Fan Following

First-person reports from the stands

England v Bangladesh, 2nd Test, Old Trafford, 2nd day

Swanny, Jimmy and Tuffers galore

Taking your son to his first Test is special. So much the better if there are a century and a five-for on offer

Nick Clapson

Comments: 4 | Text size: A | A
Graeme Swann celebrates the dismissal of Jahurul Islam, England v Bangladesh, 2nd npower Test, Old Trafford, June 5, 2010
Swann took over the show once Tamim left © PA Photos

The game
After the Bangladesh batsmen gave the England side so much trouble in the first Test at Lord's, I thought it would be interesting to see how they would perform on this very different pitch. I was also looking forward to taking my seven-year-old son to his first Test match.

Team supported
Like the majority of the crowd, we were supporting England. There were a handful of very vocal Bangladeshis in the crowd, but the sheer number of England fans easily drowned them out.

Key performers
I came to the match expecting to see a top-drawer performance from Jonathon Trott but he had fallen cheaply for three the previous day. So it was the guile of Graeme Swann's bowling against the forceful batting of Tamim Iqbal. Neither let his supporters down. Swann was as wily as a coyote, casually picking the batsmen apart. He got a well deserved five-for as a reward. However, this was only after the departure of the majestic Tamim, who even had the English fans applauding his audacity.

One thing I'd have changed
The game was perfect; quality batting from England, and a well-pitched battle after lunch. But if I had the power, I would have turned the thermostat down on the day a bit. It was blisteringly hot, and by the end of the day we all felt thoroughly baked.

Filling the gaps
At lunch yesterday, I saw the Under-11s play, but today there was nothing. However, that gave my son and I the chance to wander around the ground and soak up the atmosphere.

Shot of the day
Tamim and Ian Bell hit several aggressive drives that made the crowd stand up and applaud.

Crowd meter
It was a lively crowd, with costumes ranging from Michael Jackson to the Thunderbirds, and my son seemed to spend as much time gawking at the crowd as he did watching the game. Old Trafford is the home ground of Jimmy Anderson and the crowd was really behind him during his brief batting spell. And it roared every run-up when he bowled.

At lunch, the ECB gave the crowd the chance to do a question-and-answer session with the former England player Phil "Tuffers" Tuffnell. A great crowd pleaser, Tuffers, gave us all a good laugh, especially when he forgot who England were playing today!

All in all it was a great day that neither my son nor I will forget. The crowd was electric at times, really bringing the match to life. The players were nothing less than first-class. We saw great batsmen, great bowlers, and a wonderful competition, all in a single game. You can't beat that.

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Nick Clapson is 40 years old and lives in the North West of England. He's a keen cricket fan and a Lancashire supporter.

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Comments: 4 
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Posted by Dummy4 on (June 7, 2010, 9:25 GMT)

Where isn't there any Bangladeshi fan following interview here? Change the header too England fan following in that case. You could have put alternate fan each day....

Posted by Vivek on (June 7, 2010, 4:38 GMT)

it's always great to bring kids to watch Test cricket...we@Delhi too love to watch Test cricket in warm Winters...unlike the gross T20 where it's all madness and hoopla with no 'actual' cricket...

Posted by Dummy4 on (June 6, 2010, 11:01 GMT)

wow...a very nice article...even i ennjoyed the match.I'm verry happy dat u took ur son to the match....keep writing more!!!

Posted by Dummy4 on (June 6, 2010, 10:26 GMT)

If I believe your words that "it was a great day that neither me nor my son will forget", then surely test cricket can be entertaining and get the crowds.

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