Page:America's National Game (1911).djvu/207

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turned naturally to their country to exploit our game. They had been for years sending their splendid cricketers to America, and now we would like to bring over a couple of Base Ball teams, and give a few exhibitions. Of course I knew that there would be no use to come without the favor and patronage of the great Marylebone Cricket Club, but even that honor, in the interests of sport, I hoped might be forthcoming. I talked at some length and with great earnestness, because I began to feel the responsibility of my position. It was no longer a question of my personal picnic; but a sort of international problem, with the sportsmen of Great Britain possibly inviting sportsmen of America to visit them and exhibit to the old nation the new nation's adopted game. I think, in my ardor to win out, I made mention of the fact that we had some cricketers among our players, and might be able to do something in the national games of both countries.

At last I finished. I knew my face was red with the oratorical effort, and I could feel the perspiration trickling down my spinal column. Then, just as I supposed all was over except the fireworks, I saw approaching me an attenuated old fellow, of about eighty, bearing in his hand an ear trumpet as big as a megaphone. I could tell by the deference paid to the old gentleman that he was "classy," and I awaited his approach with some trepidation. He came, took a seat beside me and asked:

"Young man, will you kindly repeat to me what you have been saying to the others?"

Please remember that the Marylebone Cricket Club