Lo! It has finally happened. After 407 days, and 15 consecutive wins, RHC3’s finally tasted defeat. Clackmannan County 2’s were the visitors to ‘Fortress Bangholm’ on Saturday as first clashed with second in Division 7. A forfeit had looked likely on Thursday as a rash of injuries, a sulk and a girlfriend inspired holiday conspired to leave us looking around for bodies to stick on the field.
Stand-in skipper Fraggle performed a minor miracle and we arrived at the ground with 9 players. Four under 15’s (one aged 12) and the juniors coach, playing his first game of cricket since he got married. He’s been married for over twenty years!!
Clax won the toss and stuck is in, no doubt expecting us to be rolled cheaply and to get home early. JK and Jonesy opened up, and hung around for a while until the Jones was run out. Fraggle arriving to swat a few, before JK was yorked. SuperKev joined Fraggle and the pair added 40 before Fraggle was undone. Corky swatted a quick 12, Wardie got an early pearler and Ally joined Kev. These two continued to frustrate Clax, getting us up to the 40over mark. Kev was cleaned up for a magnificent 44, Ally being caught for 12 soon after, barely making it back to the pavilion before his old man was trapped lbw first ball. Chappers left stranded on 0, and the innings closing on 143 for 8.
Clax came out swinging, taking advantage of the short boundaries and the gaps in the field. As well as some loose bowling from Chappers in particular. Jonesy held a good catch to get an early break through but in truth runs were just too easy to get. Wardie then lived to regret his tale of not having dropped a catch in over a year. SuperKev then involved himself in two run outs, took a stonker of a catch on the boundary, moving to his right to get Wardie his first senior wicket. He then bettered it taking a caught and bowled to get our 6th wicket. I’ve never seen a ball hit higher, the hang time was close on 5 seconds!!!
Clax made the target in a little over 21 overs with 4 wickets to spare. Lifting them to the top of the table with 89%, we’re second on 87%. Edinburgh will be third, the best they can be is 85%. Points deductions meaning that a 5-0 record would only be good enough for third. It’s off to Dunbar next week, they were the last side to beat us before Clax. Here’s to another winning run.
So, the BNP got a couple of seats in the Euro elections. Not massively surprising that the locations are in the North. Areas traditionally reliant on heavy industry, with large numbers of unemployed in run down towns, that have large asian populations. It’s easy, in times of economic blight to point fingers, and drum up blame. Combine that with a low voter turnout. Most people in Britain can’t be arsed to vote in a general election, never mind for a European parliament that seems distant, remote, removed from our lives.
Should we be worried?? I doubt it. Whislt the rise of votes for the right all over Europe looks like a pattern, it’s understandable in context. Most countries are governed by the centre right or left leaning parties. These euro elections are pretty much mid terms. It’s rare for governments in power to do well mid term. The economic climate brought about by greedy bankers leads to a need to protest vote. Or in some cases not vote at all. In these situations minority parties always do well. They say things that other more serious parties won’t, and appeal to the baser instincts at these times. Will it lead anywhere? Unlikely. Labour in the UK are at the end of their days for now. But the BNP are not a serious alternative. Come the general election, we’ll wake up, smell the coffee and vote for a safer choice. Eastern Europe? Now they are a different kettle of fish. Freed as they are from the yoke of communism, neo-fascism has a real chance to take root there, and indeed has, as a statement of nationalism. Protecting ones own is a natural state when times are difficult. The banks have a lot to answer for, unless and until we can spark economic recovery, the spectre of the far right grows darker over Europe.