Browny once told me that he was the club’s longest serving consecutive member, having started his glistening cricket career with the mighty Woodham Mortimer in the season of 2002, when I was just 8 years old and little Ribu was just a twinkle in Mrs Tripathi’s eye. I’ve never checked whether this fact is true or not, nor care much neither. But through the usual slurred words of Captain Brown I believe he meant to stress this as an achievement of sorts. Ha! 14 years of village cricket and still pony. “Give it up” they say to our Browny. But, with a bar as cheap as ours it’s very hard to cut ties, just like he finds it hard to cut a cricket ball, – so much so that Brown makes a weekly trip all the way down from Clapham just to drink from his favourite watering hole. If that’s not commitment then I don’t know what is. The club motto: ‘a drinking club with a cricket problem’, is the embodiment of Browny. He loves it so much that then he dies he wants to be reincarnated as a widget. Cracking idea that AB.
But this lad isn’t just a drinker. He’s a real sportsman too – someone in peak physical condition. Must be to win the ‘outstanding fielder of the year’ award on three separate occasions. Must be rigged mind you. Unfair to put anyone else at the club up against Browny when it comes to fielding. The maestro is a keen cover fielder, and regularly scares the batsman out of their wickets with those crazy eyes and gigantic belly button that looks as though it could transport you to another dimension. Something out of Stargate Atlantis. It’s so big I’ve seen him catch cricket balls inside it, not to mention those odd occasions when he uses it as a beer holder. But I’m getting off topic. Blooming terrific fielder. And quick too. Must of thought it was last orders or something. Has also been known to hold a bat when he wants too, and must be half decent after scoring over 3500 Woodham runs! I stress the half. But take no notice of my jibs because perhaps our favourite moment of Brown’s career finally came in late 2016, when after years of failing to hit 100 he finally reached his maiden century against Great Baddow. You just couldn’t write this fairy-tale. Long live Captain Brown, the patron saint of drunks and village cricketers.