The Coronation weekend provided the backdrop to four entertaining games of cricket; while there was disappointment for the T20 side and 1st XI, the other senior teams enjoyed convincing wins against Deane and Derby. Edited highlights below!

Friday's T20 against Brandlesholme Rd locals Woodbank Wildboyz brought huge bar takings, as expected, and a lively encounter. Afternoon rain had threatened to scupper the action at Crompton Meadows, but thankfully the game was on. Totts batted first and Nick Haynes provided a steady start. With Niko and Phill both hitting sixes, the score moved to 40 inside the powerplay overs. Pro Burns walloped 29 in quick time, but the innings stuttered from 92-2, a final total of 135-7 possibly a little short. Will Turner decided to end the game in the first over, smacking the pro for two maximums before trying his luck once too often. With Niko bowling economically at the other end, Burns removed fellow pro Mohsin and when Mirza departed first ball, Totts were well in the game at 27-3. Unfortunately Gav Nicholl had other ideas, the local stalwart bashing a game-winning 65 from just 37 balls. He fell close to the end, but the damage was done and the visitors ran out winners with five overs to spare.

More overnight rain left the Meadows soggy on Saturday morning, but the 1sts game with Uppermill went ahead. The visitors boast a strong line up, and their opener Roberts enjoyd the shortish boundaries, climbing into seven maximums on his way to 73. He was the first of four victims for Ry Marsh, enjoying a lengthy bowling spell to some good effect. Pro Kulasekara played the innings of the day, however, his innings of 118 from 103 balls only coming to an end in the penultimate over. His efforts underpinned the innings and saw the visitors to an eventual total of 247 all out. Ry and Burnsy shared seven wickets, but there was some heavy damage for Lenny and Niko along the way.

A big run chase was always goign to rely on a solid start, and unfortunately Totts got off to the worst possible start, Niko departing in the first over. With none of the top order other than Burns (24) able to get started, the innings tottered to 104-8. Nathan and Callum restored some pride with an enjoyable stand of 58, but ultimately the side were dismissed for 169. This is a strong Uppermill side, and a good barometer of the work that lies ahead.

Meanwhile the 2nds had the pleasure of a trip to Deane and Derby. It's the sort of place lovingly imagined in the writings of EW Swanton and Neville Cardus; rundown local authority housing frames the top end, while at the other side, the hill drops away to reveal a breathtaking view of derelict factories and overgrown wasteland. Idyllic. "I've only been there once" Deardo told me as I was scrabbling around for team sheets, "I got a speeding ticket leaving." Having arrived following some frantic dashing around to locate essential items such as the team sheets, spare ball and the whereabouts of Daz Wood, the lads arrived just in time for the day's first action - hefting a garage full of water bottles upstairs for the day's Coronation knees up. I must admit I wasn't anticipating the sight of Nick Marsh posing with a life-sized cardboard cutout of Camilla, but here we are.

The fun and games continued as the groundsman informed me he wasn't sure whether to cut a new wicket (this was at 12.10) and then the home side's skipper presented umpire Mick Jones with a team list written on soggy notepaper. Clearly team cards are a rare commodity everywhere these days. With Doc P standing in as captain there was little chance of winning the toss (1 in 20 years I think, including the double loss on the same day at Rochdalians!) There are obviously bigger and better tossers elsewhere. Anyway, we were inserted on what appeared to be the outfield, but c'est la vie. Daz arrived just in time, looking as through he'd come from a meeting of City financiers and we were ready to go.

After last week's steady knock, Tom decided he was going to play like Chris Gayle, hutching and thrutching at everything from ball one; sadly, he departed more like Gail Platt, tamely edging to cover while attempting another expansive whip through midwicket. One of his shots took off vertically about as high as one of Elon Musk's rockets, but thankfully fell into space between the static slip and static point fielder.

