Monday, 30 June 2014

God said to Noah......... Oh, I've used that one :-(

What do you do when your game is unplayable? You take the Juniors to their game, give them support, scout their talents and make up nicknames to pass the time.

With transport short I picked up my motley crew of Gilly, Dave and new girl Maureen. After turning Kanye West off for fear of offending Maureen I quickly turned it back on to drown out the salty language.

The A team turned up in force to support our club mates and we weren’t let down for entertainment.

Cat took the green at number 1. In between Cat's travelling the globe she also bowls and a fine player she is. Dora explored the whole green at the Drum and found every inch to her liking as she took an impressive victory to 12.

Fast Eddie was up next against a man who doesn’t shave very well. Eddie stuck to his game plan but it wasn’t enough to beat Arthur Beard who left Eddie on 16

The demise of Horny Horn blower has been greatly exaggerated. Yes Bob’s delivery has been hindered by his recent illness but ever stubborn and obdurate Bob stuck in there for a decent card of 12. Just think what he could do if his woods weren’t square

Dave Evans got unlucky with the draw getting the always quality Danny Keenan. Butch worked hard though and despite his relative inexperience bowled well, taking the few chances he got and earned an excellent 12

14 down after four

Gilly took the green at number 5 and the heavens opened, with his opponent flying and bowling really well both players sought sanctuary off the green - strangely they didn’t stand under cover - but after a drinks break they returned to the green where things carried on in a similar vein with Gill scrambling up to 4.

Maureen Meldrum was at 6 and this was the first time I had met Mo let alone seen her bowl. Mo though has now been christened Mighty Mo as she stormed to a quality win to 7, she wasn’t even phased when her opponent put his underpants on his head and started shouting wibble .

CJ took to the green at number 7, the natural home for all captains (and Wiggly), and started the game in brilliant fashion before holding of a spirited fight back to win 20

Rounding out the second four was Alan "John Boy" Walton. Alan is a natural and if he played more often would be a major asset to the club. The Rover,n not content with messing the road up and making driving around the Olton a chore, also steal our bowlers. A curse on you Land Rover!!!.
Alan said goodnight to his opponent and the Walton’s with a win to 12.

7 down with the last four on

Dave Lowe continued his 25 year goodbye tour with a great win over the always stylish Ted Seeley to 17. We think the score was 21 -17 but the card markers were having such a good chat they missed half of the ends and suspicions are rife it was actually 37-36.

Karen stormed into her game liking a Viking pillaging a poor northern town, winning to 13.

John Lloyd and Pete Greenhill were 11 and 12 and both put in strong performances against good bowlers, both finishing with 18 leaving us agonisingly short of a shock away win - losing by one shot. How about we call it a draw?

Exciting times though for the juniors considering the side was picked with both Dingleys, Neelesh, Steve Myatt and Bucko all missing. If we ever get the full side out we could be onto something.

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Another Picture Diary of the Alliance Game

As my brother is the captain I get to play in the Seniors so don't see our Alliance Games. I do, however, get some great pictures from a mad woman which I reproduce here for your delectation.

Please note that there is no report so I have added a narrative for each photo.

Captain CJ, hands permanently glued to his hips, does his best Rigsby impression

Here we see the Lesser Spotted Gilly, rarely seen away from the cover of his natural habitat - team-mates right and left keep quiet so as not to startle this notoriously placid creature.

Rocky's recently planted Giant Hogweed can be seen here attempting to devour the woman in Pink

Parks County star Paul Buckley is seen here after his fine win, made all the better by having to wear his old "Boy at C&A" school trousers.

The infamous "F****d up card" incident. Noted diplomat Robert Horn can be seen here discussing the incident with the other marker. "Excuse me chaps, it seems to me that you may have made a teensy weensy error on the card. Do you mind awfully correcting it so we can move on in a spirit of equanimity?" Alan is struck dumb at this Kissinger-esque display of diplomacy.

Nee with a V here, seen just after coming fourth in the 100 metres at the 1968 Olympics.

