May 24, 2005

Old school lie

24 May 2005

The Sports Editor
The Guardian
119 Farringdon Road
London EC1R 3ER

Dear Sir/Madam

I was most surprised to read in Donald McRae's
interview with Andrew Strauss yesterday that Strauss reckons he and Glenn McGrath "played a few games together" when McGrath was at Middlesex last summer. From memory, and a quick flick through Cricinfo just now, I don't reckon they were ever on the same team, not even once. Am I mistaken, or did Mr McRae neither know nor check?

I was also rather amused at the notion of a "mild dressing-room stigma of him being an ex-public schoolboy" – not to mention his claim that "when I arrived at Middlesex I was the only guy who'd been to public school". Given that Phil Tufnell went to public school, the latter claim is entirely incorrect and the former can hardly be taken seriously either. The current Middlesex batting line-up includes, apart from Strauss himself, both Ben Hutton and Jamie Dalrymple from Radley, Nick Compton from Harrow, Ed Smith from Tonbridge and Ed Joyce from an exclusive school in Ireland the name of which escapes me.

Which doesn't leave a lot of space for any "stigma", mild or otherwise. Indeed, one doubts whether county cricket has seen such a public school-dominated dressing-room since Gentlemen started coming in through the same gate as Professionals.




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