I've been turning out for a few twenty over games of an evening [it's been fun, and heavily nostalgic having grown up playing these matches; the dipping sun, the sweetness of the breeze, rushing to get the overs in under giant shadows, the way everything feels different and possible on a cricket ground as the night comes down - it brings a tear to the old glass eye...] and out walked an opener who looked like Robert Key.
In fact, he looked so much like Rob Key I thought for a second that it was, however unlikely it would have been for Keysey to be knocking it around in a village cup miles from home.
Faced with an evident likeness, the guy had obviously decided to embrace it. He had the helmet on the same way with the hair hanging out just so, he had the ruddy cheeks and the whole vibe down. He stood like Key at the crease, and played the same kind of hearty biffs as well.
I thought about his choices while I was fielding. He could have kicked against it, cut his hair, worn different gear, not opened. But then maybe it was kind of fun, and useful, to look like a pro. I realised that as soon as he'd walked in I'd presumed he could bat. He played well, too.
He wasn't the ersatz pro archetype. He was different. I must have come across a few over the years, guys who'd played up a similarity by buying the same kit, hitting the same kind of shots. It's a rare phenomenon, but an oddly interesting one...