CategoryPlayer Spotlight

Javagal Srinath: Fastest in a billion

On 25th June 1932, India became the sixth team to be granted test cricket status. From there it took 20 years for India to register their first test victory. Even though India had no problems finding good batsmen or even competent spinners, their problem with fast bowlers during the British colonialism of India was that they only had two: Shaikh Mohammad Nissar and Amar Singh. Both of them were outstanding when they went to England and within the first 20 minutes of the first test, they made...

County Stalwarts: Rikki Clarke

Last week, Rikki Clarke called time on his long and distinguished county career. A terrific player for three counties who played the odd game for England in his youth, but who became a much more mature, and consistent, player in his late 20s. It is ironic that England never tried him again after the 2009 retirement of Andrew Flintoff, as he would’ve been capable of standing in for Ben Stokes when needed, too. I say this not as a Surrey fan but an England fan – there are some players...

Anderson’s 1000th in the age of the Internet

People had been talking about Jimmy Anderson’s 1000th first-class wicket for a while. I first heard Tanya Aldred bring it up on The Guardian’s live blog for the County Championship more than a year ago. So, I assumed he was somewhere pretty close to the milestone when this year’s tournament came around. Worse still, his next international assignment was set to be the five-match Test series against India. When they last toured the UK in 2018, he had surpassed Glenn McGrath’s wickets tally...

Dawid Malan?

What does one do when the cupboard is bare? This is the question that’s been bothering me since England’s pathetic capitulation at Edgbaston. Some want to look to the future; others want to recycle players from the past. One name that keeps coming up, however, is the admirable Dawid Malan. Today Rob Stephenson champions the veteran left-hander’s cause … So that is that. A chastening defeat and a first home loss in six years, and England’s young batting line up ridiculed as one of the...

The James Vince Seduction

I flipped open my laptop in a hurry. Punched the keys to bring up my usual page.  I could feel the buzz of anticipation which preceded the inevitable come down.  The buzz that always makes you continue. The hypnotic circle on the screen continued round and round. The premonitions start. Ball outside off, snick, gone… ball outside off, snick, gone… ball outside off, snick……..and then the screen lit up. A guilty pleasure, taking his guard, James Michael Vince. Watching James Vince bat feels...

New Stars Emerging In The Championship

What fun the new-format County Championship is turning out to be. Covid has been horrid, but live streaming has saved the day, given us new pleasures. If your game of choice is not too engrossing, or has finished early, just fly over to Trent Bridge, or Southampton, or Old Trafford, as I did. At Trent Bridge, I watched an old favourite Tim Bresnan steer Warwickshire home in a tight finish. At the Ageas Bowl, I saw Craig Overton and Josh Davey swing it round corners to prise out determined...

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