plundering runs with any fielding errors being exaggerated by a quick out field where the ball quickly skidded away for four.

As well as the openers bowled however, the Oaks were lacking the variation that could have been offered by Dan Sumner or Clive Welsman because with George Lethaby and Steve Bown replacingJimmy Bright and Tommy Holbrook, it was almost, give or take a bit of pace, replacing like for like, when perhaps, a bit of spin was required.

Mark ‘Harry’ Potter offered some part-time spin as an alternative and did really well to pick-up two wickets to go with Jimmy’s pair but this did not stop Dinton racing to 280, courtesy of a fine century from their number 4 batsman.

The Oaks opened with Darrel Dimond and Scott Bright who quickly got things moving as a 100 partnership developed only for Darrel, infuriatingly, having to leave to work his night shift as a paramedic.

Darrel made an excellent 57 and Scott, a sumptuous 73 before he was eventually caught and when in form Tommy Holbrook exited for just 1, the Oaks were looking like a collapse waiting to happen. However, the middle order did hang around with a decent partnership from Steve Bown and Mark Potter as well as a belligerent 34 from Jimmy Bright who was having an excellent afternoon.


Hot Scott: Brighty hit a sumptuous 73

The game finished on a good note with Colts player, Isaac Reeves, hitting a cracking four of the last delivery of the game, denying Dinton maximum points in the process.

Dinton were a good side, particular in the batting department, but with their opening pair in the side and with a bit of bowling variation, the result may well have been better for the Oaks. However every player put in an honest shift in a game where it was no disgrace to lose.

Some players didn’t arrive back until after 10:00 pm and after a hot day, they would have slept well. A big well done to those who gave up not only their day, but their night, for what was a long old trek.

Up the Oaks!

Bob Lethaby XI Claim the Big Rich Cup

A bumper crowd were treated to vintage display of cricketing excellence on a beautiful day at Oakley Park yesterday, with the Bob Lethaby XI defeating the Michael Wood Invitational XI in a keenly fought battle of wit, cunning and individual excellence.

After being put into bat before doing a toss for the sake of tradition, Bob’s XI got off to a decent, if not rather turgid start with the highlight being veteran, Gordon Scott, gleefully pumping Steve Bown to all parts of the ground.

Wickets came and went but runs were also mounting up, with decent contributions from Jack Brundleand Gordon Scott and an excellent maiden 50 for Matt Vickers. Backed up by some useful tail-end contributions from Brad “I don’t like to talk about it” Compton-Bearne, Ben Farragher, Alex Gray andGeorge Lethaby, Bob’s side completed their innings on 205.

Sometimes in sport, you wonder if the script has been written in advance and when Alex Gray, on the last ball of the innings, looped a shot high in to the air towards the irrepressible Deano James, a golden moment in Oakley’s long history beckoned. The birds stop singing, the leaves in the trees stopping rustling and the supporters and players stood still and silent in anticipation of absolute scenes of celebration.

However, Deano, never one to conform to the perceived norm, doesn’t work to scripts, so he dropped it.


A great crowd turned up at Oakley Park for the Big Rich Memorial Day

With a big target to chase, Woody brought out the big guns, with Chris Garret and Deano James set the task of plundering early runs to get the chase going. However, this was counteracted by Bob opening the bowling, utilising his own raw pace at one end, with under 15 sixth change bowler, Isaac Reeves,steaming in at the other.

Bob, known to many as the Oakley Express, tore into the batting attack like an uncontrollable tornado and it wasn’t long before he totally obliterated the stumps with a delivery of such ferocity, it had a bamboozled Deano resembling a new born baby foal on an iced lake.

Wickets continued to fall and when Woody holed out with a mistimed slog that would have mad Big Rich weep and Bownie followed after violent swing at thin air, only to see the wall loop on to his stumps, the chase seemed over, with only pride to play for.

However, a late stand by Nathan Stamp and Pat Cross gave some momentum to the innings and a tight finish briefly looked on, but when the partnership was broken by Jack Brundle (who was standing out as a beacon of hope to the England selectors debating the loss of James Anderson) it only left a late cameo of comedy by Mike Pemberton as a consolation.

The game was followed by a BBQ and a steady flow of alcohol as players and supporters reflected on the feast of top class cricket they had witnessed. As well as the trophy going to the Bob Lethaby XI, theMan of the Match Award went to Matt Vickers who took two wickets as well as being the game’s top scorer, with 50 retired.

Of course, the event was created to remember and celebrate the life of Richard (Big Rich) Wood, who was a regular supporter of the club and if he was watching from above yesterday, he would have seen the good and decent players and supporters of Oakley CC having a great time, poking fun at each other, having lots of laughs and enjoying their day.

He would have liked that.

Special thanks to Deano (BBQ) Pete (Bar) Woody’s auntie (Cakes) and everyone else who came along to make it lovely day where the sun shone on the righteous.

Second XI Back on Song!

The Second XI blasted back to form after a disastrous couple of weeks, completing a fine victory at AWE Tadley, chasing 191.

Bowling first, the seconds, despite a couple of fine catches by Alfie Rowley, missed opportunities in the field with Rob Gerrard in particular, unlucky to finish with just two wickets when he could have had 5.

The other wickets went to Alex Brundle (3) Perry King (2) and the excellent Oscar Rowley who also picked up two.

Chasing the target looked like a tough task but Michael Wood and Steve Savage eased the the Oaks past 50 without loss, before Woody departed in the thirties whilst looking good for a big score.

Alex Brundle came in at three and batted really well as he edged his way to a second 50 of the seasonbut Oakley were hampered by the retirement of Steve Savage, who had to retire after pulling up with cramp.


Steve Savage hit an Excellent 53 before retiring

This brought Brad Compton-Bearne to the crease to finish the job with Alex but after a quick-fire 18 he was caught on the boundary, a decision he disputed and told every Oakley member about after the game until they either dozed of or simply went home for some peace and quiet.

As a consequence Jack Brundle managed to see Oakley home with a brilliant 0 not-out trying to claim that he hit the winning runs as he did so. The problem with hitting the winning runs is that you have to do just that, hit them, not try to claim heroics for a no-ball. Though in fairness, Jack completed his marathon stint at the crease without needing a drink.

All in all it was a great day for the two’s who could yet claim the title and it justified Michael Wood’spublic and underhand sacking of veteran, Bob Lethaby, who has risked being fined by his club for allowing The Sunday Observer to publish extracts from his forthcoming autobiography ‘Wood You Believe It!’

With some irony, Bob captain’s a club invitational game against Woody tomorrow, a match where he promises that personal grudges won’t affect what happens on the pitch.

“I hate Woody”, said Bob, “but I have to make sure I do my talking on the pitch…he doesn’t rate me and that is his prerogative…a mesmeric spin bowler with his talent has a right to his opinion but I aim to make him grovel.”

When questioned Woody was adamant he made the right choice. “I picked Deano ahead of Bob because he supports West Ha…sorry, I meant because he was in the net practising while Bob was having a beer and that’s all I have to say on the matter…I will let the score-book do the talking as it did today.”

The match takes place at Oakley tomorrow at 1:00 PM…for more information click here.


First XI Lose Out in Thriller

The Oakley first string narrowly missed out on a memorable victory versus Sparsholt today in a well fought game, played in good spirits.

Fielding first, all the lads bowled well to keep the score respectable but the introduction of Alex Dilley(son of former England player, Graham) turned the game Sparsholt’s way as he he started hitting the ball to all areas of the ground with an excellent display of aggressive batting.

Without any of the Oaks players doing much wrong this accelerated the score to a pretty formidable 247 with five wickets down.

Chasing the target, the Oaks got off to a bad start with Paddy Saines departing early, but captain, Darrel Dimond, steadied the ship and started going along nicely with in-form Gerry Dique.

Darrel went LBW whilst trying to push the score along, but his innings left the game well set up forTommy Holbrook, who immediately looked in good touch whilst Gerry passed 50 at the other end

Unfortunately, a mix up cost Tommy’s wicket as both players collided mid-wicket and feeling partly at fault, Gerry lost a bit of composure and departed soon after for a well crafted 57, leaving the Oaks with it all to do.

Instead of caving in, every Oaks player worked hard to keep the game alive and after Clive Welsmanand McLindon went, unselfishly pushing for runs, Steve Bown started an aggressive recovery backed up by George Lethaby who was pinch hitting at the other end.


Going Bown Fighting: Bownie tried to keeps the Oaks in it

When Bownie went, holing out after an excellent 35, the game looked up, but James Wiltshire, in his first innings for the Oaks, got his eye in and started hitting out and it looked like the impossible might be on, despite losing George at the other end who was replaced at the crease by Jimmy Bright.

Sadly, James was caught on the boundary for a brilliant 30, leaving Jimmy and Keith Cutmore with just a little too much to do as the Oaks were bowled out on the last ball for 236, just 12 short of victory.

Despite defeat, all of the Oakley players contributed to a spirited chase in a great game. It was just a shame they couldn’t quite get over the line as the result didn’t do justice to the overall team performance.

Up the Oaks!

Out of Sorts Seconds Suffer Another Title Setback!

An abject batting performance by the second XI left their title ambitions in tatters on a sunny but cool afternoon on Saturday after a Friday deluge had put the game in doubt.

After being put in to bat first, Steve Savage and Stuart Spalding dug deep against, what was, it has to be said, some excellent bowling from St Mary’s who were executing some really tight stuff at one end of the pitch that was playing like a Christmas pudding.

However, when Savage went trying to push the score along, a collapse ensued with Dan Beckall,Michael Wood and Alex Brundle going in quick succession, failing to deal with the low bounce.

Bob Lethaby put up some resistance with a couple of well timed fours amongst some decent defence but, stupidly it turns out, he got cleaned up trying get the innings heading towards a good score when he was safely settled in with 10 overs still remaining.

Thereafter the innings collapsed amid a host of rash shots and it was left to number 11, Pete Holcroft, to guide Stuart Spalding to what was an excellent, patient and well crafted innings of 50 on a damp pitch. The fact that the next highest score was 10, was a clear indication of what went wrong as Oakley reached 100 exactly.

St Mary’s were never really particularly troubled chasing the score but in fairness, the Oaks kept battling and had the odd flurry of hope as the opposition batsmen got themselves out trying to finish the game early.

Alex Brundle bowled well as usual and picked up a wicket and as a consolation, former Colts, Oscar Rowley (2) and Perry King (3) emerged with good figures and a late wicket from Michael Wood at least made the score appear respectable as St Mary’s got to their target with seven down.

The Oaks were missing a few players who were upgraded to the First XI but the truth is, there was enough batting in the side to get them to what would have been a defend-able target of 150; they just failed, when it mattered, to execute the patience and grit that Stuart Spalding showed with his 50, typical Aussie that he is.

The Oaks now need to man up, dig in and get back to winning ways to avoid their season petering out after all the hard work earlier in the summer.

Sumner and Dique Bat the Oaks to Victory!

A fantastic unbeaten partnership of 181 from Dan Sumner and Gerry Dique swept the Oaks to victory on Saturday in what was a great all-round team performance at Amesbury.

Bowling first, Tommy Holbrook and Jimmy Bright pegged Amesbury back with some really tight stuff and as the pressure started to increase on the low scoring rate, wickets started to fall as runs became required.

Holbrook only picked the one wicket, which was less than his efforts deserved, but this paved the way for others as Amesbury were forced to play shots, resulting in wickets for Jimmy Bright(2) George Lethaby (2) and 4 for Dan Sumner who heading towards his best day in an Oakley shirt.

The eventual target of 181 looked testing rather than daunting on a good track however, and Sumner, bursting with confidence after his fine bowling spell, thrived on any bad balls as Dique once again, looked like a class act at the other end.

Amesbury vs Oakley I-1

Hitting the Heights: Gerry and Dan are in Top Form

In what is a blossoming partnership of youth and experience, this was the second 100+ partnership in a week for this pair and the third of what is now becoming a fruitful season. It was fitting that both players finished on 83, even if Gerry’s perpetual jug avoidance is becoming something of a nuisance.

The Oaks have now totally dispelled any relegation fears in their first season in County 4 and can look forward to a productive last month of the 2015 season where players can play with more freedom. Captain, Darrel Dimond, was rightly proud of the shift all the players put in.

Up the Oaks!

Brundle Sends Stuttering Oaks Into Semi-Finals

Oakley, after a great start, stuttered their way in to the Cyril Thompson Semi-Finals after a nervous display in the field gave opponents Ramsdell, more than a sniff of victory on a sunny evening at Oakley Park.

Batting first, Oakley got off to a strong start with the experience and nous of Clive Welsman and Gerry Dique aiding the score past 50 before Clive went, unselfishly pushing the score along.

Gerry was joined by Brad Compton-Bearne, and Oakley’s master of carnage bludgeoned his way to 36 off 9 balls as Gerry watched on in bemused admiration at the other end.

Whilst it is rare to see Gerry play ugly shot, Brad’s uncultured savagery can be just as effective in this form of the game, so it is probably best to leave him untamed, accept it when he gets a golden duck and enjoy it when he bludgeons the ball to all parts of the Hampshire countryside.

The innings was completed by Tommy Holbrook, who hit a couple of beautiful straight sixes in a more than respectable partnership with Paddy Saines, and the Oaks completed their 20 overs with 166 on the board.


The Oaks struggled in the field during the T20 victory over Ramsdell

After a Tommy Holbrook maiden in the first over, the result looked a formality, but the Rams openers began to see the pace of the ball and get the scoreboard ticking, plundering fours and sixes through a combination of good shot-making and poor fielding, rather than poor bowling.

As the game moved into the middle phases, lack of confidence from recent poor form ate away at he fielders as a plethora of unforced errors turned parity into advantage Ramsdell, with it appearing difficult for the Oaks to turn the tide.

Captain, Darrell Dimond, threw the dice one last time and brought on second team opening bowler,Alex Brundle, who responded by almost single-handedly putting Ramsdell in reverse with two wickets in two balls.

Alex may be a smart arse who has an answer for everything and can count himself lucky never to have had a good shoeing, however, on this occasion he had the right answers to drive the Oaks on to victory in adversity with an excellent bowling display under pressure.

Alex followed his double by dismissing the dangerous Ramsdell opener (who admirably walked when initially given not-out) caught behind and with Clive Welsman and then Gerry Dique, slowing up the run rate at the other end, the Rams ran out of overs, finishing on 149 in what was an exciting encounter played in good spirits.

So a great result in the end but if Oakley are going to retain the trophy come the end of August, they need to get their confidence and concentration sorted out in the field, because, as last week’s loss to Wherwell emphasised, dropped catches lose matches.

Up the Oaks!

Sunday XI Complete an Unwanted Weekend Hat-Trick!

A combination of poor batting, good bowling by the opposition and a couple of contentious decisions put paid to any chances of the Sunday XI putting the brakes on a dismal return of weekend results for the Oaks yesterday.

Batting first, George Lethaby, replacing the injured Dan Sumner, looked like making a decent score until he got caught flat footed on one that moved away just enough to remove off stump.

Fellow opener, Gordon Scott, inexplicably dropped off the first ball of the innings, exerted some control but wickets were going for not very much at the other end, despite a reasonable knock from Jack Brundle and a brave 18 from youngster Perry King in the face of some quite hostile bowling.

With Alex Gray and Brett King going cheaply after Gordon edged one, it was down to Clive Welsmanand Bob Lethaby to try to edge the game forward with Bob holding up an end as Clive played the role of aggressor.

However, just as the partnership began to get going, Clive was unlucky to get done by a misjudged LBW decision under pressure from a strong but hopeful appeal from the Hartley Wintney players.


Clive Welsman was unfortunate  to be dismissed LBW

However, if Clive’s mood was fairly dark and mildly vitriolic, it was about to be paled in to insignificance by Bob Lethaby, who totally lost the plot after he was giving out stomach before wicket by an inexperienced umpire who was put under pressure from another half-hearted Hartley appeal.

Volunteer umpires need to get used to the idea that most deliveries are missing the stumps and that without DRS systems it is impossible for an amateur to give a certain LBW unless the ball pitches in line and traps someone beneath the knee roll in front of the stumps.

This was exemplified by two decisions the Hartley Umpires turned down, not on the basis they were definitely not-out, but because there was doubt and with doubt, the benefit goes to the batsman every time.

However, this did not excuse Bob exploding in to a fit of temper, kicking and throwing everything in sight as the club house turned in to the Mary Celeste before he received respective admonishment from his girlfriend and a stern talking to from Gordon Scott.

Fortunately this was a game where the result was not important but it empathises Gordon’s suggestion that the club should hold an umpires course to explain the rules of LBW that are far more complex than they might seem.

After the drama of Bob throwing toys from his pram in all directions, Alex Brundle and Matt Vickersedged the Oaks to a paltry total of 116 which was always going to be a struggle to defend.

Wickets did come for Alex Brundle, George Lethaby and Clive Welsman and as a bonus Ben Allumtook a wicket and an excellent catch as stand-in captain Alex, rightly rotated the bowling, insisting that player participation in friendlies is more important than the result.

Hartley reached the target with two wickets to spare and with calmness now in the air, Clive and Bob, with the help of a couple of bottles of Ringwood, were able to look back and laugh at their misfortune.

It’s only a game.

Up the Oaks!

Second XI Capitulate as Unbeaten Run Ends!

An incredible unbeaten run, dating back to July 2013, ending in cataclysmic fashion as the seconds were found desperately wanting in a savage beating by nearest rivals Compton & Chandlers Ford.

Batting first after losing the toss, Michael Wood and Dan Jones never really got going against decent but unspectacular bowling from Compton and both of them went in quick succession without much on the board.

Dan Beckall temporarily looked in good nick before skewing one looping in the air, leaving the crease in disgust before the catch was even taken, whilst Brad Compton-Bearne went to a cross bat hay-maker that was so ugly, it made made Anne Widdicombe look pretty. To crown his glorious moment, Brad threw his bat down the crease in a fit of temper that would have had a toddler writhing in envy.


A rare bad day: Brad Compton-Bearne

Alex Brundle was desperately trying to stick it out and was joined by Bob Lethaby, who came in early to try and steady the ship with some defence to stop the rot. However, Bob was done through the gate between bat and pad for nought and was soon joined back in the pavilion by George Lethaby, who celebrated this unique father and son double-duck by volleying his helmet a good thirty yards before attempting to spear it with his bat.

Jack and Alex Brundle tried to calm the storm but Jack went shortly after Alex had been caught, leaving it to Deano James to hit his best ever shot which, sadly, had the misfortune of arrowing towards Compton’s deep mid-on, who took it calmly.

Rob Gerrard had a late flurry of 18 but when Tom Barnes was brilliantly caught at slip, the game was up with Compton needing just 70 to win.

George Lethaby picked up an early wicket courtesy of a fine catch by Rob Gerrard but when the other opener was dropped with the score on 12 any hope of a miracle was quashed.

There was still time for some petulance from Bob Lethaby and Dan Beckall in the slips after the same opener failed to walk after a clear edge went in to the gloves of Jack Brundle, but the flurry of bad tempered sledging that followed was as much in frustration with personal performance as it was with the non-walking batsman.

Tom Barnes did give the Oaks a smidgen of consolation, picking up two wickets in an over when the game was already lost, which at least gave the Oaks a bowling point and denied Compton maximum batting points.

In reality, the Oaks were well beaten and the poor manner with which they dealt with a losing situation, was an example of a team that is not used to being not only being beaten, but having their noses metaphorically ground in to the dirt.

The Oaks have a week to lick their wounds, get back on track and continue towards promotion and another title.

Up the Oaks!

Dropped Catches Lose Matches as Firsts Fall to Wherwell!

Stand in skipper, Clive Welsman, was left ruing a day of missed chances as the first XI failed to defend a decent target of 209 against vistors Wherwell.

Batting first, Gerry Dique (92) and Dan Sumner (54) got the Oaks in a great position where they could go on to win the game, however, apart from a typically stoic 23 not-out from Steve Savage, the middle order collapsed as they went hard chasing the runs.


Ton Up: Dan Sumner and Gerry Dique put on another 100 plus stand

Wherwell cashed in early in their pursuit as Tom Holbrook battled against injury trying to re-produce his early season form and Clive Welsman also struggled a little. Clive made changes and brought Jimmy Bright and Mark Potter into the fray, with Potter smashing through the Wherwell attack in a devastatingsix-wicket spell.

With well over 50 still required with 8 wickets down, the Oaks were well in charge but dropped catches and an injury to spinner, Dan Sumner, allowed Wherwell back in the game and they scented an unlikely victory which came with an over and a half to spare.

There is a lot to think about regarding selection and perhaps this was an occasion when the Oaks needed their best 11 players on the field rather than mixing and matching with the second eleven.

With cricket, unfortunately, selection is always a nightmare and when it goes wrong, hindsight is a wonderful and frustrating thing.

Onwards and upwards.

Up the Oaks!

Clive and Gordy are Veteran Bounty Hunters!

The Oakley Sunday string enjoyed a handsome win over Bounty Social today with a victory built around half-centuries from Clive Welsman and a resurgent veteran Gordon Scott.

Batting first the Oaks opened with Gordy and Brad Compton-Bearne, however, Brad, a death or glory batsmen, chose death, going for a two ball duck, meaning an early visit to the crease for Bob Lethaby. 

