Records show that three venues were considered for the August Bank Holiday excursion of 1992. Official minutes saying that Bath, later visited in 1994 and 1995, Hertfordshire (1996) and Bournemouth were under consideration. The latter was the eventual location.
The planning of the tour was initially a little problematic. Finding a suitable Guest House for one, eventually being resolved (Although the owner was rather gruff about the constant need for changes in booking) and also finding suitable fixtures against unknown opposition. Come the event itself all this had been made good, although the one thing that cannot be controlled upon these shores, namely the weather, was in a foul mood.
On the Saturday of the tour Wanderers made a 50-mile visit to Urchfont, near Devizes, a club famously associated with Bill Frindall. The weather, heavy but mostly dry throughout, held back enough for the match to be played. On a wet pitch, Wanderers held the hosts to a total of 102-7 in 45 overs, having been 54-4 after 36, but were bowled out for 62. Mark Scholfield top scored from the opening berth with 16.
Returning to Bournemouth it became apparent that the weather was worsening, and thus it didn’t disappoint. The Sunday game was a wash out without Wanderers even travelling to the venue. Although records don’t show the name of the intended opposition, it is thought to be a local side, Ferndown.
The intervening 24 hours are the subject of the blessed sponge of amnesia for some, and much hilarity for others. Whilst various drunken capers will be met with accusation and denial, what cannot be denied is the ‘whoopee cushion’ incident that played itself out on the cruel wicket of the Guest House living room down in East Cliff.
Steve Page, Neil Oglieve and Martin Malpass were naturally in fine off field form as expected. As Wanderers gathered to bemoan a lost afternoon a whoopee cushion was placed under one of the armchairs. The schoolboy fun claimed a number of club victims until two seats remained in the room, under one of which the offending bag of air was placed. As footsteps were heard, one of another couple of victims was unassumingly about to be claimed. Except that it turned out that the two intended targets were not members of the touring party…..
Dear reader, you can only imagine the horror on the face of even the most villainous of jokers as a retired couple entered the room and made a beeline for the offending chair. An almost audible gasp of air was heard as one took to their seat. The giggles end there as the cushion itself failed to fart, but it goes without saying that the it made no further appearance that weekend….
A large number of hangovers made the short journey to Whitecliff for the shortened 30 over friendly on the Monday against what is listed in the scorebook as Solent & Wessex Cricket Association, although it is believed that the opponents were connected to Bournemouth Transport (Buses). The match had been in doubt because of the sheer volume of rain that had been falling, but had since been a little better. The pitch, however, was a quagmire.
Wanderers lost the toss and were put in to bat. Cool and dark at the start, it began to rain. The match survived, however, and Wanderers fund themselves 60-3 after 13 overs.
The biggest problem was the wicket conditions though. After a while it became unplayable. There was a single solution, that being to call a halt to the match. At that point an inventive idea, in absence of a growling groundsman, came to the fore. Why not move the wicket ? Not once, but twice was this plan enacted. A stand of 143, possibly a tour record, between David Noakes and Martin Malpass ensued. Although had the action remained on the original yardage this would probably have been implausible.
With Dave Noakes keeping wicket, Wanderers used all ten outfielders to bowl during their opponents stuttering reply. By the time the score had finished on 105-9, Howard Price had take three wickets, Jason Thackeray two, and Nick Clarke had bowled some left arm spin. The scorer had ran out of space.
The match scorecard can be found below:
|Total||(30 Overs)||3 Wickets||203|
|Fall of Wickets||14,17,60|
|Did Not Bat|
|Mills (Bob)||c Noakes||Field||1|
|Total||(30 Overs)||9 Wickets||105|
|Fall of Wickets||Unavailable|
|Wanderers win by 98 runs|