A hint to the England cricket selectors

As England continue to struggle in the West Indies I have decided to follow up my acrostic poem, ‘Hildreth for England’, hint to the selectors of a week ago with a more direct nudge in the form of a six verse song penned two years ago. For those old enough to remember try this to the tune of ‘The British Grenadiers’.

                                                   HILDY

Some talk of Vivian Richards and some speak of Gimblett,
Of Botham and Bill Alley and many others yet.
But of Somerset’s great heroes, there’s none finessed and played
With the glorious art and poetry that Hildy’s bat arrays.

Those heroes of our history all scored with cannon balls,
They played with force like thunder to cause the bowlers’ fall.
O’erwhelmed the opposition, but none would serenade
With the glorious art and poetry that Hildy’s bat arrays.

Whene’er they are commanded to storm the palisades,
Our spinners bowl their tweakers that land like hand grenades;
Our pacemen send stumps tumbling, but watch our rivals fade
To the glorious art and poetry that Hildy’s bat arrays.

And if they break his ankle he’ll stand there just the same.
Their spinners may bowl tweakers that land like hand grenades.
Their pacemen bounce him roundly; he’ll leave them all dismayed
With the glorious art and poetry that Hildy’s bat arrays.

Then when the match is over we to the bar repair.
While from the team’s pavilion famed ‘Blackbird’ fills the air,
For now we have a team friends that does not doubt or fade
And the glorious art and poetry that Hildy’s bat arrays.

And when we’re in our dotage we’ll drink a health always
To those who played so proudly, and graced our summers’ days.
We’ll call great feats of players, and pray our memory’s saved
The glorious art and poetry that Hildy’s bat arrayed.

This was first published on grockles.com in the autumn of 2016 and subsequently appeared in James Hildreth’s Testemonial brochure. The song is as apposite now as it was then and England are still missing a gem of a player.

FW