Bob and Gordon slowly started building a partnership until five minutes of madness saw Bob depart. A six at Oakley is something Bob has longed for, for many a year, but when he eventually hit one straight back over the bowlers head, his celebrations were cut short by a delusional and chaotic sense that he could make lightning strike twice.

Result? Clean bowled attempting a hay-maker to a straight one. At 47, maturity still seems a distant dream for Bob.

Bob’s departure saw his son, George, arrive at the crease to start a decent partnership with Gordy before a short one stopped as it pitched and looped on to the stumps for a bizarre dismissal that was comical and depressing in equal measure. George was visibly choking back the vomit as he trudged back to the pavilion.

This left it to Gordy and Clive to pile on the runs and Gordy, rediscovering his love for playing, made an excellent 50 before gallantly retiring to allow others to bat. Clive passed 50 as well but at the other end wickets were falling with Peter Holcroft, Paul Sumner and Ben Allum struggling on a dead pitch. This left it up to late flurries from Dan Sumner, Alex Brundle and Jack Brundle to make very competitiveOakley total of 215.


The Oaks in action against Bounty Social today

Defending the total, Brad Compton-Bearne picked up two excellent early wickets with some pacey stuff before the duo of Alex Brundle and George Lethaby broke the middle order with George, who has had a frustrating time lately, taking three wickets including one absolute corker that snapped the off stump clean in two.

With the game virtually wrapped up, this allowed captain Dan Sumner to give youth a chance and Peter Holcroft responded with two overs of the most cataclysmic bowling witnessed at the club for sometime; it was like watching Stephen Hawking bowling blindfolded.

However, cricket is a crazy game and Peter, inexplicably, took three wickets as he went through the Bounty tail end, presumably by bamboozling them with his ineptitude. This was much to the amusement (not) of Jack Brundle, who was attempting to plunder his first ever wickets at the other end before having his day cut short by Paul Sumner, who cruelly, some might say viciously, took the ball from him to have a couple of overs of his own.

Ben Allum also had a couple of overs before Bob Lethaby came on for a short spell, in fact a spell so short that his figures read an average enhancing 1 wicket for no runs off one delivery. What a guy!

The victory by 70 runs, completed an excellent weekend for the club where all teams came away with victories.  A Sunday that saw two fifties for club stalwarts, a first ever Oakley six for the Chairman, three wickets for the treasurer and a snapped stump, can only be a good one.

Up the Oaks!!!

One’s Make it Three on the Row!

The first team made it three wins on the spin on Saturday with a comfortable win over lowly Andover III’s at a sunny and warm Oakley Park yesterday.

Bowling first the Oaks were a little off key with Tommy Holbrook carrying an injury and Jimmy Bright a little bit out of sorts and getting frustrated, much to the delight of Tommy who laughed at Jimmy mercilessly.

Gerry Dique however, found some rhythm and despite getting clumped for a six by a young lady, he picked up an impressive five for to get the Oaks heading in the right direction with Steve Bown andGeorge Lethaby also picking up a couple apiece as Andover were out for 164.

Chasing the target,  Dan Sumner and Gerry Dique once again put on 50 before Gerry went for 25, handing the job over to rapidly improving Chris Morris to take the Oaks home.

When Dan went for 42 courtesy of a “Dan must nearly be on 50” wicket, Tommy Holbrook came to the crease and showed his class with a quick-fire 33 as the Oaks pushed on towards the target.


Dan Sumner top scored with 42

Clive Welsman went quickly but at least he contributed in some way, offering players and supporters the loudest expletive of the season so far with a high pitched “F**K” that shook the timbers of the club-house and scared the living daylights out of Tommy Holbrook who proceeded to check his whites for dubious looking brown stains.

The job was finished off by Jimmy Bright and the excellent Chris Morris who hit a mature 39 unbeaten, leaving the players in a celebratory mood as they listened to Gordon Scott’s vast array of jokes from his forthcoming book, ‘Scotty’s 101 Corset Busters’  the follow up to his previous best seller ‘It Was Going Down Leg’.

Clive, after a bad day where he was a perhaps bit too harsh on himself, could take no more, exiting the building, somewhat ironically, with a bag of rubbish.

Did I mention that Gerry got hit for a six by a young lady?

Up the Oaks!

Two’s Cruise at Colden Common!

Michael Wood’s two’s looked every bit a championship winning team with yet another fine performance at Colden Common on Saturday.

Bowling first, Alex Brundle, fresh from a 5:30 AM finish after the Oakley Quiz night, showed what good preparation is all about with a devastating four wicket spell of swing bowling to rip the heart out of the Colden batting line-up.


The Two’s put on another disciplined performance at Colden Common

At the other end Tom Barnes was having no luck during his spell but his tight bowling was at least keeping the score down as Colden struggled to get the scoreboard moving.

Perry King and Nathan Rabley both came on and bowled well but a couple of Colden batsmen were getting their eye in and the score was ticking along nicely as they took advantage of anything short, despite a fine Brad Compton-Bearne run-out that he will never want to talk about.

Michael Wood, a man with a burgeoning reputation for showing the tactical acumen of a champion chess player, curtailed the run chase showing all the cunning of a fox by bringing himself on with Brad Compton-Bearne to mop up the tail.

Brad picked up two wickets and Woody, with a dazzling display of spin that would have seen a certain Shane Warne turn green with bitter envy, picked up three to reduce Colden to 93.

Chasing the target, Wood got cleaned bowled for 4 by what must have been a brilliant ball as he never gets clean bowled and Steve Savage who had looked comfortable, produced a shot that made Nora Batty look beautiful, looping one up to an elderly chap who took the catch with all the joy of a man who had just won the Euro millions.

When Alex Brundle rolled back the years with a cross-bat air shot and was given plumb LBW, the Oaks were wobbling a little, but Dan Beckall was not at all fazed,  marrying up his dashing looks with dashing shots, continuing his recent form with, dare I say it, a mature, unbeaten 33.

At the other end Brad Compton-Bearne, in what was becoming a day he would be able bore his grandchildren senseless with (“Go to sleep or Grandad will tell you the story about his run-out”bludgeoned his way to 29 to see the Oaks home to what was, in the end, a comfortable win.

Up the Oaks!

Strong Oaks XI Cruise Past Sherfield

Captain, Darrel Dimond, reaped the rewards of having a strong and enthusiastic side out for the first game of Oakley’s defence of the Guy Jewell Shield on a balmy evening at Sherfield on Loddon.


A Balmy evening at Sherfield on Loddon

Bowling first, despite a poor first over from George Lethaby, the Oaks were soon on top with Steve Bown and Tom Holbrook assuming control and taking wickets as Sherfield floundered in temperaturesabove 30 centigrade.

Clive Welsman also took wickets as well as a bit of tap, whilst at the other end Gerry Dique was tight enough to reduce Sherfield to a meagre total of less than 100. 

Chasing the total, Gerry Dique and Dan Sumner batted with the freedom that comes with having a long batting line-up behind them and splayed the ball all around the park with a partnership that took the Oaks to the target without loss or alarm.

Gerry Dan

Howdy partner: Dan and Gerry Celebrate with a pint

The Oaks can move in to the next round in confident mood and with team of the quality on display tonight, why not another trophy at the end of the season? However, the forthcoming holiday period will be a test for Darrel, as it is for any village captain.

Up the Oaks!

Sunday XI Emerge Victors as Carnage Ensues!

Dan Sumner’s Second XI emerged victorious from a bizarre match on a nightmare of a batting track atCheriton this afternoon.

Batting first, the Oaks were soon in disarray as the ball fizzed off a pitch that was crumbling apart like a Rich Tea biscuit, dispatching Brad Compton-Bearne and Oscar Rowley in the process.

In-form Bob Lethaby, fresh from the 45 not-out last week that he doesn’t like to talk about, smelt leather as it fizzed past his nose on a couple of occasions before gloving another to slips, departing for what was now looking like a ludicrously acceptable 7 shortly after the irrepressible Deano James had gone for a comedic 1, no doubt relieved he still had his teeth in his head.

Will Bentley was unlucky to go for a duck but the same could not be said of Jack Brundle, who successfully executed the worst shot ever witnessed on a cricket pitch, lobbing up a disastrously short pitched long hop into the hands of the salivating mid-on. Jack’s claim that “it swung” completed a unique ‘Worst shot, worst excuse’ double, for which he was rightly ridiculed.

The situation was at best pitiful but although the tail hardly wagged, it did, tentatively at least, move from side to side as Dan Jones (17) Alex Brundle (16) George Lethaby (10) and Dan Sumner (10 not-out) edged the Oaks along to 72 all out.

Defending the target, it has to be said that George Lethaby and Alex Brundle used the pitch to devastating effect, causing absolute carnage as they tore through the Cheriton attack taking fivewickets between them before the target had reached 30.


Three’s Company: George, Alex and Dan caused carnage whilst dismissing Cheriton for 48

With huge damage done, Dan Sumner gave Alex a breather and blitzed his way to a brilliant 5 for as Cheriton resigned themselves to a heavy defeat with a mixture of dignity, bewilderment and anger from one batsmen who George clattered in the helmet from a nasty one that reared up.

Cheriton were all-out for 48 and whilst Oakley may have been frowned upon by some for attacking hard on dangerous pitch, it is hard to know what else to do when defending such a small target and the majority of the Cheriton players accepted the fact that it was, ultimately, their pitch to prepare and not Oakley’s.

In complete fairness, Cheriton, a decent bunch of chaps, were quick to show their disappointment that they have not been able to create a better surface since the damage caused by the 2013 floods, and whilst it was a good win, most of the Oakley players would have preferred a better match on a better track.

Ce La Vie and all that…

Up the Oaks!

Seconds Hold Nerve to Hit New Heights!

Michael Wood’s Second XI tightened their grip at the top of the table with a well earned win against their nearest rivals, Bishops Waltham III, at a warm and muggy Oakley Park yesterday.

Bishop’s Waltham’s success this season has been built around their opener, who has plundered runs aplenty, and he soon showed his range of ability, putting away bad deliveries and playing some classy strokes off his legs.

However, at the other end wickets were tumbling with Rob Gerrard, Neil Warner and Perry King all in on the action. Eventually though, it was Alex Brundle who took the vital wicket and along with two run-outs, including a spectacular effort with a direct hit from Brad Compton-Bearne, Waltham were all-out for 144.

Chasing the target, Steve Savage and Michael Wood remained calm, putting on over 60, despite missing talisman, Bob Lethaby, as their potential rock in a crisis. When they departed, Dan Beckall (24)eased the score along with Rob Gerrard (20) who was having a bit of fun before having to depart early for a family function.


Team Spirit: The Two’s Bandwagon Keeps Rolling

This left it down to Alex Brundle who hit a 4 and consecutive 6’s to ease the Oaks home with plenty to spare in what could have easily been a more testing encounter.

This team continue to answer the questions they come up against and their unbeaten run going back to 2013, threatens to break club records that date back to when Steve Savage was sat in his nappies, counting all his future runs on an abacus he received as a gift on his first birthday.

There is still work to do, but another November night at the Rose Bowl and Oceania is within sight, with all the younger members of the club doing a practice run last night.

Up the Oaks!


First XI Start to Find Consistency

The First XI enjoyed a consecutive victories for the first time this season with a well fought and ultimately deserved win at a muggy Winterslow yesterday.

Bowling first, George Lethaby, with an eclectic combination of luck and good deliveries, got the Oaks off to an absolute flier with two wickets in his first over, the first courtesy of a hideous shot from a short and wide one that should have either been ignored, or pumped into the middle of Burt Bacarach’s live set at Glastonbury. Instead, it was chipped into the gleeful hands of Dan Sumner.

However, this lulled the Oaks into a false sense of security and a combination of lacklustre bowling and poor ground fielding let Winterslow back in the game despite wickets for Clive Welsman and Steve Bown as the Oaks attempted to peg things back.


Two in Row: The Oaks in action at Winterslow

Sensing danger, Oakley did start to reverse the tide of runs, tightening up in the field and with the ball as Gerry Dique along with Dan Sumner wrested back control, taking 3 apiece as Winterslow were restricted to a total of 155.

Chasing the target, Dan Sumner went for 6 but Gerry Dique looked in great nick moving along nicely with Chris Morris before eventually going for 59. However, Chris, Steve Bown and Tommy Holbrookall made 20+ as the Oaks coasted to an important and morale boosting victory to further ease any relegation fears.

There were shaky moments in the game but this group of players are beginning to find their way and there is no reason why they can’t have a strong second half to the season.

Up the Oaks!

Oakley Lose at Crondall Despite Lethaby’s Epic Innings!

A makeshift Oakley Sunday 11 didn’t have enough fire-power to tame a strong opposition batting line-up on a warm afternoon at Crondall Cricket Club yesterday.

Batting first captain Dan Sumner put in Jack Brundle and the veteran of many Oakley battles, Gordon Scott, who emerged once more from the shadows of retirement in his 66th year, which is actually quite young for Sunday cricket.

A decent partnership of 40 ensued, with Gordon beaming with pleasure after a hefty blow on the left nipple followed by another that crashed in to his ankle a few balls later, before he eventually departed for a gutsy 12, safe in the knowledge he should be walking again by Friday.

Jack Brundle kept going into the twenties despite suffering from exhaustion and demanding drinks like a 90 year old man who had just scored a double century in the Sahara Desert. However, just when he looked set for a maiden 50, the pressure got to him and he departed for a commendable 31, his highest score in an Oakley shirt…in fact, any shirt.


Flying High: Jack celebrates his best score of 31

This allowed man of moment, Bob Lethaby, to the crease, bristling with all the confidence of a man who has smashed 41 runs in his last 66 overs. After showing his growing group of admirers a couple of overs of trademark, turgid defence, his captain Dan Sumner, ordered, with some authority, an opening of the shoulders.

Older readers of his post will recall when Ian Botham once said to Graham Dilley “Let’s give it some humpty” when faced with a near impossible mission in the 1981 Ashes Series.  However, in truth, when the same rule applies to Bob, it is the equivalent of asking a Kangaroo to up sticks and start a new life in Greenland.

However, not being one to accept the brutal reality of his ineptitude, Bob opened his shoulders and starting to swing like a suburban couple at a 70’s dinner party and before long, remarkably, an eclectic flurry of the sublime and the ridiculous got the scoreboard ticking along nicely.

Aided by cameo roles from Dan Sumner, Steve Bown and in particular, Oscar Rowley, who smashed anexcellent quick-fire 20, a maiden 50 was becoming realistic target. However, sadly for Bob, but gladly for his fellow Oakley members, who would never hear the last of it, Bob fell 5 runs short, finishing his innings on a career high of 45 not-out as the overs ran out.


45 Not Out: Bob Missed out on 50 he wouldn’t like to talk about

Defending 154, the Oaks missed Alex Brundle and George Lethaby badly as Crondall had a couple classy batsmen in their top four and they were pretty much merciless with the ‘bad ball’ racing along to the target in the blink of an eye.

There were a couple of wickets, one apiece for Steve Bown and Dan Sumner, but by then the game had gone, which at least allowed Dan to give overs to Colts players, Ethan Taylor and Brett King, who didn’t let anyone down and even created a few chances as the Crondall opener plundered an excellent hundred.

Crondall, as always, were excellent hosts and as is the tradition, a few beers and tales of cricket ineptitude at the Plume of Feathers public house ended what was a good day for all concerned.

Especially for Bob…he scored 45 not out you know, but you won’t hear him talking about it…never!

Wood Looking Good as Two’s Maintain Top Spot

A majestic 73 from Captain Marvel, Michael Wood, aided the seconds to what was, ultimately, a comfortable victory against Basingstoke V.

Bowling first Woody gave the the opportunity for youth to shine and he was not disappointed, with three wicket hauls for Perry King and Nathan Rabley with Tom Barnes also picking up a pair.

Alex Brundle,  a veteran at 24, joined in the party with a sharp run-out and a wicket to see Basingstoke off for a total of 132. The Basingstoke innings also saw a first bowl for Ollie Rabley (Nathan’s dad) though sadly, he did what dads do do best when called in to action and pulled his hamstring.


Michael Wood: He’s Great

Chasing the total Steve Savage went for 1 but leaving it up to Dan Beckell (27) and Alex Brundle (25) to support Woody’s fine and ultimately match winning innings.

The unbeaten run continues and despite enforced changes, the second’s ship looks steady and well on course for an unprecedented double promotion.

Up the Oaks

Bown Shines for Resurgent Firsts!

Steve Bown claimed the plaudits in a great all-round team performance as Oakley brushed aside recent poor form and a miserable weather forecast with a fine win against third placed Bishop’s Waltham.

With Gerry Dique missing, the Oaks opened with Scott Bright and Dan Sumner, with Scott racing to 28before getting out. This left the returning Paddy Saines to come in and build a fine partnership with Dan Sumner.

Dan eventually departed on 48 and Paddy went shortly after, trying to push on after making an excellent 50. The gamble of putting in big hitting Brad Compton-Bearne didn’t come off but this did allow Chris Morris to return to form with a well constructed 36.

Steve Bown then hit a quick-fire 20 to aid the score along to a respectable total of 208 and give something for the bowlers to defend.

Oaks - Copy

The Oaks put on a fine performance at a cloudy and muggy Oakley Park

The Oaks opened with Tom Holbrook and Jimmy Bright who kept the pressure on and the reward came courtesy of a sensational slip catch by Steve Bown (off the bowling of Tommy Holbrook) that was gushingly described by umpire, Paul Sumner, as the best catch he had witnessed in amateur cricket.

Waltham did start getting back on target with a decent second wicket partnership but wickets from George Lethaby and Dan Sumner pegged them back and created the scene for what was soon to become the‘Steve Bown Show.’

With great back-up at the other end from Jimmy Bright, Bownie tore into Bishops Waltham and his five wicket haul was no less than he deserved on what was a day he will remember for some time.

All in all, it was also a great team performance that was typified by sound catching and a fantastic run-out between Brad Compton-Bearne and Paddy Saines.

Up the Oaks!!!

Sunday Oaks Prevail at Odiham!

The Sunday 11 continued their impressive Sunday form this weekend with a win at Odiham & Greywell.

Odiham batted first and got off to a steady start before Oscar Rowley took the wicket of of their opener thanks to a smart catch from Alex Gray.

Will Bentley bowled well and was unlucky not to pick up a wicket or two, leaving it to twins of spin, Clive Welsman and Dan Sumner make inroads into the Odiham batting line up and slow up the run rate.

As a bonus, Alex Gray and Jack Brundle combined well for a run-out as Odiham finished with a decent tally of 175-6.

Run machine, Brad Compton-Bearne, opened with Darrell Dimond and smashed his way to fifty before holing out, as did Alex Gray whilst looking good for a decent score.


Return to Form: Darrell Dimond

Darrell in the meantime, was showing a return to the kind of form the first team desperately need with awell crafted 71 that was aided by Clive Welsman as the Oaks recorded a deserved victory by 8 wickets.

An interesting week of selection issues awaits.

Up the Oaks!

Get On Up, Brad’s a Six Machine!

The second 11, depleted by injury, holidays, illness and the loss of their players by the first team, carried on regardless and maintained their healthy position at the top of the table against a spirited St Cross VIyesterday.

Bowling first, Oakley were faced with stiff resistance from the experienced St Cross openers and despite some tight stuff from Tom Barnes and Rob Gerrard, it took a bit of luck in the form of a dodgy LBW forPerry King, taking his first senior wicket.

Perry has waited a long time to get a chance with the ball and he grabbed with both hands, bowling full and straight to take a further two wickets and make inroads into the St Cross line-up.

Perry’s brother, Brett, then joined in the action with an excellent spell, taking a valuable wicket, with Rob Gerrard and Brad Compton-Bearne also taking one apiece as St Cross were restricted to 117, a fair target on a stodgy pitch.

The Oaks got off to the worst possible start with Steve Savage going first ball, leaving it to Bob Lethabyto come in and do what he does best by holding up an end in a 30 partnership with Dan Beckall.

Bob’s batting style is about as glamorous as dinner date at the Harvester with Anne Widdicome and in a run chase he would be as much use as a barber shop at the steps of the guillotine. However, on a low scoring pitch with an inexperienced batting line-up, his stubborn resistance and turgid refusal to be drawn into flamboyance is the perfect foil for an aggressive partner.

That man was Brad Compton-Bearne and it turned out to be a partnership made in heaven as Brad smashed his way to a brilliant 71 in a partnership of 88, that ripped the game away from St Cross in the space of half an hour.


Six Machine: Brad-Compton Bearne

Brad and Bob left the field unbeaten in what was, on paper, a comfortable victory, but at 0-1 and 30-2, with an inexperienced tail-end, it could have easily gone badly wrong and stand-in captain, Dan Beckall, who was receiving frantic texts from captain, Michael Wood, who is in Cyprus, was relieved to report another successful day as the second team bandwagon rolls on.

Great credit goes to the whole team for sticking with the game plan and a special well done to the King boys who took their chance and did the damage with the ball.

Up the Oaks!

Poor Batting Costs the First’s Once More!

Another poor day with the bat left the first 11 battling against the odds once again, with an excellent performance in the field not enough to avoid a fourth defeat of the season.

