AuthorBilly Crawford

Should cricket split into two separate professional codes?

By now we have all had time to digest Sir Andrew Strauss’s High Performance Review into the state of English cricket. For many of us it has left a sour taste in the mouth. The reduction of Championship games, the seeming untouchability of the Hundred and the general distain for the county teams makes it hard to swallow. Strauss didn’t help himself this month by referring to the county game as “one man and his dog” live on Sky Sports. If you are going to conduct a supposedly impartial review...

England Go From Strength To Strength In Short But Sweet Series

Blink and you missed it, that was the feeling at the end of England’s three Test series against South Africa. Each match seemed to be played on fast forward. Test cricket for the T20 generation perhaps. No game lasted for a full three days, with the first match over by the middle of the third afternoon, denying the paying public a Saturday at Lord’s. The final Test would have been over inside two days – the first time this had happened in England since Andy Caddick skittled the West...

Ruthless South Africa Expose England’s Need For Flexibility

There is a phenomenon in English society known as “tall poppy syndrome”. Briefly it means to build somebody up in order to knock them down, the idea being that the tallest poppies that stand out from the others in the field are the most likely to be cut down to size.  Having spent the best part of the season signing the praises ofEngland’s new management team of Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum it would seem peculiarly English to bury them in criticism after one defeat...

A Battle Through The Ages: England v South Africa

There are few tours that stir the passions in quite the same way as a visit by the South Africans. For those of us of a certain vintage, over 30 perhaps, only the Ashes gets the pulses racing more than a visit from the Proteas. With the exception of a largely forgettable series in 2017, every tour by the rainbow nation since readmission has been intense, enthralling and usually quite bruising for England and its captains in particular. Mike Atherton was caught with dirt in his pocket at Lords...

Cricket, The Game That’s Destroying Itself From Within

The leaked version of the Future Tours programme which reached us last month makes for concerning reading. It provides us with endless contests between the big three of the international game, England, India and Australia, whilst marginalising the rest of the Test playing nations even further than they currently are. No matter that the tourism from England tours sustains the WICB and Caribbean economies, or that the West Indies toured England at the height of the Covid pandemic when no one else...

Leicestershire injustice a sign of the times

It has been a tough week for Leicestershire CCC. The two-point penalty incurred for disciplinary breaches in their previous T20 Blast match against Northamptonshire rendered their winner takes all game against Yorkshire at a packed out Grace Road a meaningless encounter. The White Rose side would be guaranteed to go through regardless of the result. At first glance the penalty does appear to be very harsh. It is undeniable that Leicestershire had a poor disciplinary record in the 2020 and 2021...

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