CPCC Rejects Aunt Emma

Today croquet is played on stubble bedded in concrete. Clearances turn into jump shots as the ball hits the rough, pirouettes around what tufts of grass remain, or skates away like a curling stone. Knowledge of the conditions is paramount. Unfortunately, most of CPCC’s home matches were played earlier in the season when grass was greener.

The only recent away match to buck expectation was against Kington Langley, in the GC Central North League; it was the first match to be played on their two new lawns. Equal at lunch the home team came out revitalised racing to an 8:4 lead. After the fifth round, the score narrowed to 9:7. CPCC had to win the last four games. They would have if the jump shot on the thirteenth and final hoop had succeeded. The match ended in a draw.

The SWF GC High Handicap league home match against Dowlish Wake was played in the baking sun; even the electronic timers gave up. One ahead at lunch, the home team, after recovering in the shade, ran on to win 11½:8½. The most successful player was David Christie (pictured here) who won three singles and drew his doubles game.

The GC Level Play team, playing away at Bristol, was overwhelmed by the home squad and their lawns, winning only one game and drawing another. The Central South team faired only slightly better under a relentless sun that baked Dowlish Wake’s sloping lawns.

Armed with more enthusiasm than expertise, CPCC’s newcomers to association croquet, their new ‘B’ League team, bravely took on long-established opponents. The team ventured to play positively, rejecting a style of defensive play, known in croquet circles as Aunt Emma; a gruesome tactic designed purely to bore one’s opponent into submission. As a result, they inflicted heavy wins on their opponents and narrowly missed two whitewashes.

Oh, let the rain reign.