The legends of Lashings

IT'S almost easier to list the great cricketers who haven't played for Lashings than those who have, but in the past 20 years a series of authentic legends have worn the famous Rudie logo and the black and gold kit. Here is a guide to just a few of them, starting with the man with whom it all began RICHIE RICHARDSON The original Lashings legend and the man who transformed the club into the All-Star XI we know today. In the mid 1990s Richie was winding down his playing career and looking to play cricket at a recreational standard somewhere near London, where he had business interests. Knowing nothing of this, Lashings chairman David Folb was sat in his office one day when the phone rang and an agent offered him the chance to sign one of the world's greatest batsmen. Folb's initially reaction can politely be described as one of disbelief, but when he realised the caller was serious a deal was done and to widespread incredulity (see our about us page) Richie not ony signed for Lashings but spent over a decade with the team before his commitments with the West Indies national team meant his appearances had to be more sporadic, though he remains a lifelong friend of the club.
 MUTTIAH MURALITHARAN Murali was the exception to the usual rule of Lashings signing established stars. He arrived in Maidstone in the late 90s as a relative unknown, everywhere other than his home country. Already a player of obvious class, he gained experience of English conditions in the unlikely surroundings of Senacre Playing Fields. Murali was going to be huge anyway but he never forgot his mates at Lashings and returned for several spells over the next few years.
SACHIN TENDULKAR Frankly there's very little need to say anything about a man who was arguably the greatest cricket galactico ever and one of the most famous men on the planet. Everyone knew what he could do with a bat but what made a lasting impression on everyone at Lashings was just what a gentleman he was when he joined us for a handful of appearances in 2006, during which he displayed a predictable mixture of brilliance and humility. An extremely down-to-earth mega star, Sachin is welcome back at any time.
BRIAN LARA Brian Charles Lara was at the peak of his powers when he stunned the international cricketing media by signing for Lashings in 2001. Lara was unveiled to a crowd of 3000, half of whom seemed to be journalists, at the University of Kent in an event covered live on Sky Sports News. For the rest of the season Lara, backed by Richardson and a number of his West Indies team mates, smashed a series of English club sides before returning to the international side. He returned to Lashings in 2014 when he captained an International XI to victory over an Asia XI in Qatar, in a game organised by Lashings and Insignia.

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