Paul Golder writes for the Brentwood Gazette
We’re sadly saying goodbye to 98 Not Out – or should that be 98 retired, not out?
We started chatting to Billericay Cricket Club chairman Daren Mootoo in the summer of 2019 about a cricket show incorporating cricket news and features at not just a local level but national and international too.
I’m not involved in cricket at all so I had no idea how well connected Daren’s team would be – but I knew it was going to be pretty good when the first good luck video message rolled in before the first show, from West Indies legend Sir Vivian Richards!
Daren brought on board his opposite number at Brentwood Cricket Club, Paul Webb, on board as a regular presenter, and used the local knowledge of sports writers such as Debbie Knight, Paul Newman and The Grumbler – Richard Clarke.
As a community station it was great to feature local teams who wouldn’t get in-depth radio coverage anywhere else. But it was also amazing to see how many cricket superstars we managed to get on the show in the last three years.
Just some of the names who chatted to Daren and the team included David Gower, Mark Butcher, David ‘Bumble’ Lloyd, Michael Atherton, Nasser Hussain, Alec Stewart, Nick Knight, Charles Dagnall, Isa Guha, Henry Blofeld, Monty Panesar, Chris Woakes, Steve Harmison, Chris Lewis, Alex Tudor, Matthew Hoggard, Mark Waugh, Shane Watson, Adam Zampa, Chris Green, Simon Doull, Daryl Mitchell, Jonty Rhodes, Jason Holder, Daren Sammy and Simon Harmer. It’s been a staggering roll call over the last three years.
Daren will be staying as part of the Phoenix FM team as he’ll be continuing to present his late night reggae show Reggae Revival – and we’re hoping the cricket show will be back in some form or other in the future.