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Opens Saturday: Reg Bamford v James Death

[<<] [>>] by Andrew Gregory at Surbiton
9th July 2011 (AC - Championships)

Good morning from Surbiton. The sun is shining. I shall be commentating on the Singles semi-final on lawn 1.


The speed of lawn 2 is being measured. Eleven Plummers by rolling the ball. The Lambertometer is now out. Fifteen and three quarters, which converts to 11.9 Plummers.

Death has turned up. As has Fulford. A Plate game has already started on lawn 5.


Death is practising already. Aiton is here, and Reg has just turned up.


Reg is wearing his South African blazer - very smart.

James has just run a 3-yard hoop. Is that really what one should practise?!

I've been specifically asked to report that Ian Plummer is chopping onions in the kitchen.

I am currently lacking an expert analyst, so am reluctant to offer opinions on the forthcoming battle. Presumably Reg will continue to employ 1-back tactics.

Reg is now practising missing 6-yarders.


I have an expert comment on James Death. "He could do anything."

Reg is now practising hitting 6-yarders.


Reg still practising, James ready to start. Come on chaps, it's ten o'clock.


Reg now assessing the boundaries. At the risk of losing followers, I should point out that they've started on lawn 3.


Christian Carter has earned a Yellow Card in the Z - is this a first? Emeritus Manager Hilditch thinks it controversial.

G1T1 James Blue 10yN of 4th corner
G1T2 Reg Yellow 11y duffer tice
G1T3 James Black misses Blue from A-baulk. Comes on 4' N of Blue.
G1T4 Reg is removing clothes. He's shooting at his duffer tice. Hits, rushing it to near hoop 4. Yellow is croqueted to near hoop 6. Blue is rushed close enough to hoop 1. Approach settles into hole 18" in front of hoop, asks referee for relief. Reg now attacking hole with corner flag. Mangler now bringing bucket of tools.


G1T4 Reg finally runs hoop 1. He had been in an old rabbit-run. I notice an ambiguity in my last comment, and assure you that Reg is still respectably dressed. He's now picked up break.


G1T4 Reg is about to make hoop 6 with Red off Blue. Black and Yellow are loitering near the peg. Reg is having a long think


My preview should have said that Reg will use sextuple tactics - "1-back tactics" not really the term in SuperAdvanced I guess. Let's see which way he leaves his rush...

G1T4 Reg: Red has reached 1-back. Diagonal Spread. He's left the rush for Yellow.


G1T5 James lifts the ball at the peg (Black) to B-baulk, misses Red or Yellow (24y).


Apparently Reg professionally adds clothing when not on lawn, takes it off again when in play.
James is practising darts.

G1T5 Reg: Yellow rushes Red well to Blue, Blue to 1'E of hoop 1. Makes 1, cuts Blue into 4th corner (just E of Black). Open cannon sends Blue almost to N bdry beyond 3, Black 3y SW of hoop 4. Good roll sends Black 3y W of 6, Yellow nicely to Red. Makes hoop, asks for referee again as Red is allegedly on some dodgy ground.


On lawn 2 Wixy has just peeled 4-back from 20 yards. Good eyesight these young uns.

Mangler and Ian Vincent on lawn with tools, Reg with corner flag. Finally we resume...

G1T5 Reg peels 1-back by 8 yards going to Black. Black rushed to N bdry, good croquet stroke sends Black to 4 getting rush on Blue. Makes 3, Blue is croqueted 2y SE of hoop 1, Yellow has rush on Red. Black is nearer 5 than 4, so I don't anticipate a peel attempt going to Black... Wrong! Red is jawsed in 2-back going to Black.


I've messed up my turn counter, this is of course...

G1T6 Reg's mallet is in the air again. Though he only needs an umpire. His croquet stroke after 4 sent Black 3yN of peg, Yellow a little short on Red. Copes with the rush-peel. Red is croqueted 3yW of 3-back. MAkes 5 off Blue.


G1T6 Reg (Yellow) Blue is rushed back South after 5, and is croqueted 4yW of hoop 6. Peels Red through 3-back (by about 3y) going to Black. Makes 6 off Black. Where's his 2-back pioneer going to be? Thick take-off after 6 doees not go well: Yellow is short of Red, and Black appears to be dead in front of 4-back.


I've just been out for a closer look and it doesn't appear as if Black can be rushed within 10y of 2-back, (though it's not blocking 4-back). Nevertheless Reg rolls Red to 4-back - actually 4y beyond. Makes 1-back off Blue, rushes Blue 1yW of Red. Now all 4 balls within two square yards. Black must have been further from hoop than i thought, he's cut it 3y in front of 2-back. He'll be trying for 4-back peel before 3-back.


