Heavy Rollers In Edgbaston and Stirchley, Primarily For England v South Africa Days Two and Three, 30 July to 1 August 2008

We have Charles Bartlett to thank for the most wonderful relic from this trip: a superb stack of pictures – 80 of them – click here to see them all. I’ll pepper this piece with just a few.

30 July 2008

This was one of those rare occasions that the test started on a Wednesday and so we actually travelled up on the first day and watched days 2 and 3.

Thus we gathered for pre match cricket in David Steed’s local park in Stirchley.

Adam was not impressed with his batting performance

Never mind Adam’s body language above, that muck-about game on David’s local green went well for Adam and did not go at all well for me, as evidenced by this page of my jotter.

2006 Muck About Cricket

Nigel “Father Barry” White (and son) did well, as did a local lad, Craig, who wandered along and asked if he could play with us.

Harish (Harsha Ghoble) also had a good go, although I do recall bowling him on one occasion with one of my moon balls which descended vertically onto the stumps. “How are you supposed to play a ball like that?”, complained Harish. Nigel then dispatched my next, similar ball for six. “Like that”, said Nigel.

I also recall lots of bites on my legs afterwards. Yet I was (uniquely amongst those in the following photo) wearing long trousers.

As darkness fell…

…then on to David and Anita’s place for a super barby:

Super barby at Steed Towers

31 July 2008

Chas and perhaps some of the others must have gone for a good walk the next morning, in the grounds around Harbourne House…

Signs of some walking around Harbourne House…

…while Harish and I, great athletes both, exerted ourselves with some morning sports activity:

For those looking in black and white, Ian’s the one dressed in red…
Some signs of mis-spent youth there; not least Ian’s ability to play a little better after a couple of bevvies.
Then the annual Heavy Roller shirt ceremony…
…for some reason Chas got a unique, pink one. As I’m the Middlesex supporter among us, “it should have been me”…
…then off we go to Edgbaston.
All action it was. Could this have been the year that someone started a row with Nigel 20 minutes before the start of play asking him to sit down?

We had the honour of witnessing “that” over from Flintoff to Kallis:

The crowd was just a little bit involved.

We’re all standing now (apart from Hippity and Monkey-Face)!
I think we went to Zizzis that night – correct me if I’m wrong, folks

1 August 2008

We did it all again! But Chas didn’t take pictures that day.

Want to know what happened in the cricket? – here is the scorecard – yes, click here.

I made my own way home by train, as oft I do. Unusually, though, Nigel and Chas stayed on an extra day, having decided to brave the Eric Hollies Stand.

Aftermath – Chas and Nigel in the Eric Hollies

There are plenty of pictures in that photo album, but I’d really like one or both of the lads to write a short side piece describing their very different day “on the other side”…

…the dark side…
…with brigades of Amy Winehouses…
…and extra police protection. Had the fuzz been tipped off that Chas and Nige were coming?

Do tell, fellas.

Postscript: Nigel wrote up the Eric Hollies experience for King Cricket. King Cricket published the piece 8 November 2017 – here.

Indeed, other memories from any of us much appreciated, in the comments section or by e-mail ahead of a post script.

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