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Weehibbydrew

Mussel-bound Radge
Test cricket bores me rigid. Much prefer the shorter game. Enjoying your tales though. Keep them coming 👍🏻
As I've mentioned before in this thread, I'm the opposite. I just can't take to this 20-over stuff - it's like trying to get excited about the Tennents Sixes.
Mind you, I remember when the 60-over Gillette Cup was akin to sacrilege!
 

Ifield Hibee

Just A Radge
Will respond to these interesting posts later but in the meantime...

Just thinking back to some of the players who were around at that time in the 1970s and the good few I managed to talk to in some capacity, often on duty on match days.

Those match days were purely fantastic for me, I loved cricket in those days and so working at Trent Bridge on a Saturday at time-and-a-half or double pay on a Sunday were my idea of heaven. I’d probably have been there paying to watch anyway, if I wasn’t playing myself.

Maybe one or two of the cricket fans might know about the rules governing the roller. During the match, the captain of the side batting can request the rolling of the pitch (the actual wicket) for a period of up to seven minutes before the start of an innings and before start of play after the first day. There were two rollers, heavy and light. The heavy roller was a large sit-on roller, I mentioned earlier, whilst the light roller was the kind of familiar hand-pulled thing you might see on someone’s lawn back in the day. The head groundsman detailed me the regular job of seeking out the captain, on the pitch or in the pavilion and asking would he like the heavy or the light roller. It was pretty much a formality with 99.9% of the time the heavy one being chosen.

This was my cue to talk to many famous international cricketers although as a kid I was pretty much terrified of these larger-than-life, legendary figures. Maybe the largest in size was the great Clive Lloyd of Lancashire and who became captain of the West Indies. A huge man but one who loped around the pitch like a lithe big cat. Certainly, one of the best and most agile fielders ever. So, quaking a bit, I ran out on to the pitch and asked him ‘which roller, Mr Lloyd?’ ‘It’s kind of you to ask young man, the heavy roller please, what’s your name?’ ‘Stuart’. ‘Well thank you Stuart’.

Clive Lloyd was captain of a wonderful West Indies side at the time, a great world star, and a great gentleman too. Each time that Lancashire or the Windies came to Trent Bridge subsequently he would greet me by my name. Me, a snot-nosed teenager with scruffy work jeans on. He was a gem of a man with the humble touch. I had huge admiration for.

Contrast that with the undoubtedly most hated player in cricket at that time (and probably ever). I wonder if you can guess?

Yes, Geoffrey Boycott. What a total fcuking obnoxious arsehole. The lads on the staff detested him and would do anything not to have to speak to him. He was ignorant, rude and dismissive, apart from having a massive ego. Probably the most selfish player ever too. I recall going out on to the pitch at the end of a session and asking him which roller he would like on the wicket. The answer was ‘give me the fucking heavy roller and make sure it’s the full fucking seven minutes’. This to a sixteen year-old kid.

Not one other captain spoke to me like that and they numbered some huge names in the game, apart from our own great Sir Garfield Sobers there was, Ray Illingworth, Tony Greig (who at a height of 6ft 6ins’ would turn up at the ground in his 1960s BMC Mini), Australian captain, Ian Chappell and Mike Denness of Kent who became England captain. Mike was originally from Bellshill and I had family there so he would always have a chat. A lovely man.

On Test Match days in particular at Trent Bridge there were always a lot of celebrities around and I got to meet one or two of them. My favourite was John Le Mesurier – Sgt Wilson of Dad’s Army – who was a great cricket fan. I’ll maybe save that chat for another time.

Brilliant memories, keep them coming.

Nostalgia is not what it used to be!!!
 

Ifield Hibee

Just A Radge
As I've mentioned before in this thread, I'm the opposite. I just can't take to this 20-over stuff - it's like trying to get excited about the Tennents Sixes.
Mind you, I remember when the 60-over Gillette Cup was akin to sacrilege!