Finally, the board. Well done all on a good win and keep taking the pictures Kaz - it's a great opportunity for me to show that I'm intelligent rather than funny!!

Friday night lights and The Coward of the Olton

Apologies for the lack of Blog Posts this last week - I've had a very busy time but it's hopefully a tad quieter now. I'll return this blog post to Captain Craggers who is approximately 1oz lighter today.

The weekend started with the premier B cup against the Old Cross at Boldmere St Michaels. With the confusion over the draw and its late posting - and with no opponents at ten past seven - we feared the worst. Just as I was seeking clarification on what we do next the Old Cross rumbled through the door and the game was on. Our opponents had an inexperienced side and our first four took full advantage with two wins to six and two wins to ten. Dave Hosgood's opponent is on record as saying what a good bowler the Wiz is. That is the first person to join the Dave Hosgood fan club and gets a badge and a quarterly news letter. The back four featured some of the Cross regulars and was a much tighter affair with the opposition pulling 7 shots back leaving the total winning margin of 45 shots. Thank you to Boldmere for leaving such a great surface to play on - if you are reading Swannie, that is how you do it ;)

With a late pull out Lord Lowe of Olton was called in For his first senior game of the year and his first game with me for 15 years. No one should be denied the honour and pleasure of playing with me for that long. As the game began the sun beat down on the sun trap of the Green man, people were sat on deck chairs with handkerchiefs and the bowlers at the bottom end of the green appeared through the heat haze like Anthony Quinn and Omar Sharif appearing to Lawrence of Arabia. Just with fewer camels.

(For those who don't know what a Green Man is, this is a Green Man - Ed)

Larry Goodridge continued his consistent run of form, bowling solidly to take the opening game to 17.

I got stuck on ten for what seemed to be an eternity before regaining the block and winning to 16.

Dave Hosgood didn’t add to his fan club but did battle back from well down to finish with 17 and was left kicking himself and anyone within distance for not finishing the game off. After 3 we were 5 up.

Wiggly, who complains I never put his score on here, won 21 – 19 . Reason 9 that Wiggy was jettisoned from the Moseley - he is a coward who lies to try and get himself a better draw. I asked Wigg if he was okay to go first 3, he replied “ of course Cap Anything for the team” he wandered into the club house took one look at the cards which Pete had left lying around then runs out to me shouting “ Cap! Cap! Can I not go on first 3 I need a poop (bad language removed - Ed)and I may be sometime” Sorry wiggly I said astounded at what I was hearing “ yes boss, I have a bad stomach and the turtles head is poking through something fierce” Ok Wigg Whatever you can go on number four just get your self to the bathroom now. I had just completed the draw when wiggy arrives back, full of the joys of spring and, ooooooooohh half an ounce lighter, after a pit stop quicker than Lewis Hamilton can manage. Fortunately for us, Kenny Rogers was playing today so could sing him his new theme tune. More on Kenny later.

or, you may prefer this version

Jack Savage was at five after complaining I usually play five and have won all my games. Jack played well but found my opponent from last week just to strong for him. Jack was confused to have found his bowls pegging for the first time since he bought them but bowled well for a good solid fourteen against a dangerous player.

Dave Lowe is a force of nature - he has a false arm which is his bowling arm, a dodgy ticker, two glass eyes and only half a buttock. When he is needed though somehow he always pulls it out. 8-1 down against a very good home bowler the adrenaline kicked in, which is great for his bowling but probably less so though for his heart. Lowey was amazing - the man is a natural on a bowls green coming of winning to 14 and cancelling out Jacks card. After 6 we were now 7 up.

JP started slowly as Bouncy Bob Freeman raced into a nine nil lead, JP though kept on plugging away, working his way up to a good 12 and keeping us in contention.

Rocky Rogers was next up playing his away debut for the seniors. After serenading wiggy with the coward of the county, he sang his way through Lucille, ruby and an encore of the Gambler twice as he ran out from 15 13 down to win and nudge us back into the lead. It was a great performance from Rocky to follow up on another good performance last night, again on a green new to him.