The returning Watty doined the Doc at the crease and the innings progressed serenely and occasionally flamboyantly to 42-1 before the skipper managed to pull a ball directly at the only fielder within 30 yards and departed. Watty then dug in like an Extinction Rebellion professional, setting his stall out for a lengthy stay. Sam came and went, then compounded his woes by dropping some yellow sandwich filling straight down himself. A stroll round the field allowed us to take in new guy Will. He immediately looked out of place on two counts - he was clearly very athletic (which goes right against the 2nd XI ethos) and he could run between the wickets (ditto). We were also able to enjoy a magnificent conversation with a couple of the home side's supporters, who asked us who our pro was, didnt believe this was Division 5 cricket ("how can you not tell?" asked Sam), and then refused to believe that despite ourselves being in Division 5, clearly their own players were some kind of Premier League elite ("You're in division 5 too, that's why we're playing you" - another S Collins masterpiece). The lad who batted in Stevie Wonder's glasses (of which more later) should perhaps have lent them to his mate on the sidelines.

Anyway, back to the action. When Nick Marsh fell the score was 65-5 and the game delicately poised. At the drinks break Watty's Lucozade injection clearly acted like some kind of batting viagra - having scored 20 from 21 overs, he then mullered one of the biggest sixes ever seen to clear what must have been a 90 yard boundary, and then smashed another clutch of boundaries. "He's going to get our first 50 of the season" volunteered Sam - precisely seven seconds later Watty was LBW, the bowler on his knees by the time he'd finished his second round of appeals.

Donny and Clive "the Nudger" Brooks fell ("I don't play big shots now" he advised as a reason to be promoted to number eight, before launching what Donny might describe as a series of WHOOSHES), and then Daz and Connor came together at 111-8. To our astonishment and delight the two absolutely mullered the bowling for the remainder of the innings, putting on a magnificent 74 runs in just under 10 overs, with Connor hitting two sixes that suddenly made Watty's look like child's play. It was thrilling stuff, and in retrospect was the defining partnership of the match.

A celebratory tea ensued, with us sat round a large plastic table eating our own food and drinking tea from polystyrene cups as the rain arrived. An idyllic English scene.

The home side's target of 186 was clearly a sizeable one on a desperately slow wicket, but the top three went off like they'd been injected with Watty's Lucozade. Some horrific heaves to leg got the scoreboard moving, but then the returning Awais struck with just his third ball to bring early inroads. Raja then smashed the ball back past Awais like a tracer bullet only to see Doc P pull off the unlikeliest of running catches; the imprint of the ball is still on my hand on Tuesday morning ... "Bloody hell" said umpire Jonesy, "we all thought there was no chance!" Wickets continued to fall. Connor was slipping all over the place, and Nick Marsh came on to bowl his usual tremendous nagging stuff. Doc P struck in his first over to remove one of the Adia clan, and then Donny - who was absolutely brilliant behind the stumps all day - pulled off a lightning stumping from Nick Marsh. With Doc striking twice more, the score was now at 93-8. Stevie Wonder's glasses made not one but two appearances - either that or the team is sponsored by Reactolite Rapides (one for the kids there). For some insane reason, D&D appeared to have saved their only decent attacking batsman til number 10. Khan bashed the ball around to briefly put the wind up us, but then Awais, cheered on by Mrs Awais on the sidelines and one of the opposition who must have been his twin, took his fourth and the team's final wicket to leave us victors by 57 runs.

Cheers troops, we'll do that again soon.

On to Sunday and for Sam it was yet another dose of Deane and Derby, though this time in the more welcoming environs of Crompton Meadows. After his Saturday woes, it was great to see young Samwise register the club's first half century of the season. Having put on 55 with Donny, Sam's eventual total of 58 provided a significant percentage of the eventual total of 133 all out. With just four players getting into double figues, was this a wasted innings?

Not a bit of it! This young 3rd XI is having a tremendous start to the season. Awais, already playing what must be his twentieth match this year, struck first ball to continue his love of D&D wickets. His eventual figures of 3-14 from 10 overs sum up what has been a great effort from him this weekend. Youngsters Jack Schoey, Jack Kenyon and skipper Katie each picked up two wickets, and with the score at 114-8 and a partnership building, Awais completed the day by running out Fahad first ball to clinch the game for the thirds. Shove it up em!

So two great wins, Katie's side maintained their 100% record, and the 2nds are now up and running. Let's hope next weekend brings good fortune for all of our sides. Thanks as always to everyone who came and supported, got the game on, provided teas and cut grass, and located missing team sheets. You rock.

To view scorecards from all our games, view the TSJ fixtures and results on CricHQ or check out our fixtures page.

I Will if You Will Biffaward

Beryl Avenue, Tottington, Bury, BL8 3NF
Twitter: @TottyStJohnsCC