Lord's Taverners Swann Song Lunch and General Meeting
Graeme enjoys his Swann Song
For the first time presiding over a Lord’s Taverners event I went in with some trepidation. I felt like I was going in number four at 10-2 with plenty of movement about. There had been an unsatisfactory AGM which preceded the Spring Lunch at Lord’s which had left many members disgruntled. Others were reputedly unhappy at the choice of Graeme Swann as our tributee, as they thought he had jumped ship in Australia on the England tour.
I was proud of the Taverners who gave Swann a standing ovation as he walked to his table. Without his bowling we wouldn’t have become no.1 in the world nor had such a happy dressing room without him in it, so for me he deserved every round of applause he received during a day of tributes.
Greg James was well qualified to kick it off. His radio show featuring Jimmy Anderson and Graeme Swann has been well received and he was able to paint a nice picture of Swann the man, or should I say Swann the piss-taker! We featured Jimmy via video link, which he had filmed as a ‘selfie’ on his mobile phone. It was rubbish Jimmy, but thanks for the effort.
I then had a fascinating interview with the new MD of English cricket, Paul Downton. He only did this to support the Lord’s Taverners as he was in the midst of an England cricket team overhaul, some would say crisis. It was brave of him to trust me to ask him ‘any question you like’ as in his short reign in the job he had just removed Kevin Pietersen and Andy Flower (albeit mutual) and was about to appoint a new coach. Paul did us proud, speaking openly and honestly about England’s future and we wished him well in his new job.
As always I gave a brief overview of our giving before Dominic Tinner from the Seashell Trust spoke beautifully and passionately about how we have supported them. This was followed by carnival time – another Charlie Ross auction – thanks Charlie as always!
We then had the Surrey and England off-spinner Pat ‘Percy’ Pocock who, with his amusing stories and rendition of a Frank Sinatra number, was the perfect warm-up man to our guest of honour.
Swanny was quite relaxed with what I thought was like a searing, throat-high Mitchell Johnson bouncer first ball, when I asked him first up why some people thought he had jumped ship from Australia.
“Simple,” he said, “my elbow had gone, I wasn’t going to bowl another ball, we were 3-0 down in the series and the fear of me just loitering around the dressing room taking the piss out of the players was probably too much for coach Andy Flower. So he sat me down, shook my hand and simply said, bugger off on the next plane!”
Graeme Swann has been one of the great characters in English cricket and I was proud to have him at our Spring Lunch, which was aptly billed as the Swann Song. He offered his time freely, he entertained us in a natural and amusing way and the Lord’s Taverners had enjoyed another great event.
Original event details:
Join us at the home of cricket for the Lord’s Taverners ‘Swann Song’ Lunch – a celebration of the career of one of the greatest characters and finest spinners of English cricket, Graeme Swann.
The day will feature tributes from:
England and Lancashire
Managing Director of the England and Wales Cricket Board
Radio 1 and Radio 5 Live’s ‘Not just Cricket’
Hosted by CHRIS COWDREY
Former England Captain & President of the Lord’s Taverners
Plus surprise guests who will join us to celebrate the career of the legendary spinner who took 255 wickets for England in 60 Test matches.
We look forward to welcoming you to the Nursery Pavilion at Lord’s Cricket Ground following the Lord’s Taverners AGM for an insight into the life of an England star, cricketer, singer, joker and family man – a lunch not to be missed!
Venue: Lord's Cricket Ground, London, NW8
For directions click here.
Dress code: Lounge Suit
Ticket cost: £125 per person
Lord's Taverners Members discounted price: £100 per person
Tickets include a three course lunch and half a bottle of wine per person.#
To view booking form please click here.
To book tickets please call the events team on 020 7821 2828 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bookings are only confirmed with payment
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