Basking in the sunshine at the Parks this week, with nets in full flow, it feels a good time to reflect on what’s happened in the club over lockdown.
After last summer’s disrupted season, hopes were high heading into Michaelmas. Socially distanced trials were held in 3rd week, and we were all chomping at the bit to book those net slots but alas, Covid intervened once again, and the doors to the cricket school were barred shut.
Michaelmas came and went and while most of the squad went home, a few stragglers managed to get in the nets, but this proved a false dawn as Christmas came and the third lockdown took full effect.
Things were looking a little bleak at this point, and spirits may have been dampened, but we found a way to stick it out. Fitness guru Angus Livingstone wrote an S&C programme for the boys to follow at home, giving us some accountability over the winter. This was paired with weekly yoga sessions run over Zoom by mobility advocate Alex Thomas, and whilst flexibility might not one of the club’s strong point, lockdown barnets definitely are and it was lovely to watch them sprout week on week.
On the social side, social secs Will Barker, James Pyman and Tom Oliver got us to put our money where our mouths are, and predict the results of the England v Sri Lanka and India v Australia series. They also put on the first OUCC quiz, which went down a treat; some excellent statting and jazzing pulling victory out of the bag for team Marshall.
The highlight of lockdown was the Runathon against Cambridge. Over the week, everyone would record how far they ran on Strava, and the winner would be the squad with the highest average kilometres per person. The buy-in from us was fantastic, and we clocked up some truly insane distances. Particular shoutouts to Hamza Ahmed (118.96km), John de Bhal (117.79km) and Ollie Dunnett (117.74km), Cal Job (116.53km) and James Pyman (102.3), who all crossed the 100km mark.
Overall, on average each squad member ran 57.62km, compared to Cambridge’s 38.8km. It was a brilliant effort all round and testament to the culture we’ve built in OUCC, and credit to the new squad members for buying into this despite everything being online – great signs for the year ahead.
Indeed, as April begins and hopefully a full cricket season to look forward to, things are looking up and as a club we can’t wait to welcome spectators back to the Parks when we’re allowed.