Monday, June 05, 2006

The Unbearable Soreness of Being

Spent yesterday afternoon playing cricket in Scotland. Sounds like an oxymoron, doesn't it? Cricket in Scotland, making wine in England, eating ice cream in Iceland [the country, not the supermarket chain - you'd probably get arrested if they caught you eating the ice cream in a supermarket, though that doesn't seem to sto some people selecting a bag of grapes and munching them as they traipse round the aisles]. Anyway, yesterday was the first game for the Biggar Cricket Club and I somehow ended up in the team, having played cricket about five times in my life [most of them badly]. For non-Americans, watching US-created sports like baseball and American football can be an impenetrable maze of jargon. Well, get ready for some cricket jargon, sports fans.

The opposition hit 219 for 2 in forty overs, while we replied with 170 for 6 in our forty overs. Stunningly, I took the first wicket for our team, trapping one of the opposition's batsmen leg before. LBW isn't given that often in amateur games, so the batsmen had to be absolutely plumb. The stunning part stems from the fact I was spraying the ball all over the place while bowling. You name it, I bowled it - full tosses, wides, balls so short they were rolling along the ground by the time they reached the batsmen. In the four overs I bowled I must have gone for at least 20 runs. I think the bowl that claimed my wicket must have been almost the only straight one I got on the right length all afternoon. Still, it was a joyous moment. [My batting was no great shakes, scoring six or seven before getting clean bowled - annoying.]

This morning I am suffering for it. Five hours of running, diving and tumbling have left me stiffer and more sore than a very stiff and sore thing. Both hands are bruised, I took one ball in the left cheek, another in my right forearm and bruised my right breast. My whole body is one big ouch. I'll be fine by Wednesday, but the next two days are all about pain and misery. This sporting life is bloody hard work.

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