Let's start at the end, so we don't bore you completely to death. Lobat's made it to yet another Grand Final, except this time, instead of scraping into the finals somehow, somehow they were on top of the ladder and the team to beat. In fact that is the only reason they made the finals, because the semi-final was completely rained out which meant the Lobats were unable to loose in the semis. The skipper, of course, takes all credit for that semi-final win.
So the Lobats were the team to beat in the finals, and that's exactly what happened. They got beat. No, correction - they got hammered. And yet, they are still in with a chance of being champions. That is correct. You read it correct the first time. No need to reread what you just read, unless of course you find this column to be incredibly entertaining. Ok, no chance of that. So keep reading.
Let's be clear. The match is over. The Lobats dropped 10+ catches - no, correction - 20+ catches and found themselves 136 runs short, chasing a total of 237. Yet, they are still in with a chance of winning the match.
Yes, you read that correctly. No correction required there. If you are confused, let's confuse you further.
Here's how it went down. Our skipper tossed by placing a coin on the ground, standing on it and spinning himself until he got dizzy and fell over. Then the umpire looked to see if the skipper was on his head or tail. He was on both, with his tail between his legs. Our skipper dusted himself off and ordered the opposition to bat.
Unfortunately they took that literally. And bat they did. In hindsight, the Lobats skipper agrees he should have ordered them to bring their bats and get out. A couple of them even forgot their bats and kept sharing one bat. Although they weren't getting out, we had them only scoring two runs an over.
They were less than 60 runs after 30 overs and less than 90 after 45 overs. Then after a wicket fell, a fellow showed up to bat that we had never seen before. Our skipper, who was behind the stumps, walked up to the batsman and very politely asked him his name.
It sounded like he said 'Slim Shady' before he turned around to face the bowler. We thought nothing more, because our skip is known to be very friendly with the opposition in general. Some say it's because the skip is simply networking and career planning. Later in the day, Upul asked him his name again while fielding close, and it sounded like he said Shady Patel.
Confusion ensued. Eventually when the Lobat's were batting, or rather getting out, they decided they should help the poor fellow out by finding out his name and informing him. We were worried that he had spent his entire life not really knowing who he was. He could have been like that fellow in the movie Lion who got lost in Calcutta and ended up in Tasmania only to find his real name out 20 years later.
So the Lobats took it upon themselves to 'Ok Google' Mr Shady. They then walked around and took a few pictures of Mr Shady and plugged the results into various dodgy sites and a few international databases, including Interpol, Europol and Gujupol.
What ensued was pandemonium.
When a picture showed up on Facebook of Shady Patel who looked completely different to this Mr Patel, the Lobats skipper decided to halt proceedings. Our skipper skipped out to the middle and asked their skipper if he would skip off together to find the real Slim Shady. Their skipper told our skipper to skip off.
So we waited patiently till the drinks break and asked them to do a line up, so we could get to the bottom of this. We asked the real Slim Shady to 'Please stand up, please stand up, please stand up…' The problem was they were all already standing. So we tried a different approach. We said, 'Will the real Slim Shady please sit down, please sit down, please sit down.' They all sat down.
This was going no where. Then their skipper gave our skipper a lecture in the 'spirit of the game'. Our skipper, who is no stranger to lectures, politely told their skipper there was only one team playing within the spirit of the game and no one knew which team it was. In fact, we pointed to the fact that their vice skipper had yet to learn how to spell the word 'spirit' although he always had a spirited reaction to pretty much everything that happened or didn't happen.
So our vice skipper offered their vice skipper a few choice vice words that were echoed by Shane, in no unclear terms. This resulted in further spirited challenges to the spirit of the game. Further pandemonium ensued.
To put matters to rest, a senior member of the Lobat's club, whose name shall remain the same as it was from the day he was born, interrupted proceeding and suggested that the Mr Slim Shady in question simply provide a legitimate ID confirming he was indeed Slim Shady. Mr Shady, who after repeated calls of his name, realised we were talking to him, finally said he possessed no ID in order to avoid uncomfortable situations just like this.
Finally a decision was made to continue with the thrashing the Lobats were receiving and then to resolve this matter of the mysterious Mr Slim Shady at a different venue, in front of the village elders. And so it was. The Lobats found themselves 136 runs short, despite a spirited knock by Danuka and Jana. Yet the Lobats could find themselves being crowned league Champions.
Only the Lobats could achieve that result.
Never a dull moment with the Lobats. If you are as old as this correspondent, God help you, but if you believe you have seen everything there is to see in cricket, we recommend you come watch the Lobats. You will learn a thing or two, or probably not. One thing's for sure, it's just not cricket. Correction, it's not just cricket. And the season ends.