2023 will go down as a fantastic season for the club in the history books. A big thank you to all those who contributed to Wizzy News throughout the season – the match report writers who so eloquently put into words our shared experiences and the photographers who managed to capture some magical moments . A very big thank you in particular to our club photographer Chris Marshall who provided an endless supply of quality pictures – many of which are featured in this end of season edition of Wizzy news.
If you missed any of our previous editions of Wizzy News please click here for the newsletter section of our website
Century Club Draw
The most recent Century Club Draw took place at the annual Dinner and awards evening on 9th September
Congratulations to all the winners :
- 1st Prize : Dan Vickery £250
- 2nd Prize : David Tulip £150
- 3rd Prize : Howard True £100
- 4th Prize : Neil Brandon £75
- 5th Prize : Neil Trestrail £50
- 6th Prize Neil Trestrial £50
The next Century Club draw will take place at the AGM on 28th January . If you would like more information on how the Century club works please click on the following link : http://www.wisboroughgreencc.co.uk/century-club/
Senior Honours Boards
2023 was a season for the batters with no fewer than 7 centuries being scored by players across all age groups.
Every century is special for each player but its worth highlighting a few innings which were particularly noteworthy
- Matt Watts had never scored a century in his cricketing career prior to the 2023 season. In the game against Ifield at Wisborough he was on 94 facing the final ball of the innings. He hit the ball which cleared the boundary rope but brushed past a leaf which according to local rules meant that it was adjudicated as a 4 and not a 6. He more than made up for the disapointment in the game against Pagham at Arundel when he not only surpassed the magical 100 mark, but went on to score 150 – the second highest score ever by a Wisborough Green player according to the Playcricket stats.
- Will Dixon (age 15) scored no fewer than 3 centuries this season and his 145 against Petworth Park at Wisborough Green is the 4th highest by a Wisborough Green player in the history of the club. Will’s name appears 5 times in the 20 top scores for the club this season. An exceptional achievement for a fantastic young cricketer.
- Jonny Farmer has been at the club for over 20 years. His very first century for the club was scored in the game against Pagham – the same game that Matt Watts scored his 150. Centuries by two players in a game is not common. Congratulations to both players.
- Ollie Stott was trapped lbw on 99 in the game against Rudgwick last season denying him his maiden century. His 107 against Chippingdale this season was very special !
Congratulations to all players who made it onto the Honours boards this season.
End of Season awards
The seniors celebrated the season at the end of season awards evening in style at the Sir Roger Titchbourne pub in Alfold on 9th September.
Congratulations to all the players who were recognised :
- First team batting award : Chris Douglas
- First team bowling award : James Rainford
- Second Team batting award : Matt Watts
- Second team bowling award : Josh Dixon
- Women’s team player of the year : Hannah Williams
- Women’s team batting award : Bex Samuelson
- Women’s team bowling award : Natalie Ayling
- Karn Smith award for most promising Junior : Oscar Warmington
Club captain’s end of Season report
The end of a season is always bittersweet – on the one hand, no more Friday night spent trying to get players for Saturday and no gut wrenching feeling of getting a text on a Saturday morning with a late drop out. But then you remember that it also means no more cricket – no better feeling than smoking one through the covers or the joy after taking a brilliant catch, not to mention the jugs of beer that follow – win, lose or lose!!!
The season has certainly been one where we had to dig very deep as a club. The results didnt always go our way – particularly for the First X1 but we should remember there is still much to be positive about
I rarely like quoting anything Jonny Farmer said but one message he sent throughout the season is worth remembering – he said “we have a bloody good club” – I couldn’t agree more. There were some low points throughout the season but we never argued or fell out with each other, didn’t blame anyone, and in true Wisborough fashion we dusted ourselves off and went again! This team spirit is very much a tradition of the club – and one that shines through in everything we do. After all, for a small village club we are punching well above our weight and we shouldn’t forget this!
