The Reuters global sports blog
Bright spring sunshine hit Lord’s on Saturday but with England’s first Test against West Indies having finished inside three days there was no one there to enjoy it.
Instead, the England and Wales Cricket Board were left gloomily counting the lost gate receipts for the final two days of the earliest Test yet staged in England.
The first Tests against both West Indies and Australia this year start on Wednesday instead of the traditional Thursday because the second Tests are scheduled for the following week.
West Indies, beaten by 10 wickets, were not even the first choice team to open a season the marketing men have called the greatest summer of cricket ever staged in England with a Twenty20 World Cup and an Ashes series.
Freddie Flintoff breaks down playing IPL cricket and needs an operation on his knee, news that comes as no great surprise to cricket fans, at least if twitterers on the subject are a good guide.
“Flintoff crocked again. Honestly, I’ve won more robust things at the fairground,” said theskiver in a fairly typical comment.
I saw this story and was very surprised. The usually mild-mannered Matthew Hoggard has hit out at his treatment after being dropped by the England cricket side 13 months ago.
“My contact with the ECB has been zero and so I’m completely and utterly not even thinking about a recall,” said the 32-year-old pace bowler, who was part of the attack which beat Australia in 2005.
Andy Flower, appointed England director of cricket on Wednesday, was responsible with Zimbabwe team mate Henry Olonga for a startling and unprecedented protest in his team’s opening 2003 World Cup match.
Flower and Olonga took the field against Namibia in Harare on Feb. 10, 2003, wearing black armbands to “mourn the death of democracy in our beloved Zimbabwe”.
The recent announcement that two Australian cricketers will play English county cricket before the Ashes has been met with stinging criticism and bewilderment in the UK.
Opening batsman Phil Hughes, who’s just played in the third test against South Africa and is fresh from becoming the youngest batsman (at 20) to hit two centuries in a match, and opening bowler Stuart Clark, chief destroyer of England in the 2006-7 Ashes with 26 wickets, will play for Middlesex and Kent respectively.