There were tears. There was stamping. There was messy nose blowing. Cricket Boy did not wish to bat.
'But you were great last time!' Big, wet eyes that knew the truth looked up at me.
Quick update. 'You'll be great this week!' More tears.
Then, coaxed every step by the coach, he dragged out to the crease; shoulders slumped, bat a-hanging, pads unravelling.
And he whacked that ball! He slapped that ball! He clouted that ball! He didn't score many runs, but he did score a little bit of dignity, and that's enough for me.