Gardening: Cuttings

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THERE ARE some simple inventions that change your life. For me, one such is the Test Match Special hat. This brilliant invention consists of an ordinary baseball cap, into one side of which has been inserted a small radio and a small retractable aerial. The sound is relayed to the ears by means of ear-pieces connected to batteries in the hat. For those people, like me, who have room in their hearts for both gardening and cricket, this cap is a godsend. I can now weed in the garden and listen to the Test Match at the same time. This summer, I have had the pleasure of listening to Aggers and Blowers describe some pretty tense moments: Fraser and Croft manfully saving the Third Test while I mowed the wild flower "meadow", and Atherton and Stewart finishing off the Fourth in fine style while I was cleaning round the raspberries.

Today I shall, no doubt, find plenty of reason to be out in the garden as the third day of the Fifth Test at Headingley unfolds. That is, if I can wrest the cap from my husband. I recommend this hat even for cricket- haters, for the radio receives both Long Wave and FM stations, so the choice of stations is wide.

The cap is available at cricket grounds around the country for pounds 15 and there is a floppy white sunhat at the same price. Or send pounds 17 (to include post and packing) to the MCC Shop, Lord's Cricket Ground, St John's Wood, London NW8 8QN.