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Sri Lanka v England

Fan who waited a year for England’s return to Sri Lanka booted from Galle fort, belts out Jerusalem anyway

by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

The vocal presence of the Barmy Army has become such a fixture at England away matches that it normally passes without comment.

However, in these strange times, the attendance of just one fan at the first Test in Sri Lanka has caused quite a stir, with Rob Lewis, a 37-year-old web designer from Surrey, having waited nearly a year for England’s return to the country.

Having flown out in March 2020 for England’s two-Test series, Lewis was dismayed when the Covid-19 pandemic caused a postponement, and resolved to stay on the tropical island until England returned.

Today, the long wait came to an end, and Lewis was fully prepared, posting pictures of himself standing alone on the Galle fort with three huge banners below him.

However, not long after play started, he tweeted that he had been asked to leave the UNESCO world heritage site and remove his signage.

Having waited this long, Lewis wasn’t to be deterred, and soon enough posted footage of himself belting out Jerusalem, one of the Barmy Army’s favourite tunes, to make things feel just a little more like normal.

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