Batting first, the Oaks lost Dan Sumner early and when Gerry Dique went for 16, a familiar capitulation of the middle-order ensued. Only 30, from Tommy Holbrook (Oakley’s most consistent player this season) and an excellent 9th wicket 50 partnership from Jimmy Bright (27) and George Lethaby (24) allowed Oakley to pass the 100 mark.

Scot and George

50 Partnership: Jimmy Bright and George Lethaby 

Once again, Oakley were excellent in the field and with the ball in hand, and Tommy Holbrook and Jimmy Bright took the game the Hurstborne Priors which was a catalyst for collapse of wickets.

Wickets went to Tommy Holbrook (3) Clive Welsman (3) and when Jimmy Bright took two in an overOakley looked like they might nick it with 9 wickets down.

However, it wasn’t to be and Oakley were left to rue another day when they didn’t dig in and bat the overs out on weather affected pitch.

Up the Oaks!

Lethaby Tames Whiteditch!

A thirty-eighty over marathon stint from the mercurial veteran, Bob Lethaby,  drove the Sunday 11 on to victory against Whiteditch on beautiful afternoon at Oakley Park yesterday.

Oakley batted first and lost Brad Compton-Bearne on the very first ball, leaving it to Bob to come in and steady the ship and halt an early collapse.

What followed could be described as an innings of dashing and audacious authority from the free flowing bat of a man emanating graceful and belligerent exuberance whilst in his physical prime.

However, that would be a lie of preposterous, even biblical proportions, because this was a display of such obdurate, turgid, misery, that the Oakley record books, dating back to 1849, will have to be re-written. This was an innings that made Chris Tavare look like Chris Gayle.

And by God how Bob loved it. Forward defensive, after forward defensive, after forward defensive, in aninnings of 29 that lasted just under three hours and 38.3 overs. An innings that included no sixes, no fours and twenty-three singles before he was eventually caught and bowled just as members and supporters started preparing to hang themselves from the club-house rafters.


Front Foot Forward: Bob’s Innings Was One of Turgid Misery 

However, after staying at the crease where 146 other runs were scored, notably from Matt Vickers (36) Dan Sumner (25) and Oscar Rowley (20), Bob can rightly claim to be the catalyst for the winning of the match as other players came and went after failing to get forward on a  pea-shooter of a pitch.

Defending the target of 175, Oakley started quite badly, with extras and byes sending the score rocketing along past 50 despite wickets for Tom Barnes, Oscar Rowley and Will Bentley.

As the target got below 4 an over captain, Dan Sumner, turned to the experience of George Lethaby andAlex Brundle to get a grip on the game, and a cluster of wickets and maidens swung the game heavily back in favour of the Oaks, with the target quickly going back up to 10 an over.

Dan Sumner picked up another wicket and Brad Compton-Bearne, out on the first ball, made amends with a wicket on his first and third balls to polish the game off with Whiteditch 40 short of victory.

But this game was all about about Bob, with an innings that Geoff Boycott would have paid good money to see…Oakley were winners on the day, but the real winner was the game of cricket.

Up the Oaks!

Unbeaten Two’s March On

Michael “Woody” Wood’s two’s recovered from the hammer blow of Bob “Lethy” Lethaby’s recent retirement from Saturday cricket with an excellent win at Odiham yesterday.

Batting first, Odiham looked solid at 60-1, but the Oaks galvanised themselves, dug in and started rattling through the batting order.

Pick of the bowlers was Tom “Jones” Barnes who picked up three wickets whilst Rob “He’s better than Steve” Gerrard (2), Michael “Woody” Wood (2) and Alex “Let’s Get Ready To” Brundle picked up the others.

Also of note was a run-out for “Fred” Perry King and a first ever catch in league cricket for the irrepressible Dean “Deano, Mr Cricket” James. 


Deano James: Took a Catch

Chasing the target, Dan “Becky” Beckall returned to form with a steady 31 whilst supported by Michael“Woody” Wood who made 18.

Alex “Let’s get Ready To” Brundle chipped in with 13 leaving it down to Steve “Bownie, Bowner, Chinese” Bown to hold up an end as Brad “Commie-Bearnie” Compton-Bearne smashed a quick-fire 25 that he spent the night claiming was 27, to see the Oaks home to yet another victory.

The Oaks now top the table as the only team with 100% record and already look like champions…surely only doing a Devon Loch can stop them now!

Firsts Lack the Power For a Chase

The firsts were beaten by league leaders Steeple Langford yesterday after failing to chase down a target of 174 on a pea shooter of a pitch where runs were hard to find.

George Lethaby returned to the attack to partner in form Tommy Holbrook and as a pair they took a couple of early wickets for not too many, to get the Oaks on the right track.

However, the Oaks were below par in the field and some needless extras combined with the Langford middle order batting sensibly and then gradually putting their foot on the gas, allowed them momentum.

Further wickets came for George, Dan Sumner (3) Clive Welsman (2) and Gerry Dique (2) as the Oaks gained maximum bowling points, but the general feeling was that 174 would be a big target to chase.


The cause was not helped when Gerry Dique was out to a shaky LBW that appeared to pitching way outside the line and Dan Sumner was cleaned up soon after, leaving the Oaks reeling on 19-2.

Steve Savage and Scott Bright steadied the ship, but when Steve went to another dodgy LBW, the Oaks were in desperate need for a middle order batsman to support Scott (who went on to an excellent 50) and give impetus to a target that was approaching 10 an over.

However, it never came and by the time the bottom order came in the cause was pretty much lost, with the Oaks failing to reach 150.

All in all it was not a great day for lads but it has to be said that Steeple Langford were an organised and settled looking team who ultimately deserved their victory.

We move on

Up the Oaks!

Seconds Cruise Past Liphook and Ripsley

Michael ‘Woody’ Wood’s second 11 barely moved out of first gear in a one-sided affair against Liphook and Ripsley yesterday to maintain their status as promotion favourites.

Bowling first the Oaks didn’t mess about with Steve ‘Bownie‘ Bown and Lance ‘Vanny’ Van Dyke taking 3 wickets apiece as L&R were reduced to a paltry 25 for 6.

It took an L&R Under 13 player to steady the ship with the opener and with the aid of a couple other colts, they edged past 100 despite further wickets for Dan ‘Tom’ Jones (2) Alex ‘Let’s Get Ready To’ Brundleand Tom ‘Jones’ Barnes.


Chasing the target Michael ‘Woody’ Wood got out clean bowled after executing an exquisite pull-shot andDan ‘Becky’ Beckell went LBW as Oakley stuttered.

However, Steve ‘Savvy’ Savage steadied the ship with a very useful 47 that  was backed up by a careful 24 by Alex ‘Let’s Get Ready To’ Brundle and a five minute cameo 17 (including 2 sixes) from Brad‘Commie-Bernie’ Compton Bearne.

It was a routine win that didn’t have the drama of last week’s game at Holyborne, with the highlight of the day for Bob ‘Lethy’ Lethaby, who had, in reality, been about as much use as a one-legged man in an arse kicking contest, being a post-match chat with the opposition’s chairman and treasurer.

Apparently, a few years ago, a member of the travelling community joined L&R and when the subject of new sight screens came up at a club meeting, they were soon to be greeted with some handy-work by the said gentleman.

He generously gave up his own time to smash up two caravans and create two sight screens with the debris, surmising that it was the obvious thing to do, as the wheels were already in place!

Hearing the tales of the opposition committee members is often more entertaining than the game itself.

Up the Oaks!

Firsts Hit Top Form

Darrell Dimond’s first 11 put on an impressive show against Whiteparish yesterday, putting the woes of last weekend behind them and start to move up the table.

The Oaks bowled first with Tommy Holbrook and Jimmy Bright putting on an excellent display of fast bowling that had the Whiteparish openers under severe pressure to get the scoreboard moving.

As the pressure increased, wickets began to fall, with everyone chipping in, including Tommy (4) Dan Sumner (2) Clive Welsman (2) and Gerry Dique (1) as Whiteparish collapsed to 164-9.

Oakley have failed to chase small targets on two occasions already this season, so they could have been forgiven for early nerves, but the experience of Gerry Dique (74) and emerging talent of Dan Sumner (53)blossomed, and a partnership of 120 effectively won the game.


Opening Flourish : Dan Sumner and Gerry Dique were in fine form

There were a few nervous flutters as Paddy Saines and Neil Warner went cheaply but Tom Holbrook andChris Morris saw the Oaks comfortably home to a fine victory.

Darrell will now be hoping for some more consistency from what is a strong side and Clive Welsman, hurtling around the field and being incredibly unlucky to be denied a wicket from a flying catch in the slips, epitomised a team performance that the Oaks need to produce week on week.

Up the Oaks!

Sunday XI in Fine Win at White Waltham

The Sunday 11 put in an excellent performance, chasing down a target of 200 on a great batting track atWhite Waltham yesterday.

Bowling first the Oaks were under early pressure as the one of the Waltham openers made batting look easy, plundering runs with consummate ease.

However, the Oaks kept plugging away and George Lethaby got his man with a ball that lifted and got played on in a slightly bizarre dismissal that stopped the onslaught.

Some excellent bowling from Alex Brundle kept things tight for a while but the Waltham number five was in a destructive mood, hitting big sixes and threatening to take the game away from the Oaks before he holed out, caught by George and bowled by Dan Sumner. 

Further wickets came from Dan Jones and Will Bentley but 200 still looked a daunting target.


The Oaks chased down 200 at a picturesque White Waltham

However, Brad Compton- Bearne and Dan Sumner set about the target with gusto, instantly sending Walthan on to the back foot with some fine hitting taking the Oaks past 50 with just six overs gone.

Brad went for 33 and was followed by Dan who was desperately unlucky to go on 49 but with a lot of damage being done, Alex Brundle and Matt Vickers both batted really well, with Matt making an excellent 39 and Alex batting sensibly for an unbeaten 35 whilst being aided to the target by Dan Jones and Will Bentley.

A big well done to the Colts and former Colts in a side where taking the old man, Bob Lethaby, from the equation, Alex Brundle, at 23, was the senior player.

With a young team like this one, the future looks bright.

Up the Oaks!


Second XI Rescue Victory From Jaws of Defeat!

Michael Wood’s undefeated second team showed remarkable resilience and team spirit to achieve a superb victory against Holyborne II’s on Saturday.

Batting first, Oakley look unsettled from the off and lost Steve Savage and Dan Beckall in quick succession, whilst at the other end, Michael Wood was receiving more lives than a cat as he scrambled through the early overs.

Woody eventually went for 35 leaving Brad Compton-Bearne to come in and blast a quick-fire 23 withBob Lethaby and Alex Brundle, temporarily steadying the ship as the Oaks scrapped their way to apaltry 130.


Michael Wood and Alex Brundle top scored in a meagre total

Defending the total George Lethaby and Alex Brundle fought hard to get the Oaks back in the game and a spectacular caught and bowled from George two balls after a disastrously mis-timed catch by his Dad, was the catalyst to restoring belief throughout the side.

At 75-2, Holborne were still red hot favourites but despite a couple of catches going down, the Oaks kept going and wickets for Alex Brundle (4), Michael Wood (2) Tom Barnes (1) and Brad Compton-Bearne, to add to George’s two, assured a dramatic climax and a win by 16 runs that will live long in the memory of a team where every player contributed.

Up the Oaks!

Batting Collapse Costs First XI Dear

The first team’s yo yo season continued with a cataclysmic batting collapse whilst chasing just 140 against Compton & Chandlers Ford at Oakley Park on Saturday.

Bowling first, the Oaks soon took control with some great stuff from Tom Holbrook causing the Compton batsmen all sorts of problem.

The wickets soon started falling with Tom once again being the pick of the bunch with four wickets, backed up with further wickets from Clive Welsman, Dan Sumner and Jimmy Bright.


On Song: Tom Holbrook took 4 wickets

However, the Oaks will be kicking themselves for letting Compton off the hook with a tail end flurry of runs when, in reality, they should have been all out for 100 or so.

Still,  140, with a strong batting line-up, looked pretty much achievable but only Dan Sumner and Neil Robinson got in to the thirties whilst a late flurry of runs from tail-ender, Keith Cutmore, was not enough to avoid disaster with Jimmy Bright left stranded not-out.

This Oakley side has more than enough ability to survive and prosper in this league as the bowlers have shown, however an unsettled batting line-up when chasing small totals, is an issue that needs rectifying sooner rather than later.

Onwards and upwards chaps.

Up the Oaks!

Oakley Edge Out Dummer in T20

The first ever Ron Ferguson trophy was claimed by Oakley on a warm evening at Oakley Park last night.

Batting first, Brad Compton-Bearne went death or glory from ball one and amassed 50 in just seven overs before retiring.

At the other end Paddy Saines (25) went quietly about his business before a minor middle order collapse halted the Oaks progress.

However, an excellent partnership between Darrell Dimond (34 not-out) and George Lethaby (28 not-out) saw Oakley reach a tough target of 168.


Oakley taking on Dummer at Oakley Park

Chasing the target, Alex Stuart and Mark Barden ramped up the scoring after a slow start and for a few periods the target looked achievable and after Alex retired after an excellent 50, Andrew Fergusonhad a real go, bludgeoning sixes and fours all over the ground before getting done attempting to pull one that stayed low.

An entertaining late flurry by Graham Brown was not enough to put further pressure on the Oaks who ran out winners by 20 overs in a great spirited game.

The subsequent retirement to the bar and the healthy spending on burgers, raffle tickets and booze, ensured a healthy night of takings that were approaching the £500.00 mark.

Well done to all involved, especially Suzanne Barden (catering) Andrew Ferguson (sound system)Billy Turner (PA man) Peter Holcroft (barman)  and Jeremy Stuart (umpire).

Up the Oaks!


Eclectic Oaks Lose to Waverley

A heady combination of colts, newcomers and hopeless cases, formed the nucleus of the Oakley side that were comfortably beaten by Waverley on a chilly afternoon yesterday.

The Oaks batted first and although Dan Sumner (19) and Jack Brundle (12) made a good start, the wickets soon started to tumble, with Deano James going for a classy golden duck that was soon followed by dismissals for Ben Allum and Brad Compton-Bearne.

Bob Lethaby tried to steady the ship and look relatively composed for two overs before inexplicably doing an impression of a one armed man trying to kill a snake in a phone box, going plumb LBW for just four.

Alex Brundle then holed out for a quack quack, leaving George Lethaby to try hold the innings together and at least get the score past 50. George was joined by Tom Barnes who threw caution to the wind,hitting five 4’s in in his 27 during a rare glimpse of entertainment.


Waverley were worthy winners on a chilly afternoon

When Tom went, it was down to the young King brothers, Perry and Brett, to help George see the total past 100 and credit must go to Perry for aiding the score to 112, thus avoiding a scorecard that read ‘P.King Duck’  to rival the one achieved by South Africa’s Alan Donald some years ago.

George, to his credit, remained unbeaten on 22.

Defending the target, the Oaks started with George and Alex leading the attack and they achieved early success, removing both openers, but after a few chances came and went, Waverley edged themselves to victory despite further wickets for Alex, Dan Summer and Perry King that at least kept the game interesting.

All in all, the game was lost because of a bit of dodgy batting by those who could do a little better, but friendly games are there to offer cricket to all club members, regardless of ability and everyone got a good go yesterday and Waverley are good guests who always spend well behind the bar, so not a bad day out really.

Up the Oaks!

Excellent First’s Back on Song!

The first team produced a stunning performance to put their nightmare start at Bentworth last week firmly behind them and dish out a beating to local rivals Whitchurch in warm May sunshine.

Batting first the Oaks suffered an early alarm, losing Dan Sumner, but Gerry Dique (47) looked a class act in a game where most of the batsmen did their bit, with other notable contributions coming from Neil Warner (40) Tom Holbrook (34) and Clive Welsman (22) in a total of 216.

Mr Reliable, Tom Holbrook, was once again bang on form with the ball and set about the Whitchurch attack with 2 wickets aided at the other end by the clever veteran, Clive Welsman, who snared four wickets with slow bowling that was varied and perplexing in equal measure.


A Great Team Effort By the First Eleven Yesterday

Dan Sumner also bowled well without the wicket he deserved and it was left to Jimmy Bright and George Lethaby to polish off the tail with George taking the three wickets required for victory, whilst Jimmy, back on form and on a full length, kept it tight at the other end and was desperately unlucky not to get the reward his bowling deserved.

All in all what would have impressed captain, Darrell Dimond, the most, was that this was a total team performance, with everyone contributing in all areas, and it was obvious to see that the Oaks are blessed with a young and athletic field that is worth a good twenty runs a game.

It was also great to see the second team, early victors over Easton, turn up and cheer the boys on to victory, demonstrating the unity and good spirit throughout the club.

All in all, with wins for the 11’s, 15’s, the first and second teams, it has to go down for a great weekend for the club.

Up the Oaks!

Seconds Administer Demolition Job!

The Oakley second string, unbeaten since 2013, hammered a beleaguered Easton yesterday after dismissing them for a paltry 35 in the warm May sunshine.

In what was described by vice captain, Dan Beckall, as a “perfect storm” the poor batting of Easton was met by devastating spells of bowling by Lance Van Dyk (4 wickets) and Steve Bown (6 wickets).


Proud Captain: Michael Wood congratulates Steve Bown

Oakley did lose two wickets but cruised to the total without further alarm demonstrating that they are more than well equipped for their recent promotion.

With the game wrapped up in under two hours, this allowed the players to take the short trip to Whitchurch to cheer on the firsts.

Ton Up Bownie Gives the Oaks Some Consolation

The Oakley Sunday string were on the wrong end of a battering by local rivals Farleigh Wallop on Sunday.

batting first the Oaks couldn’t even reach one hundred and the numbers in the score-book looked pretty much binary except for a fine 50 by Michael Wood.

Farleigh’s chase of the target was pretty much straight-forward though a few batsmen did fall, with the King boys picking up wickets and Bob Lethaby taking a salmon like catch to remove Andy Woodgate as well as the scalp of Rob Diamond with glorious full toss/long hop that was scythed into his stumps.


There was also some vicious banter aimed at Darrel Dimond, the Oakley Saturday skipper, but he stoically refused to let his Saturday team-mates get him out.

Such was the manner of the victory, Farleigh invited the Oaks for a 16/16 match which resulted in Steve Bown hitting an amazing century off just 12 overs that included no fewer than 11 sixes, allowing Oakley to cruise to a consolation win with plenty to spare.

The highlight of the afternoon was the King brothers both getting a good bat and bowl and Brad Compton-Bearne bringing along his lunch and a Craig Bellamy autobiography as his source of spectator entertainment.

The lowlight was a fearsome blow to the head and fortunately helmet, of Jack Brundle, which had everyone very concerned as he behaved normally for at least an hour afterwards.

Brundle Stars For Second’s

Michael Wood continued his successful spell as the captain of the second eleven today, leading the boys to a fine win over Aldershot.

The Oaks batted first and Woody led from the front with 32 but was loosing partners on a regular basis with Dan Beckall (2) Steve Bown (10) and Brad Compton Bearne (15) all getting in then out again.

When Alex Brundle came to the crease and Woody departed soon after, the Oaks looked in trouble but Alex kept his composure with an excellent innings of 54 that included three 6’s.

Jack Brundle (16) and Lance Van Dyke (14) aided the Oaks to a respectable total of 165 for 9.

Oakley then took control with the ball after a steady start by the Aldershot openers and after Steve Bowntook a wicket, Alex Brundle and Dan Jones took over, taking 8 wickets between them in a devastating spell.

Alex’s 5-26-6 was to go with his 50, made it a perfect start for the Oaks and he was rightly named man of the match by his captain.

Up the Oaks!

Firsts Off to Bad Start at Bentworth!

The first team got their season after a poor start after a below par display against a spirited but unspectacular Bentworth side today.

Batting first, Bentworth were pinned down, in particularly by Tom Holbrook, who put in a fine spell of bowling. However, the breakthrough didn’t materialise until the arrival of Clive Welsman, who bowled full and slow for success taking a of couple of wickets in a tight spell.

However, there was too much short stuff from the Oaks on a pudding of a pitch, although Dan Sumner andGeorge Lethaby did have some success picking up a wicket apiece and Tom Holbrook eventually picked up the couple of wickets that his bowling deserved.


Chasing a total of 179 the Oaks kept getting themselves in then out, losing patience with slow straight bowling that was nothing to be alarmed about. Paddy Saines, Dan Sumner, Clive Welsman, Darrell Dimond and James Bright all made starts before infuriating themselves with poor shot selection.

Tommy Holbrook and George Lethaby, steadied things but when Tom went for 22, the game was nearly up. George was joined by Keith Cutmore who batted well for 13, and then his Dad, Bob Lethaby, who was happy to try and see out the innings and look to George to finish the job.

George, however, holed out to a long hop after a gutsy 36, leaving the Oaks 30 runs short of victory with five overs to play.

Some harsh lessons learnt on a disappointing day.

Oaks Win Again Despite Late Wobble

The Oaks kept up their good start to the season with a reasonably comfortable win over Herriard, despite a late batting collapse on a chilly late April afternoon at Oakley Park.

