Club Cricket Conference

Tuesday, 30th November 2021

Lara and Lord's promise much for Hertfordshire's big day out


By Charles Randall
17 June 2014

Brian Lara provides the major attraction as a player for the MCC against Hertfordshire on Lord’s Anniversary Day on 22 June, a Sunday that effectively celebrates club cricket at the game's iconic headquarters.

The MCC have promised a good day out for £10 admission, and Hertfordshire members will have free access to the pavilion. Interestingly, for the first time since 1987 spectators will be allowed to watch from the grass inside between the perimeter fence on the Grand Stand side, enhancing the match atmosphere just like the old days.

The presence of Lara should be a wonderful bonus. The former Trinidad and West Indies left-hander stands among the best batsman ever to have played the game and, at the age of 45, would still represent a formidable obstacle to the Hertfordshire club bowlers in this 40-over match. Several club players without a first class background are listed in the MCC side alongside Lara. These are batsman Will Vanderspar, of Brondesbury CC, Alex Martin, the Oundle Town CC wicketkeeper-batsman, and committee man Hugo Loudon, formerly at Sevenoaks Vine CC.

Sunday's Bicentenary game marks the exact occasion of the first match played at the current Lord’s ground - 22 June 1814, MCC versus Hertfordshire. This time MCC are to be led by John Stephenson, and Hertfordshire will be captained by Nesan Jeyaratnam, of North Mymms CC, for a 2pm start.

Nick Gilbert, chairman of the Hertfordshire County Cricket Association, said it was a “huge honour” for his county to play a significant part in such a milestone celebration. "We have every wish for the cricketing community in Hertfordshire at whatever level to come to Lord’s to join us and help MCC mark the day,” he said. “I’m pleased that many organisations have really 'bought into' the day and even to the point where some clubs are laying on buses for the day to take their members to Lord’s. This is fantastic for us and hopefully a significant crowd on the day will not only help cheer our boys on but will add to the festival type atmosphere that I know MCC would love to see."

The MCC have issued 1,000 public tickets for the pavilion, half of these available on the day. Many family attractions include a children's fete, bicentenary Lord's tours, cricket master classes, a 63-piece steel band, singer-songwriters, magicians, Victorian food stalls, wine and champagne tasting, real ale bars and film shows in the Lord's museum. Bat-makers Hunts County will be hosting a bat and ball making workshop on the Nursery Ground.

MCC: John Stephenson (captain), Daryl Mitchell, Brian Lara, Dale Benkenstein, Will Vanderspar, Jonathan Wileman, Aaron Laraman, Hugo Loudon, Alex Martin, Trent Johnston, Min Patel.

Admission to the ground anywhere is £10 for adults and £5 for under-16s. Start 2pm. or call 0207 432 1000.