Hitting the West Wing – Can it be done?
Harry Goode from Earlsdon turned out for a local cricket team in the late 19th century and on one occasion played in a match against the boys of Stoneleigh. The pitch was then (as it remains today) in front of Francis Smith’s magnificent West Wing at Stoneleigh Abbey. Harry is reputed to have hit a ball straight through one of the main floor windows!
A hush followed, then there appeared a liveried footman to enquire after the guilty batsman. Harry owned up, whereupon he was given a sixpence from Lord Leigh for a magnificent shot.
As recently as the 1990s, the late Lord Leigh was still prepared to offer a bounty for such a shot, suitably adjusted for inflation. A direct hit on those windows is a very good clout indeed, approximately 90m from the centre of the square!
Obviously the genes went wrong somewhere since I have rarely managed to send the ball even an inch or two beyond that boundary in over a thousand matches of trying!
Martin “Webs” Webster’s 6000 runs
Martin Webster, dear old Webs, has become only the fourth Stoneleigh batsman to score 6000 runs in a Stoneleigh Career. The only others to pass this mark are Paul Lazenby, Dave Wildgoose and Colin Summerton. How many more might he have scored if he ever turned up on time!
RIP Webs – who sadly passed away in June 2020 – a true Gentleman.