News

Nightmare for family as umpire comes to stay

Young Toby Harrison's unusual hobby brought a nightmare for his unsuspecting family as a friendless umpire took advantage.
photo for this article

On this day in cricket, 19 December 1998

Groundsman accused of murder was “set up”

Hoggshire's Chief Coroner is examining bones discovered last week during a midnight pitch inspection at Nettle Park Cricket Ground.

Police released Head Groundsman Andy Thorne without charge on Tuesday after questioning him in relation to the gruesome find.

An angry Thorne has since told the Hoggshire Gazette that he was "set up" by Hoggshire's Chief Pitch Inspector Boris Himmelbraun.

"His henchmen dragged me out of bed, threw me in the back of an armour plated Mercedes-Benz, and took me to Nettles Park where Himmelbraun was waiting," claimed Thorne.

"He greeted me with the words ‘we have a problem Mr Thorne', before explaining that moisture had seeped underneath the tarpaulins covering the wicket area."

Thorne was then shown the cause of the problematic gap that was letting in water: a human skull protruding out from edge of the covers.

"Human remains are commonplace at clubs like Plague Moor and West Crematorium but they are practically unheard of at Nettle Park," said Thorne. "It was a worrying development but Himmelbraun offered me a cigarette and reassurance. He said there was little evidence of foul play and mentioned that a lot of people commit suicide under cricket-pitch covers during winter."

After earning the groundsman's trust, Thorne claims that Himmelbraun then tricked him into signing what he later learned was a murder confession.

"I was led to believe I was signing a petition to exempt groundsmen from Hoggshire's human trafficking tax," said Thorne. "I guess I should have paid more attention but it was dark and I was tired. I certainly had no reason to suspect I was admitting to the murder of cabaret performer Lena Schmid."

Thorne has yet to clear his name but his chances of doing so have vastly improved thanks to a fortuitous chance encounter

"Being at the centre of a murder investigation can be quite draining so I decided to partake in a spot of retail therapy to take my mind off things," said Thorne. "I was running low on exploding cigars and needed a new finger chopper so my first port of call was West Crematorium Joke Shop".

"I had been inside for little more than an hour when I spotted Boris Himmelbraun and Lena Schmid. I kept out of view and watched as they purchased a replica skull and some fake blood. I suspect they are already plotting the downfall of another innocent groundsman."

There were no witnesses to confirm the sighting and Thorne is desperately hoping that the Hoggshire Follies dancer hasn't gone to ground.

Although he is convinced that the skull discovered at Nettles Park is identical to those on sale at West Crematorium Joke Shop, he does not want his future to hinge on the outcome of forensic tests.

"Hoggshire's Chief Coroner is a Joke Shop regular," claimed Thorne. "I saw him in there just last week buying a black-eye microscope, disappearing ink, and a glow in the dark skeleton costume."



Opinion

Pleasure and frustration: a weekend at the Umpire Inn

The first hotel in the world to cater specifically to the needs of cricket umpires has received mixed reviews from a group of elite umpires.

News

Cricket official couldn’t stop freak accident

A Hoggshire League cricket official has defended his decision to leave his wife in a dangerous situation.

News

Rule change ends 125 years of cricket history

Hoggshire league side Plague Moor are changing a club rule that has stood for over 125 years. But not everyone is happy about it.

News

Veteran cricket umpire interrogated

A sixty-seven year-old cricket umpire became the focus of an intense investigation when he claimed he could milk cats.

Features

Marriage, me, and the RSPB

He was the golden boy of Hoggshire cricket at a time when regional greats abounded. These days Boris Gripper is a recovering addict in a viewless room at Green Fountain Sanatorium.

News

Umpire's ordeal is "no joke"

"It was a funny old day" for Hoggshire league umpire 'Boring' Norman Makepiece. A bizarre sequence of events left him questioning his sanity ... but even worse news was to follow. However, in a PDCC exclusive, we ask: is it all a terrible misunderstanding?
Hoggshire League
Live Scores
Green Fountain under 14s
11-7
-v-
Fish Sands
0-2

Rickets Wood
44
-v-
Nettles Green

Cannibal Caves
16-6
-v-
Verruca Bath under 12s

East Midden
20-3
-v-
Egg Thieves Rock
2-3

Plague Moor
14-1
-v-
Rillington Place Third X1

Bramble Park
19-0
-v-
Horse Field

National Socialists
30-8
-v-
Moth Meadow

West Crematorium
18-4
-v-
Leech Beck
9-6

Kitten Sack Pond
11
-v-
Trench Lice

Tipside Tigers
31-7
-v-
Park Royal Pederasts

Summerisle Strollers
25-3
-v-
Goats of Mendis Second X1

Hoggshire Cricket News
Twelfth man admits teasing fish
Tea time bear stampede impresses Valerie Singleton
Search for "vanishing" tea-lady intensifies.
Fielders told to keep pets off pitch during play
Tributes paid to radioactive tea lady
Rioters criticised for sparing Oval
Club president swapped wife for a scratch card
Bin Laden wanted ashes scattered at Grace Road
Scorer's body exhumed in missing pencil probe.
Groundsman stole palace worms claims royal aide