Savour The Magical Atmosphere - Chris Broad
Featured News | 8th July 2014
Every Test appearance at Trent Bridge should be treasured – because it might be the only one you make.
That was the case for Chris Broad, who will be at the ground on day three of England's match against India, which starts tomorrow.
He will ring the ceremonial bell as part of a one-day campaign to promote his family's charity, the Broad Appeal.
The England line-up will feature his son Stuart, with the Nottinghamshire bowler poised to make his sixth Test appearance at his home ground.
For batsman Chris it was a one time deal as he made 54 and 16 in a draw against West Indies in 1988, the year before he played the last of 25 Tests for his country.
Long after his retirement he still savours the "magical atmosphere" the 22 players will experience when they walk down the pavilion steps tomorrow, some for the first time as internationals.
Broad, a former county star for Notts, said: "I would have liked to have played more international games at Trent Bridge but I loved playing in the one Test I did, as well the one ODI.
"It's a fantastic place to play cricket. The atmosphere is magical and I love going back there whenever I can.
"Nottingham and Trent Bridge is certainly home even though I started my career with Gloucestershire. You are always made to feel so welcome in this part of the world."
His single One Day International appearance at Trent Bridge came in a losing effort against Pakistan in 1987, when he made 52 of England's 157 runs.
These days he has followed the poacher turned gamekeeper route by becoming a Test referee.
He is still able to give his views on England though and he feels they will have benefited from having time to reflect after the narrow 1-0 series defeat to Sri Lanka.
"They've had a period between the Sri Lanka and India games to rethink a few things about how they want to play a very good India side," he said.
"When you look at the team they've got a lot of good young players coming through and that can only bode well for the present and future.
"Guys like Ben Stokes are really pushing through and there are others coming through. That can only be good for the team."
Even though he travels the world in his job, Broad still keeps tabs on his former side Notts.
He believes they have players who are capable of following his son into becoming England regulars, if they make it impossible for the selectors to ignore their form.
"I'm very aware of how Notts are doing. They've got guys who must be knocking right on the door," he said.
"Samit Patel has been in great form. He's been pushing his case. He's got to keep doing that because in the end it's impossible to ignore the weight of runs and weight of wickets.
"James Taylor is another one who can get in there. He's had a bit of an in and out season so far, but he's very capable of making big runs."
Being ignored by the selectors is something that has long since grated the 56-year-old.
Consensus suggests the former Notts batsman should have won more caps.
In a career that in some ways has mirrored his son, he was no stranger to controversy.
Stuart became a hate figure for Australian fans, who probably admire him playing in the mould of their heroes, last winter for not walking in the previous Ashes series when he edged the ball at Trent Bridge, but was given not out.
His father too had moments of notoriety as he refused to walk after being given out in Pakistan and in the 1988 Bicentennial Test in Sydney, he smashed his bat into the stumps after being bowled.
Such an occasionally fiery temperament might partly explain his number of appearances, but Chris has always maintained staying at Gloucestershire until 1983 hampered his chances of breaking through as the selectors favoured the more fashionable counties.
He said: "I look back on my career, 25 Tests, I probably could and should have played more. That was the way it was though.
"The selectors always denied they favoured some counties over others. In my case it seemed strange that as soon as I left Gloucestershire for Notts I got in the England team.
"I think these days it's different. The current selectors would say they see a lot more cricket so everyone gets their chance to impress."
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