I'm with you.

I love the strategy of the Test Match.

I am fortunate to have grown up in the sixties (born in 1959) where the only real daytime television when it was pishing down in Perth during the summer holidays was Test Match cricket. Had the pleasure of not only watching some brilliant players, in the 60s, 70s and 80s but also some of the best commentators ever to be on radio or TV. Most of today's football imposters are a disgrace.

Never played in Scotland it wasn't a big thing. Played football at Junior standard.

Moved down south in 1987 (worked for my local Council) and we used to play 20 overs matches against other local businesses on a Wednesday after work in the summer. Couldn't bowl, couldn't bat, was a decent fielder and loved keeping wicket. I loved it.

The social side was brilliant.
 
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Jack

Aulder Than The Internet This Radge
I'm sure there's a few tales of playing in Scotland to come.

I can remember when I arrived to play a game one Saturday and we were told of a new guy who was actually on the books at Trent Bridge as a youngster :22:
 

Stu

Maple Leaf Radge
I'm sure there's a few tales of playing in Scotland to come.

I can remember when I arrived to play a game one Saturday and we were told of a new guy who was actually on the books at Trent Bridge as a youngster :22:
No games in Scotland but I did play one in Naples in Italy - now THAT was an event!
 

tayside hibee

Well-Known Radge
Going to a test can be one of the best ways to spend a day. I think the mistake people sometimes make is to think it'll deliver the same kind of experience as football. If you go expecting non-stop action you'll be disappointed, but give it the right kind of attention and a whole landscape reveals itself, an ebb and flow that's sometimes - yes - quite boring (and to which you can pay only cursory attention and concentrate on drinking and chatting) but occasionally electrifyingly exciting. Often because the boring bit has built up the game to a tremendous point of tension.

The one thing I do find funny is when people say it's a soft, effete kind of game. Face a bit of proper fast bowling and then try to claim that! Years ago I had a Scottish flatmate in London (who I'm still v friendly with) who constantly ribbed us in a good natured way about cricket being easy and for weaklings etc. We still call him Sanjay after a legendary night watching England play India where, with almost no knowledge of the game whatsoever, and a huge bag of cans, he cheered India relentlessly to a very exciting win.

Anyway, he came with us to a net once at the Oval. We stuck him in against a couple of pretty easy medium pace bowlers and he never said it was a soft game again.
For sure, it is not a game for the fierties , not at the top level anyway.
The batsman is protecting himself as much as his wicket 🤪
 

Stu

Maple Leaf Radge
A few years ago, me and my partner at the time made a few visits to stay with friends in Naples for a holiday. My friend's partner had a job teaching mainly NATO servicemen and women's kids in a school there. Me and the pal went to see Napoli v Roma one Saturday afternoon (where a huge riot broke out incidentally) and in the din, started nattering about cricket for some reason rather than the major talents of the likes of Batistuta and Totti paraded on the pitch He mentioned that some of the staff from the school had formed a casual cricket team playing the odd friendly against the locals. 'You used to play cricket didn't you, why don't you come along and play?'

In truth, I wasn't that keen and said so. I hadn't played for years and hardly remembered one end of the bat from the other, 'ah come on, you'll be right, we need you'. So, under coercement I agreed, quietly thinking I'm going to make a right twat of myself here...

We turned up at the school playing field early and met our captain, a little guy who was clearly a professional Yorkshireman and bragged endlessly about Yorkshire's success over the years. He had one of those stupid stripey public school cricket caps which was a major black mark too I felt. The team gradually mooched through the gate, one by one, wives and girlfriends in tow. Mainly British expats with one Italian waiter as our 'import' playing down the order (thankfully, as it came about).

But then...catastrophe. Somebody had forgot the big fcuking mower and when we surveyed it the grass on the pitch was like a wheatfield – literally so long it was up and past your knees. Not to be beaten, somebody grabbed a little ancient push garden mower and some garden shears and 'trimmed the wicket a bit'. Not looking good. I didn’t remember this at Trent Bridge?

