Cricketing Scientists

Saturday, February 19, 2005

The Oxford University Plant Sciences Cricket Team prepare in earnest for the arrival this summer of the Bangladesh test side.

Cricket was included in the Paris Olympics of 1900 but never again graced the games. At the time, a French magazine observed that “cricket is… a sport which appears monotonous and without colour to the uninitiated.”

The editor of that rag had clearly never been to Oxford to witness the passionate and flamboyant play of the Plant Sciences team.

On the other hand, a British journalist reported, “We found the French temperament is too excitable to enjoy the game and no Frenchman can be persuaded to play more than once.”

In 1900, the cricket competition consisted of one match between Great Britain (represented by the Devon and Somerset Wanderers Cricket Club) and France (represented by staff from the British embassy in Paris). Great Britain won by 158 runs.

Although it is no longer an Olympic sport, I hope to play some more cricket in the coming years. I have been lucky enough on occasion to be invited to make up the numbers for the Plant Sciences team, and on Thursday night attended their AGM. It was a fun evening, and I probably drank more Kingfisher than any pseudo-Olympian ought to (even though it smelt like washing-up liquid).

Huge thanks to the team, not only for the invites to play last season and to attend the AGM, but also for the spontaneous whip-round that raised £60 for Sobell House – your donations are greatly appreciated and will do a lot of good.


Master Foley said...

fuck the french

SwissToni said...

I may have to abandon my support of the London 2012 bid: they have adopted a song by M-People (or M-People featuring Heather Small, as they now appear to be called... know your enemy) as their official song.

We deserve to lose.