Encounters with the Stars

The Old Batsman writes about seeing Shane Watson, Ricky Ponting and Mike Hussey in the street in London.

I can't remember seeing any properly famous cricketers in the street. I don't think Keith Tomlins (of Middlesex and Gloucestershire non-fame) and Kevin Jarvis (the man who once said that if he could bowl at himself it would be 'an amputation job to get the ball out of my hand') really count, although I hope someone out there remembers them.

However, I did once share a Port Elizabeth hotel with the England team and its media pack.

At one point I was walking, alone, down a corridor, and, coming in the other direction, also alone, was Ian Botham. He looked at me, I looked at him. He looked suspicious, I probably just looked sunburnt after a day spent frying in the St.George's Park sunshine. Neither of us said anything, although I had the distinct impression that he expected me to, probably because he was all too used to people thinking they knew him when they didn't and treating him like a lost friend when he hadn't got a clue who they were. I reflected later on our wordless encounter, thinking about the fact that while he'd never consciously seen me before and knew nothing about me, I knew his name, when and where he was born, the names of his wife and children, where he grew up, went to school, and so on and so on. To all intents and purposes I did know him. But then again I didn't.

Another member of my party opened the door of his hotel room to find Bob Willis bowling a tennis ball down the corridor at Mark Ramprakash.

I think he played and missed.


The Old Batsman said...

Bob Will bowling a tennis ball at Ramps - that's too good. Hope Bob was off his full run

Brian Carpenter said...

I think I may have embellished that one a bit. It may not have been a tennis ball. It might have been a screwed up piece of paper or something like that.

I should think Bob was off his old 'Sunday League run'.

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