Amidst the rising standard of school cricket, begun four years ago, was a new and positive approach to the game: thought has at last attained an equal place with technical capability; at last many of our lst, 2nd and U.15 and U.14 players are more sad about a loss than a low score.
There are two disturbing factors to be remedied by next season, apart from the cancellation of over 20 matches. The extremely poor condition of the junior pitches is one, the second, the ridiculously heavy burden that rests on the shoulders of Mr. Chambers, as Cricket Master. The work he did, and cheerfully, was positively too much, from stock-taking, box-checking, team picking, and coaching, to running and umpiring the lst XI, and running, or so it seemed, many of the other XI's as well. He has been the mainspring in any success the school has gained.
I should like to thank his colleagues who helped to umpire during the season and especially, Mr. Groom, Mr. Hobson, and Mr. Haslam who ran the junior teams. Gerry, our groundsman, has done a difficult job well, and we are always grateful to those mothers who prepare the teas.
1st XI Review
Like last year there was much pre-season pessimism and on paper this attitude might have appeared reasonable. Though the batting was undeniably strong, the bowling was very short of lst XI experience. The record of ten wins in the curtailed season proved the critics wrong. We lost to only two schools, and were dismissed only four times. The batting was revealed to be less reliable than the bowling if one recalls Buckhurst Hill, Southend, Colchester and Mr. Chambers' XI; even so the school will find it difficult to match the brilliance of this year's batting; there were twelve individual "50's". The bowling grew in stature and not once did it let the side down despite its limitations of accuracy and, sometimes, basic cricket experience. The fielding was well below average, but the catching excellent.
One will not remember this lst XI for its highlights like the team of 1963, but for its theoretical approach to its cricket. Here at last was a complete lst XI that played and thought its cricket, not merely played.
D. C. Jolly