What does it take to make a Lord’s Test match quintessentially Irish? (a match report)

Posted by
2 minute read

Send your match reports to king@kingcricket.co.uk. If it’s a professional match, on no account mention the cricket itself. If it’s an amateur match, feel free to go into excruciating detail.

Ged writes:

“What does it take to make a Lord’s Test match quintessentially Irish?” I wondered to myself ahead of the inaugural Test between England and Ireland. King Cricket wondered the same thing and asked me to report on’t.

At Lord’s, the availability of bottled Guinness was pretty much to be the “be all and end all” of it.

I needed to take matters into my own hands.

I arranged to take guests to each day of the match, hoping that I’d be taking at least one person of Irish extraction each time, but without pre-selecting guests on ethnic grounds.   

One of my Wednesday guests, Dominic, answered the question, “Do you by chance have any Irish ancestry?” with the intriguing answer, “No… apart from one Irish grandfather.” 

Nigel “Father Barry” White joined me and Charley “The Gent” Malloy on Thursday. Nigel is a self-confessed Scouser so I suspected he had some Irish roots.

“Yes,” he said, in answer to that question. “My great-great-great-grandfather came from Ireland in the 1850s…” and he proceeded to tell a fascinating family history. Nigel might be persuaded to chime in with it, by way of a comment.

Báirbre, one of my Friday guests, also from Merseyside, was a bit more of a slam dunk in the Irish origins department; her wonderful father was probably one of the most quintessentially Irish people I have ever met. 

I was on picnic duty for the Wednesday and the Friday. On Wednesday I made the bagels with some outstanding Irish smoked salmon, a gift from Daisy’s lovely (former) client Helga who now lives in West Cork and who has sent us gifts of salmon from her local smoke house ever since we praised the stuff to the rafters when we visited Ireland in Dumbo a few years ago.

Mrs Malloy made the superb Thursday picnic for us. Corned beef sandwiches, a Charley “the Gent” favourite, were the centrepiece as usual – a (probably unwitting) tribute to Irish cuisine.

On Friday I thought I’d goofed until I discovered that the Jarlsberg cheese I had bought for the turkey, cheese and mayo sandwiches was, in fact, from Ireland. So I couldn’t use my “Norwegian Option” joke but I did at least have an Irish backstop.

Actually, the most quintessentially Irish thing about that Lord’s Test was the gloriously topsy-turvy nature of the match. But this is King Cricket – so we’re not allowed to talk about that.


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


Why risk it when it's so easy to sign up?


  1. Super stuff, Ged, had you included cabbage in this somewhere, you would pretty much have covered the gamut of Irish cuisine in your efforts.

  2. Top notch, old boy, but perplexed by the addition of cheese into a Turkey sandwich. What do I know, I eat my avocados with Worcestershire Sauce and melt Stilton into mince pies.

    1. The cafe near us started doing roast of the day sandwiches this week. We gave the gammon a run.

      What we didn’t realise – and were delighted to discover – was that it’s a full roast on a sandwich. Roasties, stuffing, gravy, the works.

      1. Well first of all, you don’t want to choose your bread… poorly. We went for what they described as a ‘soft ciabatta’ that was thick enough to provide leeway. I’m not sure sliced bread would be the way to go.

        Secondly, it’s quite thick gravy and the spuds are quite broken up, so they absorb a fair amount.

        We’re not quite sure how they’ve managed it, in all honesty, but it honestly works. There’s a bit of extra potato and gravy on the side, so you can always dip to add moisture, if necessary.

Comments are closed.