West Hatch teacher umpires longest-running fixture at Lord's

East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Paul Nicholls at Lords Paul Nicholls at Lords

A school teacher has described umpiring at Lord's as the greatest thrill of his umpiring career.

Paul Nicholls from West Hatch High School in High Road, Chigwell, was one of the umpires for the longest-running fixture played at Lord's, the annual match between Eton and Harrow.

He officiated the match in front of a crowd of more than 3,000 on June 21 in the 200th anniversary year of the Marylebone Cricket Club coming to Lord's.

Mr Nicholls, a Head of House at the Chigwell school, described the experience as the greatest thrill in his eight-year umpiring career.

He added: “"It was a very moving moment when I walked through the Long Room and onto the ground with my name up on the scoreboard and being announced over the public address system."

The fixture is more than 200 years old and is one of the longest established sporting fixtures in the world.

Mr Nicholls began umpiring after retiring from a 25-year playing career at Enfield Cricket Club.

He has worked his way through the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) system and is now one level below professional umpiring at county 2nd XI and Minor County level.

Harrow made 233 all out and won by 63 runs.

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