Wixy took advantage of his luck to complete his TP against Rothman.

G1T6 Reg is now using the (and his) third corner flag to do some more gardening in front of 4-back. Peel goes a couple of yards through. Black is 4ySSE of 6. Blue is rushed to 3-back. Yellow makes 3-back, rushes Blue to East of Red. Blue stopped towards penult (2yENE hoop). Rush on Red undercut - maybe 4'NW of penult. Rolls Red into penult getting 2y Rush on Black. Again not the best rush, but copes with 4-back. Black croqueted 2yW of peg. Red is rush-peeled nicely to rover, takes off back to Blue.


G1T6 Reg now just has to negotiate a straight rover peel with the balls pretty much ideally placed.

Does so

Game 1 Bamford +26sxp


G2T1 Reg Black 9yN of 4th corner.
G2T2 James Yellow in or near 2nd corner.
G2T3 Reg Blue misses Black from A-baulk, comes on 1yN of Black
G2T4 James Red makes double from B-baulk. Hits Black, rushing it 2 or 3 yards West of 4th corner.


G2T4 James Red has taken off to Blue, rushed it near 3, croqueted it 3yNW of 1, roquets Yellow. Takes off to 1 from near 2nd corner, well short. Joins up (ish) behind hoop 2.


James think my (ish) was a bit harsh. I was only trying to say he hadn't got a dolly rush anywhere.

G1T5 Reg shoots Blue at Yellow (25y). Hits.


G1T5 Reg (Blue) has made 1 off Red and has rush to Black. Yellow is at 2, so a six hoop turn is in the offing.


Hopgood fans will be delighted to know that he's just done his 100th TP. Hopgood fans? That'll be er... Hopgood. (Sorry James!)

And now I've messed up my game count, this is of course:
G2T5 Reg (Blue) has gone to 1-back. A different leave this time (he's been watching Rob!) Cross-peg with Yellow 2yESE of peg, Red 18"WNW of peg. Black has rush on Blue from W bdry. My expert analyst tells me this is to deny a shot into 4th corner.


G2T6 James lifts Red to A-baulk, shoots at Yellow, centre ball, rushing it to 3rd corner. Takes off to Blue and Black. Black to 2, rushes Blue close enough to 1. Makes 1 with rush and hence break.


G2T6 James (Red) has only grovelled through 2, ref is on. James copes. I'm guessing from where Yellow's been put that James has some POPping in mind. Yes, Black is POPped through 1 after 4.


G2T6 James (Red) has put out a 1-back pioneer. So it's looking like a break to 4-back with 2 POPs and a contact leave. I seem to recall Maugham doing this against Aiton yesterday. Black POPped through 2 after 1-back.


G2T6 James (Red) to 4-back. Leaves Yellow (for 1) in 4th corner; Blue (for 1-back) in 2nd corner; Black (for 3) 12yS of 3rd corner; Red (for 4-back) in 1st corner.


James tells me that Yellow is 5' N of 4th corner, Blue 1' S of 2nd corner. I got the other 2 right though.
James feels he's deserved his first pint of the day.
Reg is thinking.


G2T7 Reg picks up Blue, takes croquet off Red in 1st corner. Takes off to Yellow, hits it. Takes off to Black. Has leave North of 3.
Yellow hits Red, one-all.


Sorry the last comment was James' prediction. In fact..
G2T8 James Yellow misses Red (27y).


G2T9 Reg Blue rushes Black to 1-back, makes it. So it'll be 3 hoops and a leave.


So while Reg makes three hoops, here's a quiz question for you. Which is the largest country in Africa? I'm pretty confident I knew the answer yesterday...

James has taken advantage of Reg's slowness to have a game of darts against Jim Bast. Having trouble hitting the final double.

G2T9 Reg takes Blue to 4-back. Diagonal spread.

James hits double 2 to win the darts.


G2T10 James lifts Yellow (at the peg) to end of B-baulk. Shoots at Red (14y). Misses.


G2T11 Reg (Black) rushes Blue to W bdry. James is forlornly hoping he's forgotten he's been POPped to 3! No such luck. He hasn't got a hoop 4 pioneer as such, but has all the balls well into lawn so shouldn't be a problem.

I've had an answer from Samir on the African question. Wikipedia is no slouch!


