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The Men In White Coats

In every sport, in every land across the globe, fans will reserve their most vicious bile for the officials. Those responsible for regulating play are the ultimate arbiters of the game. They are never loved, grudgingly respected and occasionally despised. However, cricket is different as umpires maintain an air of gentility and the concealed respect of players and fans. Back in the day, they always wore ties and a white overcoat. A white hat, black trousers and white shoes completed the outfit...

ODIs: What Once Felt Shorter Now Feels Longer

With Ben Stokes announcing his retirement from ODIs yesterday, and the ECB sacrificing our domestic 50 over competition to accommodate The Hundred, I thought now would be a good time to publish this guest post from Haren Shylak. With T20 bringing in so much money, and Test cricket still the purists’ favourite, will ODIs be the format that slowly dies? Since the first ODI was played in 1971, the format has always evolved. The format has seen revolutionary changes such as coloured clothing...

Blast Finals Day Preview

Two groups have been fighting out for over a month and we’ve narrowed the eighteen counties to just four. There’s been some controversy, there’s been some upsets but it all comes down to these three games at Edgbaston. So who’s going to surprise us, who’s going to dominate and ultimately who’s going to win. Here’s a breakdown of the finals day teams. Lancashire For me, the Lightning are favourites. They’ve got lots of experience, headed by Steven...

Yadav and Bracewell: A Tale of Two Tons

They say white-ball cricket makes you forget. On Sunday, two batters – playing a little over 400 kilometres apart – did their best to be the exceptions. I. Trent Bridge, Nottingham It is the fourteenth over of the Indian chase. They are in pursuit of 216 – a daunting T20 target even on the best of pitches. Luckily for them, they are playing at Trent Bridge. But the conditions do not count as much as the desperation of the situation does. The Indian side leads the series 2-0, with an air of...

Positive Vibes?

I wasn’t sure whether to add a question mark to the end of this headline or not. After all, there’s no doubt that England’s Test side have looked like a completely different outfit, playing extremely positive cricket, under Brendon McCullum thus far. The transformation has been nothing short of remarkable. And I say this as a grumpy old cynic, worn down by decades of false dawns, who usually regards hyperbole as a modern-day plague. Give me half an opportunity to look at life through a...

Surely 90 Overs Per Day Isn’t Too Much To Ask?

It’s no secret that over rates in Test Matches are far below the 15 per hour target. Losing overs hurts spectators, especially when the price of tickets across the country is increasing and in some places, Lord’s, they are in excess of £160. A day at the cricket is a luxury and if you’re paying that amount, you don’t want to be short changed. Famously, Alex Hales refunded a fan 10% of his ticket after a day at Edgbaston finished after just 81 overs. The disgruntled fan...

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