On the day that Australian cricket legend Jeff Thomson celebrates his 69th birthday and cricket loving newsreader Trevor McDonald his 80th, it was also on this day 60 years ago that American singer and actress Madonna was born. And so for those of you Addicted to spending your Saturday afternoons at the UCG, You'll See another Amazing weekend of cricket, Rain permitting of course.
Tom Marsland's 1st XI, who have fallen Deeper And Deeper and lie bottom of the table, 26 points from safety, certainly won't be in for an Easyride when they welcome 5th placed Bollington to the UCG. Upton picked up 25 points in their last home game and will be looking for Everybody to put in a repeat performance. We were well beaten by our visitors in the return fixture back in June, when opener Caleb Ziebell contributed an Incredible 191 to their 267 for 4. Not surprisingly, Ziebell is their leading run scorer with 584 league runs, however, Hough also has 335 runs so Dave Williams & Liam Sundve (with 55 wickets between them) will need to put in a Superstar effort. Stuart Plant (with 30 league wickets to his name) will provide the main threat with the ball, however, it Ain't No Big Deal asNothing Really Matters when we have the Iconic Upton faithful behind us. This game provides One More Chance to ensure Survival in this division and we'll be trying Over And Over to do just that in the remaining games.
After an effective washout last week, Tom Maguire's 2nd XI will be pleased to be Back in Business when they go Miles Away to 2nd placed Oulton Park with 25 points Up For Grabs as they look to close the gap on the teams above them and preserve their Premier League status. The 2s will find a Ray Of Light from the first meeting, when we bowled Park out for 137 (Keeno & Callum taking 4 wickets each). Unfortunately, the memories will be Bittersweet as we could only manage 121 all out in reply despite 44 not out from Luca. Owen Williamson (388 runs) and Andy Mills (363 runs) are likely to pose the biggest threat with the bat whilst Richard Smith & Owen Williamson have 25 & 23 wickets respectively. We will need plenty of Fighting Spirit if we are going to take anything from the game but Tommy will be urging his players to Express Yourself!
In what Has To Be the game of the day, the Spotlight will fall on the Sanctuary of the back pitch as the 2nd placed 3rd XI take on league leaders Didsbury (who are 18 points ahead of us). Upton won the first meeting earlier in the season with Ian Sharrock taking 5-32 and Alex Livingstone hitting 81 not out. For the visitors, Sunil Singh has 245 league runs this season (including 120 against Mobberley back in May) whilst Syed Haris Umair has taken 21 wickets. For Upton, skipper Ian Sharrock (the Heartbeat of the side) has 42 wickets to his name (twice as many as anybody else in the division) whilst Dave Charles has 310 runs and they'll be hoping that everyone can Get Together and put in an Masterpiece performance to Push us back to the top of the league.
And Finally on Saturday, Ian Bruce takes his 4th XI to Tranmere Victoria who lie joint bottom of the Division C West table. Upton are 8th in the league but a win could lift them into 6th and they Promise To Try and do just that as they aim to see How High they can finish. In the first meeting between the sides, Kevin Jackson (5 - 31) & John Scragg (4 - 26) helped bowl Vics out for 86 and the father and son combination, Phil & Tom Wood, knocked off the total with an unBroken opening stand to seal a 10 wicket win. Although Phil was the major contributor in the partnership, Tom was definitely in charge and was heard to say Oh, Father and Papa Don't Preach when Phil offered advice. Alex Bristow is the only Tranmere bat to have more than 100 league runs to his name this season whilst Ronnie Abbott has 12 wickets.
On Sunday, the Ladies XI will contest the final of the Cheshire Womens Cricket League - Knockout Plate when they take on Stockport Georgians. The T20 match will take place at Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club starting at 5.30 and will follow the Kia Super League fixture between Lancashire Thunder and Southern Vipers who include England captain Heather Knight in their ranks. All support will be most welcome even if it will leave Upton something of a Ghosttown. We lost to Stockport on the opening day of the league season and we'll need to combat the threats of Maddy White who has 137 runs and Liv Bell who has 15 wickets if we are going to prevail on this occasion. Hopefully we can Get Over the line and there'll be Celebration on Sunday evening. Some Girls will know What It Feels Like For A Girl to bring the cup back to Upton. We wish them well as we know they have everything they need to get the win, i.e. "You have the Material Girl"