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1990s

1993

The 1993 season began with a fanfare. Allan Border returned to England with his Australians and they played a tour warm-up match at Cobden Hill on April 30, easily defeating against an England Amateur XI. This was an opportunity for a first glimpse of Shane Warne, though at the time he was merely an obscure leg-spinner, if not for long. That ‘ball of the century’ against Mike Gatting in the Test at Old Trafford was still in the future. At Radlett his figures were 9.2-1-41-2, nothing to write home about.

Matthew Hayden, another big name of the future, hit 151, though Michael Slater’s 41 was a more dashing innings. The Australian batting order: Slater, Hayden, Taylor (captain for the day), Boon, Mark Waugh, Martyn, Zoehrer, Warne, McDermott, Julian, Holdsworth. Their English opposition included Mel Hussain, Nasser’s brother, and off-spinner Rupert Evans, a force in many future league games against Radlett in the Home Counties Premier League.

The match had not been part of the tour schedule, and the Australians wanted some match practice. Radlett, convenient for London, were asked to host a game, and the club rose to the occasion, with Taylor, Blundell, Holland and John Tattersall leading the way. A temporary stand on the bottom ground peering over the hedge was erected, and about 3,500 spectators arrived, including many from Earls Court with strange accents. The media interest was phenomenal, with at least 28 photographers, BBC Radio, BBC Television, Sky Television and writers from the national and local press converging on Cobden Hill. The club made a £9,000 profit.

Radlett finished third in the Herts League, captained by Ian ‘Oz’ Edwards. Campbell Horlock, an Australian greenkeeper from Melbourne, finished as leading run-maker with 823.

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