Gentlemen & Players, 2016

As someone who earns his living from coaching the game of cricket, before 1963 I would have been a “Player“, who used a separate changing room, probably ate lunch apart from the Gentlemen, and would have been listed on scorecards as Beaven A. R. (or, indeed, as “Teesra T[he]”), not A.R. Beaven.

Archaic, in the 21st Century, surely?

Perhaps – but does the distinction between “Gentlemen” and “Players” still persist in 2016?

Recently I coached a public schoolboy, who was keen to develop a more robust range of strokes in anticipation of an impending contest with a school master – the Director of Cricket at his school, referred to simply as “Smith” (name changed), not “Mr Smith” (as I might have referred to a school master), not “Smithy”, nor by any other nickname the player might have gone by during his illustrious, international playing days.

It would appear that “Smith” did not receive the honorific “Mr” because he was a professional (small “p”).  Not because he was not respected as coach and player; but he was a Player, not a Gentleman.

aside – my appearance in the scorecard reads “nought for plenty off not many”…might have been better to have played under a pseudonym!

Oh, well – don’t do what I do, do what I say!

Published by Andrew Beaven

Cricket coach, fascinated by the possibilities offered by the game. More formally - ECB level 2 cricket coach; ECB National Programmes (All Stars & Dynamos Cricket) Activator Tutor; Chance to Shine & Team Up (cricket) deliverer; ECB ACO umpire.

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