Savo Had a very Savo game. His opponent hadn’t shown up and his replacement scored the first end and claimed the nil was on. Savo promptly went 13-4 up before the wheels fell off, 64 pints of Ubu combined with baking sun took it’s toll. Savo tried his best but couldn’t find the mark at all but 3 late shots could have proved vital leaving the back 3 two shots adrift.

I was always confident my back 3 would earn a plus and Chris Downes was straight out of the gates with a stunning performance 21- 5.

That left Jaymo and Scotty needing 14 apiece and Jaymo was 15-7 down. Chris though showed all his quality, more than making his shots finishing with 16.

Scotty meanwhile from five across stepped up a gear with his best performance for a while consistently beating 6 inch woods to leave his opponent on 10 and the game never looking in danger. The final score was 222 201 a victory by 21 with 7 winners. With Richie and Killer missing this week plus Parks county star Bucko who will be pushing for a recall after his holiday hopefully we can only continue to improve as the season continues.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

The Kenny Everett show

While the score hinted at a Disney story there was no happy ending for anyone this week. The England Rugby side lost by one, the England football side lost on the evening, and bowls sort of just happened as two sides allowed the selves to sleep walk through the game.


The day started of reasonably normally, or as normal as a day can be when surrounded by the odd bods of the Olton. I  awoke to the now weekly suggestive snapchats from Jack, who is obviously confused about his sexuality, and headed for the green. After the role up we were greeted by the booming voice declaring in "the best possible taste" that Scott, Dave Hughes and myself were wankers. Thanks Ken always good to see you to!! As well as ken we were also face to face with ex team mate Bouncy Booby freeman who delighted in telling the tale of me cheering on the bell while playing for the greville. We also learned the green man were a man short and one player didn’t really want to play. To be honest this sucked all the life out of the day - yes we should have perhaps kept our around the green standards up but in truth it was a very difficult afternoon.


Larry started things of against Bouncy bob who was decidedly bouncy at 15 11 up. Larry though steeled himself and had a run taking him to 20 -15. After a slight wobble for two ends Larry finished the game off to 19.


Scotty drew the Legend that is Ken Everett. Kens hands have shrunk since his TV days and disappointingly he didn’t have Cleo roccos and her cleavage in tow. He did however bowl very well and at 15 across was looking dangerous, Scotty though dug deep, won the block and settled on a mark running out to win 15. This was also a very polite and dull match with only 4 two’s, no swearing but liberal use of the word winkle.


Dave Hosgood returned to winning ways settling into his game quickly and winning comfortably to 10.


Wiggy continued his winning run with a good solid performance, overshadowed somewhat though by reason number 8 the Moseley decided to dump his derriere. Ken asks who’s on and unfortunately there was no one from the green man forthcoming so wiggly trotted over and duly informed ken he was definitely on. This call was so obviously wrong that there were sharp intakes of breath around the green and in the bar, the guy cutting the carvery sliced of his finger and even roy hodgson commented on it in the England press conference. Either wiggly needs the operation Lowey is having done, he is thick as the proverbial or he just likes deliberately mislead an opponent. Whichever one it is,its another worrying development and black mark against the centre of the universe.


After 4 we were 31 up


I took to the green at number 5 and my opponen  started strongly and did bowl well, I like so many of us got of to a very slow start before finding my bearings and winning 15.


Richie had a run of 12 shots without reply to win 7 and look like he is finally working out his new woods  that are meant to be 2-11’s but have elicited guesses from bowlers between  2-2 to 3 pounds .


Savo was another to fall behind and at 19-15 against looked done but he finally found a bit of the green he couldn’t moan about and duly ran out.


Rocky returned to the seniors to replace the killer who has gone to spend two weeks kicking Mickey and Donald up the arse just for looking at him the wrong way while he queues for the rides at Disney land. Rockies game was nip and tuck until a run at the death got Rock his debut senior win this year to 16.