As with the case on Saturday it was the bowlers doing the damage, with wickets once again for Alex Brundle (2) George Lethaby (2) Dan Sumner (2) with Gerry Dique (2) and Dan Jones also pitching in as Herriard were dismissed for a paltry 71.

Openers Gerry Dique and Dan Sumner set about the target with gusto until Gerry (28) and Dan (18) went in quick succession, sparking a calamitous batting collapse through the middle order that included the dismissal of the irrepressible Deano James, who showed his former club what he was made of with a stylish and destructive nought.


Herriard supporters brave the chilly conditions at Oakley Park

After what was rapidly becoming enough ducks to fill the village pond, Keith Cutmore scored what could now be regarded as an impressive 7 before Dan Jones aided his heroic captain, Michael Wood, over the line with seven wickets down.

Thanks to Deano for doing the teas and to Herriard for bringing support and using the bar on a weekend where the takings and profits coming in to the club have got us off to good financial start as well as the boys having a positive weekend on the pitch, despite the chilly conditions.

Well done to all associated to the club.

See you all on Wednesday and if anyone wishes to assist with colts training on Monday or Tuesday, we will be there from 6:00pm.

Up the Oaks!

Oaks Start the Season With a Saturday Friendly Win

Oaks had their first outdoor game of the pre-season today in what turned out to be a resounding win over St Mary’s at Oakley Park.

Batting first, the Oaks made 188, with main contributions with the bat coming from Dan Sumner (40) Brad Compton-Bearne (25) and a blistering 50 from newcomer Ben Peart that included five sixes.

Oaks v St Marys

The Oaks Enjoyed a Comfortable Win V St Mary’s Today

The Oaks made short work of defending the total dismantling St Mary’s for 44 with wickets for Alex Brundle (3) George Lethaby (2) Dan Sumner (2) Clive Welsman, James Bright and Ben Peart just before the rain set in.

The second game of the weekend is tomorrow at Oakley Park versus Herriard at 2:00 pm.

Up the Oaks

Oaks Finish the Season With a Sunday Win

The Sunday 11, or should I say 9, finished the season in style with a fine and hard earned win at Hartley Wintney yesterday.

Batting first, Oakley lost Dan Sumner early but a brilliant stand of 97 between Callum Van Dyk andDarrell Dimond put the Oaks in command before a plethora of late wickets that appeared to be costly.

Bob Lethaby once again looked a class act before departing just 48 short of a maiden 5o and was replaced by Jack Brundle who batted well for his 23 before some calamitous stuff from George Lethabyand Alex Brundle left Matt Vickers stranded at one end as the Oaks collapsed to 164 all out.

Defending the total, lovers, George Lethaby and Alex Brundle made amends for their pathetic batting with some excellent, disciplined bowling that left the hartley openers struggling to get the scoreboard moving.

George went for just 13 off 7 overs and Alex, with a brilliant slower ball, removed one of the openers before 15 year old Tom Barnes stood up to the mark with an excellent spell that included the removal of Hartley’s most dangerous batsman.

Callum Van Dyk picked up where the others left off and the Oaks continued to pick up the wickets with some fine catching and stingy fielding really putting the pressure with Jack Brundle taking a flying catch despite tripping over as he ran towards the ball.

The game was still on though and with a depleted field, the Oaks still needed to defend hard with 20 needed off the last three overs with a couple of wickets in hand,

However, the Oaks held there nerve in the field an excellent last over from Alex Brundle resulted in Hartley being all out 11 short of victory.

Hartley Wintney were excellent and sporting hosts who provided Oakley with an excellent tea and warm congratulations in what was a fitting fixture to end a succesful season.

Well done to all the regular lads and helpers in the Sunday set-up including, Dan Sumner (captain) Paul Sumner (umpiring and photography) Petua Sumner (teas) Alex Brundle and George Lethaby (bar stock and finance).

We all agreed after that it has been a great summer where friendships have been cemented amongst some fine cricket, some occasionally ugly hangover inspired cricket, some calamitous cricket and most of all some right good laughs along the way; it was also day tinged with sadness that it is all done for another year.

At least we have the indoor league to look forward to.

Up the Oaks!

PenningTON Slays Hungover Oaks!

A brilliant century from Cliddesden’s finest, the irrepressible Simon Pennington, put a hungover Oakley Sunday 11 to the sword at a picturesque Farleigh House yesterday.

Fielding a side that featured a record breaking number of hangovers courtesy of the previous night’s promotion celebrations, the Oaks didn’t waste time collapsing to 42 for 7 with only the classy looking Bob Lethaby (10) and Matt Vickers (17) reaching double figures.

Julian Worthington somehow managed to pull himself together (after spending the early hours vomiting down the side of his mother’s car) and put on a hundred partnership with new boy Brad Compton Bearne, who hit some clumping blows whilst reaching an excellent maiden Oakley 50.

George Lethaby came in late on and hit a few fours that helped the Oaks reach a reasonable target of 171 to at least make a game of it, but after the Dummer opener went for a golden duck off the the first ball of the innings, Simon took over with an knock of class, belligerence and aggression (That’ll be £100 please Simon).


Hangover Cure: A Lovely Afternoon at Farleigh House

It could have been different if MATT VICKERS had run him out when on just 8, but he inexplicably missed the stumps and Pennington rarely (well supported by the other Dummer opener) looked in trouble thereafter.

Only one more wicket went down but this only allowed the Dummer number 4, Andrew “Mr Cricket” Ferguson, to come in and bat as always, cutting a dash with a vast array of cuts, drives and pulls that had Simon wiping away tears of glowing admiration at the non strikers end.

In a fitting finale, Simon hit a six to win the game and complete his century at the same time, a century that wouldn’t have happened had MATT VICKERS not missed the stumps with a simple run-out. However, it has to be said, it was a great knock, despite MATT VICKERS missing an easy run-out when Simon was on eight.

However, there is no point dwelling on a missed run-out by MATT VICKERS as when you score a century (how would I know?) you always have to ride your luck at least once, and Simon did so, taking advantage of a missed run out by MATT VICKERS.

As usual, the game was played in a good spirit by the two sides, with Farleigh House being a great place to enjoy a game in the sunshine before the autumn starts creeping up on us.

A ‘hair of the dog’ beer was just what was required after the game where Dummer were worthy winners, courtesy of MATT VICKERS missing an easy run-out that I wont mention.

(Throw) Up the Oaks!!

Oaks Celebrate Historic Treble Success!

Oakley CC celebrated long into the night after both sides won promotion to go with the Guy Jewell Shield trophy that was secured last weekend.

With promotion already secured, the first team were perhaps, understandably, below key at home toKingsclere and ended up losing but the real drama was taking place at Crondall where the seconds were in a last game shoot-out for the title with second placed Odiham who were also unbeaten this season.

The Oaks responded to the pressure in style, turning in a a fine bowling and fielding performance to leave Odiham’s dreams in tatters at 101 all out.

Wickets were shared between Lance Van Dyk. Callum Van Dyk, Rob Gerrard and Steve Bown, leavingSteve Savage and Dan Beckell to knock off the runs after captain, Michael Wood, departed on 30.


The Saturday Seconds: Champions with a 100% Record

It was a dismissive performance by Oakley who were warmly congratulated by Odiham after the game before the celebrations began in earnest.

Both teams got together at the club and Saturday on evening and spirits were high with everyone joining in the fun and games with champagne, beer and Jaeger bombs flying around the place.

Oaks Win the Guy Jewell Plate


Guy Jewell Winners. Top Row (Left to right). Neil Robinson, Tom Holbrook, Chris Morris, Steve Bown, Michael Wood, Sam Holbrook, Michael Constantine 

Bottom Row (Left to right) Bob Lethaby, Clive Welsman, Julian Worthington, Adam Robinson

Oakley completed part one of an unprecedented treble at the Mays Bounty yesterday, with a relatively comfortable victory over local rivals, Ramsdell.

Bowling first, Oakley, restricted Ramsdell to 120 courtesy of some fine bowling from Tom Holbrook, Clive Welsman, Neil Robinson and Steve Bown that was backed by a near faultless display from all concerned in the field.

The wickets were shared around all the bowlers and there was also a fine run-out from Tom Holbrook.

Chasing the target, the Oaks never really looked in trouble and despite losing Clive Welsman in the first over, Adam Robinson took off from where he left in Saturday, pasting the ball to all corners of the ground.

The Oaks did lose Neil Robinson and Sam Holbrook and if Ramsdell had taken advantage of Laurel & Hardy type mix up between the Robinson brothers that should have resulted in a run-out, the game may have swung their way.

However, Tom Holbrook came to the crease with Adam and looked a class act with a mixture of pull shots and straight drives in a great knock supporting Adam’s brilliant, match winning unbeaten 79.

It is now down to captains, Michael Wood and Clive Welsman to galvanise their respective teams and complete what will be one of the best seasons at Oakley in recent years.


Oaks at the Double!

Oakley maintained a double promotion push on Saturday with both teams recording comfortable victories in cool but sunny late summer conditions.

The firsts put on an impressive showing at Longparish, accumulating on a formidable total of 261 withAdam Robinson once again in belligerent form with an aggressive 102.

Other contributions came all the way down the order, notably from Neil Robinson (42) and Tom Holbrook(25) with Bob Lethaby adding some late innings entertainment for his team mates with a knock of 7 (seven) not out that was riddled with class.

In fairness to Longparish, they had a go, but as the wickets tumbled they appeared to settle for the consolation of completing their 42 Overs.

The Oaks worked hard to get Longparish all out but stoical middle order defiance from two veterans frustrated the bowlers enough to allow them (Longparish) to complete their allocated overs with 9 down.

Wickets went to Clive Welsman (3) Tom Holbrook, Andy Woodgate, Neil Robinson and emerging all rounder, Bob Lethaby, who was in excellent form, picking up three wickets with a bamboozling cocktail of of doosra’s, flippers, googly’s, wrongun’s, sliders and reverse good balls that had the Longparish batsmen flaying at the ball as if they were one armed men trying to kill a snake in a phone box.

What a talent Bob is.

Bob’s brother, Keith Cutmore, also bowled well and was unlucky not to pick up a wickets as reward for his efforts.


Ton Up: Adam Robinson Set Oakley Firsts Up With a Marvellous 102

Meanwhile, down the road at Oakley, the seconds were eventually making light work of Ashford Hill II’safter a shaky period with the bat early on. 63 year old youngster, Steve Savage, kept the innings together with a well constructed fifty that was well supported by Alex Brundle (42) and his irrepressible brother,Jack, who made a 19.

The Oaks eventually put on 216 and when Ashford Hill crumbled to 7 for 7 an Oakley defeat seemed about as likely as a confirmed sighting of Elvis Presley riding two abreast on Shergar with Lord Lucan…On the surface of Venus.

Pick of the bowlers was Steve “Chinese, Bowner, Bownster, Bownie” Bown, who returned incredible figures of  4-5 off 10 with some of the meanest and most aggressive overs seen since Courtney Walshand Curtley Ambrose took Mike Atherton’s England to pieces in Trinidad some 20 years ago.

There were also wickets for Callum Van Dyk, Lance Van Dyk, Alex Brundle (2) and emerging colt, Dan Jones, as Ashford Hill eventually scrambled to 81, leaving captain Michael “Woody, Woodman, Woodster, Woodie” Wood happy enough to drink heavily into the evening.

So the season is set up for a thrilling climax next weekend with the seconds in what is effectively a final against second placed Odiham, whilst a first team win will guarantee them the second promotion spot.

Keep going boys, one last push for glory.

Up the Oaks

Oaks Into Final of the Guy Jewell Plate!

Oakley are now through to the Guy Jewell Shield Final that is taking place at 12.00pm on the 24th of August at the  Mays Bounty ground.

Our opponents are set to be either Sherfield or Ramsdell on what should be an entertaining afternoon of cricket and the possibility of some silverware in our most succesful season for several years.


The Mays Bounty: A Great Place to Play Cricket

It would be a great day for the club if as many players, colts, wives and girlfriends can make it a day out to remember.

On a sunny day, the Bounty is a great place to play and watch with excellent bar facilities for everyone to enjoy a beer or a Pimms as they roar the boys on to an epic victory.

Get down there and support your village club.

Up the Oaks!!

Bob Lethaby


Firsts Blow it in Title Decider

The first team, weakened by the loss of the Robinson’s, Scott Bright and Mark Potter, fell apart with the bat after reducing a decent Bentworth side to 168.

Oakley were nearly off to the ultimate start when the Bentworth run machine, opener, McCarthy, dollied up the first ball from Tom Holbrook into to the only place where there was no fielder.

After that Bentworth steadied and started going along at a steady rate despite some fine bowling from Tom Holbrook and James Bright, who once again, tore in to the opposition with no reward.

Oaks had a change of luck when McArthy, who had bludgeoned a quick 53, edged to George’s Lethaby’sfirst ball loosener, much to he delight of the whole fielding side as they now had a reall scent of victory.

As expected, Bentworth toiled in the hot afternoon sun after that dismissal came regular wickets courtesy of Alex Brundle, Tom Holbrook, Clive Welsman and Dan Sumner, to leave Betworth stuttering towards 164 all out.

It was a great all round effort in the field and at this point the Oaks were well on top.

However, a batting collapse ensued, with only Dan Sumner 17 and Sam Holbrook 33, showing any resistance as Oakley made a miserable attempt at chasing a meagre total on a good day for batting, with the tail not showing any wag to rescue the afternoon.

No one chooses to have a bad day, but the atmosphere in the bar afterwards was proof that several player felt they had let themselves and the team.

The Oaks need to bounce back quickly to keep alive any hope of an end of season Championship party, but it looks like the fat lady may have already sung.

Up the Oaks!

Firsts Blow it in Title Decider

The first team, weakened by the loss of the Robinson’s, Scott Bright and Mark Potter, fell apart with the bat after reducing a decent Bentworth side to 168.

Oakley were nearly off to the ultimate start when the Bentworth run machine, opener, McCarthy, dollied up the first ball from Tom Holbrook into to the only place where there was no fielder.

After that Bentworth steadied and started going along at a steady rate despite some fine bowling from Tom Holbrook and James Bright, who once again, tore in to the opposition with no reward.

Oaks had a change of luck when McArthy, who had bludgeoned a quick 53, edged to George’s Lethaby’s first ball loosener, much to he delight of the whole fielding side as they now had a reall scent of victory.

As expected, Bentworth toiled in the hot afternoon sun after that dismissal came regular wickets courtesy of Alex Brundle, Tom Holbrook, Clive Welsman and Dan Sumner, to leave Betworth stuttering towards 164 all out.

It was a great all round effort in the field and at this point the Oaks were well on top.

However, a batting collapse ensued, with only Dan Sumner 17 and Sam Holbrook 33, showing any resistance as Oakley made a miserable attempt at chasing a meagre total on a good day for batting, with the tail not showing any wag to rescue the afternoon.

No one chooses to have a bad day, but the atmosphere in the bar afterwards was proof that several player felt they had let themselves and the team.

The Oaks need to bounce back quickly to keep alive any hope of an end of season Championship party, but it looks like the fat lady may have already sung.

Up the Oaks!

Brad the Lad Overcomes Timsbury!

A makeshift Oaks team made up of the George Lethaby fan club, beat Timsbury in a thrilling evening contest last night.

Oaks lost he toss and bowled first but after it became apparent that Timsbury were not the greatest side in Timsbury, captain for the evening, Bob Lethaby, heroically made a decision to bowl everyone on the pitch for at least one over.

A plethora of pie chucks, no-balls that came down with snow on them and wides that ended in another county, allowed Timsbury to a competitive total of 135 in a game that featured the batmen having to retire on 25.

The most remarkable part of the innings was a hat-trick for Dan Sumner in the final Over; a great moment against some of the best batsmen I have seen since I watched the Basingstoke blind 11 fending off a sharp bowling attack whilst using sticks of rhubarb as bats.

Batting second, Mr QuietMark Potter got off to a slow start, retiring on 28 after a stoical eight ball innings, allowing George Lethaby to show great skill by gloving a donkey drop to the wicket keeper in the next over. Alex Brundle soon followed after a couple of hefty fours.

Once again, the man they call Mr Pressure, Bob Lethaby, came to the crease, executing a mixture of class, diligence, belligerence and brilliance as he compiled 22 of the most beautiful runs you will see before a top edge hoik got him caught behind off a ball that would have made Waqar Younis weep with envy.

Alex Gray and Tom Barnes batted well, Alex in particular, with a quick fire 21, but the rate was getting above 10 an over with wickets falling, however, when you need a hero for an hour, anger can be power…Enter Brad Compton-Bearne, a man who has not played since school and was wearing a testicle crunching pair of whites that he once used a s a colts player.

However, with 10 needed in the last over and his bemused brother Charlie wondering what to do at he other end, Brad stood up to the plate like a children’s comic book hero from the 1950’s.

After a running a few and hitting a lusty 4, 2 runs were still needed off he last ball…Bang…an enormous six that had his team mates erupting with joy and laughter from the sidelines.

What an occasion, what a night, all that was missing was a vision of the sun setting behind the Christ the Redeemer statue…No matter, for one night only, Brad the Lad, was our Lord and Saviour!

Up the Oaks!

Brad the Lad Overcomes Timsbury!

A makeshift Oaks team made up of the George Lethaby fan club, beat Timsbury in a thrilling evening contest last night.

Oaks lost he toss and bowled first but after it became apparent that Timsbury were not the greatest side in Timsbury, captain for the evening, Bob Lethaby, heroically made a decision to bowl everyone on the pitch for at least one over.

A plethora of pie chucks, no-balls that came down with snow on them and wides that ended in another county, allowed Timsbury to a competitive total of 135 in a game that featured the batmen having to retire on 25.

The most remarkable part of the innings was a hat-trick for Dan Sumner in the final Over; a great moment against some of the best batsmen I have seen since I watched the Basingstoke blind 11 fending off a sharp bowling attack whilst using sticks of rhubarb as bats.

Batting second, Mr QuietMark Potter got off to a slow start, retiring on 28 after a stoical eight ball innings, allowing George Lethaby to show great skill by gloving a donkey drop to the wicket keeper in the next over. Alex Brundle soon followed after a couple of hefty fours.

Once again, the man they call Mr Pressure, Bob Lethaby, came to the crease, executing a mixture of class, diligence, belligerence and brilliance as he compiled 22 of the most beautiful runs you will see before a top edge hoik got him caught behind off a ball that would have made Waqar Younis weep with envy.

Alex Gray and Tom Barnes batted well, Alex in particular, with a quick fire 21, but the rate was getting above 10 an over with wickets falling, however, when you need a hero for an hour, anger can be power…Enter Brad Compton-Bearne, a man who has not played since school and was wearing a testicle crunching pair of whites that he once used a s a colts player.

However, with 10 needed in the last over and his bemused brother Charlie wondering what to do at he other end, Brad stood up to the plate like a children’s comic book hero from the 1950’s.

After a running a few and hitting a lusty 4, 2 runs were still needed off he last ball…Bang…an enormous six that had his team mates erupting with joy and laughter from the sidelines.

What an occasion, what a night, all that was missing was a vision of the sun setting behind the Christ the Redeemer statue…No matter, for one night only, Brad the Lad, was our Lord and Saviour!

Up the Oaks!

Oaks Trounce Farley!

Because I had the misfortune of spending the week in Turkey with three women, I was unable to compile a match report last week.
However, fear not as the irrepressible Adam Robinson stood in, not only as captain but also as a man of literacy genius…Is a ton every week not enough for his peoples poet?
So strap yourselves in….Here is the report from Sat!
Was overcast and extremely humid, Lost toss, and was put into bat on a wet green deck.
Jules and Adam put on another 50 run partnership, Adam punishing anything loose from the bowling, before Jules lobbed one to backward square leg for 5. S Bright came to the crease and didn’t hold back attacking the bowling from ball 1 before falling just after drinks. This led to Mozza coming to the crease and after a steady start came the most unlucky dismissal for Adam. Mozza smashed a long hop straight back to the bowler who dropped the ball onto the stumps with Robinson out of his crease. Sending him back to the pavilion for 102. Mozza carried on and scored a well deserved 43 NO with Sam H and Tom H also coming to the party smashing some boundaries. Oaks 224/6
J Bright and T Holbrook started as they always do, bowling tight lines. J Bright then got the wicket we needed helped by a brilliant catch from Mozza to remove the opener. Bright then picked up another shortly afterwards which out the oaks very much in control. T Holbrook was unlucky not to have a wicket to his name as a catch went down unfortunately in the slips. Meanwhile Farleys skipper was at the crease and was batting really well hitting the bad balls for 4 until the mighty big lad Paul Potts (Mark Potter) came on and with a brilliant instinctive catch at first slip my Ginger Bown the momentum was very much with the oaks. The wickets kept tumbling with D Sumner bowling well and picking up a couple but the stand out figures were Paul Potts 5/19. Ensuring the hosts were bowled out for 122. Max Points!
A beautiful piece by Adam, full of such emotion it had me weeping tears of joy from my balcony!
Up the Oaks

Sunday Oaks Complete a Weekend Hat-Trick

The Sunday string mate it a memorable weekend for the Oaks completing a hat-trick of wins with a resounding victory over Bounty Social at Oakley Park.

