Comment and Analysis | 3rd November 2010
My Week At Trent Bridge: Jeans and Knitwear
Jonathan Agnew turned up to Nottinghamshire’s black tie awards dinner in a pink shirt with open collar at the end of last season. He had to make his apologies because he was the after dinner speaker and all of the chairs were pointing towards him.
Fast forward 12 months and Aggers was hosting the Business of Cricket Awards, an event at which jeans and knitwear were welcomed in 2009. Unfortunately, myself and Chris hadn’t read the dress code and were the only two people not wearing lounge suits for the occasion in 2010.
We accepted the award for best website and trundled off without having had a chance to apologise to our better-dressed colleagues from other clubs, including Derbyshire duo Tom Holdcroft and Nathan Fearn who we’d hammered in the hotel lobby 60 minutes earlier for dressing a bit stiff in their club blazers.
90 minutes earlier, we were debating whether or not we could get away with trainers so I was at least relieved to be wearing decent shoes. My dark jeans and grey jumper weren’t a compete disgrace but Chris’s choice of semi transparent un-ironed white shirt and baggy cardigan was definitely worthy of Agnew’s shout of ‘do you let them dress like this at Trent Bridge Derek?’ Paul Franks saw the picture on the web and asked Chris if he shared clothes with Russell Brand.
The best website award probably meant more to me than the LV= County Championship and I think I proved this when I left the Championship trophy on the bus when we got to the Lord’s Taverners offices ahead of our reception at Buckingham Palace.
On a guest list of 50 that included players, coaches, committee members and sponsors, I was well aware that I had let myself down a bit by failing to carry out the sole, simple task for which I was responsible.
We’d been at Tavs HQ for about half an hour when Deputy Chief Executive Lisa Pursehouse (my boss) asked me where the trophy was.
“I’ve left it on the bus,” definitely wasn’t the answer she was expecting and things got worse when I rang ‘Dave’ the Coach Driver only to get his answer phone.
Hurried calls to Trent Bridge and Dunn Line helped me to get an alternative contact number and ten minutes later Dave pulled around the corner and opened the hold to reveal a lonely flight case containing the LV= County Championship gold.
Chris Read was asked to say a few words in front of the gathered dignitaries and commented that this was the first opportunity he’d had to hold the real trophy having paraded a replica at Old Trafford while the genuine article was sat in a metal box at Durham. I hope this wasn’t a pre-written speech because I nearly ruined his punch line by forgetting the key prop.
It’s never nice to watch another team win a trophy that you had one hand on yourself so I’m sure Nottinghamshire supporters can empathise with the Somerset fans who sat around ‘The Emirates Durham’ watching the conclusion of Lancs-Notts on their giant replay screen whilst the Durham staff played a Twenty20 friendly without a care in the world.
There’s a photograph that captures the reaction of ECB Chairman Giles Clark and Somerset Chief Executive Richard Gould as they watched Andre Adams dismiss Shiv Chanderpaul on the screen. The question they appear to want an answer to is ‘how are Somerset NOT the LV= County Champions?’
The answer lies in Dave Bracegirdle’s new book ‘What do points make?’ which documents every twist and turn of Nottinghamshire’s season. Dave will already be known to many of you as BBC Radio Nottingham’s ball-by-ball commentator and if you didn’t have chance to listen to his audio description of the climax at Old Trafford then it can be heard here. Neutrality at its finest, I’m sure you’ll agree.
Dave approached us a few weeks before the end of the season to explain his plans to publish his diaries and we were happy to give the book official status when it became clear that it would serve as a souvenir of a victorious campaign.
It’s a quality publication – 196 pages, hardback, 32 pages of colour photos and a nice sleeve – and it’s already got a better review than Harry Potter 12 and Jamie Oliver’s twenty minute meals (by me) so pre-order it here and you’ll also get a hand-numbered print personally signed by Mick Newell and Chris Read (Mick/Chris, if you’re reading this I need you to sign 300 photos).