The theory was that we would be going to South Africa in December, and that it made sense not to go all the way up to Scotland in the summer. Nice theory. We ended up staying in Devon and, in terms of results, having our least successful tour ever. In terms of injuries, however, it was probably our most prolific: Adi made a complete mess of his shoulder in the act of recovering to take an excellent catch at Uplyme; Sid aggravated a back injury with his fourth (and last) delivery of the season; Kevin's pelvis proved too weak to cope with the demands of a cricket tour; Peter dislocated his finger and Chirpy put his back out.
Dunsford, with four Mystics in their line-up, beat us by one run, despite Bryan's battling 47, and Donna's selfless batting at the end of the innings. At Uplyme, Fred and Chirpy rescued us with an unbroken fifty partnership for the seventh wicket, and we secured our only victory of the week. The two draws with Wadhurst at Clyst Saint George are probably best forgotten, although Chris Cook's 127, and that game with the eggs are worthy of mention. Pictured are (L to R) Jim Thomson, Ernie Sharland, Jim Dudbridge, Chris Cook, Matthew Cook, Dan Shepherd, Chris Squire, Chris Healey, Oliver Gardiner and Windy Miller.
Andy Wendon's 87 was the basis for our score of 163 against Plymtree. Only James Dudbridge and Matthew Cook were able to make any impression with the ball, and the home team squeezed home in the penultimate over. An exciting game at South Devon ended in a draw, with both sides pushing for a win up to the final ball. At Christow on the 15th anniversary of the first ever game between the sides, the Erratics set us 166 to win. It seemed a fair total, until we went out to bat. We were all out in the 21st over, 113 runs short of our target.
The last game of the tour was against Broadclyst in the idyllic grounds of Killerton House. Kevin spearheaded our attack, despite his dodgy pelvis, and Broadclyst were all out for 151. We were never really in the hunt. After 21 overs, we had subsided to 54 for six. Grumpy and Dunc briefly threatened to turn the tide, but with their dismissals our chances died. After the match, Julie Hewlett, was chosen as supporter of the tour. "Anyone who travels from Vietnam to watch Dan play cricket," said one of the selection panel, "either deserves an award, or needs locking up." Ollie was player of the tour.