Batting first, the Oaks struggled against a decent attack, losing Dan Sumner early and Jack Brundlewhen the score was on just 15.

Alex Brundle and the wonderfully turgid Bob Lethaby saw off the attack with Bob waiting patiently for a bad ball…Sadly, when it duly arrived, courtesy of a full toss, Bob hoiked across the line and was out LBW…What a prick!

Billy Turner came to the crease and batted patiently as Alex Brundle opened up and started increasing the run rate with a flurry of sixes and fours.

Pete Holcroft went for a classy duck and when Alex was caught on 47 it was up to George Lethaby to take up the senior role, batting aggressively for a quick-fire 33.

It was left to Tom Barnes and Dan Jones to get the score up to somewhere near 150 and Dan in particular, batted well to aid the score to an almost respectable 143.

Defending the total, the Oaks got off to good start, with Dan Sumner removing one opener whilst the other was caught off the bowling of Tom Barnes at mid-on courtesy of a mesmeric flying catch by Bob Lethaby.

Once again, chairman courageous had turned a game on it’s head with a cricket brain that so often has him labelled by his lesser peers as Mr Cricket.

This caused a dramatic collapse for Bounty, with George Lethaby, Dan Jones, a further two for Dan Sumner plus a brilliant run out by Jack Brundle and another hilarious one gifted by Bounty, leaving them all out for a paltry 69.

So another fine day for the Oaks in what is shaping up to be a season to remember as all the young lads have developed a winning habit.

Time, once again,  to say those all to familiar words.

Up the Oaks!

Seconds Ease Past AWE Tadley

The Oakley 2’s eased past AWE at a picturesque Aldermaston bomb factory yesterday; there is no more a quintessential setting than the AWE, with a stunning backdrop featuring a caravan park and a nuclear waste facility surrounding by exquisite barbed wire fencing, it is an fine example of why the beautiful game was invented.

AWE batted first and were aided to a healthy total by a plethora of dropped catches as the Oaks, unusually, toiled in the field, perhaps intoxicated by the heady mix of July sunshine and plutonium.


Oaks Eased to Victory at a Humid AWE 

Steve “Bownie, Bownster, Bowner”  Bown removed the AWE opener third ball but from then onwards, AWE started making good progress with a series of edges and miss-hits flying to the boundaries as the the Oaks bowlers, George “The hair” Lethaby, in particular, fizzed with anger at their misfortune that wasn’t helped by catches going down.

Lance Van Dyk, resilient as ever, took three wickets and son Callum took the all important wicket of theAWE number 4 who had gone on to make a 50 that only included about fifteen play and misses and dropped catches.

Captain courageous, Michael “Woody, Woodman, Woodstock” Wood then finished off the tail with 5 quick wickets that included a hat-trick that whilst impressive, could have been completed by Stephen Hawking or even Bob Lethaby.

Chasing the 191 total, the Oaks got off to a terrible start, with Michael “Woodstock, Woodman, Woody” Wood edging for a third ball duck but Dan Beckall and Chris “Mozzair, Mozzer, Mozzman” Morrissettled things with a 50+ partnership before Dan top edged to point whilst going well.

Callum Van Dyke started where Dan left off and aided Mozzer past 50 before eventually getting done by an exquisite piece of pie chucking. Bownie then came in and batted sensibly, but just as the game was about to be won, there was a late twist as Mozzer went for an excellent 93, leaving the Oaks needing 2 to win.

It was was left to Bob Lethaby to see out a nervy end, and his faultless 15 second stint at the non strikers was typical of a man who, when needed, can bring calm and order to a tense situation; it was a great innings from Bob, who received treatment for cramp at the end of the game.

This was the second’s biggest test so far, one they overcame, in the end, with ease!

Up the Oaks!

First’s Have an Easy Day

The first team made it seven out of seven on Saturday with a comfortable victory over St Cross at a humidOakley Park.

Bowling first Oakley tore into St Cross and dismissed them for just 93 with some great bowling from Tom Holbrook, James Bright, Mark Potter and Clive Welsman doing the damage.

Wickets went to Clive, 5-26,  Tommy, 2-24, and Mark Potter, 2-16.

Chasing the total, Adam Robinson, fresh from a week of batting coaching from Chairman, Bob Lethaby, tore into the St Cross attack with a blistering 82 not-out.

To see Adam executing the shots that Bob taught him, is great testimony of his desire to learn to bat with the same grace and style of his irrepressible Chairman.

So another a week and another win!

Up the Oaks!!

Sam’s the Man as Oaks Bash East Woodhay

A fantastic 50 off just 6 Overs by Sammy Holbrook put East Woodhay, two divisions higher, to the sword at Oakley Park last night.

There were many other rapid contributions throughout the Oakley batting line-up that took the score to a commanding 149-6 off of just 16 overs.

Defending the total, the Oaks were in fine form with the ball in hand with Dan Sumner taking 3-21 andClive Welsman 2-3 as Woodhay wilted in the warm evening sunshine.

Callum Van Dyke and Steve ‘Bownie, Bowner’  Bown were also impressive as Woodhay ended well short of the the target, finishing on 105-7.

All in all it was a great evening for the Oaks in a competition that, availability depending, they can certainly go a long way in.

There may even be an opportunity to add a trophy to the bulging Oakley CC cabinet!!!

Up the Oaks!

Oaks Edge Out Bounty in a Thriller

The Oakley Sunday 11 were victorious over Bounty Social in a thrilling encounter at at the Mays Bounty today.

Batting first, the Oaks got off to a poor start losing Tommy Holbrook and Dan Sumner early, before a partnership of 127 between James Bright and Julian Worthington put them s back on track.

Julian went for 54 and James, in excellent nick, eventually went for 77, allowing enough time for a Bob and Ben show that added another 30+ to the total.

It was another marvellous effort by Chairman Bob and his 17 in three overs was just another example of the burgeoning talent coming from within this man who exudes Bothamesque class as a genuine all-rounder.

Defending 194, Oakley started well with Tommy Holbrook bowling some tight stuff and an early James Bright wicket courtesy of a flying catch from Darren Turner,  however, the Bounty number 2 and 3 batsmen soon started wresting away the control as the run rate lessened.

However, Dan Sumner captains a spirited side on Sundays and 2 wickets for Julian Worthington and another for ‘King of Spin’ Bob Lethaby ,wrestled back a semblance of parity.

As the game drew to a conclusion, it was James Bright with a wicket maiden and Dan Sumner removing another that set the the game up for youngster, Tom Barnes, to bowl the final over with Bounty needing ten to win.

Tom rose to the biggest challenge that he has faced in men’s cricket so far by reducing the Bounty batsmen to eight from the over, resulting in a dramatic Oaks victory by just one run.

Well done lads

Up the Oaks!

Adam and Jules Dominate Wallop

Adam Robinson and Julian Worthington were the stars of the show as Oakley ran out winners in a rain affected game that wasn’t short on controversy…The tension the drama, the buzz, it was all happening.

The Oaks were put into bat and Adam Robinson began cautiously, smearing the first delivery for six into cow corner to set the tone on a day where he rode his luck with a flurry of sixes, some which should land around about Tuesday or Wednesday.

Cricket is often a game of injustice and it is quite remarkable that club chairman, Bob Lethaby, who plays with utter class and grace, has a high score of just 36 NOT OUT compiled over two and a half painful hours, whilst Adam can fluke his way to 141 in approximately twenty minutes.

Makes you sick it does.

Anyway, at the other end, the smiling assassin, Julian Worthington, was also making steady progress and it wasn’t to long before he passed the 50 mark as a willing onlooker to the carnage being unleashed at the other end.

Julian was eventually caught on 84 and the partnership of 234 was the highest by an Oakley opening pair since the 350 put on by Steve Savage and Gordon Scott last summer against Hook in the Guy Jewell Cup Final at Mays Bounty.

ads and jules

Julian and Adam: 234 Partnership

The game then descended into chaos as the rain came down, meaning the the umpires had to get the calculators out and check the rule book that, by sheer coincidence, was written by the worlds most pedantic man…An evening with him would surely result in a short walk in the woods with a revolver.

Anyway, luckily for the Oaks, Over Wallop just wanted to finish the game and after some hefty blows to the Oakley attack the wickets fell, with Clive Welsman being the pick of the bunch picking up three wickets as the light faded and the rain continued to threaten.

So another great points haul for the Oaks as they maintain their position at the top of the league, a big well done to all, as well as opposition captain, Paul Cullen and the other players from Wallop, who were willing to get the game done when they could have easily escaped with a ‘No result’ because of the conditions.

Up the Oaks!

Drunken Oaks Lose to Crondall

An Oakley team featuring five players still pissed from the night before, suffered defeat in the annual Sunday friendly against Crondall.

Oakley bowled first with Alex Brundle and George Lethaby, featuring a accumulative total of 3 hours sleep, labouring in the hot afternoon sunshine but amazingly, wickets did start to fall.

Alex Brundle picked up a couple as did spin craftsman Bob Lethaby, but it was the legend Michael Wood who was pick of the bunch with three wickets coming off a plethora of alcohol fuelled deliveries.

Crondall got to 175 courtesy of some hefty blows and Oakley faced the task of batting with most of team standing accused of being drunk in charge of a cricket bat.

Michael Wood, holding back the vomit, opened with a rather grey looking Dan Sumner and both were beset with a host of early LBW shouts as they swung and missed at virtually every delivery.

Dan didn’t last long before Gordon Scott came to the crease, looking in great nick before he went for agolden duck. Alex Gray came in at four and lasted longer than most before Matt Vickers joined the fun with what was in comparison to the rest, a moderate hangover.

Matt was joined by Bob Lethaby who hung around for a classy 13 before being replaced by Alex Brundlewho got a drink ravaged duck.

George Lethaby joined Matt who went on to compile an excellent 42 and as George plundered a couple of hefty sixes it looked game on, but Matt eventually went.

George was joined by Paul Sumner who hung around as George hit out but Paul went for 5 leaving George somewhat unlucky to finish unbeaten on 25, leaving the Oaks 30 odd short of the target.

All in all an ugly afternoon of village cricket.

Up the Oaks!

Oaks Keep Run Going With Victory Over Winterbourne

Oakley won again at on a beautiful afternoon at Oakley Park yesterday.

Putting Winterbourne in to bat, Tommy Holbrook and James Bright opened with their captain liking Tommy’s pace quickly moving onto 31 before Tommy finally got his man. James, consistent as ever, bowled 10 tight overs without any luck only going for 25.

Mark Potter replaced Tommy bowling 10 overs 2 for 35, but Clive Welsman was the pick of the bunch, bowling 9.1 overs 5 for 37Dan Sumner also chipped in with 1 for 24.

Winterbourne were eventually all out for 176 after what was a great fielding display by The Oaks.

Julian Worthington opened with last minute call up Andy Woodgate and they put on 77 before Woodgate fell for 34 in the 17th over.

Julian went on playing some cracking shots all round the ground before eventually falling for 63. Scott Bright then departed for 15 as did Sammy Holbrook for 2.

It was left to skipper, Clive Welsman to see the Oaks home with an invaluable unbeaten 42 that was ably supported by Didier Dimond who also stayed unbeaten on 9.

This again was a great team performance with late injury drop outs for The Robinsons who hopefully will be fit for next week as the Oaks travel to in-form Ashford Hill who are hot on Oakley’s tails after only losing one match so far.


Up The Oaks!

Two’s Cruise at Ashford Hill

The seconds maintained their 100% start to season after a relatively comfortable victory at a warm and sunny Ashford Hill yesterday afternoon.

Batting first Oakley got off to a decent start before Steve Savage departed on 13 but they soon recovered as captain Michael “Woody Woodman Woodstock” Wood put on a magnificent partnership of 101 withDan Beckall.

Dan eventually went whilst tiring shortly after making his 50 but was followed by a well constructed knock of 28 at from Callum Van Dyke. With Woody blazing his way to 75 and the Oaks approaching the 200 mark, this set up George Lethaby and Alex Brundle to give it some humpty in the final overs.

As series of fours and sixes sent the score hurtling towards 250 before George (25) and Alex (24)departed leaving the tail to run everything and take the score up to a commanding 259 that included anexquisitely executed 9 from the outrageously talented Chairman, Bob Lethaby.

Ashord Hill

Oaks ran out comfortable winners against Ashford Hill

As the temperature soared the Oaks had a real battle on their hands to take full batting points, especially as Ashford Hill understandably opted for damage limitation rather than chasing an unlikely victory.

All the bowlers and the field worked extremely hard with Lan Van Dyk, as ever, giving everything in pursuit of a breakthrough backed by Steve Bown at the other end.

George Lethaby and Callum Van Dyk also bowled well, sticking to their task and eventually, all the bowlers got at least some reward with George and Bownie picking up two apiece and the Van Dyk’s one each, the highlight being George, rather hilariously, trapping his Uncle Matt Vickery LBW for a duck.

However, Ashford Hill survived to see out the overs, despite Woody trying everything including bowling himself and Bob Lethaby in attempt to flummox the opposition batsmen with a series of donkey drops, pie chucks and reverse good balls, but it wasn’t to be.

However, it was another win and a great team effort by the boys against what was a limited but stoical Ashford Hill side in a match was played in good spirit by both teams.

MOM: Michael “Woodman Woodstock Woody” Wood

Up the Oaks!!

Hungover Sunday Boys Overcome Odiham!

A team featuring a plethora of of players who had slept on the floor after a World Cup party at club on Saturday, ran out eventual winners against Odiham at a cloudy Oakley Park on Sunday.

Odiham batted first and looked like they meant business with their opener smashing a second six off the second ball of the over, but after getting off to a flyer before he was dismissed by a short plugger by Callum Van Dyke.

As Odiham started taking the game away from the Oaks, two wickets in two balls from a rather pale looking George Lethaby, changed the course of the match and Oakley started to dominate, with a further wicket apiece for George and Callum backed up by others for Dan Sumner and Alex Brundle and an Odiham run-out courtesy of a pinged hamstring.

Odiham finished on 134.


George and Alex preparing well for the match v Odiham

Oakley opened with Steve Savage and Darrell Dimond, who both batted calmly before Steve went for 24, sportingly giving himself out run-out.

Darrell, who went on to make 44, was joined by Dan Sumner, who, suffering from a heavy head, tried to carve one into cow corner only to be clean bowled. Matt Vickers followed in similar fashion before George Lethaby smacked a couple of fours in a quick-fire 13.

It was left to Julian Worthington and chairman Bob Lethaby (14 not out) to finish the job, Bob hitting the winning runs with the finest shot of his illustrious career, a shot that, disgracefully, received absolutely no applause from his team-mates who were fast asleep on the various benches and chairs.

Up the Oaks!

Captain Clive Settles it For Oaks

The Oaks ran out winners in a tight, low scoring and often ill tempered game game at Oakley Park on Saturday.

Aided by excellent fielding that included two fine catches for Sammy Holbrook, the Oaks were in fine form with the ball with pick of the bowlers being James Bright, who was a persistent thorn in he side of the Basingstoke attack during a spell of 4-12.

There were also wickets for Tom Holbrook (1) Neil Robinson (1) and the excellent Dan Sumner (3) as the Oaks dismissed Basingstoke cheaply, or so it seemed.

Going into bat, Oakley were soon in trouble as Adam Robinson went for 20 and was followed quickly byScott Bright and Neil Robinson as Julian Worthington held things together at the end.

However, captain, Clive Welsman, showed his experience, steadying the ship with Julian in a stand that was slowly taking the game away from Basingstoke, with the only alarm being when Clive was dubiously given out but reprieved by Derek Dicker, who showed great sportsmanship by recalling him to the crease.

Clive survived some near the mark sledging to compile 46 before getting caught in the deep and Julianwas unlucky not to get a 50, departing on 44, but Dan Sumner and Tom Holbrook kept their cool to see the Oaks home to a fourth consecutive victory.

Up the Oaks!

Sumner Puts Whiteditch to the Sword

A near faultless 99 from Dan “Flake” Sumner was the highlight of a slightly tedious affair yesterday against a Whiteditch side who played with good spirit but were far too inferior to a young Oakley side to make the game any kind of spectacle for a good crowd enjoying the June sunshine at Oakley Park.

Oakley batted first and it was not long before Michael “Woody Wood and Flake Sumner pounced on any bad deliveries to get the scoreboard rattling along at a more than steady rate.

Woody eventually went for 44 after he started, unselfishly hitting out, leaving it to Keith Cutmore to come in smash one for four before trying the same party piece that only had him trudging back to the pavilion with self-loathing thoughts of what might have been.

Debutant, Darren Turner, joined the fray and quietly went about the business of compiling an innings, happily playing second fiddle to Flake Sumner who was destroying most of what came his way.

Sadly, he also had the look of a young man who wanted to destroy himself when he went for one big shot too many and was dismissed on 99, a score that was greeted by his team-mates with a plethora of what might have been’s, just to make sure he knew what he had done.


Flake: 99

It was then Chairman Bob’s turn to take up the challenge, hampered by a violent hangover from a school re-union. What followed was a ten minute spell of air shot hay-makers in a cataclysmic innings of six that was the perfect anti-Christ of what the Flake had served up.

Bob was replaced by Matt Vickers who played some decent shots in an innings of fifteen, though he departed not long before Turner, who had compiled 25 in his first game since leaving school some twenty odd years aback.

Steve Bown smacked a a four soon went whilst going for another and George Lethaby hit a quick-fire 18 not-out to take the score up towards 250, a job that was completed with an Alex Brundle four off the last ball.

Whiteditch didn’t bother chasing the total, looking for batting practice and time at the crease as they sensed they would never reach the target. However, on the plus side, this allowed Dan to rest Alex Brundle and George Lethaby so Colts players could feel the experience of opening the bowling.

Both lads did really well, in particular, Tommy Barnes, who took his first senior wicket in a spell where he went for just 15 off 8 overs.

As the game meandered from tedium to suicidal, Dan brought on Bob Lethaby and Keith Cutmore to see if Whiteditch would have a go, but respective bowling figures of 1-17 and 0-12 of 8 overs apiece, summed up limited ambition as some of the Oakley players sought to keep the game interesting for both teams.

In fairness, Keith Cutmore did his best to entertain, with some vintage 1970’s disco dancing whilst fielding with his feet and fellow baldy, Bob, enhanced by what was now becoming a vomit inducing hangover, was his normal chaotic self.

However, in the end, the highlight of the day was one of the worst dropped catches in the history of Sunday cricket by Alex Brundle.

When the ball looped towards and then through Alex’s hands at approximately 2.5 miles per hour, it was a moment of classic moment of tragi-comedy that deserved punishment far in excess of the meagre fifty pence fine it got….Sadly, written words can’t do it enough justice.

Woody picked up three wickets and Bownie another, but there is little else to report as Whiteditchstruggled just past 100 in their allotted overs.

All in all a win is a win and it keeps the club’s great momentum going and it was good to see such a young team again, with 8 players 21 or under.

Thanks to Paul for umpiring, Petua for doing the teas and to the Whiteditch players for cleaning the clubhouse whilst we were fielding.

Up the Oaks!

Oaks Romp Old Basing

After some heavy early morning rain in Hampshire, Oakley were delighted that the Old Basing covers did their job, allowing the Oaks to coast to victory in the afternoon sunshine.

Clive finally proved that he is a capable tosser and it turned out to be a good one to win, with half the pitch bone dry and theother damp due to some pesky kids removing the covers from one end of the pitch Friday night.7

The Oaks opened up with Tommy Holbrook and James Bright who proved too good for the Old Basing openers who could only scrape to an opening stand of 20 by the the thirteenth over when Dan Sumner took a catch at point off the bowling of Bright.

Wickets continued to fall at regular intervals but Oakley just could not get the tenth wicket which would have put us on target for maximum points. The bowling figures make impressive reading with Tommy 10 overs 2 for 14Jimmy 10 overs 1 for 20Neil Robinson 10 overs 3 for 37Clive 6 overs 1 for 18 and Dan Sumner 6 overs 1 for 20.


The Oaks had a Comfortable Afternoon at Old Basing

Chasing a meagre total that just nudged past the 100 mark, The Oaks went into bat with Adam Robinson and Julian Worthington both taking their time in the early overs as the bounce seemed to alter a slightly after the break for tea.

Worthington fell for 19 when trying to push the score along but by then Adam Robinson had his eye in and made short work getting to 61 before chasing a wide one and being caught behind.

Darrel Dimond came in carefully nudging singles as support for Mark Potter who belied his quiet and introverted nature with an aggressive quick- fire 24 to that saw the Oaks home in just over 19 overs.

It was another great performance by the boys and a patient one in the field as it would have been easy to switch off with the lack of action but they all stuck at it.

Next week is comes a sterner test with the visit of  Basingstoke at Oakley Park and they will be looking to knock the Oaks off top top spot, however, with early season form and a long batting line-up, captain Clive Welsman, will be confident of maintaining a 100% start to the season.

Clive nominated Tommy Holbrook man of the match as recognition of a young man who gathered up his toys, put them back in his pram and got on with doing what he does best.

Thanks to Gordy for the umpiring duties.


Oakley Oust Dummer in 20/20 Thriller

The Oakley 20/20 side resisted a late Simon Pennington onslaught to edge to victory at a sunny but breezy Oakley Park last night.

