Saturday, 30 November 2019

Catch up

Well the first test started quite well for England.  We started well with the bat, then let them off the hook.  Started well with the ball and let them off the hook again.  New Zealand done exactly the opposite and in the end outplayed us in all departments.

Now the second test is two days old and I don't know what to make of it.  England put the Kiwis in and 'restricted' them to 375.  Latham hit a century, Broad's resurgence continued with four for and Woakes picked up possibly his best overseas figures?  By close we were 39/2 with Burns and Root left at the wicket.  One of these two needs to score a century...  I don't have a clue how things will go from here; how good a score is 375?  Should be interesting listening in a bit...

Friday, 22 November 2019

First Test vs New Zealand

So here we are, a couple of months on from an Ashes series, test cricket is back with a series in New Zealand.  We are playing at somewhere called Mount Maunganui, in fact this is the first test match to be played here.  I can't comment about how it looks because I haven't seen a single picture of it.

As has become customary I listened to the start of the series on TMS which is as brilliant as ever.  All went to plan on Day one, England won the toss and batted and by the time I crashed on the latest opening partnership had passed fifty!!

And when I woke up in the morning the score had meandered along to 241/4 at stumps.  Yes England's top order actually batted how a test team should, Burns, Denly both made half centuries and Stokes was 67*.  This is all pretty good but it could all go wrong in the morning, i mean evening...

Day two starts in serene fashion with Stokes and Pope seeming to score freely but then both get out!  (Stokes for 91), quickly followed by Curran and Archer!  This leaves us 295/8 and it seems like same old England.  By the time I switch the radio off Buttler and Limpet Leach have calmed proceedings but we're still a long way short of a good score.

I wake up and switch the computer on with trepidation, i fear the worst.  The Kiwi's have a good batting line up, I'm sure they will be piling up the runs.  But no!  Buttler and Leach put on 52 to get us up to 353.  What's more we've knocked New Zealand's top four over, 144/4!  Curran took two wickets, Leach and Stokes one each.  Now I look forward to listening to Jofra steam in when play starts up tonight!

And while I remember Stephen Finn and Mark Ramprakash have made great additions to the TMS team, hopefully we can now jettison Vaughan and Swann, both of whom I loved as players but piss me right off in the comm box.

Friday, 15 November 2019


So as usual my winter tour selection was miles out (though the first XI not so far away?) but they did pick an interesting squad, chucking a couple of young batsmen into the mix, it will be interesting to see how they go.  I hope Bairstow scores massive runs in the championship next year and fights his way back but leaving him out was the right thing to do.  The first test is next week, England are currently struggling to take wickets in the warm up match and New Zealand have an excellent batting line up, I make the home side favourites.  I hope I'm wrong.  With the kids grown up Sky TV has gone so this will be the first series in about twenty years that I won't be able to watch on television.  I can live without it but I could never live without TMS.

A couple of days ago a couple of old friends and I went to see a band which have been touring for almost as long as we've been alive.  In fact this was the fiftieth anniversary tour for a very British institution, Hawkwind.  Apparently their music was once known as 'Space Rock' which is probably media speak for "music made and enjoyed whilst off your nut on psychedelics".  Tuesday night it still sounded pretty bloody good after drinking a solitary 'Ghost Ship'.  I've never been a massive fan of this band but I've seen them at least four times over the years and they were mostly good.  On this occasion the old favourites sounded great and went down a storm with the audience of old misfits.  But when the newer tunes were played it all went a bit flat.  "Spirit of the age" was fantastic, "Silver Machine" (Lemmy RIP) sounded tired,  "Hurry on Sunrise" a brilliant surprise.  Dave Brock looks and sounds like he could go on forever, I'll probably see them again one day. I must mention the venue Ipswich Corn Exchange which is a good room which could easily hold more people and bigger bands.  There isn't enough live music in my home town!