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MCC beat France in 'Olympic' clash Published: 18 June 2012

A watching Richie Benaud was the star attraction as MCC beat France in a T20 match to commemorate cricket's only appearance in the Olympics.

As was the case in the Paris Games of 1900, MCC came out on top against their less illustrious cricketing opponents, winning the match by 35 runs.

That single encounter more than a century ago remains the only time cricket has appeared at the Games and France remain cricket's Olympic silver medallists.

MCC's side which took to the field at the Chateau de Thoiry featured the likes of BBC frontman and former first-class cricketer Chris Hollins as well as ex-Somerset wicket-keeper Rob Turner.

The two-match trip - part of 450 matches played by MCC each year - formed part of the hosts' preparations for the qualification tournament for Division Eight of the ICC World Cricket League, which runs from 20-23 June.

Cricket in France is currently going through a strong participation push. As with the team which took on MCC in 1900 - which was made up entirely of English players - there is a strong element of players with cricket playing nations in their heritage in the current squad.

But a new deal will see 200 schools introduce cricket as part of the carriculum, hopefully exposing almost 4,000 of them to the game.

School parties from across the Channel are also regular visitors to Lord's, where they get the chance to test their cricketing skills in the MCC Academy at the Home of Cricket.


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