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A Cricket Dressing Room Attendant

or as I prefer, 'Players Environmental and General Wellbeing Executive' !

Around the County circuit, the job description for a Dressing Room Attendant varies quite a lot. Some have an Attendant who mainly tends to the Cricket Player's needs such as supplying Tea at regular intervals and generally keeping an eye on security etc. with a separate 'Cleaner' in the evenings.

At Canterbury, the Dressing Room Attendant does everything, which for me is better because, although it's a long day, I have a handle on everything going on around me.

Rather than attempting the almost impossible task of writing a job description, I'll just go through 'an average' day at the St. Lawrence Ground for me.

0800 - Arrive. I wear yesterdays Kit to work, have a shower, put on some clean Kit and wash the old set. This also starts of the procedure of washing some 40 towels from the previous evening baring in mind that some Players are going to want a shower when they come in as well. Fill up the Drinks Cabinet with Water and Sports Drinks.

0830 - Have Breakfast (the first one that is, I have the reputation of being Catering's biggest overhead!).

0900 - The Players start to arrive and get ready for their Warm-Up training session. I very occasionally join in on a bit of this, but upon feeling my age, suddenly remember something I haven't done! This is also the time when I get the Players Tickets sorted out, make sure the Umpires Room is OK as well and obtain yesterdays scorecards for the Journalists in the Press Box.

1030 - The Players usually return to the Dressing Room, have some breakfast (so I join them for my second!). This is the time where you get the "would you just's", but they're always good about it.

1055 - 1900'ish - The Player's are out there doing what they do best and the Attendants job becomes an 'as and when'. This is making pot's of Tea, generally going around tidying up behind them, getting autograph's done, arranging Press interviews etc. But it's a time when you can get to sitting on the Balcony with the Players and watch a bit of Cricket as well. The trickiest part is keeping an eye on what's going on. You don't want to be passing a Player who's just got out on a dodgy LBW on the staircase and you tend to diplomatically keep your mouth firmly closed at certain times!

1900 - Havoc usually! You want to get on with all the cleaning and tidying up, but are interrupted by Journalists and Media people wanting interviews with Captains or notable player's of the day. You are also keeping an eye on the Autograph hunters hanging around the Dressing Room Door. You're trying to find extra towels because the Players have used them all day and don't know who's is who. Then there's the Umpire's end of day drink to sort out etc.etc.

2000 - By now hopefully, the last Cricketer will have left for home or Hotel and you're on your own - bliss! You now start the long routine job of cleaning the showers and 'other places', tidying up the Kit (almost impossible) and getting ready for the next day.

2200 - 2300 - A cup of Coffee on the Balcony, the work done and time to go home!

Another slight variation on a theme is that, at Kent, the Attendant also looks after the opposition. The larger Test Match grounds have an Attendant for each.

This makes life harder but does give you the opportunity to get to know many world class cricketers and the genuinely nice County Players - and believe me, they are 99% OK.

Two Baths. One's for the dreaded Ice Bath in which the players sit for 15 minutes and the other is the Hot one which they climb into causing great floods!

Another perk is that you get to go around the Grounds as a guest with the Team. Here I am with Scorer Jack Foley in the Lord's Dressing Room, somewhere I never dreamt of being one day!


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Feature _______________________

The Room Attendant at the Oval some years back left the room just before the start. The 'famous England opening batsman' went out and was given out first ball. He returned to the Dressing Room somewhat disgusted with himself and sat down on the Bench. The Room Attendant returned, "You'd better get going Mate, they've already rung the Bell". Apparently this didn't exactly go down well, but the Attendant did survive a physical beating - not a verbal one !