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Celebrity match against Bucklebury Cricket Club thrills Woolhampton




Cricket fans gathered at Douai Pavilion in Woolhampton on Sunday last week to watch Bucklebury Cricket Club take on a team comprised of sports stars, including big names from English cricket and football.

The match, which kicked off after lunchtime, was hosted by broadcaster Chris Tarrant, who lives locally.

Mr Tarrant's commentary – imploring onlookers to buy raffle tickets in aid of disability charity the Lord's Taverners – was supplemented by that of Felix Francis.

Lords Taverners Team
Lords Taverners Team

Mr Francis is the son of the late novelist Dick Francis and an acclaimed author in his own right.

Ex-England rugby player Rob Andrew was meant to feature, but was unable to make the day.

Former international cricketers David Gower and Mike Gatting, originally signed for the visitors' team, ended up umpiring instead.

Taverners David Seaman was surprised by a short ball
Taverners David Seaman was surprised by a short ball

In the end, the much-touted celebrity side counted among its players ex-cricketers Andy Caddick and Chris Adams, alongside ex-England and Arsenal goalkeeper David Seaman.

Around 300 people attended, despite initial speculation that the match could be called off due to poor weather.

It was sponsored by local firms West Berkshire Brewery and Black Cygnet Properties.

The match was well-received, with the Bucklebury side eventually winning, having brought on a number of last-minute ringers.

The crowd loved the game
The crowd loved the game

Nevertheless, the visitors are said to have put up a fight.

Organiser John Allen said: "Andy Caddick bowled a couple of decent overs, and his son – who's quite quick – bowled several overs.

"David Seaman took an absolutely blinding catch on the boundary.

David Gower umpires
David Gower umpires

"The main point is, we made some money for the charity, and, had the weather been decent, we'd have had a lot more people, of course.

"Given the weather, it was a fantastic success."

Ticket and raffle sales on the day are said to have generated substantial proceeds, although organisers have yet to disclose the final tally.

Ex-England captain Mike Gatting
Ex-England captain Mike Gatting
David Seaman enjoyed his inning
David Seaman enjoyed his inning
David Gower and Andy Caddick
David Gower and Andy Caddick
Bucklebury's Tom Pettifer misses a catch to give away 6 runs
Bucklebury's Tom Pettifer misses a catch to give away 6 runs


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