Pelicans Win Final against Frankton Reptiles


The emotion-o-meter was cranked up to high last weekend as the Pelicans celebrated a victory in the 20/20 league. The winner had to be decided by a finals series as 4 teams finished with equal points after the round robin.

Jacks Point CC was chosen as the finals venue, as the Events Centre had a school kids pixie-kick tournament on. Frankton was the opposition having dispatched Arrowtown the week prior. We had beaten them in a thriller earlier in the season and lost to them last year so a good scrap was anticipated.

BaaBaas generously donated his Mad Dog River Boarding bus to transport the team to the game, several pickups were made including a stop at the Frankton Arms Tavern to have a cheeky warm-up before the game. The suggestion that we should flag the game and have an all day session watching the league was discussed but the lure of a final was too much.

Due to players from both teams having travel issues the game got underway at 2.30pm with Frankton batting first. The traditional 9 slips formation was used in competition for the last time this year, it didn’t get the result we longed for and the first ball was shoveled thru the covers for 2 runs. Reg ‘9 Slips’ Williamson will be back next year to complete his mission (first ball wicket in slips) after which he will chose his successor and the field to be set.

The Frankton batsmen set about building a total but good bowling had them rushing in and out like George Michael at a late night toilet convention. Eventually Pud settled into his work with the willow and got amongst the runs. One shot in particular that landed in the carpark next to the ground was worth the price of admission.
The captain of the Pelicans had given the boys a stirring emotional speech prior to the game, along the lines of ‘Oi, take your catches and bowl straight’ and promptly dropped a catch himself. Good advice big fella. The bowlers did a good job of keeping the Reptiles to one boundary per over, except for one spell that conceded more runs in 3 overs than the bowler had conceded since January.

In a classic case of lightning sometimes strikes twice, Don Jackson took another gruesome blow to the wedding vegetables and the punters that took odds offered in the Pelican Brief last week can collect their winnings from the 12 Bar during Mardi Gras

The fielding highlight was a piece of catching brilliance that cannot go unrecorded. Rhino ‘Broadway’ 44 was stuck under a regulation lofted drive that wafted towards him at a leisurely rate and should have been simple pouch & high five job, however just to raise the bar he made a late decision to charge the ball and then fling himself bodily backwards after it had passed him. He dragged in the screamer with one hand behind his head while moving bodily forwards but leaning backwards. It was a spectacularly unnecessary display of athleticism from the man with a million nicknames. He now also sports ‘Broadway’ as a handle after showing mixed form all season and turning in an amazing game-winning bowling spell in the semis and the catch of the match in the final.

The target was set at 138 and it was game on.

Paddo came out ready to run through a brick wall to win the game and swung so hard at the first 2 balls that the NZONE parachuting plane was forced to abandon a landing due to wind shear.

A couple of quick wickets got the ‘Tiles into the game but unfortunately for them it bought Fraser and Finchy to the wicket. The run rate was slowly chipped away at as the frontline bowlers did a good job keeping the Pelicans batting under control. Franktons bowling stocks were depleted when Daz slipped on a diet mocha latte receipt and rolled his ankle. Fraser used his bat like a feather weight bludgeon and some of the players spent more time off the ground looking for the ball than they spent fielding.

The game came to a swift end when the cool southerly wind got up and Finchy wanted to get back on the warm bus. An unlucky Reptiles bowler was sent in to challenge him with slow dead straight bowling that mostly ended up rattling around by the adjoining tennis courts. A small boy was almost decapitated on a field nearby as a tracer bullet from Finchy sliced into the dirt 6 feet from his head.

The game was over in the 17th over with a victory to the Pelicans by eight wickets. Frankton had played well, but the loss of Pud (travel) and Daz(injury) effected the team balance and the Pelicans came out on top.

Ian Patterson got the presentations underway with Katrina from Mountain Scene thanking both teams for the contribution to the newspaper website during the season. Some quick speeches were made, the Pelicans received the trophy and some gifts from MS and it was into the sponsors products.

The temperature was going down faster than a $2 hooker so the teams left the ground for the 15 minute drive into town. Due to a rip in the time/space continuum the Pelicans took 3 hours to make this journey and any sightings of the team at Frewers House, playing cricket in the main street of Arrowtown or outside the Arthurs Point Pub are purely coincidental and cannot be proven.

The Pelicans Tool Shed (the Ale House) was our formal dinner venue. Most of the team had a quiet shandy and went home early to catch the Coronation Street Omnibus, however one or two pushed on and enjoyed some stirring conversation with two visiting librarians and a travelling vacuum cleaner salesman. Please see photos.

The 20/20 comp is over for another year, however there is a number of activities in the pipeline, including the Sombreros Mexican Cantina night in May, planning for the West Island Tour later in the year and even the possibility of raising money for a trip to India.

Contrary to popular belief the national animal of India is NOT Butter Chicken, it’s the Peacock.

The pelican would like to acknowledge the sponsors that have contributed so much to the team this year.
Speights & Speights Ale House, Sombreros Mexican Cantina, The Helicopter Line, and Mad Dog River Boarding. Good on ya.

Remember – The Pelican is the only animal that can eat a hammer.