Cricket - Cooper wants trumpet ban U-turn

Billy 'the Trumpet' Cooper is still hoping for an 11th-hour reprieve to blow his horn at Trent Bridge on Wednesday.

PA Sport
Cricket - Cooper wants trumpet ban U-turn
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Billy Cooper is hopeful he will be able to attend the Trent Bridge Ashes Test

England's principal cheerleader was told in no uncertain terms last week that Nottinghamshire are not minded to alter longstanding club policy by allowing him to play his instrument in the first Ashes Test.

Administrators have appeared all along unlikely to change their tune but, amid reports all may not be lost for the 'Barmy Army' musician and the home team who would love Cooper to serenade them, the man himself has had his say. He told talkSPORT radio: "The Ashes is a big one for us. I would love to be there, playing away."

Cooper's timely tunes have attended many of England's most famous victories home and away in recent years, but he has always been banned from both Trent Bridge and Lord's - where the second Test will be played next week.

On Monday, Nottinghamshire's own Graeme Swann became the latest to voice players' support for this summer's sporting cause celebre.

"It's a real shame, I think," he said.

"The players are all in favour of Billy blowing his trumpet, wherever we are.

"He is the unspoken 12th man for us when we are on tour and in big series at home. But we don't make the rules ... I have tried to have my say but I have been batted down."

Whatever the outcome, Cooper is grateful for the response from Swann and several of his team-mates.

"It has been touching - the support from the players," he said.

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