58 up after 8



Jack took to the green at number 9 against a man who really didn’t want to play as he had just had his shoulder replaced that morning. He didn’t bowl like it though and much to Jacks frustration took the lead. To be honest this game was only remarkable for one end. Jack struck hit, another end then hit the end he was aiming for and all chaos ensued. Eventually everything was replayed where jacks strike this time only hit the intended wood sending it past the hapless onlookers through a pint glass and into the bushes. Jack the big stroker rallied after this to win 15.


Dodge was another who found himself 14 across before getting on to the crown and running out 14


Chris James raced into a lead and was bowling some great stuff and was threatening the 21-4 sweep, his opponent though got hold of the block and like Peter Frampton came alive. Jaymo though wrestled the block back and took the spoils on a quality game to 12.


With 1 short our unlucky player was John price who decided he would have a few bevies, then Bouncy bob stepped forward to Give JP a game and at 15-7 things weren’t looking great for JP. Perhap spurred on by the fevered crowd, inspired by the effort and desire of his 11 teammtes or maybe the alcohol wore off, either way Jp came home winning twenty and handing Bob his second loss of the day.


So with the walkover the total score was 101. The green man bowled a lot better than that sounds and we limped along a bit, but with 12 winners and 100+ it would be churlish to complain, we just have to make sure our heads are back on for the return game next week and I am sure they will be.


Thanks to the green man for a pleasant game and to Bob for playing twice in uncomfortable weather conditions.


Friday, 13 June 2014

Talking of Bygone Days, it's time for the third instalment of Where's Bucko

In all seriousness, good luck in the Parks County side on Sunday Buck. I've played for the Civil Service and you've played parks county - what have the rest of our lot done eh? lol

Bygone Days Part Deux

Some time ago one of our former members - the wonderful Mr Roy Smith, once the victim of one of the most heinous selection decisions ever made - contacted Stevie Myatt with some club memorabilia that he had kept.

He sent the following charming letter along with a selection of Dinner Dance programs, one we have scanned here from 1951!!

Bygone Days

We have discovered (although I'm sure they were not lost, just a tad ignored) some old photos' of the club and its members. I haven't scanned them all but here are a sample - see how many you can name.

There is one current first-teamer on these photos. We think it's pretty obvious but he is not as hirsute as he was!!

The following pictures show the clubhouse in various stages. The first one appears to show the clubhouse in its original form which looks to be little more than a shed. This is followed by a picture of what we imagine to be the opening of the clubhouse - centre stage is Norman Morris in the trademark jacket, no doubt about to recreate his famous scene from the wooden horse.

The third photo is another team shot, but this one shows a clubhouse of a stylish wooden appearance. Some of us may remember dismantling the old clubhouse (pictures still exist on the OTBC website I think) but i prefer this version to what we have today.

For anyone interested, Norman is the one playing the violin at the window starting at about 41:45

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Interview Number 4

Return of Hot Bowling Action!!!

Huzzah!! The free weekend has passed so we were back to bowls on with an East Birmingham league game against the Bradford Arms.

After last week's narrow away defeat against the Foden A, Captain PG Tips and his merry band of men (and one bird) descended on Caste Bromwich to get back on track.

I foolishly forgot to take a picture of the board, but with wins for The Greenhill twins, Kaz, CJ, and someone who shall remain nameless, we won by roughly 10. This being the East Birmingham league then we wont know where we finish in the league till we get next years fixtures, but I think we are top-ish.

Anyway, a few more pics

Captain Craggers in colourful garb as usual

Oh, and some of the benches at The Bradford are obviously memorials and carry some latin as can be seen below

The script means "A word to the Wise". Most of our benches would be more suited to "Drunkus Bumus Satus Herus"

Thursday, 5 June 2014

No bowls :-(

No bowls this evening or weekend :-(

We will try and keep you amused, however with some pictures and tales from our sojourn to sunny Torbay.

This evening, I discovered a new flavour of cider

Earlier today, we saw a boat that able seaman Bucko served on many years ago

Later this evening I will update the blog with results of this week's games so far, so stay tuned!