In terms of outcomes…..(and a bit of rant – sorry!)
Unfortunately, the 1sts were relegated from Div 4 having been promoted last season, with the 2nds finishing 5th, which is a respectable finish – but really we should be romping that league. Ultimately there is one main reason for both these outcomes – availability and commitment (or is that two reasons?). We had over 38 people play for the 1sts XI this year, which I suspect is more than double most teams in the league. And without a strong backbone of regular players, often requiring 7 or 8 changes from week to week, it becomes hard to drive consistency in performances for both teams. This is something I would love to address next season – we certainly have the strength in the squad to win both divisions but need everyone to buy-in and commit to the cause! Ranting a-side…..I do hope that this resonates with some people and therefore if next season we can all commit slightly more I am certain we can bring something together that will deliver on the outcomes our great club deserves.
Looking into the detail a bit more….
Having started the season with a flourish – bowling Felbridge out for 92 and knocking them off 4 down (no thanks to a first ball of the season duck for James Newman!!) – we ended with 2 wins and 13 losses. Some 90 points below the same Felbridge side we had dismantled. The season was a mixed bag – some games where we played well for most of the game but lost the crucial moments (notably Crawley, Three Bridges, Felbridge and Burgess Hill away games as well as Horsham at home), some games where we were just outclassed by a better team and some where we didn’t even bother to show up. Chris Douglas finished top scorer with 475 runs and Captain Rainford finished with 16 wickets.
The 2nds finished 5th in Div 10 on 309 points which was actually only 90 points off promotion. They won 7 and lost 6 with 5 cancellation and abandonments. Winning the last three games on the spin to secure safety. The team scored no less than 5 tons – Matt Watts 150 (of his total 337 2nd XI runs this year at an average of 67), Will Dixon 145, Jonny Farmer 119* (his first ton in his 176th playcricket innings for the club), Tim Palmer 111 (in only his fifth innings for WGCC) and Ollie Stott 107 (one of only two innings this season). I should also note Tarnie Dixon and Tommy Colbran who scored 320 and 199 runs respectively this year. There was also some notable bowling performances from the usual candidates (Joshy and Franky) as well as a few contributions from Tommy Colbran who got two 3 wicket hauls.
A big thank you……
I would like to take this opportunity to thank a few people that have given a lot to the club, both this season and over the year.
Firstly, to Junior (James Rainsford) – for his patience and understanding throughout the season. Junior never moaned at the late team changes or when random players turned up that he wasn’t aware were coming and generally having to make do with one bowler too few or when he had no choice but to bat D Vickery at the top of the order. I am certain other captains would have jacked it in……Thanks Jr!!
The Peters – one that would be feared by John Wayne on the set of a western and the other with a nod that’s dreaded by many batsmen across Sussex. Not only are they vital for us, donning the white cloaks each week of the season, but they are great to have around the place. Thank you both for all that you give to the club.
To Tarnie (and ultimately Trish) – for the continuous list of player suggestion you would send me week in week out only to receive a response that I had tried all those and to no avail!! Nonetheless you went undeterred and usually managed to help get us a team. Tarnie has been an excellent chairman throughout the season, always the first to show up when jobs need to be done (usually there about 20 mins before me at least!) and is always a cool head when I have almost given up with frustration!
To Stevie (Steve Calder Smith) , for everything he brings to the club over many years. Be it the sponsorship he has bought in, the advice he gives on and off the field, running the century club, developing the youth setup, being a captain of both sides, chairman and president. Not to mention the bucket load of runs he continues to score!!
DJ Dominique – an ever present at training and on a Saturday. Never grumbles batting up or down the order or when asked to keep wicket – a true clubman.
The London boys – for making all the trips . I appreciate its a long way to come and we enjoy having you down !
And finally – to my wife……for putting up with me spending every spare hour either playing or doing something cricket related!!! Maybe one more year??
Some of the highlights………..
