Sporting legends swap cricket balls for microphones at Epsom

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  • TWO sportsmen more experienced in a different type of run are to commentate on this year’s Derby Trial at Epsom.

    Former England cricketers and BBC Test Match special regulars Phil Tufnell and Graeme Swann have signed up to take the microphone on Wednesday (20 April) at 2.30pm.

    Both men will be given tips by commentator Richard Hoiles before the race, but may have to change their usual style.

    A spokesman for the racecourse said: “The former international spin bowlers, who are used to calling the more measured pace of a Test match, will have to up the tempo to keep race fans informed as the Investec Derby hopefuls tackle the famous Epsom course.”

    Mr Tufnell said: “I’d say Swanny can talk faster than I can, which might put him at an advantage, but I’ve actually ridden in a horse race when I took on Jason Gillespie a few years back so I can let the audience into a few trade secrets!”

    The “more adept” commentator, as judged by Mr Hoiles, will be given £1,000 for a charity of his choice.

    Mr Tufnell has chosen Cancer Research and Mr Swann Belvoir Cricket and Countryside Trust.

    Mr Swann said: “Tuffers has got to be ante-post favourite given his racing experience but I reckon there’s a decent chance he won’t remember which horse is in which colours. It should be a lot of fun and we’re both competing for great causes.”

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    Mr Swann, widely considered to be one of the best spin bowlers in English cricketing history, took more than 250 Test wickets during his career, while Mr Tufnell took more than 1,000 first class wickets in his long England and Middlesex career, including more than 100 in Test matches.

    The race, which offers £50,000 to the winner as well as “wild card” qualification for the Derby (4 June), is the centerpiece of the spring meeting.

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