A FROZEN pitch, opponents in Viking helmets and a risk of polar bears in the slips and silly mid-off? It’s just snow cricket.
Except it is – at least for three Lothian cricketers, who are swapping the clipped lawns and comfy clubhouses of the Capital for an icy lake outside Oslo, Norway, to take part in a truly unique event.
The trio, Steve Green, Andrew Scott and Jamie Burton, have packed their winter warmers along with their whites as they get set to be part of the Captain Scott XI cricket team.
The Captain Scott Arctic Challenge will be played on the snow and ice against a hardy team of Vikings – the Amundsen XI – on Tuesday.
It has been organised to mark the centenary of Captain Robert F Scott arriving at the South Pole in 1912 – only to find he and his team had been beaten by Roald Amundsen’s Norwegian expedition.
And the three Scots representing Captain Scott have admitted they plan to “right a historic wrong” by beating the Amundsen team.
Mr Green said, 48, said: “The game is going to be played on a frozen lake about an hour outside of Oslo, so it could be bit tricky, and we’re going to need spikes for fielding. I’ll still be throwing myself into every catch, though.”
“It’s all for fun, but we certainly plan to right this historic wrong and be the victorious team.”
While in Norway the three local lads will also take part in a series of other challenges, including a dog sled race and a ski race, with funds being raised for the Cricket Without Boundaries (CWB) charity.
While this will be a daunting challenge for the men, it is not the first time they have played in conditions that are far from the usual at the LCC.
Back in 2010, Penicuik Cricket Club member Mr Green travelled to Kenya with the organisation that undertakes work in sub-Saharan Africa, where they coach cricket in underprivileged communities and spread the Aids awareness message.
Then he taught a tribe of Maasai the finer points of the game, with the warriors swapping their normal full battle dress for the more refined cricket whites, while Mr Burton, who has recently moved clubs from RH Corstorphine to Grange, undertook a similar trip last year with CWB.
Mr Green added: “When we arrive in Norway we expect the temperatures to be minus for sure and we will have to be warmed up and wrapped up properly for the match. It should be a great experience, though, and certainly not something you get to do every day.
“While we appreciate that many friends and colleagues helped us with our previous trips, it would be fantastic if anybody was able to help support our efforts.”
As well as CWB, the trio has also already raised money for the Roy Castle Foundation as part of the experience. And Mr Green also admitted he hoped the good work of raising money for the charity might also have a few benefits for them.
“Knowing we’ve contributed to this cause will hopefully give us all a warm feeling inside when standing down at fine leg for 15 consecutive overs while suffering from mild hypothermia as a result of exposure to the freezing conditions in Oslo,” he said.
To help them with their fundraising, visit www.justgiving.com/OsloChallenge2012