Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Where is she?

Not been watching IPL for the last few days, did put it on on Sunday but as Jim Rosenthal appeared on the screen i assumed my TV was on the blink. So i put it on today... where is Mandira?! Did they get rid of her or something. Oh well better put a picture of her on here to ...erm... illustrate this posting.

Conference call

Switching the county championship from 2 divisions to 3 conferences is being mooted again and may well happen this time. It is something i could live with as long as there were semis and a final to decide the county champions (3 conference winners and best runner up). A 5 day grand final at Lords at the end of August could be pretty good. I disagree with Rob Steen though in that the conferences should be regionally based and not randomly drawn every season. After a few years it could get boring seeing the same teams over and over again.

Monday, March 29, 2010

We're off

The 2010 season is days away and the Bears are playing against Oxford UCCE in a 2 day match at The Parks over the next 2 days. Just in time for the cricket the weather has gone cold and wet after a few days of glorious Spring sunshine!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Homes to be demolished

The council is to ask the government to approve a compulsory purchase order so Warwickshire can buy 12 properties on the Pershore Road which will be demolished to make way for the new ground development. Some properties have already been bought by the club. It has been suggested that the gardens may be used for overflow car parking during big matches because of some spaces being taken up by building work. Carrots and onions today Fiestas and Jaguars tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

England win - but do people want more?

A victory margin of 181 run with three hours of the final day to spare can be considered pretty convincing, but a spirited rearguard effort from Bangladesh and a flat dry pitch has turned this victory into a laboured win for England.

True England should be beating sides like Bangladesh by clear margins, but to dismiss the absence of key players and the growing confidence and development of the Bangladeshis as a factor in the weary nature of the victory would be naive.

This was a mixture of A-teamers and first choice England players with the emphasis very much on experimentation or, in Kevin Petersen's case, a desperate attempt to claw back some form.
New skipper Alastair Cook, leader in place of the absent and influential Andrew Strauss, made some tactical errors on the final day, admitting after the game that he was conservative in his field placing. But this is a nursery ground for his development as a skipper - the time to make mistakes is now.

By only playing three pacemen, two of them relative rookies at this level, England left themselves exposed should they not dismiss the opposition quickly and long hard sessions took their toll. This is exactly what happened as the likes of Junaid Siddique and Mushfiqur Rahim dug in to frustrate the bowlers. In the end it was the brilliance of Graeme Swann, who bowled nearly 79 overs in the entire match, who let his weary pacemen off the hook.

Speaking of Swann, the Nottinghamshire spinner entered the record books after becoming the first England off-spinner to take ten wickets in a match since Jim Laker took 19 for 90 at Old Trafford in 1954. It s fitting reward for a player who has grasped his second chance at an international career by the scruff of the neck and turned himself into one of England's most reliable performers.

Bangladesh meanwhile are improving as a Test playing nation and surprised many with their resistance in the final two days of the test. Siddique and Rahim in particular batted superbly as they stayed together for two sessions, just short of 70 overs, racking up 167 runs in the process.
Siddique himself hit a marvellous century while only a rush of blood from Rahim, bowled while charging down the wicket to Swann, cost him a three figure score.

In the end it was a game where everyone can be satisfied. A weakened England side did what was expected of them, while the hosts showed they can hold their own in the test match arena. The cricket odds make England strong favourites to win the second Test, but Bangladesh will certainly be able to take positives out of the series.

Meanwhile, in football news, England remain third favourites in the World Cup 2010 betting despite the fact a number of important players are struggling with serious injuries.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Angry man suffers injury setback

Darren Maddy has suffered a setback on his return to the team following a knee injury last year that saw him miss most of the season. He suffered a facial injury in a nets session during the Warwickshire pre-season trip to South Africa. He will now require an operation. Its not known when he will be able to return to the team. Get well soon Darren!


Three cheers for ITV4 as finally i have been able to see some IPL on TV and what i have seen so far has been pretty good. The excitement, the colour, the big 6s, the hot chicks in the crowd which the cameraMEN always dwell on. What is not to like?

Well the infamy of that last over bowled by Tyagi (who didn't even get to finish it as he bowled 2 over the waist height balls so he ended up with the superb figures of 1.5-0-39-0). What was Dhoni doing bowling him in the last over after his previous over had been so badly mauled? So my adopted team of the Chennai Super Kings didn't get off to a very good start (my great-great-great-aunt was born in Chennai in case you were wondering how i picked them).

Seeing the old stars like Shane Warne and some exciting new Indian players makes the IPL some excellent cricket in my opinion.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Pre-season friendlies

Just a few weeks away now.

Oxford  UCCE, The Parks (March 30th-31st)
Leicestershire, Grace Road (April 1st-2nd)

Meet Craig Kieswetter – England’s latest South African

"It's something that I'm going to have to put up with for my whole career."

That's Craig Kieswetter view on criticism of his South African heritage, both from the Bangladeshi bowlers and, rather bizarrely, Michael Vaughan - who also works for his management team.

But the 22-year old Somerset batsmen, the son of an Afrikaner father and Scottish mother, doesn't appear affected by such jibes, answering his critics both verbally and with his sturdy cricket bat.

"I was born with a British passport, I've done my four years, I am British, and I don't see it as an issue. Everyone is entitled to their opinions, but for me it's about putting performances in on the park and helping England win," he said.

He certainly did the latter in Chittagong, blasting a magnificent 107 to form the backbone of England's 284 for 5, which proved good enough to secure a series whitewash. At 22 years and 97 days it also saw him become the second-youngest England batsman - after David Gower - to score an ODI hundred.

The score was, ironically, achieved in a patient, steady style, rather than with the gung ho spirit that earned him his international call-up in the first place. His aggressive style, born from the hard pitches of South Africa, raised hopes that England had finally found that quick scoring powerplay batsmen at the top of the order their limited overs side needs.

After two steady seasons of progress with his county in 2007 and 2008, 2009 saw Kieswetter begin to fulfil his potential. He averaged 65.83 opening the batting in the Friends Provident Trophy and he scored an unbeaten 138 off just 131 balls in the opening group match against Warwickshire. He notched 248 runs in the Twenty20 Cup and 1,242 runs at an average of almost 60 in the County Championship.

It is little wonder he was awarded his first cap the moment he qualified for England.
After two nervy innings in his opening matches it is encouraging to see him learn so quickly at this level, adapting his game to react to the match situation, showing a maturity and adaptability beyond his years.

With Andrew Strauss to return to the side and Alastair Cook doing a solid job as stand in, Kieswetter may just have given the selectors an unexpected, if welcome, headache.

Anyone considering a cricket bet on England to win the forthcoming Test series with Bangladesh can get odds of 2/7 on this happening.

Meanwhile, in football news, the World Cup betting still makes Spain favourites to win this year's tournament which will be held in South Africa.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Calum MacLeod to be in documentary

Warwickshire's young Scottish bowler will be featured in a BBC Alba documentary about young Scottish sports stars next week. Cothrom Spòrs: A Sporting Chance’ will be broadcast on Monday 8 March at 9pm.

Thursday, March 4, 2010


ITV has bought the rights to show this year's IPL and will air 59 live matches. Well i'm definately looking forward to this. Go Chennai Super Kings!