- My highlight of the entire season was the memorial match played between the Vickery XI and Spiers XI. Not only was it a great day of cricket but the atmosphere on the green reminded me of the days I was little and my dad was out there dispatching bowlers over long-on for fun whilst I was lining up against Jimma and Franky in a muck around game by the side of the pav!!
- We welcomed lots of news players to the club – this not only shows the draw we have for people wanting to play but they also added to the family vibe we have around the club with many of their children being regulars in and around the pav. The new players include: Chris Douglas, Dave Griffiths, Tim Palmer, Ash Perry, Will Andrews, Alex Martin, Matt Whale and Mark Wadey to name a few – welcome guys, its great to have you!
- The continued progress of the junior sections and their performances for the seniors. Not only did the U16s win their league but they contributed many runs and wickets in both the 1sts and 2nds this season. I hope that they continue to grow and develop with the club as if we can retain these players then the future is bright!
In order that we continue to develop as a club we are building a plan to ensure that coaching is available and we have more structured training sessions. We have winter nets are already booked up on Thursday evenings starting 8th Feb 2024 as a starter for ten. With structured training and coaching I hope that we will see more people come to nets on a weekly basis next season. This will really help weekend performance and perhaps we can reach our potential and get both teams promoted!!
For now I will be enjoying the spare time I have (that would be previously spent texting thousands of people each week – sorry guys!), as in the blink of an eye we will be back to having aching shoulders come Feb!!
Until next season….
It has been a real pleasure to be part of the WGCC 2nd XI Team this season. We have had many more highs than lows, played in the right spirit throughout with excellent team camaraderie and finished a very respectable 5th in the league (out of 10 teams). It has been particularly pleasing to see the number of Juniors that have played for the 2s throughout the season such as Joe Aspdin, Raff Finn, Jackson McCullagh, George Redgrove, Monty Palmer, Dexter McCullen, Matt Ritchie, Will Dixon and Ran Dawson. Not only have they been an integral part of the team but they also have made important contributions with bat and ball at key times in the matches – many thanks to you all. We have seen heroic batting performances with several centurions including Matt Watts (150), Will Dixon (145), Jonny Farmer (119*), Tim Plamer (111) & Ollie Stott (107). Joshua Dixon topped the wicket count with 22 including a triple wicket maiden in his final over of the season.
It was great to see some new recruits such as Will Andrews and Tim Palmer and the invaluable regulars such as Jonny Farmer, Tommy Colbran, Juan Vorster, Harry Hunter, George Nicholls and Frank Vickery who all have performed well with the bat and ball. Many thanks to Peter Klein as the umpire / player who was always happy to play if the need arose. All in all it was a highly successful and enjoyable campaign sharing memorable moments with superb individuals as a team whilst playing the game of cricket. I think we can win the league next year.
A summary of the Women’s season? To quote Sam, who was reflecting on our first ever league game, “We threw some balls, we hit some balls (some more than others), it was fun.” 😊
A perfect summary, and it’s the fun part that is making this venture so special and successful.
From the off, we set the bar high as a contender for ‘best tea in the league.’ With literally a bar. Thanks to Sarah’s outstanding hospitality, out came the gazebos, the gingham tablecloths, the wine and prosecco chilling on ice. A full array of homemade teatime favourites, all heartily enjoyed by the oppo and on occasion stirring up thoughts of defection to Wizzy.
And all supported by our very own barmy army. With Jenny Jones and Lucy Vickery leading the charge, we had ever increasing vocal support from the crowd. Attending every game were stalwarts Rick Truttero (Nadia’s dad) and Grandad Colin (Jilly’s dad), calmly offering pearls of cricketing wisdom (or is that Wisden?) between innings. Loyal scorer and stats analyst Josh Braddock didn’t miss a game, helping with coaching tips and set up. It is no coincidence some of our supporters were celebrating with us at the EOS dinner.
