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Life is not a dress rehersal PDF Print E-mail
Written by Chris Maquire   
Monday, 14 April 2014 09:28

The last Saturday before the new cricket season and I was given the starkest reminder possible why I haven’t retired.

The day started with me cleaning out the litter tray for our new cat. I then fixed a garden fence, mowed the lawn, put up a new washing line after first digging out the foundations to the old one, and ended cleaning the conservatory with a new 3 metre extendable brush.

I was exhausted. If I didn’t have cricket to look forward to I’d run the risk of doing that every weekend!

It’s been a long close season with the accolade for the most amusing tweet of the winter going to Eccleston’s Thomas Wilkinson, who couldn’t understand why his club’s new Twitter account was following me. “Why are we following @ifthecap?” he asked. “He’s an ass.” The season hasn’t even started and I’m already getting sledged!

The time between my last cricket match (an ignominious first baller against Withnell Fold) and the new season has been dominated by me taking my 10-year-old daughter to her football matches.

I idolize both my children and my youngest daughter and I are bonded by a shared obsession of sport – which has created an unexpected dilemma.

“Daddy,” she piped up. “I want to see you play cricket.” And this is the problem. If she sees me play any illusion that her old man is any good will be shattered within seconds.

Not only will I be lowered in her estimation but watching her dad play could prompt some very embarrassing questions. “Daddy why did all the opposition players point at the pavilion when they got you out?” or “Daddy why did that angry Australian bowler ask if you knew which end to hold the cricket bat?” or the most hurtful question of all “Daddy, why don’t you hit the ball with your bat?” I can hardly turn to her and say: “Because Daddy’s c**p.”

However one accusation that will never be fired in my direction is that I never fulfilled my potential – because I never had any cricket talent to waste.

I love the game and that will never change. As a new season beckons there are a couple of other cricketing certainties. The first is that I won’t put my dirty kit from last season into the washing basket until Friday and the second is that veteran David Makinson will be oldest player in the Leyland first team.

In his preview for the new Northern League season Makey Snr said the second oldest player in Leyland’s 1st team was just 26. What he didn’t say was that with him in the starting line-up the average age of Leyland’s 1st team is 46!!

I have a huge amount of respect for people like Makinson. He’s in his 50s but hasn’t got an ounce of fat on him and continues to love the game and bringing on young players.

I’m 42 in May and I feel about as sprightly as Sir Bruce Forsyth. I recently injured by shoulder in my sleep! My idea of an ‘all nighter’ is not to have to get out of bed for a wee.

I recently went to Emirates Old Trafford and watched as some of the Lancashire’s players had a net on the edge of the square. Unless my eye sight was failing me (and my batting average in 2013 indicates that it was) Liam Hurt, who I played against when he was at a kid at Leyland, and wicketkeeper Alex Davies, who learnt his cricket at Darwen, were among those being put through their paces.

 

It was an overcast day. The stands were empty and there was a hint of rain in the air. But at that precise moment I would have given everything I’ve achieved in my career to live the dream of a professional cricketer.

 

I have no reason to think it’s not the case but I hope the likes of Liam and Alex and fellow Lancashire team-mates Luis Reece, Tom Smith, Steven Croft and Simon Kerrigan not only enjoy every minute of being a cricketer but make the most of every ounce of their potential because life is not a dress rehearsal.

 

I say that with a heavy heart because in 2014 we won’t see Stephen Connor leading his Whittle and Clayton-le-Woods Cricket Club side in the Palace Shield.

That’s because he died in December after collapsing while playing Sunday league football for Plough FC. He was just 30 and he’d only been married for 10 weeks.

I can’t profess to have known Steve really well but when I met him he was a top lad. A couple of my team-mates at White Coppice were good friends and remain devastated by his death.

As we embark on a new season let’s all remember that life isn’t a dress rehearsal and cricket is just a game to be enjoyed. Good luck comrades.

 

Chris Maguire can be followed @ifthecap

The last Saturday before the new cricket season and I was given the starkest reminder possible why I haven’t retired.

The day started with me cleaning out the litter tray for our new cat. I then fixed a garden fence, mowed the lawn, put up a new washing line after first digging out the foundations to the old one, and ended cleaning the conservatory with a new 3 metre extendable brush.

I was exhausted. If I didn’t have cricket to look forward to I’d run the risk of doing that every weekend!

It’s been a long close season with the accolade for the most amusing tweet of the winter going to Eccleston’s Thomas Wilkinson, who couldn’t understand why his club’s new Twitter account was following me. “Why are we following @ifthecap?” he asked. “He’s an ass.” The season hasn’t even started and I’m already getting sledged!

The time between my last cricket match (an ignominious first baller against Withnell Fold) and the new season has been dominated by me taking my 10-year-old daughter to her football matches.

I idolize both my children and my youngest daughter and I are bonded by a shared obsession of sport – which has created an unexpected dilemma.

“Daddy,” she piped up. “I want to see you play cricket.” And this is the problem. If she sees me play any illusion that her old man is any good will be shattered within seconds.

Not only will I be lowered in her estimation but watching her dad play could prompt some very embarrassing questions. “Daddy why did all the opposition players point at the pavilion when they got you out?” or “Daddy why did that angry Australian bowler ask if you knew which end to hold the cricket bat?” or the most hurtful question of all “Daddy, why don’t you hit the ball with your bat?” I can hardly turn to her and say: “Because Daddy’s c**p.”

However one accusation that will never be fired in my direction is that I never fulfilled my potential – because I never had any cricket talent to waste.

I love the game and that will never change. As a new season beckons there are a couple of other cricketing certainties. The first is that I won’t put my dirty kit from last season into the washing basket until Friday and the second is that veteran David Makinson will be oldest player in the Leyland first team.

