I'm bowled over by my boy's big match

Share
Related Topics

A big day in my life is nigh. I'm taking my nine-year-old son to his first proper cricket match. We are going to see England vs Australia, but I'll be lucky if it's as good as the first one my dad took me to.

It was the legendary Headingley test where England were forced to follow on and then, thanks mainly to Ian Botham and Bob Willis, went on to grab an extraordinary win over the Aussies.

That, of course was a five-day match, and we very nearly left after the third day as all seemed lost. I'm well aware that it's one of those matches where, if everybody who said they were there was actually there, then they would have filled 10 Headingleys, but I was there, I swear it on Geoffrey Boycott's life.

There was a documentary on telly the other day called Botham's Ashes which I watched only to spot a 13-year-old me in the crowd. It wasn't that hard as I was sporting a rather offensive camouflage jacket that I loved and my dad hated.

My boy and I are going to a one-day game as he has quite a short attention span. I feel confident that the sun will shine on us, and everything points to it being a great day.

I remember taking my wife to a game at the Oval where we were squeezed in between a group of very rotund West Indies fans. I was enjoying the match until I turned to find her fast asleep on a very kindly man who was loathe to move her off his shoulder. About five minutes later and a Mexican wave gave him the opportunity he needed to both wake her up and send her flying simultaneously. Stacey has never been to another cricket match.

Try as I might, I have never managed to get her to love the game as I do. This is probably because, as a Canadian, she is preprogrammed to find the game both confusing and dull.

Every year I have to suffer the tedious joshing of my in-laws about how I can enjoy a game that can go on for five days and end in a draw. I riposte with as much scorn as I can for a country where lacrosse is played by men and the national sport, ice hockey, is basically a legalised form of pub brawling on skates.

So I shall go alone with my boy, a father-son bonding day, where we will kick back our heels, talk nonsense and watch the game.

I actually think that, what with the current state of Australian cricket, he will be more excited by the crowd than the game. He has never been anywhere with a crowd of that size, save for a curious excursion involving fake dinosaurs wandering around Wembley Arena while a reject from drama school pretended to be an intrepid explorer in a time machine.

On that occasion, I fell asleep, only to be woken up and ordered to bankrupt myself at the gift shop selling overpriced dinosaur-related tat. I fear that this day might be equally ruinous, with stalls selling hot dogs, cricket gear, shirts … Thank God he is not old enough to drink yet, or I'd have to sell one of my kidneys to pay for the outing.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

IT Project Manager

Competitive: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based in Chelmsford a...

Business Intelligence Specialist - work from home

£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established and growing IT Consultancy fir...

Business Intelligence Specialist - work from home

£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established and growing IT Consultancy fir...

IT Manager

£40000 - £45000 per annum + pension, healthcare,25 days: Ashdown Group: An est...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Nigel Farage has urged supporters to buy Mike Read's Ukip Calypso song and push it up to the No 1 spot  

Mike Read’s Ukip calypso is mesmerisingly atrocious — but it's not racist

Matthew Norman
Shirley Shackleton, wife of late journalist Gregory Shackleton, sits next to the grave of the 'Balibo Five' in Jakarta, in 2010  

Letter from Asia: The battle for the truth behind five journalists’ deaths in Indonesia

Andrew Buncombe
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals

'You need me, I don’t need you'

Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals
How to Get Away with Murder: Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama

How to Get Away with Murder

Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama
A cup of tea is every worker's right

Hard to swallow

Three hospitals in Leicester have banned their staff from drinking tea and coffee in public areas. Christopher Hirst explains why he thinks that a cuppa is every worker's right
Which animals are nearly extinct?

Which animals are nearly extinct?

Conservationists in Kenya are in mourning after the death of a white northern rhino, which has left the species with a single male. These are the other species on the brink
12 best children's shoes

Perfect for leaf-kicking: 12 best children's shoes

Find footwear perfect to keep kids' feet protected this autumn
Anderlecht vs Arsenal: Gunners' ray of light Aaron Ramsey shines again

Arsenal’s ray of light ready to shine again

Aaron Ramsey’s injury record has prompted a club investigation. For now, the midfielder is just happy to be fit to face Anderlecht in the Champions League
Comment: David Moyes' show of sensitivity thrown back in his face by former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson

Moyes’ show of sensitivity thrown back in his face... by Ferguson

Manchester United legend tramples on successor who resisted criticising his inheritance
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells