Monday, 4 May 2009

Life imitating art 1

Daniel Morris was quite a useful fast bowler. He played for the Sunday side of Swafham and was counted on to dispose of the major threats amongst the opposition, so that Swafham’s captain, the portly Reverend Kershaw and his fellow opener, Constable Burrows, could amble out and safely knock off the required runs. They would then retire to the Dog and Pheasant, for a few pints and a gloat.

Swafham’s success made them an irritation in the fixtures table, but their beautiful ground offset the inevitable pasting from Morris’s bowling and the trundling run acquisition of Kershaw and Burrows.

One day they were drawn against a side of mini-celebrities, past sportsmen, media personalities and the inevitable recuperated rock legend. The mini-celebrities provided champagne and orange juice at pre-match drinks, but Morris was careful to restrict himself to the orange juice. To the inexplicable amusement of the recuperated rock legend, he sunk three glasses in succession.

Half way through his run-up, Daniel Morris felt an elation he had never experienced before; his legs felt immensely powerful, his chest expansive, his arms supple and strong. The ball felt like a metal projectile weighted perfectly in his hand. The breath streamed through his nostrils in an icy gush. He focused past the dwarfish umpire to the awaiting batsman.

The batsman seemed to morph into an excoriated form of David Gower. His face became a fleshy blur. His legs, encased in bandage-like pads, straddled the wicket. He gave a hallucinatory leer and flexed goatish muscles.

The effect was raw, venomous and terrifying. Without knowing what impelled him, Daniel Morris shrieked with terror and speeding ever faster, raced down the length of the wicket, past the crouching batsman, past the keeper, over the boundary ropes and across the fields.

He has retired from the game.

1 comment:

No One In Particular said...

Entertaining! And you write as one in the know. Of cricket I mean, of course.