Bowled out by Brexit, former PM May honours cricket hero Geoffrey Boycott

UK

LONDON (Reuters) – Former British Prime Minister Theresa May has chosen former cricketer Geoffrey Boycott for a knighthood, honouring her hero whose persistent style she had vowed to emulate in her ultimately failed efforts to deliver Brexit.

FILE PHOTO: Former cricketer Geoffrey Boycott looks on during a lunchtime presentation during the second cricket test match between England and South Africa at Headingley cricket ground in Leeds August 2, 2012. REUTERS/Philip Brown

May last year compared herself to the legendary English cricketer Boycott, who scored over 8,000 runs in test cricket and was known for his stubborn and conservative batting style.

“One of my cricket heroes was always Geoffrey Boycott,” she said in November last year when quizzed about how long she would stay in office as ministers quit in protest of her Brexit strategy.

“And what did you know about Geoffrey Boycott? Geoffrey Boycott stuck to it and he got the runs in the end.”

May resigned earlier this year after repeatedly failing to pass her Brexit deal. She nominated Boycott and former English cricket captain Andrew Strauss for knighthoods on her Resignation Honours list, while Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick will receive a damehood.

Queen Elizabeth grants Resignation Honours at the request of an outgoing prime minister.

May previously mocked her predecessor David Cameron’s decision to knight his communications director Craig Oliver, saying that seeing his name on Cameron’s resignation honours list had given her a retching feeling.

However May too has also chosen to honour some of her closest advisers and allies, with her Director of Communications Robbie Gibb, chief Brexit negotiator Olly Robbins, European adviser Peter Storr and de facto deputy David Lidington all receiving knighthoods.

May’s former joint Chief of Staffs Fiona Hill and Nick Timothy, an architect of May’s approach to Brexit who has been outspoken in criticising his old boss’ strategy since he stopped working for her, are in line for lesser honours, while their replacement, Gavin Barwell, has been nominated for a peerage.

Kim Darroch, Britain’s former ambassador to Washington who quit in July after a leak of his memos to a British newspaper prompted a stinging attack from U.S. President Donald Trump, has also been nominated to sit in Britain’s upper chamber, the House of Lords.

Reporting by Alistair Smout; Editing by Lisa Shumaker

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