Evo’s delight as England Over 70s seal the ‘Grey Ashes’

FROCESTER’S John Evans has returned to the UK an extremely happy man after playing a key role for England Over 70s who retained the ‘Grey Ashes’ with a memorable victory in Australia.

‘Evo’, as he is popularly known, helped steer the tourists to glory in the three-match One Day International series after losing the opening clash.

The 71-year-old was originally named vice captain of the England squad but, because of illness to skipper Chris Swadkin, ended up taking the reins in seven of the ten matches, scoring more than 200 runs in total.

Evo, who was accompanied to Australia by Frocester clubmate James ‘Slim’ Catto who was the tour party’s scorer, took the man-of-the-match honours for a crucial 81 in the second ODI which England won to square the series.

And despite the disappointment of being dismissed for a golden duck, top edging “a rank long hop”, in the decider, England went on to cruise to an eight-wicket triumph.

The Frocester chairman said: “The whole tour was a phenomenal experience. It attracted national TV interest and there was a crowd approaching 1,000 people for the final game.

“We had a tremendous welcome wherever we went and it was a privilege to be involved.

“It took us a while to become accustomed to the heat – us openers had to wear helmets for the first 10 overs of every innings and that was something we struggled with as it was also so humid – but things became easier as the tour went on.

“And winning the series in the final match rounded off a month I will never forget. “

England, who lost only once on the ten-match tour, will soon begin preparing their defence of the Grey Ashes as Australia will be heading to the UK this summer.

Evo added: “I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I will be involved. There are no guarantees when it comes to England selection and new players are qualifying all the time.”

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