Friday, 1 May 2015
Last August, paying a first ever visit to Lord's Cricket Ground, I had the pleasure of a long chat with Angus Fraser, the former England fast-medium warhorse, now Director of Cricket at Middlesex and one of England's fab four selectors. When I say long chat, I'm talking an hour and 40 minutes. At one stage Gus – an England selector, did I mention that? – had to field a call from Michael Atherton (I looked at the display screen), doubtless trying to get the inside line on the England team for the forthcoming Test series. "Do you mind?" asked Gus, ever so politely, "only I didn't realize this was going to take this long".
The first of the two features I pieced from our meeting, a career overview for Gleanings, was well received, being chosen for Guardian Sport's 'Our Favourite Things This Week' and eliciting a nice comment or two from the likes of Rob Smyth. Undoubtedly, this was in large part because of just how amiable and affable a man Gus is; it may also have had a wee bit to do with the interviewer being able to coax a few interesting answers from him. The trick? Keep them talking as long as possible, of course!
In the midst of working through his career highs and lows, I diverted things into his post-career transition from player to journalist, a fifteen minute piece-within-a-piece finally published earlier this week.
"Life as a journalist is a pretty paranoid existence"