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Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of Bath University Venturers Cricket Club, 2014.

The Annual General Meeting of Bath University Venturers Cricket Club was scheduled to begin at 19:00 on Thursday 4th September 2014. At 19:05 a few people rolled up and found the Secretary, who had been there for half an hour, furiously computing the averages. The Publicity Officer bought him a drink and joined in. It was agreed to wait for the Treasurer, who was expected at 19:45.

At 19:55 the meeting began in earnest. Present were Simon (Captain), Chris M (Treasurer) Chris H (Vice-Captain), Alex (Publicity Officer), Gregory (Secretary), Shubi, Nikhil, Dave, Shrey and Manoj. An eleventh person (Matt H) arrived later. It was noted that this was fairly typical for the season.

  1. Captain’s report.

    In the indoor league we won five matches and lost one, as well as making it to the quarter-finals of the knockout cup.

    Richard M averaged 37, top of the division averages by 14 runs; Matt R was fifth and Roger 11th. Our most frequent mode of dismissal was hit roof (Richard got out only this way) and we had fewer people bowled than any other side, but more run-outs. In the bowling averages Richard was 4th and Siddanth 12th. We bowled four maidens: Richard’s was a 3-wicket maiden, Siddanth’s a 2-wicket maiden, Matt’s a 1-wicket maiden and Nikhil’s a 0-wicket maiden. We also successfully chased 117.

    This performance won us the division, and a trophy. A few years ago we came second, winning a smaller trophy, which we broke, and promotion, which we declined. This year we have not yet broken the trophy and will not be able to avoid promotion. Roger has the trophy and some creme eggs, possibly broken, for the leading players.

    In the main season we played 8 long-form (40 overs or more) matches, winning six, including two against Bill Owen, and losing two, against Kilmington and Rode. Against Bill Owen, Matt B and Chris H both made hundreds: we don’t often have two hundreds in a season even. Siddanth reduced Western Flyers to 20-6 and Chris H reduced Broughton Gifford to 23-6, each taking five wickets.

    In 20-over cricket we played 13, winning eight and losing five. The losses were to Hinton Charterhouse, Kingswood, “Harjeet’s Lot” (called Amdocs this year, Cramer a year or two ago and probably something else next year), Western Flyers and Bradford 39. Most of the losses were early in the season. Against BANES we won although none of our bowlers took any wickets at all. In the next match, against Bristol Academicals in the T20 tournament, we won and our bowlers took all of the wickets, because the only two we lost were taken by Gregory, who had been lent to the opposition. In the other match in the T20 tournament (Cardiff didn’t show up) Bristol Venturers were demolished by Shubi’s bowling: five of us then played for Bristol Academicals against Bristol Venturers and won again. Chris H captained in five T20 matches and won them all. Three Matts chased 150 to beat Bradford Town. There was a match against Bathampton but not everybody agrees that what they play is actually cricket at all. We lost a lot of matches to wet Wednesdays early in the season.

    We were a bit short of players throughout, especially August Sundays, which are difficult for MSc students. Two regular players were unavailable for most of the season and we were unlucky with injuries.

    Matt B was top of the batting averages with a startling 149.50. He hit one of two hundreds, the other being by Chris H in the same innings. Matt H averaged nearly seventy; seven people made over 100 runs in the season (and Matt R and Roger just missed); ten averaged over 20 (and Sanket just missed). The leading bowlers in terms of wickets were Chris H (23 at 13.61) and Gregory (19 at 23.53), but the best average among those who bowled much was Siddanth’s 13 wickets at 10.23. The only other substantial wicket-taker was Nikhil, whose figures were all just about half of Gregory’s in every respect. Some of the scores were not kept accurately: Shubi and Shrey, in particular, did more and better than the scorebook suggests. Nikhil caught seven catches, more than any wicket-keeper; Harsh and Matt H five each and Simon four (all three kept wicket on some occasions). Simon got two stumpings, Matt H one and Alex one in the only game he played.

  2. Treasurer’s report.

    We have large cash reserves (about £3000) but made a loss of around £400 on the year. As we have been breaking even in the long run we should not worry much about a single year showing a deficit. Nevertheless there are a few places where we are losing money unnecessarily. We should find out exactly what the Sulis cancellation deadline is and try to meet it, although that will sometimes be impossible. Some more kit is needed: another bat, a pair of left-hander’s batting gloves, and some more balls.

