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The last king of Scotland

Posted in Ones to Watch

Gathering in Heathrow on a dull and dreary day had the feeling of a winter tour to an exotic climate.

Instead we were heading to Scotland for our next domestic fixture of this busy Friends Provident Trophy campaign. But, according to weather reports, Edinburgh was due to be exotic compared to London for the next few days.

We were on the same flight as some Middlesex supporters, people we are very grateful of. It is nice to have support with us all over the country but nothing would prepare us for what they had in store for the day of the game.

I knew I was to be rested for this match so I had two days to relax after bowling lots of overs in the last few weeks.

On the morning of the game we had our coach booked for 9am but it turned up late. Not to worry though as we all knew how to get to the ground pretty quickly.

An hour later it was clear the coach driver had no idea where the Grange was. He was stopping at every cricket ground in Edinburgh in the hope it would be where we were playing.

Some of the places he was stopping looked so bad that an under-11 team would refuse to play on it. It was like searching for Lord’s and stopping at Regent’s Park.

A short warm-up followed this debacle and we were soon into the game where we won the toss and batted first.

Grange Cricket Club, Edinburgh

The coach driver had real difficulty finding the Grange - fortunately Middlesex found a way past Scotland

An easy win, as predicted, was had by Middlesex, Shaun Udal providing the outstanding performance of 72 with the bat and three wickets with the ball.

Our Middlesex supporters were on song with many chants ringing from the boundary edge. One had come dressed as a Pink Panther and the rest had bright pink wigs. It was great to see our biggest fans embracing the name change and our pink kit.

My day off was cut short when Nick Compton pulled up with a groin strain whilst batting meaning I had to field for him for 30 overs - something that gave me the chance to see the ground’s pretty surroundings from a different angle.

Nick had a perfect day - 44 not out and then feet up. However, I am one to talk after my two injuries earlier in the season for which someone had to field for me. So to make sure no unfair abuse comes my way from Nick I will say no more.

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