A pop-up stadium, Aaron Jones’ 10 sixes, PNG bother the Windies, a David Wiese Super Over, Ruben Trumpelmann + more

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By heck, this could be a good T20 World Cup, you know. All of this in just the first couple of days and Nepal haven’t even played yet. (We’re led to believe Nepal will be the most fun of all.)

Even if we had the time, we have no particular ambition to recap every game of this tournament. It’s hard to overlook any of these first three though.

Game 1 (again) – Aaron Jones peppers beef

The first ever international cricket game is thought to have taken place between the United States and Canada in 1844. The first game of the 2024 T20 World Cup was also between these two teams and seriously it was not half bad.

Canada set the US 195 to win. That seemed a pretty tall target come the first ball of the US innings and it grew a few more centimetres when Steven Taylor was out off the second. However, number four bat Aaron Taylor went full pongo, cow-cornering 10 sixes. (Unless the only one we missed went elsewhere, all 10 headed in that same direction.) That got him to an unbeaten 94 off 40 balls, which – as you might imagine – won the match.

Game 2 – Papua New Guinea give the West Indies a few palpitations

For those of us unfortunate enough to have got our first exposure to Papua New Guinea via the improbably-themed children’s book Cannibal Adventure by Willard Price, it’s quite nice to get a very different angle on the place.

PNG almost got themselves a long-term conversational topic as well, taking regular wickets to make West Indies’ pursuit of 137 pretty damn uncomfortable.

We were struck that Roston Chase – he of the weird eight-for – has apparently become a key T20 batter for the Windies, coming in at four. Maybe by the end of the tournament he’ll have rebranded himself Roston “Successful Run” Chase.

Game 3 – a Super Over, but so much more

All right Mrs Trumpelmann, is your Ruben playing out today?

What a pleasure it was to see one of the great names in cricket performing for Namibia today. Ruben Trumpelmann (Ruben Trumpelmann! Remember the name!) took wickets with the first two balls of the match to dismiss Oman for 109, ending up with the seemingly match-winning figures of 4-21. However, Namibia only managed 109-6 in reply and being as wickets don’t count in T20, it was Super Over time. (Mehran Khan, 3-7 off three overs, could conceivably have bowled a fourth for Oman.)

David Wiese – formerly of South Africa – followed up his 3-28 in the 20 overs with 13 off four balls when Nambia batted and then bowled the other Super Over and took 1-10 to secure the win. (They call it a Super Over, but we’re struck that there’s always two of them.)

Nassau County International Cricket Stadium

As a sometime denizen of the Old Trafford party stand, the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium utterly fascinates us. It’s essentially a pop-up cricket stadium in a New York park.

The pitches were prepared in trays in Adelaide and sent over in shipping containers.

The 34,000 capacity temporary venue in Eisenhower Park hosts its first game today: South Africa v Sri Lanka.

As a bizarre (and very American) footnote, the ground will apparently be well stocked with police snipers because a pro-ISIS group has threatened to target it.

Just to be clear, we absolutely are not going to be recapping every match of this tournament, but stick with us anyway by getting our email.


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  1. Willard Price ‘adventure’ books! Takes me back. There’s nothing like a big dose of wildlife adventure mixed with a touch of casual colonial-mentality racism to make a gripping yarn for a10-year old… as long as you’re not a 10 year old who is actually from/connected to any of the’exotic’ places that are featured. I shudder to think what crap is in “Cannibal Adventure”. Still, quite a good introduction to the old days of ‘big game’ conservation…

    Meanwhile good effort PNG. Home to about 1/6 of the world’s languages I believe. I wonder how many have a term for ‘silly mid-off’.

    1. Writing in the Guardian in 2012, Anthony McGowan ranked it his No.1 adventure book. “Crucially, although there is a certain amount of racial stereotyping (cannibals!), Price actually treats the indigenous Papuans with great respect.”

      1. Fair enough! I remember some nonsense about “Mau Mau witch doctors” in one set in Kenya. However it was all a gripping read when I was 10…

  2. Phil Salt’s spake about how he used to play tennis with a very competitive older brother:

    “He was one of the more ruthless older brothers,” Salt says. “There were no half-volleys.”

    I wonder how much competitive tennis Salt the Younger has actually played; any tennis player, real or otherwise, knows that the half-volley is one of the hardest shots to play well – quite the opposite of it being a archetypal buffet delivery in cricket.

  3. Any idea why David Wiese was selected to bat the super over? He comes in at no 6 and scored 9 (unbeaten) in the main match. It clearly worked for Namibia but I’m wondering about the decision before the result. Is he known as a consummate finisher?

  4. So England first ‘warm up’ game was abandoned due to rain, and their first actual game of the tournament was abandoned due to rain. That warm up series looks like the perfect preparation!

  5. Oman had me hopeful early on against Australia. One wonders what would have happened if that well held 4th catch which went for six didn’t go for six. Their 3rd catch to get rid of that annoying Maxwell for a golden deserved all the replays it got.

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