Batting first, Oakley got off to a shaky start with Steve Savage departing in the second over and Alex Brundle soon following after a trademark hay-maker at thin air resulting in the all too familiar sound of leather clattering into the stumps.

This left Clive Welsman and George Lethaby to steady the ship and then accelerate with some lusty blows, before George departed for a quick-fire 18.

Clive carried on the good work, smashing the ball all over the park, but Julian Worthington holed out for just 5 leaving it to Darrel Dimond to  accelerate the score rate, quickly moving up towards 30.

Clive, after a marvellous effort that tested every sinew of his his impeccable physique, eventuallydeparted on 67 for a plumb LBW that had him appealing himself, such was his desperation to get tucked in to a bottle of Golden Goose.

Steve “Bownie” Bown then came in, clumping a towering six before departing a couple of balls later. Dan Sumner joined the fray but quickly departed when run-out, leaving it to Chairman Courageous, Bob Lethaby, to take up the challenge.

After the the recent 36 not out he doesn’t like to talk about, Bob’s team-mates watched in dread at the prospect of yet more lyrical torture from this dashing, flamboyant and destructive cricketer amongst cricketers.

What followed was a devastating example of how to play 20/20 cricket; a plethora of devastating blows in an unbeaten 24 off 14 deliveries striking daggers into the hearts of the awestruck Dummer players as the Bob’s team- mates turned the club-house upside down in a desperate search for a gagging device.

What a player, what a Chairman…What a prick.

With a more than healthy target of 176 to defend, Oakley rotated the bowling to limit it to 2 overs each.George Lethaby removed the opener in his second over and wickets looked like they were going to tumble until Simon Pennington arrived at the crease, aided by Andrew Ferguson, who would be an Oakley man through and through if he didn’t come from and play for, Dummer.

After a quiet start, Simon went on the rampage, hitting sixes all over the park as Andrew played the part of admiring spectator at the other end though Bob Lethaby was unlucky not to snare him, going for just 30 off two overs, with Simon only clearing the boundary by about fifteen feet on each of his countless sixes.

Bob did remove Andrew Ferguson with a cunning doosra/wrongun/reverse slower ball that did everything but turn, but the real prize was Pennington and Oakley knew who to turn to in a crisis…Club photographer,Paul Sumner, a master craftsman who has spent decades spinning webs to snare his beleaguered victims.

In a tension filled battle of psychological strength, Simon battled valiantly to keep Sumner out, hitting just three sixes and two fours off one over as the spectators watched on in anticipation to see who would win this vital segment of the game.

It was riveting stuff but in the end Oakley edged home despite a late towering six by Dummer’s Mr Quiet,Mark Barden, a man who’s introverted nature often has you forgetting he is there.

All in all it was a fantastic evening for the club and all the members of Oakley are extremely grateful to the Dummer lads who, as always, did some healthy damage to the stock of beer in the bar!

Up the Oaks!

Robinson Cruise(o)

Brothers Neil and Adam Robinson put on a batting master-class as the Oaks continued their unbeaten start to the season with what was, ultimately, a comfortable victory of local rivals Odiham at a cloudy but warm Oakley Park on Saturday.

Batting first, Adam (76) put on a hundred partnership with Julian Worthington (28) before further contributions from Neil Robinson (66) and Clive Welsman (25) aided the Oaks to 236 for six.

After an early wicket for Tommy Holbrook, the Odiham number 3 went to town on the Oakley attack, racking up a flurry of sixes and fours as the score raced past 100 after just 12 overs.

The Oaks dug deep and the tight lines of Mark Potter slowed the rate, resulting in the tumbling of wickets as Dan Sumner (4) Neil Robinson (4) and Clive Welsman (1) cashed in.

Captain, Clive Welsman, was delighted with the way the Oaks turned things around in the field after rough start; resilience that was rewarded with 24 points and a place at the top of the table.

Up the Oaks!

Oaks Edge Past White Waltham in Low Scoring Thriller!

A youthful Sunday 11, where chairman, Bob Lethaby, was the oldest player by 25 years, scraped to victory at a cool but sunny Oakley Park today.

Winning the toss and bowling first, the Oaks got off to good start with George Lethaby taking two quick wickets, however, Waltham settled and moved to 45-2 at drinks.

There then followed a collapse with Waltham going on to 75-6 then 85 all out after some great bowling as well as some smart catches and an excellent Matt Vickers stumping.

The other wickets went to the excellent Dan Jones 3-4, Alex Brundle, 2-7, Callum Van Dyk, 1-23, Oscar Rowley, 1-12 and Dan Sumner 1-1 with Tom Barnes unlucky to go wicketless in a 5 over spell that went for just 10 runs.

Catches went Tom Barnes, Jack Brundle, Alex Brundle and George Lethaby.

Chasing a meagre target, Oakley struggled, with Bob Lethaby going for 4 and Dan Sumner a duck. Matt Vickers looked in good nick before going for 8 and Dan Jones followed for one.

Opener, Jack Brundle, then went for a patient 11 soon to be followed by Oscar Rowley after just onelusty 4. Callum van Dyke didn’t last much longer, going for 5, to leave Oakley reeling on 45-7.

George Lethaby and Julian Worthington steadied the ship edging the score to 74-7 before George had a blood rush, getting clean bowled when trying to find the farmers field.

Tom Barnes got cleaned up by a full toss after Julian had hit a big four and pinched a couple of singles leaving the score tied with number 11 Alex Brundle facing four bowls left in the over.

Alex, acting out of character, played three forward defence strokes as the fielders closed in on him before losing his patience on ball four, swinging like a suburban couple at a 70’s dinner party.

Fortunately, it got an inside edge that fizzed passed the stumps for four and the most dramatic of victories was complete.

This was (apart from Bob) a really young side where the second eldest player was 21, so great credit to the boys, especially for what was an exceptional effort in the field.

Thanks to Petua Sumner for the teas and the lads and ladies who popped up to support.

Up the Oaks!

Rain Halts Oakley Charge


Oakley two’s were were denied by the rain and a cold and wet Oakley Park yesterday, despite the best efforts of the players and members to keep the winning show on the road.

The cancellation of the first team game allowed the Oaks to field a full side, with selfless man of the people, Bob Lethaby, demoting himself to umpire to give Darrell Dimond a game.

After delivering a first ball that was possibly the worst since “That ball” by Steve Harmison in the 2006-2007 Ashes Series, Steve Bown came up with a peach of an inswinger that had the Whitchurch opener flailing like a demented octopus as he went plum LBW.

Whitchurch settled down as the clouds gathered to the south and looked like they may start picking up the scoring until Tommy Holbrook clattered the stumps of the other Whitchurch opener as he mistimed a pull shot that didn’t get up as he expected.

The heavens then opened on Oakley Park and the two sides retreated to the dressing room to attempt to calculate the rules regarding rain delays. It soon became apparent that they would have more chance solving the financial crisis in Greece with both Gordon Scott and Clive Welsman, studying  the rule book with look of men who were battling through Stephen Hawking’s ‘A Brief History of Time’.


Scott: Confused

Ultimately, their efforts were fruitless anyway as the rain had done it’s damage, and though the skies eased from black to grey, the pitch was now unplayable.

Never mind chaps.

Up the Oaks!!

Hapless Oaks lose Sunday Record!

The Oakley Sunday 11 wilted in the sunshine yesterday, collapsing like dominoes, posting  just 135 whilst chasing a meagre target of 159.

Winning the toss and bowling first, Oakley were put under early pressure by a decent Waverley opening pair, but didn’t help themselves when a couple of early catches went down.

Openers James Bright and George Lethaby bowled well without success, with James particularly unlucky as he forced the Waverley batsmen into a series of play and misses.

Steve Bown and Sam Holbrook came into the attack and broke the pairing and the wickets soon began to tumble as it became apparent that the Waverley batting line-up lacked significant depth.

Sam was in fine form taking 4 wickets whilst Bownie took one before Dan Sumner joined in the action taking three quick wickets with some spin bowling that the middle order couldn’t handle.

George Lethaby took a simple late wicket as Waverley got bogged down just about seeing out their overs whilst behind the stumps, Matt Vickers had an exemplary day.

With a good looking batting line-up, Oakley should have been in control but the majority of what followed resembled an episode of the Keystone Cops as wickets tumbled in a dramatic, comedic and chaotic fashion.

Opener, Scott Bright, after  scoring 61 on Saturday, looked settled, but fellow opener Jack Brundlespectacularly smashed on in to his own stumps (the equivalent of an own goal) only to be replaced by Bob Lethaby who had a knock of 36 not out last week that he doesn’t like to talk about.

After nearly going for a golden duck, Bob took advantage of his escape, impersonating a bare footed Frank Spencer on a hot tin roof, before letting one through a gateway between bat and pad that was approximately the width of the entrance to Buckingham Palace.

In Bob’s case, sadly, class is temporary, form is permanent.

Bob’s son, George, followed, going for a meagre 8 in an innings that was a fine impression of his dad wearing wig, so it was now Alex Brundle’s turn to defy all the odds by somehow putting on a worse display than his brother. He did so with aplomb, executing two defensive prods before a cross bat hoik at thin air that resulted in a majestic duck.

Amongst the pandemonium, Scott Bright had departed for 26 whilst captain, Dan Sumner, tried to bring a sense of normality to proceedings by being one of the first players to make use of his bat.

James Bright went for a duck with, it has to be said, the only jaffa of a ball the opposition delivered all afternoon, meaning Dan was joined by friend of the Bright’s, Murray, who clumped two fours and a six in a quick-fire innings that could have been the catalyst for unlikely victory.

After the departure of Murray, wicket keeper, Matt Vickers was a bit unlucky when out for 5 and it was now down to Sam Holbrook to aid Dan to victory. As always, when Sam hits the ball, it tends to stay hit, but what was shaping up to be a good innings ended on 20 as hopes of victory evaporated in the afternoon sunshine.


Dan Sumner and Sam Holbrook attempted to rescue the Oaks

Steve Bown, in at 11, tried to hold up an end but ultimately, the Oakley batting line-up had failed their beleaguered captain who ended up stranded on 41 not out.

On a positive note, the sun shone brightly and Waverley, as always, spent handsomely in the bar afterwards, so at least the club funds were bolstered by a few quid.

It was of course, left to Bob, complete with sunburnt head, to provide the final piece of afternoon entertainment, hopping in his car before realising he had left his ignition on all day, killing his battery stone dead. As a clown prince of Sunday cricket, Bob as ever, was the peerless stand-out performer, amongst it has to be said, some pretty stiff opposition.

Special thanks to Petua Sumner (teas) Paul Sumner for all the cleaning and tidying of the club house and Jack Brundle for driving back to the club with a set of jump leads.

Up the Oaks!

Oaks Firsts Ease Past Shrewton II

Shrewton won the toss and put Oakley in on a sticky wicket on a loveley spring afternoon at Oakley.

Adam Robinson and Andy Woodgate opened the batting scoring at 5 an over until Robinson got an inside edge onto his stumps. Scott Bright came in at three and the run rate continued until Woodgate was eventually being bowled on 49 in the 14th over with the score on 89.

In came Sam Holbrook who found it difficult to start with but then he just let loose scoring a quick fire 41before being bowled.  Prior to that Scott Bright was punishing anything half loose and moved onto a well deserved 50 only to fall on 61 when he looked well set.

Captain Clive Welsman then changed the batting order sending Mark Potter with instructions to have a look at a few and then let loose, and he did just that. Welsman(20) joined Potter (30) and between them they put on 44 in 5 overs. Oakley could not use their allotted overs and finished on 239 all out. A very good effort after being put in by the opposition on what was a bowlers surface.


Oakley Ran Out Comfortable Winners Against Shrewton on a Glorious Afternoon

Tom Holbrook and James Bright opened the bowling for Oaks andwith an attacking field set it gave gaps for the Shrewton openers to hit into but most of their runs came from edges falling short or wide of fielders. Jimmy Bright got the breakthrough just when their opener looked set.

Tom Holbrook was the pick of the openers finishing with 4 wickets for 35 off 10 overs. Bright was unlucky with some tough chances going down off his bowling finishing with 1 for 44 off 10 overs. Mark Potter took over from Holbrook and carried on in the same vane, ripping through their middle order and having numerous edges and chances  just missing fielders.

Potter finished with 3 for 30 off 9 overs. Clive Welsman and Mark Woodgate were the other bowlers who both bowled a god line and length with Welsman hitting the off stump with a pie chucker that our chairman would have been proud off but it was so slow, the bails stayed intact. Welsman finished with figures of 0 for 17 off 7 overs and Woodgate 2 for 4 off 5.1 overs taking the winning wicket in the final over to assure Oakley earned maximum points.

A good all round team effort from the all the boys and we even showed a sense of sportsmanship by recalling their last batsman when he was given LBW but he claimed he had hit the ball.

Up the Oaks!

Oakley Enjoy a Sumner Day

A makeshift Oakley second string cruised to victory away at Herriard III’s today with a convincing 8 wicket victory.

Bowling first, Oakley, despite some comical missed catches, soon took control, with spinner Dan Sumner (4) and Lance Van Dyke (3) enjoying the share of the wickets that tumbled.

The other wickets went to captain marvel, Michael Wood, and the emerging and audacious talent that isBob Lethaby, courtesy of a reverse quicker ball that swung wildly before sending off stump cartwheeling towards the pavillion; it will be forever known as “That Ball” such was its devilish nature.


Oakley cruised to victory at Herriard

Chasing a total of 102 former Colts star, Steve Savage, made 30 and Dan Sumner, not happy with 4 wickets, produced a match winning 37. Michael Wood then came into finish the job, hitting a flurry of blistering singles and a huge six to finish the job 23 not out.

A special mention for some great catches by Paul AndrewsMichael Wood (a bit OTT that one) andPeter Holcroft, who took two, the second, a marvellous effort where he ran in like a gazelle ( a pregnant one mind) and took a diving catch, before doing the local farmer a huge favour by ploughing the field with his front teeth.

Fines went to Bob (50p, dropped catch) Alex Brundle (50p, dropped catch) and Jack Brundle (£15,000 for multitude of sins).

Unbeaten still, and top of league, well done to all those who made the effort to get us a full team out!

MOM: Dan Sumner

Up the Oaks!!!

Captain Courageous Sees Oakley Home!

11th May 2014

Oakley, against the weather odds, hosted neighbours Farleigh Wallop at a windy and cool Oakley Park today, running out worthy winners in a closely fought contest.

Bowling first, Oakley restricted Farleigh to a respectable 150 on a wicket that was unpredictable after the recent wet weather that wiped out yesterday’s fixture calendar.

The wickets were spread out between George Lethaby (2) Dan Jones (2) James Bright (1) Alex Brundle (1) and a George Lethaby run-out with George being the pick of the bunch, going for just 16 runs off his 8 over spell.

Chasing the total, 9 man Oakley were dealt an early blow when Scott Bright went for six, leaving captain for the day, Bob Lethaby, nursing a badly bruised finger, to join Jack “I don’t talk much” Brundle at the crease.

Bob dug in, leaving it to Jack to hit a few lusty blows before departing on 21 and being replaced by brother Alex, who played well until a sticker done him up like a kipper, resulting in a disgruntled return to the pavilion.


Bob: Hero

It was now the turn for the returning James Bright, who was in imperious form, blocking the good and punishing the bad as Bob stoically, some might say heroically, played the part of the blocker and admirer at the other end.

The job looked nearly done until James departed just 4 short of a maiden 50, leaving it to George Lethaby to take control and aid Bob over the finishing line in a vintage father and son combi, hitting two quick fours in an unbeaten 15, to ease the pressure and reduce the run rate.

In a fitting finale, George took a quick single that allowed Bob to finish in style with a thumping four that his brave, turgid and heroic innings of 36 not out deserved.

Well done to the nine men and a special mention to the colts, who once again, served the club so well alongside the returning Matt Vickers behind the stumps;  it was a day when the only losers were Adam Robinson and Scott Bright, who will now be fearing for their place as Oakley’s Saturday openers.

Up the Oaks!

Sunday Boys off to a Flying Start

Sunday 4th May 2014

The Sunday 11 got off to a cracking start to the season with a comfortable win over Titchborne at a sunny Oakley Park today.

Bowling first, George Lethaby tore into the Titchborne attack, dismantling the top order with 4 wickets in 4 overs for four just runs whilst well supported well by Julian Worthington, who was unfortunate to finish his spell without the reward of a wicket.

This blistering start allowed captain Dan Sumner, to introduce two débutante colts, Tom Barnes and Billy Turner into the game and they both bowled really well, with Tom in particular, very unlucky not to take wickets in a really good five over spell.


The Oakley Second 11

Further wickets came for Callum Van Dyk (2) Alex Brundle and Dan Sumner as Titchborne were eventually all out for 104.

Chasing the total, Dan Sumner departed early, but Brett Sanders, with some lusty blows, and Julian Worthington, moved the score along quickly before departing on 33 and 35 respectively.

This left a few minor cameos from George, Callum, and Jack Brundle, with Alex Brundle completing the job in style with a couple towering sixes.

All in all, a good day for the club that included a solid performance and the arrival of two new youngsters who performed really well as team players, both when bowling and in the field.

Finally, special thanks to Petua Sumner who organised the teas for today’s game.

Up the Oaks!

Second String Off and Running!

Saturday 3rd May

Michael Wood enjoyed his maiden outing as second team captain today as the Oaks won a hard fought contest against a young and spirited Longparish III’s.

Batting first, the Oaks stuttered badly, with early season nerves leading to Dan Sumner being run out in the first over and fellow opener, Steve Savage, dismissed for a disappointing 3.

Wood steadied things before getting out when looking well set on 18, however, it was Darrel Dimond (58) and Scott Bright (46) who led the fightback and wrested control from Longparish.

This was backed by 33 from Tommy Holbrook and 29 for débutante, Mark Potter, aiding the score to a competitive total of 226.


Winning start: The Seconds in Action at Oakley Park Today

Defending, Oakley set about the Longparish attack with gusto, Tommy Holbrook taking three early wickets including two in two balls and Callum Van Dyk unlucky to claim just the one in a fine spell.

Any chance of an early finish was diminished when Longparish first team batsman, Justin Jackman, arrived at the crease, steadying  the ship, before threatening to swing the game back in their favour.

However, wickets continued to fall, with Alex Brundle and Dan Sumner taking one apiece before Wood introduced Mark Potter to crush any chances of a realistic Longparish fightback.

Mark took three late wickets, with Tommy, finally and deservedly, ending Jackman’s fine innings of 86.

So in the end, a reasonably comfortable day for the seconds, who should have ambitions of a successful season ahead.

Finally, special thanks to all the ground-staff who made it possible to play today’s game after Thursday’s downpour, the lads were grateful to get a game at last!

Up the Oaks!!



Missed Catches Lose Matches as the Firsts Go Down at Sherfield

Another disappointing day in the field cost Oakley victory on Saturday as they lost in the last Over away to Sherfield.

Oakley batted first with Scott Bright and Adam Robinson quickly moving the scoreboard on, picking the bad balls against some good, lively Sherfield bowling, before Robinson got done by a cracking delivery whilst looking set for a big score.

Scott Bright and Adam Robinson got Oakley off to a good start at Sherfield

This started the wickets tumbling as batsmen got themselves in and out trying to support Bright who was furious with himself for getting out on 45 to buffet bowling when he had worked so hard to set himself up for a big knock.

Even so, a decent knock of 41 for Tom Holbrook backed by an obligatory late flurry of sixes from Alex Brundle got the score up to a respectable total of 188 that captain Clive Welsman was relatively happy with, though a further 20-30 runs would have put Sherfield out of the contest.

Defending, Oakley bowled well enough, but not for the first time this season, chances came and went and proved costly, with a fine catch in the deep by George Lethaby being one of the few chances that stuck as other catches went begging.

The wickets were shared around between Clive Welsman, Tom Holbrook and pick of the bunch, Neil Robinson who was really tight, but ultimately, it was not enough to make up for basic fielding errors that have been annoyingly infectious for much of the season.

Oakley are a better side than their league position might suggest and though it is too late now, next year needs some major pre-season work on the basics of taking catches that ultimately, win matches.

Up the Oaks

Constantine Triggers Oaks Fightback!

Oakley two’s produced a remarkable comeback yesterday to gain an excellent victory over high flying Petersfield in what was a thrilling contest.

Asked to bat first Oakley were blitzed by the excellent Petersfield attack and were reduced to 68-8 with only George Rutt making double figures. However, Michael Constantine remained firm and was aided by some wonderful stoical defence by Peter Holcroft in a stand of 64.

After Peter went, youngster Lofty Worth carried on his good work with a further stand of 24 with Michael who was smashing the ball all around the park before he was eventually dismissed for a brilliant 83.

This inspired Oakley in the field and a brilliant performance all round saw the Petersfield batting line up disintegrate, with Steve Bown the pick of the bunch with 4 wickets.

Further wickets came from Constantine (3) Ravi Kancharla (2) and Julian Worthington (1) as the Oaks bowled out Petersfield for 118 resulting in the most unlikely of victories.