Special mention of the yoof (Jax, it’s an official word). Stepping in on occasion were Edie Ayling, Eli and Becca Foster, Olivia and Bella Boyce, and Fizz Gadd, all rising stars in their own teams. And the little lads, turning up every Tuesday to challenge and encourage the women and improve our cricket. Always up for a game, we could hone our match tactics playing amongst skilful cricketers. Worth adding just how impressive our talented youngsters are. Helpful, thoughtful, endlessly enthusiastic and leading by example, they are an awesome bunch.
As for the Women, featuring no less than 25 players across the league matches, our squad is growing. In this, our first league year we saw huge improvements in all aspects of the game. Looking back at the stats, the wagon wheels, the pie charts and bubble charts (or were they for analysing the match tea?), the number of extras given away reduced game on game, economy and strike rates improved in both batting and bowling. Fielding got sharper, calling louder, Fluff diving bolder. Preserved in the score book, who can forget our first league win on a sunny Sunday away against Slinfold. Still convinced Holly’s last hit was a six (you were robbed!), nonetheless we won convincingly and celebrated in true Wizzy style.
We also hosted another hugely successful Women’s Festival in July, with six teams battling it out alongside the U11s tournament. The Women had a presence on President’s Day, enjoying the club lunch and festivities that followed. We brought a crowd to the fundraising Fun Day, playing a mixed match, and we’ve undoubtedly increased bar sales this year, only to raise funds for the Pav of course 😊.
As the team gathers momentum, it couldn’t succeed without the quiet effort and dedication behind the scenes. Sarah’s vision and inspiration, recognised at County level with a Sussex Foundation ‘Inspire to Play’ nomination, has ensured our numbers are building. And Peter’s generosity of time and support for the team, quite rightly earning him a Sussex ‘Unsung Hero’ nomination for this and his monumental and largely unnoticed contribution to the whole club, has given us gravitas. Represented by both these nominations at the County ground last weekend, Wizzy is punching above its weight. Skipper Jen helped set us up in the league and on our way. To you all, we give our thanks and respect.
Mostly, the team has brought together a wonderful bunch of people and made lasting friendships. As Sam said, we threw some balls, we hit some balls (some more than others), and it was indeed a lot of fun.
The Sunday Supplements had a thinly spread season with just a handful of matches played across the summer. Getting a Sunday side out is understandably tricky. People who play league cricket on a Saturday are unlikely to want a further game the next day. Family commitments rightly come first, and even Peter Klein would have to agree – there’s more to life than cricket. Those that do want to play are usually the colts, who gleefully lap up more cricket (often squeezing in a game on Sunday morning too). At the start of the weekend I am staring at a team sheet with five names on. By Saturday evening this can have swelled to 14. It usually settles on 11 by 1pm on the Sunday.
So a mixture of colts, dads and part timers are boosted by fan favourites, DJ and Joshy. A Wisborough side without at least one Dixon is unthinkable. If all the 4 boys were unavailable, I would insist on Trish – failing that, the dog. Such is their importance.
Other stalwarts are Oscar Warmington, his dad Rupert and brother Ollie. This is something that warms my heart. To see dads playing God’s game with their sons on a Sunday afternoon, is surely heaven on earth. Other family representatives are the Dawsons and even Hugo and Tim March. DJ always puts his hand up, doubts himself midweek, then comes good by Sunday. Tim Dent is another to get his name on the team sheet weeks in advance. For the colts to play alongside grown men, it can only develop their confidence. Young chaps like Seb Scarce, Buddy Edwards and Raff Finn will have benefitted hugely from batting with seasoned pros like Jack Dixon or Leon Kilford. Seeing the emerging young adults like Will Dixon, Harry Hunter and Oscar hitting 50’s and removing grown men’s stumps from the ground, gives them inspiration for where they could be in a few years.