I've had an email about the Z Yellow card referred to earlier. The Opens has a strict lateness policy (see Fixtures Book). First offence is a Yellow card, second offence more serious Red. The controversy is that the Z is normally a turn up and see if you have a game sort of event, but apparently Christian had requested a 10.00 game last night and then turned up late this morning.

When Dave Maugham Mangles he borrows Burridge's official red and yellow cards (Burridge being a football referee).

G2T11 Reg is setting up for a delayed TP.


Sorry for break in commentary, my machine ground to a halt. Thanks to Kibble for sorting it out.

G2T11 Reg got the 4-back peel before 6. He had a rather cheeky attempt at the penult peel before 1-back, which missed the hoop entirely. He's now had the penult peel before 4-back.


G2T11 Reg is for penult now, with the balls ideal for the straight rover peel.


G2T11 Reg does the irish peel from 1' in front of rover. It goes well. Now has 8' peg-out.

Game 2 Bamford +17tp Reg Leads 2-0



And we're off.

G3T1 James Blue 8yN of 4th corner
G3T2 Reg Yellow 11y duffer (ie 2y SSE of 6)
G3T3 James Black at Blue from A-baulk. Misses to 1yN of Blue


G3T4 Reg Red misses Yellow (11y)
G3T5 James Blue rushes Black to 4yE of Yellow. Black toward 2, rushes Yellow 2YE of Red. Blue makes 1 off Red. Should go round now.


G3T5 James tries to POP Yellow through 1 after 3. POP fails. Has another go before 5. Yellow goes through. Tries to rush Red into POPping position after 5. Optimistic attempt at POP fails. A 1-back pioneer goes out - he'll be conceding contact.


G3T5 James (Blue) POPs Red through 1 after 2-back. He rushes Black into 4th corner after 3-back, then rushes Yellow to just S of 2nd corner. Takes off to Red, rushes Red to near 4th corner. (Black is 6" N of corner.) Red is croqueted to middle E bdry, but it falls off lawn. Blue remains 3y N of Black. (It was destined for 1st corner.)


G3T6 Reg lifts Yellow into contact with Black. Croquets it to 4, rushes Blue to Red, Red well to 2. Approaches 2, wants ref again (Yellow in hole, i guess).


Miranda goes out to referee. "It's a woman's job, gardening!" says nearby misogynist.

Reg makes 2 with rush pointing SE. Blue is 10y SSE of 3. Thinking required.


G3T6 Reg is still contemplating. Whether to TPO, i presume. Wandering around 4th corner. Finally Yellow rushes Red to middle E bdry. TPO is there if he wants it, i'd have thought. He does not. More disrobing - it's getting quite warm out there in the sunshine.


G3T6 Reg takes Yellow to 1-back. Red is for 2 remember. Diagonal spread, with Black near peg, Blue 7ySW of 2. Not really a spread - Red has rush on Yellow from 3yN of 4th corner.


G3T7 James lifts Black to end of A-baulk. Hits Red (13y).


G3T7 James (Black) rushes Yellow to Blue, Blue is cut well to hoop 1. Makes 1 with Northward rush. Blue is stopped 5y shy of 3. Makes 2 off Yellow. Rushes Yellow to 7y N of Red. Yellow to 4. Now excellent roll getting rush on Blue. Now has standard TP before him.


G3T7 James Black peels Blue through 4-back after 3. Rushes back after hoop 4 (this was strangely disapproved of when i learnt the game - maybe they couldn't rush then). James correctly rushes peelee S of 5 and croquets it to 6. Doesn't get rush after 5 but with 2 balls at 6 he doesn't need one. James peels Blue through penult after 6, Blue going 3y S of rover.


G3T7 James (Black) jawses rover peel before 2-back, rush-peels it before 3-back.


Death Wins Game 3 +19tp

Bamford Leads 2-1


And it's straight on with Game 4.

G4T1 Reg: Black 10y N of 4th corner.
G4T2 James: Red (just out of?) 2nd corner.
G4T3 Reg: Blue at Black from A-baulk. Hits.


G4T3 Reg Blue takes off to Red. Croquets Red 14yN of 1st corner, 1y in-lawn. Leaves rush for Black pointing NW.
G4T4 James Yellow at Red from A-baulk. Misses into 2nd corner.


G4T5 Reg (Black) rushes Blue to Red, Red to 1, and rushes Red to North bdry in hoop-stroke. Has break.


It's started to drizzle for the first time today.

