An Aussie first? Five wickets in five balls
By TONY WHITE
ON hearing his dad had taken an incredible five wickets from five successive balls playing for Lawrence in the Lower Clarence Cricket competition on Saturday, nine-year-old cricket enthusiast Brody Davis couldn't wait to drag his father into the backyard for a replay of the stunning achievement.
"Yeah, my middle fella Brody was just over the moon," 36-year-old family legend Scott Davis said.
"He wanted me to go straight into the backyard and show him how I did it. He's a cricket fanatic.
"I said 'I can't mate, I don't really know how it happened'."
Davis, a beef and cane farmer who also works for North Coast Water, is the toast of Lower Clarence cricket.
Well, maybe not as far as rivals Yamba are concerned, having almost single-handedly cleaned up their batsmen, but the lads from Yamba at least had the satisfaction of gaining a first innings win against Lawrence, despite Davis's heroics.
Clarence Valley historians cannot recall a similar feat. Historians canvassed from outside the area including some net surfing, have been unable to find a similar recorded performance in Australia. Davis is still in shock.
"Mate, I just still can't believe it," he said yesterday.
"I've been playing cricket on and off for 18 years. I had a hat-trick when I was playing colts for Brushgrove and thought something like that was never going to happen again.
"It's every bowler's dream to get a hat-trick, to get two is an unreal feat, but to get five wickets in five balls, well, it's something beyond belief.
"It's all only just starting to sink it what happened. I play cricket to enjoy it as a team sport and for a bit of fitness.
"I was going to retire, I've got enough creaks and rattles in the body, but decided to stay on and try and help some of the young fellas coming through.
"I enjoy cricket and the team spirit. Here at Lawrence we've got a real family orientated thing. We get together a lot after the games for a barbecue and the social thing.
"For a person at my age to go out and do that has just blown me away. I've never played rep cricket and no-one has ever asked me."
Davis's magical spell came from the final four balls from his seventh over. His previous spell netted 3-16 from six overs.
Ball 3: "It was a full toss and cleaned up leg stump."
Ball 4: "It jagged back off the seam to a left hander and took off stump."
Ball 5: "It hit the batsman below the knee-roll plum middle stump. Lbw."
Ball 6: "It swung back and took middle stump."
During the following over from the opposite end Davis admitted to being in a state disbelief.
"I was just shell shocked," he said.
His first ball of the new over, with Yamba's only two remaining batsmen at the crease, hurtled down the pitch, stayed straight, and took middle stump. Davis finished with match figures of 8-16.
"I sort of thought 'gee I wish there were more batsmen' the way it was going," Davis said.
"The team was dumfounded, more so than me. Apart from getting beaten, it was just a magical day."
Teammate and resident joker Mark Horton explained the team's feelings.
"When he got the second wicket we were praying he didn't get a third because we'd have to spend money on a trophy," Horton said tongue in cheek. "After the fourth one we went 'wow' and after the fifth we were ecstatic. No-one has ever heard of it happening.
"I suggested to 'Mavis' if he parted his hair down the middle, and there isn't much of that, he'd be a yard faster.
"Thank goodness he can bowl because he got a duck with the bat.
"We've written to the Cricket Show and asked them to come up and do a story."