Sunday, 1 June 2014

A picture diary of the Alliance Home Game

As no report has been provided (it took her 3 days to write last week) I will post a selection of the pictures and you can draw your own conclusions.

A shock Win, and close only counts in horseshoes and handgrenades

The weekend started with a shock win in the bomber Cup against the Kings Norton. Admittedly they were missing heavyweights Chris Baker and Jack Badham, but we were also 3 of our starting 12 missing

6 close games at home with four winners - JP, Rocky ,Killer Chris Greenhill and The Wiz left us down by 2 in the home leg.

The away leg Started Badly with CJ and Bucko getting 9 and 10 respectively. Scotty won to 12 however to keep us in it. I would say how they played but i was driving a Norton player home who had been called out at the last minute but was no longer needed home at the time. By reports though, CJ and Bucko worked hard against quality players and Scotty bowled very well for his win. Wiggy and Sav registered wins against the Norton late reserves 12 and 18 whilst I won 17, leaving us winning by 2 away and sneaking the victory by the 8 shot handicap.

Saturday was an odd day and left us all feeling like we had been run down by a truck and then reversed over for good measure. Odd really as when the result is looked at in the cold light of day it was a heroic effort on a hell of a green. I have only played it twice - once in a neutral game and once in a game where no one was really trying - and because of that i hadn't really payed attention to how good a green it actually is in the right hands.

After collecting the cash (which a captain shouldn't have to do but i am surrounded by lazy, incompetent layabouts) I noticed someone (probably that miscreant Alan Savage) paid with a 1906 half Penny. Next time I'll be on the lookout for people paying with sixpences, sovereigns and pound notes.

Wiggy continued his lucky streak in playing a very good bowler who happened to be very ill and in all honesty wasn't fit to play. Wiggy was only drawn at this number because Milk tray boy wasn't feeling like he could deliver at number 1. I think his ankle bracelet was chaffing and he had left the vaseline at home. Wiggy won to 5, leaving us with number 7 in the series of reasons Moseley tore his collar - demanding the sweep be paid not just straight after the game but before he went on to the green. In fact, he texted me asking for it in in the early hours of Saturday morning. Bad Form Mr Wiggins Bad Form.

Larry and wiz cancelled each other out Larry running out from 8-7 down to 8 and Wiz never really getting settled for his 8. Scotty was kicking himself and cursing some bad luck in not getting across the line and losing 20 but 15 up after four was an excellent start.

I went on 5 and dropped some bad shots at critical moments before scraping home to 18. JP was another to get so far and get stuck losing 17. Richie was excellent in his victory to 8 while Savo was always a few shots behind in his battle losing 16.

22 up after 8 it was going to be close.

Chris Greenhill bowled a very mature game listening and learning with every end before falling to 16. Jack had a nightmare start going 12 nil down and his head was as scrambled as the eggs on saturday kitchens omelette challenge. Jack pulled himself together for a spirited run that earned him 11. Chris james had another epic battle falling 1 short of victory after an inspired late run from his opponent. Dodge was on the anchor leg and bowled a good game to keep us within spitting distance of glory until the very last wood.

Congratulations to Marsh Lane. I have had apologies from nearly everyone on the team blaming that end or that shot. In truth though there is no blame as we bowled exceptionally well but Marsh Lanes last two were astonishingly good when it mattered and they won the game rather than us losing it. In hindsight we can all say what if and if only and a little more luck or experience could have got us home. The only important thing about the day is that we learn the lessons and come back more determined to grow and improve as a side and as individuals. For the standard we are at we are a good side, but there is room for all of us to grow as players and a team.

Well done team I am proud of all of you, it was a great performance and by a long margin the Clubs best on Marsh Lane now lets make me even prouder captain and be even better next time.

On the way home i had to take a detour. Dodge volunteered to get Jaymo home as he had space for a little one. Maybe Dodges eyesight is going but we don't have any little ones at the club anymore :)