VISITORS to Cramond are set to be bowled over by a new attraction today – the Capital’s first beach cricket match.
Silverknowes Beach overlooking Cramond Island hosts the inaugural 16-over eight-a-side fixture, with The Barracudas going head-to-head with The Submariners.
The match-up is the brainchild of Eddie Tait, owner of the award-winning Boardwalk Beach Club on Silverknowes Esplanade and will feature sporting stars of the past and present.
“On a bright sunny day, this could rival Newlands in Cape Town as the cricket pitch with the most panoramic views in the world,” beamed Eddie.
Former Scotland rugby star Hugo Southwell, ex-Ireland one-day internationalist Rory McCann and current Scotland seam bowler and World Cup ace Ali Evans will be spearheading The Submariners’ challenge.
Ex-Scotland rugby centre Jamie Mayer will be among the opposition ranks.
Richard Charman, deputy head co-curricular at Merchiston Castle School, is manager of The Submariners and said: “It’s a fantastic opportunity for the Edinburgh community to be involved in such a fun sporting activity on the Edinburgh coastline.
“Beach cricket is played up and down the country in various locations and to bring it to Edinburgh at the Boardwalk Beach Club is amazing for all involved. There is so much excitement around it that we have attracted some top cricketers to play in the inaugural game.”
While staged all in the name of fun, there is a more serious message behind the clash as Eddie hopes the match heralds the start of something special in the area.
“We hope by staging this match that we demonstrate the sort of potential that exists here,” he said.
“Everyone is taking the event quite seriously. The pitch has been properly rolled, there will be umpires and both teams will be turning out in their whites so it should look a fantastic spectacle.
Eddie hopes that his café, voted Best Café Deli in this year’s Edinburgh Evening News Restaurant Awards, can be the catalyst for neighbourhood change, helping to realise his Edinburgh coastal vision and rebirth.
“Despite having some of the most stunning panoramic views you could hope to find, this area has been under-used for decades,” he said.
“We’re passionate about bringing the Silverknowes area back to life. We’re trying to regenerate this part of Edinburgh and the beautiful three-mile promenade on our doorstep.
“It would be great to see the beach utilised more. We are in constant dialogue with the city council over plans for the area and remain positive that things will happen to transform this stretch of the Capital’s forgotten coastline. Live the dream!”
There will be live music and a BBQ at the Boardwalk Beach Club from 6pm. Play is scheduled to run from 6.30pm-9pm.