Firstly I would like to wish all my fellow Larks and Larkettes a very Merry Christmas.
I would be pulling your plonker if I didn't admit that 2006 was a pretty traumatic year for Lymington CC, what with the disbanding of the Fourth XI, the Third XI getting relegated and Wobbly Wharton's viagra supply running out. I was tempted to describe it as an ‘annus horriblus', but I managed to get some cream from Boots and the condition soon cleared up.
Of course, 2006 will forever be remembered as the year that England handed the Ashes back to the convicts. England's abject submission has been blamed on many things, including selection policy, Steve Harmison's apparent inability to distinguish between Freddie Flintoff and a set of stumps, not to mention the lack of preparation before the series began. However, I have to take issue with the idiots who were clammering to have Monty included in the team from the start. Quite what difference a big fat Scottish golfer would have made is beyond me. I do agree however that the pre-match preparation was completely wrong. Surely Duncan Fletcher should have taken a leaf out of Meg Gannaway's book by taking the team to the pub for a few morale-boosting pints before the game before arriving at the ground about three minutes ahead of the scheduled start time. To be fair to Fletcher, he did use one of Meg's favourite tactics by selecting a couple of blokes off the street to make up the numbers - how else can anyone explain how Ashley Giles and Geriant Jones got into the side?
The question now is: how do we go about regaining the Ashes from those dastardly Australians? Well, we could chain them all up again and nick the urn while they're not looking, but I have a better idea. You see, my plan is to kidnap Ricky Ponting & Co and cunningly replace them with an alternative team of Ozzies which would include the Prince of Darkness Ozzy Osbourne, footballer Ossie Ardiles, Oz from Auf Wiedersein Pet, The Osmonds (including Marie and Little Jimmy), Ali Osman the former proprietor of Oz Cabs in Eastenders, and The Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz. Surely we could beat that lot. Well, maybe not.
Biggest winners of 2006 were the colts section who pocketed more silverware that a scouser in a stately home. The Under 11s might even have added to their impressive haul if the County bigwigs hadn't decided to pitch the wicket for their Hampshire Cup final on the dodgiest part of the Rose Bowl outfield. Apparently next year's final is scheduled to take place on Keyhaven Mudflats.
Another winner in 2006 was Mark ‘Kiwi' Newton who carried off the SPL Division 2 wicketkeeping award. Well, when I say “carried off”, I actually mean that the award bounced off his chest, was fumbled a couple of times, before finally coming to rest between his knees. Following the award ceremony, several of the Lymington group ventured to a nearby nightclub to help Kiwi celebrate his success. Sadly Neil Trestrail and Mike Pain were refused entry by the doorman who informed them that Bingo was only held on a Tuesday. Also celebrating success in 2006 were the Hunt brothers - Martin and Adie - who started up their own decorating business, and as the advert shows, appear to doing very well.
2007 promises to be an exciting year for Lymington CC with the club celebrating its Bicentenary. It's incredible to think that the club played its very first match less than two years after the Battle of Trafalgar; and even more incredible to think that Jeff Renshaw was present at both events.
Finally I would just like to wish everyone a Very Happy and Prosperous New Year
Larry the Lark