Welcome, dear reader. Far be it for me to state the obvious about the monsoon season. But hey. It feels like someone has to.
Someone Stating The Obvious
When the ECB and whatever the board of Sri Lankan cricket are called (I am going to be bold and suggest it’s the SLCB) got together over a pint and started checking the diary for potential dates for a get-together, did nobody think to check whether it was right, slap-bang in the middle of the monsoon season?
Now, I am all for Ed Smith’s commendable thought process that England should continue to push towards being the best ODI team in all conditions. But really. Does this include being the best cricket team in the world when up to your knees in water?
Just 15 overs were squeezed in last Wednesday in the opening ODI. Before rain, which was unsurprisingly forecast, took over and washed out the rest of the day. You might recall that it was, er, the monsoon season that prevented England from getting much of a warm-up in the scheduled matches before this ODI series was getting underway.
An Actual Game Of Cricket?
On Saturday, they were at least able to get some actual cricket played. Well, I say some actual cricket. They got a result. And it was a positive one for England. Huzzah.
Skipper Morgan knocked up 92 and Test captain Root 71 as England set Sri Lanka 279 to win.
We got a first proper look at Olly Stone. A bowler who is properly swift and caused the Sri Lankan openers a few nervy moments as they saw a while ball whistle past their bats, gloves and a couple of times, noses. As he and Chris Woakes reduced the hosts to five down. Before the ball was chucked to the spinners with the message ‘hurry up lads, it’s going to rain’.
The likes of Rashid, Dawson and Ali whittled through some overs with England well ahead on the DLS. Managing to get the needed 20 on the board to mean the match actually counted.
So, England lead 1-0 and might have found an ace-in-the-pack with Olly Stone. It’s not all bad then.
Equally ‘not’ bad is the coverage on TalkSport. You might recall the outcry, the letters of complaint, the placards and the general calls of ‘this just is not cricket’ when it emerged that there would be NO, I repeat, NO TMS this winter. You see, TalkSport chose to pay more money than the BBC for the privilege to report back the fact it is still raining.
Despite everyone assuming it would be absolute rubbish, TalkSport have shocked the cricketing world by getting presenters and commentators who know what they are talking about. And have kept the adverts to a minimum. As many people know, if you can get through airtime when it is raining without it being too excruciating, you have pretty much nailed it.