Of course, all the plaudits go to Michael Constantine, but without the gutsy performances from Holcroft and Worth his innings would have not been possible and it has to remembered the Petersfield target was still a low one, so huge cricket to Oakley in the field for keeping the belief and winning the game.

Dan Beckall was rightly a proud captain yesterday evening.

Up the Oaks

Bat & Ball Edge Out Oakley in Thriller

An Oakley team featuring seven veterans between the ages of 13 and 17 was narrowly beaten in a thrilling contest against Bat and Ball yesterday.

Batting first youngster, Steve Savage, scored 22 whilst being superbly supported at the other end by the mercurial talent of Alex Brundle, who top edged his way to a memorable innings of six before allowing Bob “Mr Cricket” Lethaby to the crease.

Brundle: Top edged his way to an excellent innings of six

Lethaby, always the showman, went on to make a dashing eight, displaying his vast array of bottom edges, air shots and across the line haymakers that featured an exquisite four top edged over the wicket keepers head to the boundary. A maiden 50 is surely just a formality now for this burgeoning talent who is rapidly causing the ECB major selection dilemmas.

Sadly for the bumper crowd that featured three spectators and a couple of passing horse riders, Lethaby was controversially given out LBW whilst executing a trademark across the line carve, when replays (had there been any) would have clearly shown that the ball would have hit middle stump halfway up.

This brought Dan Compton to the crease and he looked in blistering form until he was out for a second ball duck, leaving Julian Worthington and Callum Van Dyk to hold the fort before they were done by the explosive pace of a twelve year old who had mastered the art of making the ball “stay low.”

The Oaks were eventually all out for a daunting total of 118, offering little hope to the beleaguered opposition.

In the field, the Oaks went about the task of defending their total with great skill and dilligence, reducing the opposition to fours and sixes as they got bogged down in what was becoming a turgid affair.

As the pressure intensified, Oakley needed experience and who better to turn to than their captain with no idea of field placings, Bob Lethaby, a fine leader of men (and teenagers) if there ever was one.

What followed was an eclectic mix of bowling beauty, featuring full tosses, half trackers and wides that the opposition, riding their luck, splattered to all areas of the ground. One six, a lucky straight hit back over Lethaby’s head, resulted in the ball eventually being found this morning by a bemused West Dorset potato farmer.

Cricket is a game of fine margins and had Lethaby been six foot taller, it could have been an easy caught and bowled but instead, his solitary Over went for a very respectable 17 meaning that Bat & Ball edged their way two the narrowest of victories with just 25 Overs to spare.

What a day, what a game, where the real winner was the game of cricket!

Up the Oaks!

Oakley Eclectics in Heroic Victory

With holidays and injuries depleting the second team, it would have been easy to pull the fixture and take a points deduction. However, a plethora of begging phone calls and text messages resulted in the two’s fielding a team that featured young colts, late volunteers and semi-crippled parents making the 90 mile round trip to Midhurst.

In more hope than expectation, Oakley bowled first and Naveen Chandru proceeded to rip through the beleaguered Midhurst top order on his way to a sensational five wicket haul. Lance Van Dyk and Alex Ogden joined in the action as Midhurst were eventually all out for a paltry 99.

Alex Ogden opened the bat with Gordon Scott and scored an excellent 33 that was backed up by a similar knock by Tim Parry as Oakley coasted to their target without too much alarm. Their were also contributions from Billy Turner and Chandru.

It goes to show that it is always good to get a team out at any cost, because rather than a 20 point deduction, the seconds walked away with a win and a great tally of batting and bowling points that will ensure their survival against relegation.

Well done everyone, that was a big effort.

Up the Oaks!!

Oaks Miss Out Against Titchborne

Oakley missed out on what should have been a reasonably comfortable victory on Saturday, courtesy of some below par fielding, plenty of bad luck and finally, a good old bit of old fashioned controversy.

Titchborne batted first and somehow managed to conjure up a score of 171 after offering a series of chances that either just cleared fielders or were dropped.

All the bowlers did well enough to create openings and pick of the bunch was Sam Holbrook with three wickets whilst the others were shared between Clive Welsman, Tom Holbrook and George Lethaby.

Chasing the Titchborne target, Oaks lost a couple of early wickets but the excellent Chris Morris steadied the ship on his way to a quality 50. However batsman came and went with minor flurries of four and sixes, but no-one was able to hang around to see the Oaks home.

Ultimately it was left to Alex Brundle and Bob Lethaby to score 30 off the last few overs and they both offered some hope of heroics with a couple of boundaries each and good running between the wickets. However, the game was to end in controversial and cataclysmic circumstances that were well suited to Bob’s chaotic personality.

Facing the final ball of the the penultimate Over, Bob played and missed before proceeding to walk up the wicket to talk to Alex Brundle at the other end. Upon seeing that the umpire had not called the end of the Over, the Titchborne keeper stumped Lethaby and claimed the wicket, much to the bemusement of several players and the umpires.

It was seen by many players as an unsporting act but the fact is that technically, it was the correct decision and though 14 off the last over was unlikely, it would have been a better end to the game to see two tail-ender’s giving it a go.

Club members and guests came along to help Clive celebrate his birthday.

However, defeat didn’t stop the members hanging around to have a great evening celebrating captain, Clive Welsman’s birthday.

Up the Oaks!!



Gerry is the Pacemaker as Oaks Lose Out to Dummer!

A superb century by Dummer number three Gerry Dique, was the difference between Oakley and Dummer yesterday as the rain stayed away and allowed for a competitive local derby.

Dummer were put in to bat, but after a steady start they lost two wickets in one over off the bowling of Oakley under 13 player, Alex Ogden, who went on to have an eventful afternoon with both bat and ball.

Dique came in at three and quickly set about any wayward Oakley bowling as he was stoically supported by Matt “the corpse with pads on” Vickery who defended well whilst watching a fine innings from the other end. If a catch been held by the young Oakley wicket keeper when Dique was on 50 odd, things might have been different but there are not many chance-less 100?s, so it was deserved century. A few cameo roles from the  lower order edged Dummer up to 180.

Batting second, the Oakley top order made plenty of starts, but Tom Holbrook, Dan Sumner, Alex Ogden, Bob Lethaby and Rav Kancharla all got out when well set, leaving the excellent Lance Van Dyk to carry the younger inexperienced players in the lower order, remaining unbeaten on 44 as Oakley fell shy of the target. Sadly, Lance now has to wait for another day to make his first Oakley 50.

All in all it was a good day out and there aren’t many games where a 74 year old is playing in the same match as eight lads aged between the ages of 13 and 17. Oakley have made a big push at bringing the young lads into the Sunday sides to gain experience that will be invaluable to their development and it was great to see them giving it their all both with bat and ball.

Alex Ogden, Brad Welsman, John Gorrard, Dan Jones and Lofty Worth, will soon be ready to follow the likes of other former Colts players such as Tommy Holbrook, Steve Bown, Michael Wood, George Lethaby, Dan Sumner, Jack Green, Callum Van Dyk and Julian Worthington into regular competitive Saturday League cricket and that can only be good for the club.

Well done Dummer, it is always nice to see Andrew Ferguson and other familiar faces from local village cricket, both young and old.

Up the Oaks!

Parker Hits Form to Guide Oaks to Victory

magnificent 86 from Charlie Parker aided Oakley to victory in deteriorating conditions at lowly Rotherwick yesterday.

Batting first Adam Robinson made a good 50 and Darrell Dimond also batted well with a well constructed 40 which gave the Oaks a very competitive total of 260.

Charlie Parker returned to form with an excellent 86

As the periodic rain set in, Oakley looked like they would denied as they came on and off and the opposition target was reduced in circumstances that favoured them.

Oakley stayed in control though and worked very hard in fading light, with the Rotherwick run rate checked by wickets shared between Tommy Holbrook, George LethabyDan Sumner and captain Clive Welsman.

There was a few missed chances and dropped catches along the way but Oakley kept their nerve to post their second successive win and move them away from any remaining threat of relegation.

Up the Oaks

Wood Comes Good to Rescue the Oaks

Oakley got back to winning ways yesterday with a thrilling victory against Bentworth on another sun baked day at Oakley Park.

Bowling first Oakley bowled and fielded really well with captain Clive Welsman starring, taking 4 wickets whilst Tommy Holbrook and George Lethaby kept the run rate down, reducing Bentworth to 160 for five of their 42 overs.

Going into bat Oakley started really well with the returning Adam Robinson picking the bad balls and accumulating at really good rate. However, the wickets soon started to tumble as many of the Oaks batsmen made decent starts before getting out to some tidy and effective Bentworth bowling.

Both Darrell Dimond and Tom Holbrook made good contributions but after Robinson departed for 41, Oakley’s plight became desperate with Michael Wood the only recognised batsmen left at the crease.

Michael Wood kept his cool to guide Oakley to victory

After Bown and Lethaby went in successive overs the Oaks were on the brink of defeat with Alex Brundle coming in at 11 with 15 still required for victory. Under the guidance of the excellence Wood, who was keeping his cool under pressure, Alex steadied himself, stood his ground and aided the Oaks to a welcome victory.

After the game, all the players stayed behind for a barbecue and with a win behind them, the beer tasted that much sweeter on a lively and fun evening for everyone at the club.

As the chairman, I would like to thank the club members for the warm and touching reception they gave me and Justine on our engagement weekend. I t was much appreciated by both of us.

Up the Oaks

Firsts Go Down Fighting at Ashford Hill

A weakened first team lost a close encounter at Ashford Hill yesterday after falling 20-30 runs short of a defendable target.

Batting first, Oakley got of to the worst possible start with both Tommy Holbrook and Clive Welsman going early. Dan Beckell then came to the crease and was going along nicely before unluckily being given out LBW, leaving Darrell Dimond and Steve Savage to steady the ship. Steve completed his second half century of the summer and Darrell went for 46, however, the middle order and tail end never really got going as the Oaks finished their innings on 178.

Oakley were narrowly beaten in hot sunshine at Ashford Hill

Ashford Hill started well but a flurry of wickets from Tommy Holbrook, Dan Sumner and Clive Welsman along with a brilliant direct hit by Darrell Dimond had them rattled during the middle part of their innings. However, they steadied themselves and were aided by bowling that was decent but not great, gifting wides and byes that made the task a lot easier.

On the whole, the Oaks fielded brilliantly and tried to keep themselves in the game right until the end, but ultimately, being a couple of batsmen short was their undoing. Oakley have several returning batsmen next week and with these additions, the narrow defeats will turn into wins.

On a personal note, I really enjoyed the little job that Clive gave me to help stem the runs, it kept me busy all afternoon. I have never fielded at Short Backward Square before, though I have been called one a few times!

Great effort lads.

Up the Oaks!

Hoss is the Boss as the Seconds Win Again!

Oakley two’s won again on Saturday largely thanks to a brilliant 95 from incoming Colts general manager, Gordon Hossick. After losing Jack Green and Julian Worthington early on, Oakley were soon stabilised by veteran Gordon Scott and Gordon Hossick, who was playing in his first game of the season.

Further wickets fell, including the comedic two ball retirement of the enthusiastic but largely useless Andrew Ogden. However, Andy felt he had done his bit as his retirement allowed youngster John Gorrard to support Hossick with an excellent 44 that aided Oakley to 199.

Oakley successfully defended the total with Naveen Chandru the star turn with figures of 4-18 that was assisted by further wickets from Julian Worthington, Alex Ogden and Gordon Hossick.

As the chairman of the club, it is my duty to offer Gordon my congratulations for his fine knock, however, after attempting to reach a target that is half his score for the last five years, my heartfelt congratulations were laced with just a tinge of bitter jealously and general nausea.

Well done lads

Up the Oaks!!!

Batting Collapse Costly For the Firsts

by  on July 8, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

A poor display with the bat resulted in a heavy defeat at the hands of Basingstoke for the first team on Saturday.

Bowling first in hot conditions, the Oaks produced a decent performance, reducing Basingstoke to their first score under 200 this season. Pick of the bowlers was George Lethaby with 4-32, supported by Dan Sumner (2), Jack Green (2) and Steve Bown (1).

Oakley lost to Basingstoke in perfect conditions at Oakley Park

Chasing 196, Oakley got off to a terrible start with Clive Welsman run out in the first over and apart from some resistance from Michael Wood and Charlie Palmer, Tommy Holbrook lost partner after partner to bowling which was decent but certainly not hostile. It was a welcome return to form for Tom, who carried his bat, though he would have been disappointed at being left stranded on 52 not-out when he was seeing the ball so well.

Oakley need to learn to dig in more with the bat if they want a return to form, there were too many soft dismissals in what should have been a close game and Basingstoke will see it as victory they were gifted rather than one they had to earn.

Onwards and upwards

Sunday 11 Back to Winning Ways

by  on July 1, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

The Sunday 11 got back to winning ways on Sunday with a resounding victory over a weakenedRotherfield Park side who are, sadly, struggling to get enough players to put out a competitive side on Sundays; hopefully they will be able to turn things around as they are a nice bunch of lads and it is a beautiful setting.

Oakley batted first and this allowed them to move the Brundle brothers and youngster Brad Welsman up the batting order. Alex Brundle hit a few lusty blows before getting out for twelve, leaving Jack and Brad to fend off some good bowling as the run rate slowed.

Oakley completed a routine victory at in the lovely surroundings of Rotherfield Park

Jack Brundle was hilariously caught by his brother who was helping out Rotherfield with fielding and this allowed Bob Lethaby to come to the crease to make his 90 mile round trip worthwhile with a majestic two ball duck. At this point Oakley looked in trouble but Steve Bown (63) and Michael Wood (39) came in and put on a great partnership to effectively take control of the game. A few lusty blows from the tail aided the score to a total of 181 all out.

Oakley’s regular opener, Julian Worthington, kindly batted for Rotherfield  and batted well before being dismissed caught and bowled by Clive Welsman. George Lethaby (2-16) Steve Bown (1-9) Rav Kancharla (1-8) and Brad Welsman (1-8) were the other wicket takers along with a couple of run outs that completed a comfortable win.

Highlight of the day should have been Steve Bown’s aggressive 50, however, Bob Lethaby stole the show with an attempt to leap frog a wire fence, resulting in him being catapulted face first into the farmers field in an act that was similar to a WWF wrestler leaping off the ropes. When everyone stopped laughing, the game was finally completed.

Thanks to Rotherfield for their hospitality in what was a lovely place to play cricket.


Seconds See off Odiham

by  on June 29, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

The Oakley second string put on an excellent team display at Odiham today to keep up their 100 per cent league record.

Bowling first Oakley skittled Odiham out for 116 with wickets coming from Lance Van Dyk (3) Dan Sumner (3) Julian Worthington (2) and Naveed Velumani (1) in what was an excellent display in the field.

The Oaks knocked off the score within 30 overs with the main contributions coming from Julian Worthington (22) Dan Beckell (23) Paul Ciufetelli (20)and Dan Sumner who ended unbeaten on 20.

Sadly, the two’s have been victims of the weather too often this season to threaten the summit of the table, but it is encouraging for the club that they are performing so well.

Well done lads.

Up the Oaks


Oakley Well Beaten by Leaders

by  on June 29, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

Oakley Firsts were well beaten by a strong Liss side in lovely June sunshine today.

Bowling first, Oakley were given hope of an upset with two early wickets from Tommy Holbrook but Liss struck back with some aggressive and often brutal batting as they surged past 260.

The Oakley wickets went to Tom Holbrook (3) Jack Green (3) and Alex Brundle (1).

Going in to bat Oakley opted to go for it and see if the gamble paid off, however, a flurry of wickets followed courtesy of decent bowling  backed by excellent catching reducing the Oaks to a total of just over 100.

The only real resistance with the bat came from Steve Savage (27) and Jack Green, who was unlucky to be left stranded on 31 when well set for a good knock.

There are days when you just have to accept that the better team won and today was one of those days.

Up the Oaks!

Sunday 11 Defeated by Crondall

by  on June 24, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

A young Sunday side suffered a narrow defeat at the hands of Crondall yesterday.

Batting first, Oakley lost the in form Dan Sumner and George Lethaby early before Bob Lethaby (17) supported Julian Worthington as he fell just short of his 50 when out on on 49.

After a brief cameo from Rav Kancharla, it was left to Gordon Scott (20 not out) and Peter Holcroft (10 not out) to nudge the score up to 137 from 40 overs.

Crondall went after the target with some gusto with their opener hitting a flurry of fours and sixes. George Lethaby and Julian Worthington then removed both openers and the run flow was checked in what was becoming a close encounter.

Worthington took a further 3 wickets along with one from Dan Sumner and but for a couple of dropped catches off the bowling of new boy Dan Jones (a 13 oyear old colts player) Oakley may have won it.

In the end Crondall eased home but this was an Oakley team featuring seven players who were seventeen and under, all of whom performed well.

Highlight of the day was Peter Holcroft running three and having to be picked up from the square by the car of Clive Welsman as the innings finished; I am pleased to report that Peter recovered in time for the cigarette required to bump start his lungs.

So a defeat on a cold and miserable afternoon, but plenty of positives from the emerging players and an exquisite innings by Bob Lethaby with his highest score of the season.

Up the Oaks!

Off Key Firsts Lose at Old Alresford

by  on June 24, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

The Oakley first team had a disappointing afternoon at Old Alresford on Saturday where many players just didn’t get going under lead grey skies and a cold wind.

Batting first, Alresford reached a reasonable total of 216 on a pitch with a small boundary, however, amongst some of the good ground fielding and bowling, particularly from Tommy Holbrook, there was also plenty of erroneous stuff and dropped catches. It was with some irony that the hardest catch was one that actually stuck, Dan Beckell taking a flier in the slips. The wicket takers were George Lethaby (2) Alex Brundle (2) and Tommy Holbrook (1).

Oakley struggled on a cold and miserable afternoon at Old Alresford

After a rain delay the reduced target of 208 off 38 overs still looked manageable until the in form Scott Bright was cleaned up for an unlikely duck. From thereon the batsmen scratched around for form as the run rate increased by the over and only Michael Wood showed resistance and positive intent, reaching 31before an inexplicable run-out that resulted in him volleying his bat down the pitch in an almost comical fit of temper.

George Lethaby (18 not out) and Alex Brundle (25) provided a bit of late cheer with a flurry of fours and sixes that took the Oaks past the 150 mark, but the damage had been done and it was a case of what might have been.

Next week sees the return of Clive Welsman who will be keen to get this young and improving team back to winning ways.

Up the Oaks!

Oaks Fight Back in Thriller!

by  on June 16, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

Oakley fought back from a poor fielding display to claim an excellent and ultimately well deserved victory atSt Mary Bourne yesterday.

Bowling first Oakley got off to a decent start with Clive Welsman removing the St Mary Bourne opener who spooned a catch to Brad Welsman to complete a father and son combination.

The St Mary Bourne number three then came in and was nearly out first ball off the bowling of George Lethaby and was dropped again (by Lethaby) on 15. After a series of further missed catches he went on to make 86 before eventually being well caught by Clive Welsman. Some of the fielding was costing Oakley dear.

The excellent Jack Green was the star turn with the ball taking six wickets but St Mary Bourne still looked pleased with their total of 219Alex Brundle also chipped in with two important wickets as St Mary’s made a late charge at a score that could have easily headed towards 250.

The ever dependable Scott Bright got the Oaks off to a good start but after losing Steve Savage and Jack Green in quick succession the game was swinging in favour of St Mary’s. Clive Welsman (15) Chris Morris (14) and Michael Wood (21) all chipped in with support for the excellent Bright who eventually fell for 73.

Ultimately, an 8th wicket 50 run partnership between George Lethaby (35) and Steve Bown (18no) saw Oakley home with Alex Brundle (3 not out) finishing things off after Lethaby was run out with just three runs still required off 5 overs.

Captain Clive Welsman was very impressed with the way Oakley batted as a team to reach a difficult target with five overs still to spare; as a result, the Oaks, after 4 wins in six matches, are firmly placed in the top half of the table and can be well pleased with turning the game around with a very good team performance.

Up the Oaks!

Sunday 11 Ease Oakley to a Weekend Hat-Trick

by  on June 10, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

The Oakley Sunday 11 dished out a hammering to an under strength Whiteditch on a another glorious afternoon at Oakley Park yesterday, meaning that all three senior teams recorded victories this weekend.

Batting first, former Colts players, Dan Sumner and Julian Worthington eased into the match and soon started the scoreboard moving with an excellent combination of pinch hitting and aggression when required.

Dan Sumner: Maiden Sunday Century

Both passed their 50?s with ease and Dan accelerated to his maiden century before gracefully retiring to allow others to bat. George Lethaby then came to the  crease to smash 44 off 25 balls whilst at the other end Julian completed his second Sunday century of the summer before, like Dan,retiring.

With a final total of 256 captain Bob Lethaby opted to rest the in form Tommy Holbrook and George Lethaby to allow others the opportunity to bowl, with Pete HolcroftJack Brundle and Jack Ballardturning their arms for the first time this season and Matt Clarke picking up his first senior wicket. Jack (Ballard) bowled particularly well for his two wickets and  Alex Brundle bowled a bit of experimental spin and medium pace for three wickets.

