Jaqui's Daily Blog

My Sporting Dilemma

Mr B and I are watching the FA Cup Final. I am supporting Chelsea, he is supporting Liverpool.

 

I say that we should really both be supporting Chelsea. After all, at Sporting Memories last week, everybody without exception said they would be with Mr B in supporting Spurs playing in their local derby match against Arsenal at the weekend, even our most fervent of Chelsea supporters. Fair’s fair, I said - surely we should repay the favour? Mr B says all is not necessarily fair in football and he is supporting Liverpool. I can do as I want, he says, but Liverpool will win….

 

Which of course they did, after thirty minutes of extra time and a penalty shoot-out. I had to wait for the Women’s Final the following day for Chelsea to lift an F.A. Cup - I wonder if our Sporting Memories chum will be appeased by this victory?

 

Oh, but the Cup Final isn’t the same anymore! I remember the build-up in the days when my dear Dad was in charge of the TV, watching every minute of the band playing, singing along with the community singalong. Now we just get pundits predicting the score, analysing the team selection, deciding what the outcome for this player or that will be, depending on how they play. I honestly don’t want or need such input - I have Mr B for that…

 

What I do like is the competition itself, the inclusion of the “little” clubs, the enticing prospect of a giant-killing run of good luck. It’s just a pity that we always seem to end up with more of the same. Sorry, Chelsea. Sorry, Liverpool.

 

What is really concerning me at the moment, however, is that the Footie season is coming to an end. Over the last year, since our Sporting Memories Gang started to meet again (as Her Maj promised, you might remember) I have worked hard to develop my football knowledge. I have watched, with Mr B, football matches on TV with much more avid interest than in the past in order to be able to keep up with the conversation on a Thursday morning at Worthing Football Club. I have learnt the names of a good many players, usually those with memorable hair styles. I can generally hazard a guess as to who is at the top and who is at the bottom of the Premier League. I kind of know why it matters to qualify for the Champions League at the end of the season and how a team secures its place there.

 

Only last Thursday, the lovely Rhona, one of our volunteer organisers, praised my sporting knowledge. Okay, so this was because I managed to answer one of the weekly quiz questions correctly before anybody else - the answer was “Stirling Moss” and, to be strictly honest (and I always feel the Daily Blog owes that much to its readers), I had simply called out the only racing driver from the Early Days whose name I knew. 

 

The trouble is, we are now into the cricket season and the main topic of the weekly conversation at Sporting Memories is clearly shifting from football to cricket. I had to keep quiet for, well it must have been at least ten minutes, because I didn’t know who everyone was talking about. I need to know the difference between the “white ball game” and the “red ball game.” I need to try to memorise the names of the whole Sussex cricket team and what they look like - it used to be easier in the far-off days of Colin Cowdrey and Ted Dexter because the batsmen didn’t wear protective head-gear and I could check out their hair styles…

 

Before we were married I used to accompany Mr B to all his cricket matches. I used to help make the teas, like a good girl-friend, and didn’t mind too much when the other wives and girl-friends turned up at the end of the match, all dressed up to the nines, while I looked like Cinderella after a bad day in the kitchen.

 

Mr B always felt I should watch him play and I did my best. One particular match, I watched and applauded every one of the four wickets he took, and the ten runs he scored. So what did he ask me, as he left the field, triumphant?

 

“Did you see that brilliant one-handed catch I took to dismiss their leading scorer?”

 

“Er, what catch?” I was forced to admit…

 

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Latest comments

23.04 | 20:15

lovely and heartwarming - an inspiration to us all x

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09.03 | 12:07

Love this story told as ever beautifully.x

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10.11 | 21:31

What a super account of a special event. I loved meeting you last night and seeing your creation come together. I’m so pleased you got so much from the activity

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07.09 | 13:17

I have broad shoulders x

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