Melbourne: The oldest cricketing rivalry between England and Australia has a fan following like no other and to showcase his love for the team from Down Under, a 12-year-old boy, Max Waight, saved four years of 'hard earned' pocket money to watch the ongoing series in England.
"I sat next to Steve Waugh, Justin Langer, and Nathan Lyon. Justin Langer showed me the plan book which was amazing to see all his notes and talking to Steve Waugh was amazing too," cricket.com.au quoted Max as saying.
"Steve Smith and Pat Cummins are my favourites. I got to talk to them about how they prepare and play the game. It was very enjoyable," he added.
The kid had seen Australia lift the World Cup in 2015 on their home soil and it was then that he wanted to travel to the UK to watch his favourite team take on England in the high-voltage series.
But travelling to England was not that simple. His father, Damien, promised him that if he could raise AUD 1500, he would end up taking Max to the UK.
Raising AUD 1500 was not easy for the kid, but he and his mother came up with a plan of taking out the neighbours' rubbish bins on the weekends for the charge of just AUD 1 per household.
The kid then wrote a letter to all his neighbours, offering his waste management services and he attracted customers in no time.
The whole process went on for four years and he kept on taking the bins out on weekends. He took breaks when he was unable to take out the garbage bins or was ill.
When he was unable to do so, his parents and younger brother did the job to keep the process going.
And at last, when the kid accumulated the required money, his father kept the promise and booked the tickets for the entire family to go to England to watch the ongoing fourth Ashes Test in Manchester.
"When I said it, I had to follow through. If he saved up the money I was not going to let him down," cricket.com.au quoted Damien as saying.
"You do not fast forward in your mind at the start and think you are going to do it but it is good that we are here. It is an amazing experience, we have got our whole family and another close family that we are friends with. We are just making memories," he added.
Max and his brother travelled to Old Trafford on the team bus and Max was seen sitting next to Australia coach Justin Langer. In the ongoing fourth Test of the ongoing Ashes, Australia declared their first innings at 494/8 after Steve Smith's double ton. England was reduced to 23/1 at the close of play on day two of the Test.