Today I want to share a post from my friend Sharon. She loves cricket and her enthusiasm for the sport has made me interested in learning more about it. So if you're like me and want to know more about cricket, read further and learn about this intriguing sport.
The scene is set. A beautiful bungalow somewhere in Wiltshire, the windows opened wide. The television is on in the lounge and kitchen and the radio on outside. The occupants are lounging in the sun, when the radio demands they rush to the window to watch the action. Its summer 2013 and the fates have combined two of my favourite pastimes, reading in the sun and cricket.
Since he was a boy my husband has taken every opportunity to follow cricket. Today we are lucky enough to have Sky Sports H.D. but when he was a lad my husband listened to test match special on the radio, bringing to life the nuances of the beautiful game and introducing him to some of the exotic locations that host it.
We still enjoy the radio commentary with Jonathan Agnew and Geoffrey Boycott sparring but Blowers, the affectionate name for Henry Blofeld is the cricket commentator who for us remains the link to the immortal voices of Brian Johnston and John Arlott.
We married in 1984 and had two daughters in 1989 and 1992. Throughout this time the radio was a big part of our life although I never showed much interest in the game, I remember thinking ‘seriously, they play for five days and then it can be a draw? They stop for lunch and tea and the shipping forecast interrupts the commentary whatever the state of play!’ Bizarre ideas!
My husband Andy often suggested going to a game and tried to entice me with the idea of a perfect family setting, a picnic and a blanket relaxing in the sunshine... we never did. He had been to one day games but never a test match, then one day in 2004 we were having dinner with friends and he was talking about how he would love to see a test match live. Our friends expressed an interest in joining us and my first introduction to the game was at Trent Bridge in 2004 against New Zealand. I was hooked, a whole day of sitting in the sun, drinking cider and watching a game that is so fascinating with its quirky rules and traditions.
Since then we have had some amazing and frustrating days. We have sat in the rain, umbrellas up waiting for the start of play, attended Edgbaston for day 5 of the 2005 test that was the turning point for England’s Ashes victory and witnessed the only time a test team, Pakistan refused to come back on the field over a ball tampering controversy at the Oval in 2006.
Our experiences have been diverse; we have watched England in Cape Town and Galle and attended the 2013 Cornish Cricket festival in Truro supporting Andy’s boyhood team Somerset.
Going forward we would like to visit as many different grounds as possible, international venues, English test grounds and county grounds, with this in mind I thought I might set up a blog looking at the experience of attending a cricket match from the point of view of an older women.
Yes I love watching the game but it is also important to know what cider they stock, the quality of the food and that all important factor the toilet issue! We have just been to the County Ground in Taunton and are attending day four and five of the Durham test and the T20 final at Edgbaston. I’ll let you know.