Ahead of the first test against India, Michael Berkeley's guest is cricket commentator Henry Blofeld. Includes music by Mozart, Puccini, Schubert, Sullivan and Ravi Shankar.
Ahead of this week's first test against India, Michael Berkeley's guest is cricket commentator Henry Blofeld.
Henry was a very promising young cricketer, but his prospects of a first-class career were ended by a near-fatal accident at the age of seventeen. He eventually found his way to cricket journalism and ultimately to Test Match Special, where he was a mainstay for nearly fifty years, illuminating each match with his forensic knowledge of the game, as well as entertaining listeners with sightings of snoozing policemen, passing buses, and pigeons on the outfield.
But last year Henry Blofeld declared his long innings in the commentary box closed. At his final test at Lords he was given the great honour of ringing the bell for the start of play, which he did attired in one of his signature colourful outfits - an orange shirt, yellow trousers and shoes, a pale green jacket and a yellow patterned bow tie.
In conversation with Michael Berkeley, Henry Blofeld reveals how his accident changed the course of his life, and discusses the difficult decision to retire from broadcasting, and the joy of finding love later in life. He chooses music from Mozart and Puccini which reflects his life-long love of opera; music from Gilbert and Sullivan which reminds him of his Norfolk childhood; a Schubert symphony; and music from Ravi Shankar that recalls the time he almost played for England against India.