A Six on the Sixth

A Six on the Sixth


Friday, December the 6th, 2019.


It’s the years’ end and I’ve noticed lots of announcements by proud parents reporting on scholastic achievements all about the virtual spaces that we inhabit in our down time, or up time, as it could be.


Some will bemoan the proud parent post, each to their own, but, hey, why not, I am about to do the same here.


Why not acknowledge the fruits of concerted effort; they are uplifting, they can be fleeting, but they are just moments in time.


Markers of something done.


Effort spent.


It is real.


I was at the cricket last night. My youngest returned this season after having retired last year. Retired, albeit briefly. I wanted him to continue, but at 13 years I felt it not right to insist he play.


”you are not sitting around on Friday nights glued to your screen….”


That’s the naf mumsy line I’ve used over the years when he’s grumbled about the 4pm cricket rush on a Friday afternoon. I was done with that line.


”you are not sitting around on Friday nights glued to you screen….”


Then, in January earlier this year, halfway through what could have been his sixth season of junior cricket, he turned on me and begrudged the fact I had ‘allowed’ him to stop playing.




perhaps I was not so naf after all.


And so, cricket is back.


I watched from the sidelines last night, every ball, not distracted by chit chat, for a change.


After a nervous start, the fumbling ball doddered about his feet. I didn’t relax until he he was off his mark. ‘Protect your wicket, protect your wicket’ his dad had implored, and was still imploring from somewhere behind me as the innings progressed.


He did. Solid hitting, chomping the ball, middle of the bat; his older brothers’ bat that has been on the too heavy side until now, now that he’s grown, 173cm in 14years and six months. One after another, blocking away in between one boundary after another. A few singles here and there.


Months of hitting the stocking ensconced ball as it dangled from the back veranda at home has had some reward. He’s held his wicket…he’s stayed out there and he’s making runs.


And then came the six. A seemingly effortless swing of the bat that connected with the flying ball at the right moment in time.




You could feel the connection of mind, body and ball, living fully within the moment. You could feel the energy. You could feel the power.


You felt it was deserved.


It felt good as a spectator, it felt great as a parent and even better as his mum, naf and all.


It was just a moment in time.


But it was real.


It was a Friday night, and he was at not at home lying about glued to his screen.



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  1. Citrus Bob says

    Well done KB! As a wise old head you did exactly the right thing letting him make up his own mind but backing him to the hilt
    Great moment of the Birrell family and even better his return to the game and THE six.
    Will watch his exploits in the future with interest.

  2. Thx Bob

    It has to be their decision.

    That’s what made it enjoyable.


  3. Earl O'Neill says

    Beats hell outa the screen.

  4. roger lowrey says

    Love it Kate.

    As it happens, I never hit a six in my life so reassure him he is already ahead of 66 years’ worth of life achievement of your unworthy author.


  5. Oh, Roger , well, if my boy never hits another one he’ll at least have the one and only documented..immortalised forever.

    Maybe not too late?

    Thx for reading Earl.

  6. Superb Kate good parenting rapt for your colt as well how many runs did he end up with ? Thank you

  7. 54 Not out Malcom, not enough to save the match though.

  8. Luke Reynolds says

    Fantastic Kate. Wonderful that your lad is back playing the great game.

    A seemingly effortless swing for the six- they’re the best ones. The biggest six I’ve ever hit felt like I barely swung at it at all. Would hate to think about how many times I’ve been caught trying to smash the cover off the ball.

    As always, love the artwork!

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