In his preview for the new Northern League season Makey Snr said the second oldest player in Leyland’s 1st team was just 26. What he didn’t say was that with him in the starting line-up the average age of Leyland’s 1st team is 46!!

I have a huge amount of respect for people like Makinson. He’s in his 50s but hasn’t got an ounce of fat on him and continues to love the game and bringing on young players.

I’m 42 in May and I feel about as sprightly as Sir Bruce Forsyth. I recently injured by shoulder in my sleep! My idea of an ‘all nighter’ is not to have to get out of bed for a wee.

I recently went to Emirates Old Trafford and watched as some of the Lancashire’s players had a net on the edge of the square. Unless my eye sight was failing me (and my batting average in 2013 indicates that it was) Liam Hurt, who I played against when he was at a kid at Leyland, and wicketkeeper Alex Davies, who learnt his cricket at Darwen, were among those being put through their paces.

 

It was an overcast day. The stands were empty and there was a hint of rain in the air. But at that precise moment I would have given everything I’ve achieved in my career to live the dream of a professional cricketer.

 

I have no reason to think it’s not the case but I hope the likes of Liam and Alex and fellow Lancashire team-mates Luis Reece, Tom Smith, Steven Croft and Simon Kerrigan not only enjoy every minute of being a cricketer but make the most of every ounce of their potential because life iz not a dress rehearsal.

 

I say that with a heavy heart because in 2014 we won’t see Stephen Connor leading his Whittle and Clayton-le-Woods Cricket Club side in the Palace Shield.

That’s because he died in December after collapsing while playing Sunday league football for Plough FC. He was just 30 and he’d only been married for 10 weeks.

I can’t profess to have known Steve really well but when I met him he was a top lad. A couple of my team-mates at White Coppice were good friends and remain devastated by his death.

As we embark on a new season let’s all remember that life isn’t a dress rehearsal and cricket is just a game to be enjoyed. Good luck comrades.

 

Chris Maguire can be followed @ifthecap

The last Saturday before the new cricket season and I was given the starkest reminder possible why I haven’t retired.

The day started with me cleaning out the litter tray for our new cat. I then fixed a garden fence, mowed the lawn, put up a new washing line after first digging out the foundations to the old one, and ended cleaning the conservatory with a new 3 metre extendable brush.

I was exhausted. If I didn’t have cricket to look forward to I’d run the risk of doing that every weekend!

It’s been a long close season with the accolade for the most amusing tweet of the winter going to Eccleston’s Thomas Wilkinson, who couldn’t understand why his club’s new Twitter account was following me. “Why are we following @ifthecap?” he asked. “He’s an ass.” The season hasn’t even started and I’m already getting sledged!

The time between my last cricket match (an ignominious first baller against Withnell Fold) and the new season has been dominated by me taking my 10-year-old daughter to her football matches.

I idolize both my children and my youngest daughter and I are bonded by a shared obsession of sport – which has created an unexpected dilemma.

“Daddy,” she piped up. “I want to see you play cricket.” And this is the problem. If she sees me play any illusion that her old man is any good will be shattered within seconds.

Not only will I be lowered in her estimation but watching her dad play could prompt some very embarrassing questions. “Daddy why did all the opposition players point at the pavilion when they got you out?” or “Daddy why did that angry Australian bowler ask if you knew which end to hold the cricket bat?” or the most hurtful question of all “Daddy, why don’t you hit the ball with your bat?” I can hardly turn to her and say: “Because Daddy’s c**p.”

However one accusation that will never be fired in my direction is that I never fulfilled my potential – because I never had any cricket talent to waste.

I love the game and that will never change. As a new season beckons there are a couple of other cricketing certainties. The first is that I won’t put my dirty kit from last season into the washing basket until Friday and the second is that veteran David Makinson will be oldest player in the Leyland first team.

In his preview for the new Northern League season Makey Snr said the second oldest player in Leyland’s 1st team was just 26. What he didn’t say was that with him in the starting line-up the average age of Leyland’s 1st team is 46!!

I have a huge amount of respect for people like Makinson. He’s in his 50s but hasn’t got an ounce of fat on him and continues to love the game and bringing on young players.

I’m 42 in May and I feel about as sprightly as Sir Bruce Forsyth. I recently injured by shoulder in my sleep! My idea of an ‘all nighter’ is not to have to get out of bed for a wee.

I recently went to Emirates Old Trafford and watched as some of the Lancashire’s players had a net on the edge of the square. Unless my eye sight was failing me (and my batting average in 2013 indicates that it was) Liam Hurt, who I played against when he was at a kid at Leyland, and wicketkeeper Alex Davies, who learnt his cricket at Darwen, were among those being put through their paces.

 

It was an overcast day. The stands were empty and there was a hint of rain in the air. But at that precise moment I would have given everything I’ve achieved in my career to live the dream of a professional cricketer.

 

I have no reason to think it’s not the case but I hope the likes of Liam and Alex and fellow Lancashire team-mates Luis Reece, Tom Smith, Steven Croft and Simon Kerrigan not only enjoy every minute of being a cricketer but make the most of every ounce of their potential because life iz not a dress rehearsal.

 

I say that with a heavy heart because in 2014 we won’t see Stephen Connor leading his Whittle and Clayton-le-Woods Cricket Club side in the Palace Shield.

That’s because he died in December after collapsing while playing Sunday league football for Plough FC. He was just 30 and he’d only been married for 10 weeks.

I can’t profess to have known Steve really well but when I met him he was a top lad. A couple of my team-mates at White Coppice were good friends and remain devastated by his death.

As we embark on a new season let’s all remember that life isn’t a dress rehearsal and cricket is just a game to be enjoyed. Good luck comrades.

 

Chris Maguire can be followed @ifthecap

Last Updated on Monday, 14 April 2014 09:33
 

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