My Week At Trent Bridge:
Anyone Seen Elstone?

Comment and Analysis | 30th April 2010

I spent a bit of time wandering around Lady Bay last week looking for Scott Elstone. I walked up the pavilion steps and asked Wayne Noon if he’d seen him but he just stood there with a pained expression and asked me if I was being serious. I thought he was being rude at first but then it dawned on me that Scott was about 40 yards away, padded up with a bat in his hand waiting for the next delivery.

The purpose of the trip had been to take headshots of the academy lads for a new page on the website and to interview Mick Newell and Paul Johnson for a video feature that we’re producing to use on the replay screen at Friends Provident t20 matches (tickets on sale now from all good official Trent Bridge websites).

Trying to organise any sort of media commitment with Paul Johnson follows a similar pattern. First he greets you with a derogatory comment, says no and has a bit of a whinge about why it’s a terrible idea. Then you ask him again a couple of minutes later and he says yes and nails it first time. I like his grumpy old man routine (I think it’s a routine) and the video he did with Mick was amusing.

They told a story about the time Notts wicket keeper Chris Scott was sick on the outfield and had to cover it with sawdust. Nothing more was said until the change of innings when the opposing bowler ran up to the sawdust patch, picked it up to dry his hands and then licked his fingers as he marched back to his mark.

Swanny won’t be there but one of their lead guitarists told me that they’ve replaced him with ‘someone who can actually sing.’

We’d asked them to talk through the funniest things they’d seen in cricket and pitched the same question to Basher Hassan who regaled the unfortunate story of Peter Hacker. Hacker had been getting some stick from a vocal section of the Yorkshire support at Trent Bridge after some poor fielding. He took a splendid catch on the boundary and turned to the crowd to celebrate and give them a bit of chat. Meanwhile, the umpire had called a no ball, the batsmen had run four and could have had six if they weren’t reduced to rolling around on the floor laughing at the jigging fielder.

I got told this week that I’ve got the biggest inbox at Trent Bridge. I wanted to make light of the situation and get a t-shirt printed with ‘MASSIVE INBOX’ written on it but couldn’t help thinking there’s a bit too much innuendo attached. Apparently, storing 4.4 gigabytes of correspondence on the Trent Bridge servers is unacceptable and I’ve been asked to lop off at least 3.4 gig to bring my inbox inline with the national average.

Innuendo fans will be pleased to hear that Eddie Burke (player-pathway co-ordinator and aspirant level four coach who considers himself to be the lead guitarist in Swanny’s band) asked me to buy him a double muff pedal this week. Ed hasn’t got an ebay account and likes others to muck in on pet projects (I think that’s how he passed GCSE woodwork) so I’m often asked to bid on stuff on his behalf. We were driving to Nottingham Racecourse to meet npower ahead of June’s world record attempt when he rang Andy Afford (Notts spin bowling coach, probably also considers himself to be the lead guitarist in Swanny’s band) to tell him the good news. “Alright Aff, I’ve just bought a double muff so there’s nothing I can’t do now. We can stick a bit of Snow Patrol in the set-list…none of that fluffy intro, let’s just whack the drumsticks together and dive into it.”

Swanny’s band, or to give them their proper title, Dr Comfort and the Lurid Revelations, are in action at The Southbank on Sunday 16th May. Swanny won’t be there but one of their lead guitarists told me that they’ve replaced him with ‘someone who can actually sing.’ Swanny or no Swanny, their show is very entertaining and they have a great laugh when they gig so get yourself along.

Paul Franks, Chris Read, Mark Wagh and Samit Patel certainly didn’t push their case for a place on the stage when they recorded a couple of lines for Twiggy and Emma’s World Cup single this week. Hard to do justice to a chorus consisting of one repeated syllable I suppose (genuine lyrics: dooooo do do do do, dooooo do do do do, dooooo do do do do dooooo) but they got stuck-in with headphones on, eyes closed and some good head movements.

Michael Temple is Nottinghamshire's Media & Communications Manager.

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