However, the greatest moment of the day came when Bob Lethaby selfishly stole the thunder of the century makers by taking what must be one of the most comical and bizarre wickets in the 150 year history of the club. Trotting in to bowl at Whiteditch’s best batsman by far, one of Bob’s spikes got caught in a crack, resulting in him tripping and proceeding to plough the Oakley turf with his nose and front teeth.

At some point during this inexplicable and painful maneuver, Bob somehow released the ball which lopped into the air and fell on to the leg stump of the bemused batsman. This left Bob with an eventful two wickets, a catch and four not with the bat; a remarkable achievement for someone who plays the game as if he were Frank Spencer.

So all in all a good win to end a good weekend for Oakley Cricket Club.

Thanks this week go to Paul Sumner, our photographer and Justine Morris, who, with the help of Harry Lethaby and her lovely daughters Emily and Lauren, provided all the teas and helped us with the running of the bar.

Up the Oaks!

First Eleven Hit Form to Record Third Win.

by  on June 10, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

The first 11 put last week’s setback at Over Wallop firmly behind them with an excellent performance against Longparish at a sunny Oakley Park on Saturday afternoon.

Bowling first, Tommy Holbrook (3 for 13) and George Lethaby (2-14)  produced a great opening spell to remove the top order, allowing Clive Welsman and Alex Brundle to polish of the middle and tail with two wickets apiece. Lethaby took the final wicket with a fortunate run out, deflecting a straight drive on to the stumps off his own bowling.

On Song: Openers Tom Holbrook and George Lethaby ripped through the Longparish top order

Andy Woodgate ensured Oakley made a steady start with Jack Green pushing the score board along before getting a shooter to claim his wicket when he looked well set and in a confident shot playing mood . A mini collapse followed but Chris Morris and Clive Welsman saw The Oaks home with five wickets to spare.

Captain Clive Welsman offered special thanks to three players from Farliegh Wallop for helping him out and they made a big contribution in the field with Rob Dimond behind the stumps and Alastair Woodgate chasing and retrieving to all parts.

Seconds Trounce Herriard

by  on June 10, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

Oakley  put on an an excellent display of bowling and fielding on Saturday to blitz Herriard two’s on a horrible pitch that was bordering on unplayable.

Top of the wicket takers was Naveen Velumani with 4 for 16, closely followed by Dan Sumner (3 for 5)Lance Van Dyk (2 for 8) with Callum Van Dyk finishing with 1 for 0.

The bowlers were aided by some great stuff in the field with Gordon Scott, Paul Ciuffetelli and Dan Beckall all taking excellent catches to leave Herriard in tatters at 29 all out.

Despite the state of the pitch Oakley knocked off the required runs without much fuss in seven overs withDan Beckall and Julian Worthington both finishing on 13 not out.

With cancellations and waterlogged pitches it has been a bit of a rough start for the seconds, so to get a win was really important for the confidence of the team.

Well done all.

Up the Oaks!

Oakley go Down to Waverley

by  on June 2, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

The Oakley Sunday 11 lost at home today to end their recent running run. In beautiful early summer sunshine at Oakley Park, several batsmen made good starts but failed to capitalise.

After losing Gordon Scott early on, Oakley re-built with Dan Sumner and new recruit Brett Sanders making good progress before Brett’s young brain overtook his old body and he made a dash for a quick single. The result was the old boy’s favourite injury, a twanged hamstring.

Being the old soldier he is, Brett battled on bravely with a runner before eventually being run out on 22George Lethaby then came to the crease and hit a quick-fire 34 that was aided by a careful and stoical 27 from Dan Sumner who continues to impress as a developing opening batsman.

George Lethaby: Oakley’s top Scorer for with 34

After the departure of George, the wickets of Dan, Tommy Holbrook and Alex Brundle fell in quick succession as Bob Lethaby desperately played the part of Brigadier Blockaball in attempt to keep the innings together. However after Bob departed the innings fell away and Oakley once again committed the cardinal sin of being bowled out without using up their allocated overs.

Defending a total of 137 Oakley got off to a flier with in form Tommy Holbrook removing the opener 4th ball, but after a series of near misses Waverley pushed on. George Lethaby came in first change and put yesterday behind him with a good spell that revived hope after he removed the other opener.

Dan Sumner took a further two wickets and if Oakley had scored 170 odd, it would have been game on, but for the second day in succession, they were left to rue the fact they simply didn’t score enough runs to set a defendable target.

Today’s thanks go to Justine Morris for doing the teas, Paul Sumner for the photography and to Brett Sanders (who could not bend over, let alone field) for doing the umpiring duties.

So a defeat, but to play and be around a great group of people in bright sunshine is still a pleasure!

Up the Oaks

Bad Day for Oakley at Wallop

by  on June 2, 2013 in

A good start to the season ground to a shuddering halt for Oakley yesterday in a calamitous defeat where not much went right as they struggled to cope with the spongy pitch at Over Wallop.

Batting first, Oakley scored just 74 as they struggled to get the ball away and despite a couple of minor cameos, no one really performed and the cardinal sin of not batting the 42 overs was comfortably achieved.

Tommy Holbrook and Captain, Clive Welsman, tried to turn things around with the ball, both bowling vey well, taking three wickets between them to offer hope that miracles can happen.

However, Wallop knew with such a low target that all they had to do was wait for the bad balls and a couple of poor overs from the out of sorts youngsters George Lethaby and Jack Green allowed them the opportunity to coast home.

What was frustrating about this match was that it was not won by a better team, it was won by players who knew the pitch and knew how to play it.

Of course this in an advantage in the home sides favour but if Oakley had batted out their overs for roughly 125 and bowled with a bit more thought for the conditions, the outcome may have been different.

Onwards and upwards.

Oakley at the Double

by  on May 26, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

What a great weekend for Oakley Cricket Club, with the young lads yet again doing us proud in our victory over White Waltham to make it two wins in two days for the Oaks!

Waltham had a really good batting line up and Oakley had to battle really hard to remove their opening six batsmen but two wickets apiece for George LethabyJack Brundle and one apiece from Dan Sumner and the excellent Lofty Worth was backed up by some great fielding and an amazing flying catch from Jack Ballard. This reduced White Waltham to 180 off 40 overs.

Oakley got off to a good start in reply with Dan Sumner and Gordon Scott looking comfortable until Gordy was cleaned bowled. Dan went after a disastrous run out for 16 and Micheal Wood really pushed things along before getting caught after a quickfire 22.

Bob Lethaby (9) then went caught behind followed by Jack Brundle (3) and a collapse looked on the cards with Callum Van Dyk carefully building an innings at one end with deteriorating support.

George Lethaby then entered the fray at number seven with the game apparently lost, but he carried different ideas as he set about the White Waltham bowlers with a blistering assault that was backed by Van Dyk at the other end who was only too happy to pick off singles and provide support.

The stunning surroundings of White Waltham Cricket Club

George went on to amass an unbeaten 59 (A first senior half century) including two huge sixes and the game was turned on its head. It was a brilliant performance, but it wouldn’t have happened without Van Dyk providing support at the other end, so credit must go to him as well as he remained unbeaten on 40.

Special credit must also go to White Waltham who invited us to their beautiful ground that had quintessential England written all over it. They provided us with a great tea and generous hospitality and it is a match that we look forward to being a regular fixture on our summer calendar. They were a great bunch of blokes and showed great humility despite a defeat that appeared unlikely.

Taking Bob and Gordy out of the equation, the oldest player in this team was 24 and the youngest was 14.

The future is bright, the future is Oakley CC.

The Young and the Old(ish) Slay Littleton

by  on May 25, 2013 in latest newsUncategorized {Edit}

It was a great day for Oakley cricket club today as they thrashed Littleton by 9 wickets at Oakley Park.

In a good spirited game played in warm sunshine, Oakley reduced Littleton to 170 in their 42 overs thanks to a battling performance in the field that was epitomised by 4 wickets from the excellent Tom Holbrook.

Chasing a respectable if not formidable total, Steve Savage and Scott Bright set about the task with gusto, taking apart the opposition bowling attack with aggression  and sensible defence when required.



Scott Bright completes his 50 at Oakley Park

Scotty, a humble but class act, was eventually out for an excellent 84, taking his tally to 184 in three games whilst Steve, approaching his 62nd birthday, rolled back the years with an excellent unbeaten 74.

Oakley have been through turbulent times in recent months (you will all know what I am talking about) but the players who have have stuck with the club and backed Clive Welsman as the captain, are reaping the rewards that come with loyalty.

As the chairman of the club, it really was an honour to share a few beers and a barbecue with such a decent and honest bunch of guys afterwards.

Gallery available here

Top work lads.

Bob Lethaby


Excellent Win For the Sunday 11

by  on May 20, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

The Sunday 11 eleven posted their first win of the season at a surprisingly sunny Oakley Park yesterday in what turned out to be a close and exciting encounter against a decent Waverley side who travelled down from Surrey.

Oakley battling towards victory on Sunday afternoon.

Waverley batted first and despite a few early scares, their openers put on a partnership of over 100 before being removed by George Lethaby and Tom Holbrook who both worked extremely hard along with Alex Brundle to stem the run flow. It is also worth noting the flying catch taken by Jack Brundle behind the stumps that still has the rest of the team reverberating in shock some 24 hours later.

Oakley stuck to their task with determined fielding and the Waverley total that at one point looked like 230/240 was restricted to 186. The fielders were also aided by some excellent spin bowling by Dan Sumner who took 3-33, showing a really determined response after taking a bit of a battering from the in form batsmen early in his spell.

The final total still looked quite a tough target but an opening partnership of 80 from Dan Sumner and Julian Worthington set Oakley on their way before Sumner was eventually bowled for 27. The irrepressible Jack Brundle then marched to the crease only to be PROMPTLY BOWLED LBW FOR A GOLDEN DUCK. This meant that we had the pleasure Jack’s company again after about thirty seconds of temporary respite from him calculating the required run rate after every ball.  We love you really Jack.

Golden Duck: Jack Brundle

This allowed Tommy Holbrook to join Julian and push Oakley towards their target with some excellent batting that went from careful to destructive as the game suited. It really was great to watch and the 100 partnership duly arrived after Julian completed his century in style with a huge six.

With Tommy amassing  an excellent 37 not out and Julian carrying his bat for an unbeaten 109, Oakley reached their target with 7 balls to spare. There was a point during this game when Oakley were looking like they would be on the end of a good hiding, but this is a team featuring a lot of very determined young players and is proof, if it were need, that if you stick to your task and hold your nerve, victory is always achievable.

Worthington: A Brilliant 109 not out

This week’s thank you messages go to Paul Sumner who enjoyed umpiring more in the sunshine than in last weeks rain, Michael and Lisa Worth for helping with the bar and general tidying up and Justine Morris for bailing me out and doing all the sandwiches at the 11th hour; a job she enjoyed so much she has spent the last 24 hours asking me when she can do it again.

Well done to all the others who contributed as well, there was good money coming in from the bar and the raffle tickets, so a good day for the club all round.

Firsts Suffer Defeat at Four Marks

by  on May 20, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

A middle order collapse resulted in a disappointing first defeat of the season for the Oaks at Four Marks on Saturday. Batting first, opener Scott Bright (44),  led the way, but with the only other contributions of note coming from Dan Beckall (32) and Clive Welsman (20) the all out score of 157 was never likely to be enough.

This proved to be the case and despite the efforts from the Oakley bowlers, Four Marks eased to the total with four down; the wickets coming from L Van Dyk 2-26, Jack Green 1-20 and Clive Welsman 1-24

Oakley need to dust themselves down and show a bit more application when building a competitive total for the bowlers to defend; then the wins will start to come again.

Oakley Sunday 11 Lose at Farleigh

by  on May 14, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

Diabolical conditions at Farleigh on Sunday didn’t stop the game going ahead and remarkably, despite the rain and wind, the match got completed, unfortunately with the Oaks as losers.

Farleigh batted first with Oakley captain and batsmen, Clive Welsman, playing the role of traitor by opening the bat for the opposition, scoring a half century before being trapped LBW by George Lethaby.

Farleigh’s number three then plundered a brilliant century to put them well in command, finally holing out to a majestic long hop from Bob Lethaby. 

Huge credit must go Colts player, Brad Welsman, who took two fantastic catches in his first full game behind the stumps

Oakley and Farleigh in Action on Sunday Afternoon

Farleigh amassed 250 with the only Oakley wickets coming  from Bob & George Lethaby (2 apiece) Tom Holbrook and a Bob Lethaby run-out with a direct shy at the stumps; a moment that surprised everyone, including himself. Huge credit must also go Colts player, Brad Welsman, who took two fantastic catches in his first full game behind the stumps off of the bowling of Holbrook and Lethaby Junior.

Batting second Oakley were never going to reach the target on a worsening pitch and despite a battling 33 from Dan Sumner and 22 from Jack Brundle all the other batsmen succumbed to the cold and wet conditions.

Credit must go to Farleigh groundsman, Darrell Diamond, for getting the game played in such atrocious conditions, it was probably the only completed game in Hampshire last weekend.

Firsts off to a Winning Start as the Seconds get Washed Out!

by  on May 11, 2013 in latest news {Edit}

A great start to the season was had by the first team today as they dodged the showers to beatPetersfield in a close encounter at Oakley Park.

Three wickets apiece for Jack Green and Julian Worthington helped reduce Petersfield to 111 all outand a feisty 20 from Sam Holbrook, plus a well measured 23 not out from Michael Wood backed up a classy 50 from the returning Scott Bright.

Oakley batting towards victory versus Petersfield

The seconds made a 90 mile round trip to Easbourne in West Sussex only to be thwarted by a plethora of downpours. Bob Lethaby and Jack Brundle battled hard to see off the openers on an unpredictable pitch and Dan Sumner and Callum Van Dyk were both looking in good touch before the rain set in again.

Sadly, the game was aborted with Oakley just starting to push along at 26-3 on what was almost certain to be a low scoring pitch; a close contest looked in store but despite the efforts of Easbourne to get the match played, it just wasn’t to be.

The rain ended any hopes of a result for the seconds today

What was really promising was the dedication from both teams to dig in and get a result, something that was perhaps missing a bit last season and many of contributions today came from former Colts players, which is a really encouraging sign for the season ahead.

Well done to all involved in both matches today;  it was fantastic to see so much positivity at the club again.


Another Win For the Tuesday Six

The Tuesday night team continued their upturn in form on at Dummer with an easy victory over Longparish the other night. Batting first, Oakley put on a par score of 125 with contributions all round backing up a fine start from Jai Solankis and Tom Holbrook and an unbeaten 25 from Julian.

A much improved bowling performance with a reduction in wides and no balls ensured that Longparish didn’t ever challenge the total, especially as their side featured a batsman who’s painful and turgid innings resembled that of a corpse with pads during the fifth day of a dead rubber test match. Imagine Geoff Boycott being made to look like Chris Gayle in a flamboyant mood and you will get the picture.

Anyway, well done lads, as the newly crowned chairman of the club, I had tears of pride running down my cheeks after this inspired performance as we race up the league table!

A Win at Last for The Tuesday Boys

Congratulations to the Tuesday men’s team, winning the first game of the season versus local rivals Overton. Oakley bowled (particularly Tommy Holbrook) and fielded well to keep Overton down to an about par score of 130 before losing Jai Solanki early on. However, Tommy H and Julian Worthington both played intelligently placing shots rather than trying to hammer them and with both retired, Sam Holbrook and George Rutt saw Oakley comfortably to victory with 2 overs to spare. Well done lads!!!

Another Defeat for Thursday Side- 1st November 2012

The Oakley Thursday side slumped to yet another defeat against the Happy Hookers last week. A poor all round batting display left George Lethaby stranded on 18 not out with two overs to spare with a meagtre total of 78 never likely to trouble the opposition with some ease.

Defeats for Tuesday and Thursday sides (23rd & 25th October 2012)

The poor start to the indoor season has continued this week with both the Tuesday and Thursday sides slumping to defeat after poor batting performances. On Tuesday the firsts only posted a virtually un-defendable score of 95 despite 30 not out from Jai Solankis and slumped to a comprehensive defeat.

On Thursday evening the seconds didn’t fair much better posting 110 mainly thanks to 46 not out from George Lethaby who was brilliantly supported by 13 year old Lofty Worth for six overs to take Oakley to a score that was at least respectable. Oakley fielded and bowled really well with one dropped catch being the difference in the end.

Oakley need to start placing the ball rather than trying to obliterate the back walls if they are going to start winning, it is not talent, it is common sense.


Thursday 11th October 2012 v Portway Pirates-Indoor League

Portway won by 64 runs

Dermott Reeve reports from Dummer Cricket Centre

Calamitous fielding and poor bowling left Oakley two’s with no chance of a victory against the Portway Pirates on Thursday evening despite an excellent 64 not out by Jai Solankis. Wickets were shared by the father and son combination of Bob and George Lethaby with Lethaby senior also running out two batsmen but that didn’t stop a ridiculous Portway total of 174 courtesy of some shocking fielding  and bowling all round. Oakley need to improve quickly if they are not to become the Thursday night whipping boys!


Tuesday 2nd October 2012 v Sherfield-Indoor League

Sherfield won with 1 over to spare

Henry Blofeld reports from Dummer Cricket Centre

An average batting display by Oakley allowed Sherfield a straightforward victory at Dummer cricket centre last night. A score of 120 was never going to be enough and despite good contributions from Jai Solankis and Sam Hobrook, the other batsmen lost wickets by poor shots or decision making.

The bowling from Solankis and Lethaby was decent enough and Oakley briefly looked in the game but it was never in much doubt in the end. Oakley will need to improve quickly to get their first win on the board in a couple weeks time and there is nothing to suggest they can’t do that.

Saturday 15th September 2012-Whiteditch at Home

Oakley won by 160 runs

Jonathan Agnew reports from Oakley Park

A youthful (except Bob and Clive) Oakley Sunday 11 finished the season in style yesterday with a convincing win over Whiteditch Wanderers. Oakley batted first with Julian Worthington (68 retired) Jack Green (31) Clive Welsman (44) James Lancaster (31) and Alex Brundle (17) helping to add a hefty total of 240 off 35 overs, leaving Whiteditch with a huge total to chase.

Oakley opened the bowling with under 13 players Sam Green and Lofty Worth who both bowled absolutely brilliantly and though it was Sam who took the wickets it was Lofty who applied the pressure with three maidens in his five over spell. The openers were followed by some great stuff by fellow colts Bradley Welsman and Alex Ogden meaning that Whiteditch were restricted to singles and dot balls that resulted in them never getting near the required target. All eleven Oakley players had at least a couple of overs meaning that in the spirit of friendly cricket everyone was involved.

Apart from Clive, Bob and Alex, the Oakley team was made up completely of existing colts or colts who have made the step up to senior cricket this year and that was without other regulars George Lethaby, Dan Sumner and Duncan Dyk playing. The future of Oakley Cricket Club is a bright one.

The highlight of the day came from James Lancaster who brutally smacked FOUR consecutive SIXES in one over, not bad for a fourteen year old.

Well done lads!


Sunday 9th September 2012- St Mary Bourne away.

Oakley won by six wickets

Christopher Martin-Jenkins reports from St Mary Bourne

The Oakley Sunday 11 comfortably won there penultimate fixture of the season at St Mary Bourne yesterday after being set a target of 183 in 35 overs. Wickets from George Lethaby and Tommy Holbrook removed both openers and with St Mary Bourne sat precariously at 30 for 4, Oakley generously took the main bowlers out of the attack to allow a weakened opposition side some respite. However this nearly backfired as the St Mary Bourne middle order enjoyed some crash, bang, wallop shots that started to pay off as the scored fizzed past 100 and then 150, with captain Bob Lethaby facing the prospect of seeing his generosity rewarded with a huge metaphorical custard pie in the face.

Back row: Dan Sumner, George Lethaby, Jack Green, Duncan Van Dyk, Julian Worthinton, Jack Brundle, Tommy Holbrook Front row: Alex Brundle, Clive Welsman, Bob Lethaby (capt) Michael Worth

However, former colts players Jack Green and Julian Worthington got Oakley off to a solid start with Worthington plundering three fours from the first over. Green was out LBW, perhaps unluckily, when on 15, but this only allowed the arrival of Clive Welsman to blaze a trail with a quick fire fifty that  featured shots of brutality and finesse in equal measure; to watch the dashing Welsman in this sort of form is a pleasure to behold, it was an innings of grace, athleticism and poise, one that us mere mortals can only dream off.

Welsman eventually fell for 58, leaving captain and talisman, Bob Lethaby, to come in to the fray with sixty still required for victory. In the face of extreme hostility from a ten year old girl at one end and a 30 mile an hour pace bowler at the other, Lethaby had to be at his best, it really was a case of cometh the hour cometh the man. After stoically defending the first five deliveries from the 10 year old flame haired female aggressor, Lethaby launched on to the sixth, hitting a maximum in to trees, a great shot from a great player, a shot that for some reason, was greeted with some booing from some supporters.

At the other end, Worthington was looking like he could bat all day and in the end the target was comfortably reached with Worthington (68) and Lethaby (27) both remaining unbeaten. It was a game played in the right spirit in beautiful sunshine in the idyllic surroundings of the Bourne Valley and another Sunday victory for a very young Oakley team (except Bob and Clive) suggests a bright future for the club, at least until they all get girlfriends or clear off to University.


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