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Though it‘s a ﬂattering view. we‘re not really ‘another cricketing nation‘ — we’re not one at all. The gentle thwok of leather on willow beneath a burning sun is hardly a major element in the Scottish psyche. Indeed, the main impetus behind the unprecedented financial outlay of around £13.000 made by Greenock Cricket Club and the Scottish Cricket Union to bring Greenidge over, was to encourage interest in the game. particularly from youngsters. As Pete Wilkinson ofthe SCU put it ‘In a sense we are buying his name. He won‘t provide a single solution but he could well be the catalyst that helps cricket make a break through here.‘
The chances of the sport making a greater impact here are definitely improving. Until a few years ago being a Scottish Cricket internationalist was. in world sporting terms. about as prestigous as being a tiddlywinks player for Burkino Faso. Over the last decade however, significant strides forward have been made. Scotland now competes. in theory at least. as an equal in the major county competitions: the Benson & Hedges Cup and the Nat West Trophy. Last Thursday. in a momentous victory over Northants by two runs. the side chalked up their second victory in the Benson & Hedges (‘up. Prior to that there have been some stirring performances: last year Yorkshire only just squirmed offthe hook in the Nat West Trophy.
The early signs are that this season. with the elegant stroke~play of their Barbadian batsman. Scotland's fortunes may improve dramatically. Noone is really expecting miracles. but one more good result in either competition would make the press and the cricketing world sit up and take notice. Greenidge however. refuses to get carried away by the possibility ofScottish victories. 'lfl can get the players around me to lift their game then that‘s great. but obviously they would not be there if they were not professional in their approach. Yeah. I’m looking forward to the challenge of playing for (ireenock and Scotland.‘
Though his quick-time 32 set the tone for the victory over Northants the real batting stars were Philip (95) and Swan (-14). proving he is by no means the only weapon in the Scottish arsenal. Well kent cricketers have come north before; Mike Proctor and Omar l lenry (now playing as a resident). but while they contributed greatly to improving the sport‘s profile they can hardly match the calibre of C. Gordon Oreenidge. For both Greenock and the SCU he is the big fish. and they have gambled heavily to land him. Whether their investment will pay off for them. only the season will tell. The l stonewall batsman has already 1 sparked great interest in the game.
i now it‘s up to the SCU and the Scotland Xl to maintain it. The
I_ victory at Northampton has shown I
that they are equal to the challenge.
Pick a peck of picnics
Jo Roe gives a run-down ofthe hardware required for a pleasant pastoral afternoon. What do you mean it‘s raining again?
Could we have a cut of your best : ham. some fresh cream cakes and
lashings ofginger beer. Hurrah! The subject of literature and art for centuries. from SHUHUH'S and Amazons to Dejeimcr Sur L 'Herhe. the picnic has been firmly adopted as a British institution. Ignoring the
: fact that summer is very possibly
over for Scotland. feasting among
‘ the lengthening shadows is one ofthe ; greatest pleasures of the season. 3 Although the idea could probably be
traced back to Stone Age man. the word only entered the English language around 1800. at which point it referred to a form of
entertainment for which each
participant contributed to the general table. The Picnic Society was formed for a fashionable elite. members of which were referred to as Picnickians.
Most of us were first introduced to the picnic by zealous parents; sand in yer sandwiches. hard-boiled eggs and a biting wind. They can ofcourse be a more sophisticated affair. Instead, you might throw together
some smoked salmon sandwiches, a box of strawberries and a bottle of champers, find a daisied meadow, lay out the rug and wind up the gramaphone.
Although the British are keen picnickers. unabashed to set up in any verdant spot. the victuals are often plain. Americans look after themselves with huge coolers and mountains of rich food. and the French. however unimaginative their choice of picnic site may be. will concoct gastronomic extravaganzas. It is with some finer touches that we will promote the picnic from hasty snack to open air banquet.
THE HAM PER
The ultimate picnic should be housed in a wickerwork hamper. and eaten in style. The main department stores sell them in varying sizes from about £60 upwards. the most splendid ofwhich is stocked in butchers. Otherwise any picnic will be aided by a little home preparation. My grandmother used to load us with chilled gazpacho, barbecued chicken, home-grown fruit and hot garlic bread wrapped in silver foil. Summer salads. spiced with fresh basil and fennel, make delightful picnic fodder and can be eaten in pitta bread. A more substantial salad would involve rice or pasta. and Kirsty Burrell,
co-author of Food ForAII Seasons, recommends Spanish omelette, cooked at home and sliced into portions. Baguettes are very handy, snappily converted into a crocodile sandwich, though these days there are myriad breads on offer from olive to cheese-and-onion. Similarly, savoury snacks, such as spinach and feta cheese savouries, samosas or quiche, make a change from the filled roll, and yoghurt, fruit salad or apple pie will round the meal off nicely. Drink is obviously important, alcoholic or otherwise, and is best prepared beforehand.
For either filled rolls, salads and pies or for basic ingredients, delicatessens are pretty handy for the impromptu picnic. Without attempting a comprehensive list, below are some useful suggestions.
Be prepared, and your picnic, however humble, will benefit. One of the simplest yet most effective additions is a condiment set: a sprinkling of salt and pepper works wonders for the otherwise uncompromising hard-boiled egg. Equally important is a thermos for hot coffee. These come large enough to supply a football team or small enough to tuck in a lunch box. They are also useful for cool drinks, which should be prepared with ice and garnished with fresh mint. Similarly,
“The List 18—31 May 1990