And then, the Italian opposition arrived, oh yes. Not sure if anyone remembers the All-Priests Over 75 Five-A-Side Football Challenge Match episode of Father Ted but they had their own Father Sensini figure, a man of the cloth no less and wearing cool designer shades. It turns out that he was the oppositions’s coach.

I forgot to mention that a few days prior, this school where my pal’s wife worked had bought a huge consignment of new IT and installed it throughout the school. Two days later it had mysteriously disappeared after a night-time break-in, obviously by somebody with local knowledge. As it happens though, the school had been dutifully paying their dues in ‘insurance’ money - for Naples is the land of the fearsome Camorra right? I’d realised that it was good policy to do this after reading a recent story in Corriere della Sera where a local Neapolitan businessman had unwisely refused to do this. The Camorra on that occasion had politely removed him from his office in the city, dragged him into the street and set fire to him.

So, after the word was put around, the computers etc, were returned smartly, found placed in the schoolyard, just a few yards from where we were playing cricket if I remember correctly. I began to wonder whether it was actually a good idea to actually try to win this game.

Yorkie won the toss and we batted first. I was encouraged to pad up and go out and open with my pal. Taking strike, the first ball came down, fairly innocuously at a comfortable medium pace and I determined a simple forward defensive push was in order, get used to the conditions and all that, in the baking evening Italian sun, the ammonia-like smell of Vesuvio in the air. And then something unusual happened, the ball hit an errant tuft of grass which had evaded the mower and reared menacingly past my ear, with me narrowly missing a face full of (fairly battered) red leather. And so it went on. I think on reflection it would have been simpler facing Michael Holding that evening with the ball flying dangerously all over the place.

Amidst a swift bit of gardening on the wicket, my fellow opener and I had a midwicket conference, specifically about the state of play. We decided to go after the bowlers and hit everything in an attempt to get things over with as soon as possible and avoid a hospital bed. I was caught on the boundary for 25 and my partner made 29 before a similar fate.

The game was not without further incident though. When our turn came to field, one of our team went down to stop a low drive in the cover point area. He appeared to have it well covered as the ball swished through the top of the grass, textbook style, on one knee with his body behind it. The ball then found another of the many divots, shot up in his face, breaking his nose with blood gushing everywhere. He actually did end up with a visit to the hospital of course. Naturally, we carried on.

The opposition’s innings petered out fairly meekly lthough and we ran out winners, it has to be said I’ve rarely seen such a stylish looking bunch of cricket players though, as you'd expect, looking like they’d been kitted out at Gucci or United Colours of Benetton, fabulous.

It’s true to say there were no death threats after stumps, nobody even mentioned the Camorra, but rather, we had a fantastic time in a local restaurant afterwards, drinking Italian lager out of glasses you needed two hands to even pick up.

Good times.

 
Another thread to join Cheese. No offence to to followers of the not so beautiful game. The smell of freshly cut grass, leather on willow, freshly laundered whites etc nah.

Of the top supported sports in world, Cricket and American Football both bore me absolutely ridged. Crack on though amigos.



BIG G
 

Forzahibs

I'm a Radge Donator
Another thread to join Cheese. No offence to to followers of the not so beautiful game. The smell of freshly cut grass, leather on willow, freshly laundered whites etc nah.

Of the top supported sports in world, Cricket and American Football both bore me absolutely ridged. Crack on though amigos.



BIG G
I just dont get how 2 teams can play all week and it ends in a draw :22:
 

FTJT

Well-Known Radge
Eoin Morgan can play until he's 50. Bat at 11 and stand still at extra cover. Absolutely incredible cricket brain.

Jos Buttler, incidentally, is also pretty good at cricket.
 
First the London polis institutionally racist, now Yorkshire Cricket. They should rename themselves to the Mets. Hang on!.

BIG G
 
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