BM (26-03-45 / Salford, England)

Bowled Over

It only happens once a year
And that once is tough enough
The Ladies v the Gentlemen
By eck it does get rough!

Our Club is not a male preserve
It’s mixed, except for teams
And for two weeks before the match
It’s full of plots and schemes.

Oh we set the rules impartially
The committee’s fifty, fifty.
STILL the atmosphere gets tense
And the teams, get downright shifty.

Ethel Rudge the ladies Cap’
created last year’s stink
by accusing Arthur Openshawe
of doping pre-match drinks

Then Arthur. being Arthur
Bit back, as he knows how
By calling her ‘a lying witch’
And that caused another row!

But it isn’t just the women
The men can be as bad
They’ve sabotaged the ladies Loo
Now, I find that, very sad.

They’re usually SO supportive
The women and the men
But every year before this match
The knives come out again

We’ve threaten and we’ve warned them
That it makes the Club look bad
Yet every year it’s open war
The committee’s going mad!

This year we tried a different tack
The Carrot, not the stick
The Burnage Cup for “Sportsmanship”
It just might do the trick

So there we are before the match
All is quiet and serene
But the referee is nervous
As he views each smiling team

It started off so calmly
So sportsman like, and warm
Not once did we suspect it was
The calm before the storm

The jack went out to start the end
The ladies went off first
Then Ingrid Morgan dropped a Wood
And Harry Bennet cursed

“My bloody toe, you dozy sod! ”
he bent and grabbed his foot
Ingrid swung to “slap his face”
but she got poor Brian Tutt.

Now the Referee, was good here
He calmed it down a treat
as Harry and Ingrid made it up
We got Brian to his feet.

The end was played with no more fuss
Both sides were seeing sense
Then the ladies took a three chalks lead
And things started getting tense

As Avril Jones sent down the Jack
To start the second end
Fred Thompson yelled and waved
He said, “he’d seen a friend”

Gamesmanship! The cry went up
‘Team Ladies’ were irate
OK, the ref he cautioned Fred
it was too little and too late

Then Brian Tutt threw down his mat
his stance we know, pure class
one minute he was drawing back
the next, face down in the grass!

“Oh is that wood there a blocker? ”
asked Ingrid in poor taste
as Brian raised his face to see
his wood about, six inches from his face.

The referee he took Bri’s mat
And turned it upside down
It’s Vaseline! He cried in rage
And he threw it on the ground

The Atmosphere was ‘cutable’
and almost ‘daggers drawn’
“BY Gum” said Jim to Eric Stott
“This Ref will earn his corn”

April Pike, the ladies sub,
Laid Arthur on his back
Her reason for the knockout blow?
he ‘nudged away’ the bloody jack

So it went the whole game through
It was cheat and cheat about
And Jim remarked to Eric that
“It would take some sorting out”

It’s ended up nineteen chalks each
With one end ‘just’ left to play
And it looks like who cheats the best
Is almost sure to win the day

I just can’t watch this final end
It will descend to open war
But fickle fate gives two chalks each
By God! We’ve got a DRAW!

That’s your lot we tell them
This fixture is no more
But to our surprise amazingly
They ALL begin to roar

It seems they like ‘tradition’
And want to keep this game
For without this “Bit of Rivalry”
The Club wouldn’t be the same! ! ! ! !

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