These games also give opportunities for people to bat higher up the order than they would in a league game, and have a bowl if they fancy it. The wicketkeeper role can rotate if the need arises. I try to make sure every player goes home that night having had a chance to contribute. That isn’t always possible in a league game, but if someone volunteers to give the club their time on a Sunday afternoon, I want them to enjoy it. That sometime means the result is less important than it is on a Saturday, and I’m ok with that. We play against some good players, and the games are always competitive. But I don’t lose any sleep that night if we come second.
Far more important I believe, is that The Sunday Supplements are:
1 – A decent group of people that I’d like to share an outfield (and if old enough – a beer) with.
2 – We play on a nice ground. (There is no better place on a sunny Sunday than The Green).
3 – We have a decent tea.
I think by that criteria, we have had a fantastically successful season.
On Sunday 27 August we remembered all those who have gone before us by doing what we do best – having a game of cricket.
Ahead of the day we circulated a web page which included pictures of a number of the plaques on the benches that surround the Green which included list of the people who were closely associated with the club over many years Please click here for the web post
A fantastic game of cricket that eventually saw the Vickery X1 coming out on top – not that it really mattered. The game will be long remembered for many reasons – most notably Dan Vickery’s dismissal of Jonny Farmer and Jonny Farmer’s video response after the game : Please click here for the video response
Please click here for the 31st August edition of Wizzy News which included the full match report.
The day was a great success with some good cricket, a great crowd, brilliant cricket tea and one too many drinks. This was all in aid of Midhurst MacMillan who provided fantastic support to some of the legends of WG sports – in total we raised nearly £2.5k!.
We look forward to continuing this event next year….no doubt even bigger and better!!
Sunday X1 vs Sussex Disability X1
In August the Sunday X1 hosted the Sussex Disability X1 which included one Josh Dixon in their ranks – a game that was refered to as ‘The battle of the Dixons’
Below is an extract of the Chris Marshall’s match report which perfectly captured the gladiatorial contest …
…Anybody who has ever shared a cricket field with Joshy knows that his constantly cheerful demeanour, lifts the spirits of the whole team. There is no player more positive or popular at the club than Josh, and when he takes a wicket his smile lights up the whole Green. However this was serious stuff – he was batting. Steely eyed, he strode to the crease to face his friends and family. Time to bring on the remaining Dixon brothers, one from each end. With Tarni umpiring at square leg, and Trish revelling in the success of her tea, this was a Dixon family affair. Will and Jack pulled out all the stops but Josh was in no mood to give his wicket away to a sibling. The moment of the day was when Josh drove Will through mid off. I’m not saying she has a favourite son, but Trish’s was the loudest cheer of all….
Please click here for our Wizzy News edition of 24th August for the full match report – a game that will be spoken about for many years to come
The WGCC U16s Team had a remarkably successful season and all the players who turned out for the team during the course of the season should be very proud of their performances and what the team has achieved. In the North-West Sussex league they won 6 out of 7 topping the league and overturning the mighty West Chiltington and Horsham in their wake including a couple of very close games which we managed to close out with confidence and a belief in each other’s abilities – it was exciting to see great individual and team execution when the pressure was on. Then came the next challenge – to play Lingfield who were winners of the North-East Sussex league for the opportunity to get into the Champions League Semi-Final. The WGCC team scored 170 off their 25 overs with a colourful display of positive batting and then backed it up with tight bowling and fielding to restrict the opposition to 152 for 6 off their 25. We then became winners of North Sussex – at least the 4th best U16 team in Sussex – an outstanding effort. Alas our success came to end against a formidable Chichester Priory side in the Champions League Semi-Final away at Chichester – on our day we could have won that game.
I would like to acknowledge everyone who played for the U16s throughout the campaign and in particular 3 under 12s who regularly played for the side namely Buddy Edwards, Hector Dawson and Harry Maggs who all excelled at this much older age group. On a personal note it has been a real pleasure and honour to coach this team, some from the early years as U8s, and see them all develop as cricketers and people. All who qualify are now playing regularly in the senior sides and it is wonderful to have the opportunity to play beside them and the enjoy the game together. Many thanks to all who have helped the team along the way mainly Tom Dawson, Ben Reed, Peter Klein and of course Trish Dixon (Chief Administrator). You have all been brilliant and it has been a blast.
