Notts Outlaws’ Royal London One-Day Cup-winning squad were given a hero’s welcome by the city's football fans as they paraded the trophy at Meadow Lane last night (Wednesday).
Captain Chris Read and his teammates took to the pitch for a lap of honour during half-time of the pre-season derby between Notts County and Nottingham Forest in front of a crowd of 12,209 - the biggest crowd at the ground since new owner Alan Hardy took control.
Speaking about the memorable experience, Notts’ hero in the final Alex Hales - who hit a Lord's and Outlaws one-day record 187 not out - said the reception reflected the all-encompassing nature of Nottinghamshire sport.
“It was a really good evening and a big crowd, with pretty much all the fans staying at half-time to applaud our lap of honour, which was nice of them,” he said.
“It shows how good the support is for all of the city and county's sport. I think that’s the same with all the teams, the cricket, rugby, ice hockey or the football, everyone seems to follow everyone, which is a sign of a good community.”
The Outlaws opener, who scored 434 run in seven matches en route to the final at the Home of Cricket, believes the celebration was the perfect way to crown the achievement.
Hales added: “It definitely brought back some memories of Lord’s. It was amazing, it felt like I was reliving it a little bit.
“It was a great way to celebrate all the hard work that we had put in in the winter, especially after losing the first two games in the competition.
“We put together a really good run of form and won it the hard way beating Somerset and Essex in the two games before, so it was a great night to celebrate what we achieved."