Saturday 1 August saw the HAC cricket club come together to celebrate the return of the Help for Heroes cricket team in a match they had won the previous year.
Summer match: On Artillery Garden
As a warm-up for the main event, the Associate members of the HAC cricket club played an intra-club T20 match starting at 10.30am. The game provided a great opportunity for a number of the veterans of the club – from a golden era – to come back to their old stomping ground and to mix with existing playing membership. Two balanced teams took to the wicket including a President’s XI and a Vice President’s XI. It was a high scoring game with the President’s XI reaching 171 runs in their 20 overs. There were notable innings from several players. The Vice President’s XI bowling started well with miserly spells from at least one son who took particular relish in trying to bounce his father. With the introduction of slower bowling, the run rate picked up as the boundaries flowed.
In reply, the Vice President’s XI managed to keep up with the run rate but in the end it came to a thrilling finish and, in a fine piece of theatre, the last batsman kept his nerve and struck a clean blow over extra cover for the six runs required to win the game.
After a short interlude allowing a chance to enjoy the excellent catering efforts, the Squadron’s XI set a challenging target of 144 in 20 overs, despite some skilful bowling from the Help for Heroes side. In reply the Help for Heroes side made a bright start with lusty hitting keeping them up with the early run rate. The Squadron’s XI however fought back well, including a probing spell of bowling from the cricket club President. Eventually the steady fall of wickets began to slow the Help for Heroes chase. Despite a late flurry of boundaries the Squadron’s XI came through victorious.
The day drew to a close with a very satisfied Help for Heroes XI expressing their gratitude for a fine days cricket and hospitality and the donation of a cheque for £2,500 raised at the previous end-of-season dinner. There were also a great number of the old guard making a note to return next summer.