Young cricketers from Clitheroe Cobras have been in the UAE to support England in the one-day series and play a few challenge matches themselves, in Day Seven of his blog, coach FAROUK HUSSAIN finds himself at home before the flight home...
Everyone checked out early this morning and headed off to Dubai College for our final game before flying home in the evening.
A new phenomena awaited us at the venue – a concrete wicket!
It was clearly in need of a good heavy rolling however with more undulations than Tarquin’s stomach, obviously something that had been laid by Rogue Builders.
The outfield was not quite as smooth or closely mowed as previous venues and you felt like you were playing at certain Ribblesdale League grounds – lads should feel more at home I thought.
The batting failed to click and the Cobras managed a meagre 76 with a solid effort from Sam Mulligan, top scoring with 13 and several single figure scores from the rest.
The home side smashed their way to the target with Dom Stuart taking the only wicket to fall.
A quick pasta lunch, which king Cobra managed to use to decorate his white polo shirt with, was followed by a mad dash to the Dubai International Stadium to watch the England game.
Yet again a primitive ticket office and absurd security system greeted our group but eventually we made our way through the maze of barriers and found a place to sit.
Actually we could have had our pick of hundreds of seats – as the crowd was fairly sparse! Lots of singing and banter with the Pakistan fans, led as always by Tarquin helped to get everyone in a jovial mood, which deflected attention from the imminent flight home.
Shovelhands Lomax and son, accompanied by a pen and camera decided to go on a mission to grab yet more autographs and his persistence paid off as he returned brandishing KP’s signature. Another meeting with Chacha Cricket was followed by a change of viewing area as the Cobras headed up to the top tier to get a bird’s eye view of proceedings.
King Cobra and family disappeared for a quick meal and returned an hour later to gather the troops, to make the journey back to the hotel.
A shower, meal and even time for a quick coffee were the final acts as the Cobras boarded the coach to Abu Dhabi and the depressing thought of returning to the cold and work!
Wonder what happened to Florence as she did not make the return journey with us!
Did she ever make it to Qatar, her next destination, or is she currently being detained by the authorities in Dubai for theft and deception? Perhaps she is now on the FBI’s most wanted list.
It has been an amazing experience for all and I’m sure it will be remembered for the rest of everyone’s lives.
Many new friendships made and lots of stories to tell,which will become taller as each month goes by.