RICHARD ORD: Why I'm a shoo-in for England ... under 12s!

The hottest day of the year was recorded earlier this month, which I thought was an interesting snippet of news.

Wednesday, 16th June 2021, 12:00 am
Okay kids I'm ready ... but no fasties.

The following day it was revealed that even that temperature had been topped with another record high for the year. Wow!

When another year-high was recorded this week, I stopped being buoyed by this news and became slightly irritated. I mean, isn’t that how summer works? It starts off mild, gets hotter, then tails off again.

Maybe they’ve been making these announcements since January but I just haven’t been listening closely enough.

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First thing on New Year’s Day, though it may be a touch above freezing, the broadcasters may well have been trumpeting it as the hottest day of the year.

My irritation is heightened by the fact that I am currently crocked with a calf strain which means I can’t play cricket. The hot weather is taunting me.

We have perfect cricketing weather week after week and I’m sitting on the sofa rubbing frozen peas on my calf praying for rain (if I can’t play, I don’t see why everyone else should).

Which means my attention has wandered into the important matters of the day. Pub banter.

A couple of weeks ago we discussed that pressing concern of all slightly tiddly beer-users, that being which animals would win a fight. Match-ups include shark v bear, gorilla v elephant and duck v lobster. All too close to call I’d say.

Well, I can inform you all that we have moved on from those classic bouts of the animal kingdom and into new, more personal territory.

As children we all dreamt of playing for our country at whatever sport we showed a modicum of talent at playing. So this question was raised by my cricket buddies, after a few pints, naturally. At what level do you think you could play for England now? After much thought, I reckon I could, calf-permitting, not look out of place if selected for England under 12s (and by ‘not look out of place’ I mean ability level. I accept that a 55-year-old man in too-tight schoolboy’s cricket flannels I would very much look out of place). That is at cricket of course. I may only make the bench for the England under 10s football team, but that’s another story.

I also accept that I haven’t watched the top child players in the country and may well be kidding myself. Given my current condition, I reckon I’d struggle to get into the England Over-80s team.

Next week’s burning boozer banter question: How many of your mates do you think would take to beat Newcastle United in a football match. I reckon I could do it with 29.