Under 11 Girls
Our under 11 girls competed in the league for the very first time this year. It was a big step up from for the girls and it was a fantastic learning experience.
The game againt Haywards Heath was particularly memorable for a number of reasons – most notably the game awareness from a couple of our players. Please click here for the match report
Under 11 tournament
On Sunday 16 July the under 11’s welcomed 7 other under 11 teams to the Green for our annual tournament for a celebration of cricket. It was a great opportunity for our girls to show off their skills – and they didnt dissapoint.
Many thanks to Sarah Meurer for all her efforts in putting together a most memorable tournament and thank you to all those who helped behind the scenes
Under 5,6 and 7
There are few better sights and sounds in Wisborough Green than our smallest cricketers swarming about following Coach Alen and his wonderful assistants on a Friday night. The way the mayhem turns to (some sort of) order at the gather-call of “Everybody In” and then quickly returns back to mayhem an hour later with the disband-call of “Get Outta Here”.
Unfortunately that sight and sound was a little less reliable during 2023 as we were beaten by the weather more times in one season than we can remember. However when the group did get out it did so with scale. We had 60+ players again which bodes very well for the future of our club.
Even now when you wander past the Green and see the men’s and ladies’ teams you can occasionally make out the more mature faces of players that once huddled down for a “Hoo-Ha” on a Friday night before smudging their faces in ice cream. We hope they continue to play the game with the same freedom and enjoyment as they did then.
Our plan is to be back bigger and better next season. We only hope the wild weather stays away so we can play.
Pics taken throughout the season
Yes Farms – that was out …
Thank you to to all the parents who supported the players over the summer
Tim Edwardes (pictured right) wearing his favourite blanky
James Braddock (pictured left) : ‘Sometimes I sit and think – other times I just sit ..’ quote from Winnie the Pooh.
Ladies doing their bit to help fill the channels
Chairman’s end of season wrap
What a magnificent 2023 season WGCC has had!
We had a record number of Junior registrations with 160+ and the first time our Girls’ team (U11) and Women’s team played league cricket. We have had the usual 1st XI and 2nd XI Saturday league competitions and several Sunday matches. The Juniors have fielded U10, U12, U14 and U16 teams in the league and the U12 and U16 sides also played in the Junior Sussex Cricket Festival. The U16s won their North-West league and then beat the winners of the North-East league to be the champions of North Sussex. All this has culminated in more cricket being played on the Green by more players this season than ever before in the history of the Club. This impressive achievement only happens as a result of the many volunteers who put in countless hours for the benefit of others and I would like to thank the WGCC Committee for all their efforts, the Junior Coaches, Junior Administrators, Junior Helpers, Umpires, Scorers, Tea Makers , BBQers, Wizzy rollers, Channel fillers and all the Groundstaff for all they do to make this Club the wonderful organisation it is today.
It has been a pleasure to see so many of you enjoying all that goes with playing cricket and we look forward to the 2024 season.
Thank you Mr Chairman
Following on from all the thank you’s from the Chairman to everyone else it seems opportune to say a big thank to Tarnie for all his efforts leading the club. It takes a monumental effort to run a club of our size and we are very grateful for all the time and energy that Tarnie puts into the club . Not only does Tarnie chair the club, but he also captains the Second X1, coaches the under 16’s, under 8’s and the girls teams on a Friday evening. Tarnie has the unique ability to bring out the very best in everyone around him and it’s no coincidence that the Under 16 team won the league this year – a team he has coached since they were under 8.
Thank you Tarnie for your continuing leadership and dedication to our wonderful club.
The final word
No season would be complete without a word from one of the world’s greatest philosophers.
That’s it for the 2023 season – counting down the days to the start of the 2024 season …