    There was some discussion about fees. It was decided not to use membership fees, although we have in the past, and to set match fees at £5 for a midweek game or a home weekend game (where we supply teas) and £7 for an away weekend game. We shall charge £1 for net sessions. Newcomers will have two matches at half price rather than free games. The Treasurer and the captain on the day have discretion to vary these fees, for instance by not charging a player who has stepped in at the last minute.

  3. Secretary’s report

    The club has kit as follows: 4 bats; 5 pairs of pads (two of them under repair, plus two odd ones; 11 pairs of batting gloves, all right-hander’s, plus two odd right-hander’s left gloves; 4 boxes; about 50 balls varying from usable to compost; 2 helmets; 5 thigh pads, all right-hander’s; about 30 boundary flags; 1 armguard; 1 mysterious circular thing, a fielding circle or bowling marker; 2 pairs keeper’s pads (one new and uncomfortable, one old and disintegrating) and two pairs of keeper’s gloves (similar); 6 stumps; 8 bails, four of them heavy and one fragile; 1 first aid kit; 1 pen; 1 Aston Villa pencil.

    There was some discussion about fixtures, especially about August and September. Some September fixtures would be welcome but many grounds, including Sulis, are unavailable then. We struggled for numbers in August but as midweek evenings are impossible after the middle of the month because of the earlier sunset, to stop arranging August weekend fixtures might risk the season ending in July, which is discouraging.

    We could in principle host the T20 tournament if Bristol find it difficult.

    A proposal from Western Flyers to run a 40-over mini-league was discussed, but the general feeling was that this was contrary to the ethos of the club. It was noted that we should probably not be playing a 20-over match in Filton in the middle of August: there simply isn’t time. Bathampton’s version of the rules was felt to be unacceptable. Generally rules about compulsory retirement should be clarified before the match: in general we are against them. This caused problems at Hinton Charterhouse and against Bill Owen.

  4. Election of officers.

    Simon was elected as Captain, Chris Hotchen as Vice-Captain, Gregory as Secretary and Chris Middup as Treasurer. Alex was elected as Webmaster and Nikhil as Publicity Officer.

  5. Awards.

    These are at the discretion of the captain.

    • Best Batsman: Matt. No decision was made about which Matt.

    • Best Bowler: Chris H, with a mention for Siddanth.

    • Best Fielder: Manoj, with mentions for several others.

    • Best Newcomer: Nikhil, who did actually play one match last season but ran himself out without facing a ball.

    • Most Improved Player: Nikhil, for the reasons given above. Chris Middup, who normally wins this category, again improved dramatically, taking five wickets in an innings for the first time, but spoilt his chances by doing it for Marshfield, not us.

    • Best Catch: David’s sitting return catch against Bill Owen.

    • Champagne Moment: winning the T20 again, and the two hundreds in one innings (by Chris H and Matt B) against Bill Owen.

    • Best Dressed: Aby in whites got a mention, as did Manoj’s shades, Shubi’s IPL kit, and Roger’s torn trousers, but the award went to Nikhil for the flat cap and brown shoes.

    • Duck of the Year: despite the competition from Nikhil, Parth, Jerzy and Gregory, who all got out first ball against Bradford 39, there was nothing to beat Harsh’s wild slog at the hat-trick ball against Western Flyers.

    • Best Tea Contribution: Manoj’s masala sandwiches won easily.

    • Best Remark in a Match Report: this goes to Gregory, because he writes them all. The contenders were Nikhil getting expectedly stumped against Bill Owen, and shedding bits of equipment against Western Flyers; Manoj’s full 15-runs-per-hundred-balls defensive technique; Harsh’s problems with the Sehwagian mantra “See ball - hit ball”; the description of Western Flyers’ uniform kit; and the winner, the comparison of the Filton ground authorities to the Saudi religious police. The award therefore goes to Jude from Western Flyers, who suggested it.

    and finally the premier award:

    • The A.J. Wolsthenholme Prize for Running Between the Wickets: the captain refused to give the award to himself for his run-out of Dave, the third of the five wickets we lost in five balls against Bradford 39. Instead, it goes to the player from BANES who, playing his last match for the club, was allowed an innings when one of his team-mates retired so that he could bat. Coming in at the non-striker’s end, he watched three balls and then attempted a single, only to be thrown out by Harsh’s direct hit without facing a ball at all.

The meeting concluded at 21:45 and went to the Eastern Eye.

Cricket bat and ball