Monday, December 4, 2006

Lord Hoggart of Ilkley?

Amid the cheap runs and low-hanging heads of most bowlers, one man rolled back his sleeves and stood high above the rest - Matthew Hoggard.

So writes Scott Heinrich about the Adelaide test.

Matthew Hoggard has long been a sporting hero of mine. Who could not be charmed by that Yorkshire "agricultural" gait and that stoic, slogging determination?

The high-point of my hero worship was at the end of the 2005 Fourth test against Australia. As Aggers put it:

You could have picked any of England's batsmen to walk off Trent Bridge as match-winners, but Ashley Giles and Matthew Hoggard would have come a long way down the list of probables.

However, their small but crucial partnership of 13 steered England to victory when moments earlier, at 116 for 7, Australia suddenly realised that retaining the Ashes was a real possibility.

It was as I saw the calm, determined Yorkshireman walking towards the crease I began to realise that this man, and Giles, would do it. And they did.

I can only think of one argument in favour of retaining appointed peers in the House of Lords. That would be to allow Matthew Hoggard the easy way to becoming "Lord Hoggard of Ilkley".

Or would that be "of Leeds" or "of some other place in Yorkshire"? But, these are mere details. The man deserves a peerage. Period.

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