G4T5 Reg (Black) not interested in POPs. Break to 1-back. Yellow is 2yE of peg, and a bit South. Red 2'W of peg. Reg seems happy with the wiring. Leaves Blue rush into lawn from West boundary.


James is squinting at the cross-peg. Must be good enough.
G4T6 James lifts Red to end of A-baulk, hits Yellow, rushing it off North bdry.


G4T6 James pass-rolls Yellow to 2 going to Black and Blue. He makes 1 off Blue, has break. POPs Blue through 1 after hoop 1. How far will he go?


G4T6 James (Red) is making 1-back again. He rush-POPs Blue through 2 before the hoop (having jawsed it before 6). Blue (for 3) is rushed into 2nd corner after 1-back. Rushes Yellow off E bdry after 3-back. It's 3yN of 4th corner. Rushes Black (for 1-back) to middle of W bdry. Red goes into 1st corner.


Apparently there was some ball moving between strokes in James' turn, with the POPpee at 2. This gave James a chance to disturb Reg's reading.

G4T7 Reg lifts Black to (near) Red. Takes off to Blue, leaving Red 1y NE of 1st corner. Roquets Blue. Thinks....


G4T7 Reg leaves rush for Black to 1-back from near 2nd corner.
G4T8 James shoots Yellow at Red (27y). Hits. Takes off to Black and Blue. Five or six yards short. Misses.


G4T9 Reg plays Black, roqueting Yellow in 2nd corner. Stops Yellow a few yards into lawn, makes 1-back off Blue. Rushes Blue to Yellow, Yellow to 2yE of Red. Rushes Red well (6y) N of 2-back. Approaches hoop sending Red to 3-back. Good stroke. Runs hoop to boundary.


G4T9 After 2-back Reg rolls Yellow 2y NE of peg going to Blue (near hoop 2). Takes off to Red, makes 3-back. Rushes Red 5yN of 4th corner. More thinking.


G4T9 Reg plays Black, roqueting Yellow in 2nd corner. Stops Yellow a few yards into lawn, makes 1-back off Blue. Rushes Blue to Yellow, Yellow to 2yE of Red. Rushes Red well (6y) N of 2-back. Approaches hoop sending Red to 3-back. Good stroke. Runs hoop to boundary.


G4T9 Reg plays Black, roqueting Yellow in 2nd corner. Stops Yellow a few yards into lawn, makes 1-back off Blue. Rushes Blue to Yellow, Yellow to 2yE of Red. Rushes Red well (6y) N of 2-back. Approaches hoop sending Red to 3-back. Good stroke. Runs hoop to boundary.


G4T9 Reg takes Black to 4-back. Leaves Red 5yN of 4th corner, Yellow 2y NW of peg. Leaves Blue a rush from 9yS of 2nd corner, pointing to peg roughly.


Sorry for duplicate comments, I believe i pressed something foolish.

G4T10 James lifts Yellow to end of B-baulk, misses Blue.


G4T11 Reg (Blue) taps Yellow, sends it near 2. Rushes Black to 4th corner. Black to 4, Red rushed halfway between 3 and 6. Overhits takeoff. Looks like 45 degree hoop. Clubs it through. Has 7-yard return roquet. Hits it.


G4T11 Reg is now on delayed TP.


Sorry for break in commentary. Could be my dongle playing up.

G4T11 I should record that while at hoop 4 Reg took the opportunity of using the fourth corner flag for some gardening. He also got a ref for the 4-back peel before hoop 6, which went through. Reg is now attempting a death roll peeling penult going to a 2-back pioneer that was 5yN of hoop. Looks like peelee is jawsed, good rush on 2-back pioneer.


G4T11 Reg rush-peels partner through penult before 4-back. Should be all over now...


G4T11 Reg setting up for straight rover peel, with peelee less than a foot in front of rover. Irish peel succeeds. Two-yard peg-out.


Bamford Wins 4th Game +17tp

Bamford Wins Match 3-1


So we were expecting the Doubles Final now, but Mark Avery is reportedly unwell. Watch this space.


It has been decided to hold the Doubles Final tomorrow. The Singles Final will start first thing, the Mangler currently deciding what first thing means exactly.


Plate: on lawn 2 we have the Final of the Draw: Wicks v Huneycutt. Huneycutt has had 1st break to 1-back (it's SuperAdvanced), Wicks has hit the lift. Also on 2 is the semi of the Process: Hopgood v Evans. Wicks awaits the winner in the Process final.


The Singles Final will start at 9am tomorrow (Sunday). Bye for now.


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