When it comes to getting the best value for money, everyone tends to search high and low. I think I might have found the best one yet – a day at Headingley Cricket Ground watching the test. Ok so I have to admit, you have to have to be some kind of fan, however judging from last weekends’ experience, it doesn’t really matter even if you don’t have a clue what cricket is all about.
Many of us sports followers tend to either stick to watching the live events on TV or catch-up a bit later – because of ticket prices, but if you’re like me who tend to go every now and again, you have to put this one on your list of must-go. Although there are other grounds to watch cricket around the UK, day two (Saturday) at Headingley is a spectacle on its own. No ground can match up to this one – from fancy dress to off field entertainment to of course the cricket.
Here’s a comparison: The last time I went to watch a sporting event was a Premier League match which cost me over £40 for a ticket and an afternoon out in the cold. Once there, I couldn’t have a drink while watching the game and there was no off-field entertainment, to make it worse, my team lost. However at Headingley there was entertainment everywhere I looked on and off the field and it only cost me £27.
Although it might seem a long day watching cricket, it went by quickly – before you ask, I didn’t go on my own. The day for me started by getting a backpack full of food which is essential as venue prices can be extortionate, then off we went. Once at Headingley it’s clear to see that it’s more family friendly than expected and almost everyone had the same frame of mind in the food sense. We arrived about 30mins before start of play and already the beer tents were open which you can take to the stands; football take note.
As expected it didn’t take long before you heard the first Barmy Army chants – it was a glorious day of sunshine, beer on tap and England batting. Regardless if you know the game or not, it’s always great to see the support which you have to join in especially when England hit a four or a six. I was kind of hoping that the ball would find its way to our area for a possible catch, then I quickly remembered that Kevin Pietersen wasn’t playing which was somewhat a let-down on the run-rate and entertainment – oh Eng. selectors what have you done. As the day went on, the of-field entertainment took off when only a few rows behind us, a gentleman in his 50s (maybe) poured a full pint of beer on his mate which got the attention of the immediate crowd, then in retaliation, his mate then got not one but two pints and poured them both all over his ‘friend’ – they were both laughing which gave the impression that it was all in good humour. A load of ooooos’ and laughter rained the section – I think it had something to do with the venue charged £4 a pint. On the field Sam Robson was past 100 with Ian Bell cruising nicely.
England finished the day on 320-6 despite being 311-3 an hour before the end of play as Sri Lanka, led by Angelo Mathews, took three wickets for just two runs in a tight period of play just before the close. The day was topped off with a trip to a local Indian restaurant where we found even more value for money. I took a few pictures of the day which you can see above. So next time you want value for money, you might want to think further afield.