An update on the Patreon crowdfunding idea

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Winnington Park Cricket Club (CC licensed by Lizzie)

We had a really uplifting response to our survey about whether regular readers would be willing to pay a small sum each month to help us do more on the site. It wasn’t so much the financial generosity that struck us; it was the display of appreciation, which is something you don’t ordinarily get a sense of as a writer.

Upshot is, we’re going to do it. But not just yet. We’ll explain why in a second.

The vast majority of people who completed the survey said they’d pledge between £1 and £5 a month and so we’ll base the funding tiers around that (even though everything has to be priced in US dollars).

The survey also revealed almost breath-takingly limited appetite for ‘rewards’. Most people simply wanted us to do more on the site in some way or another. It’s hard to quantify, but if we get enough funding we should be able to deliver some combination of (a) more frequent updates, (b) longer pieces and (c) coverage of non-England matches.

A podcast was mentioned a couple of times. This is something we think about from time to time, but if it ever happens, it would be very occasional.

Gift vouchers for shops that no longer exist was our favourite reward suggestion. We hope the person who requested ‘an occasional hug’ is not a friend or family member, because honestly you should know better.

The reason why we’re holding fire with this for the time being is that we’ve had an idea for an optional ‘reward’ that we think a fair few of you would be interested in. However, it’ll be a couple of weeks before we know whether it’s a goer or not.

Until then, it’s business as usual. (It’ll be business as usual afterwards too.)


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


Why risk it when it's so easy to sign up?



    1. My cousin has been trying to convince me to get a capybara. Do you want my cousin?

    2. Alas, widespread distribution of capybaras would merely diminish the animal’s status as the designated vehicle of Rob Key.

    1. I don’t think capybaras are life -threatening to humans. The worst outcome a human might get is a bite from a moody, stressy, sizeable rodent.

      Whereas the capybara might be slaughtered an eaten by humans. This does not seem, to me, to be danger equivalence.

  2. I obviously haven’t been following random Cricinfo scorecards enough, but did anyone notice that Japan have qualified for their first World Cup? The 2020 men’s U-19 edition, in particular. In what was set up to be the crunch qualifying match against fellow unbeaten side PNG, their opponents could not field a team for the final day’s play after Cricket PNG suspended 11 of its 14 squad members “for internal disciplinary reasons and failing to adhere to our strict codes of conduct,” according to a statement issued over Facebook by Cricket PNG.

    I think this is brilliant but I also suspect they’re going to get a thwonking or two. Also a bit sad that two out of Ireland, Scotland and Netherlands will have to miss out because there’s only one European qualifying place, despite the fact they’d all massively rate their chances against Japan. And apparently being a full member doesn’t guarantee qualification, which is why Ireland have to qualify, although Afghanistan and Zimbabwe and everyone else went through automatically – I think by dint of their 2018 U-19 WC performances.

    1. Also slipped past me that Nigeria won the African qualification so will be playing their first World Cup too!

      I feel a bit bad for Namibia, who almost qualified when Nigeria had a wobble against Sierra Leone, and particularly bad for their captain and star player Divan la Cock, who possesses a name far too magnificent to be constrained to qualifying tournaments,surely deserving to be at the main event. And Namibia have a De Villiers too!

      Kenya came fifth, behind Uganda (4th) and Sierra Leone (3rd). Perhaps Bert can inform us whether they’ve had some kind of sporting implosion due to their cricket being sucked down a localised black hole? For those of us who have fond memories of Steve Tikolo and Collins Obuya reaching the 2003 semifinals, it seems such a waste.

      1. @Ged

        Top Divan-spotting there. Simply divine.

        While entirely unofficial (and the ICC now provides official complete T20 rankings in which Kenya have slipped below Jersey!), I’ve always found Shane’s ratings pretty accurate – they’ve worked well when associate sides have clashed at global tournaments, usually only going seriously awry when a country has found – or lost – some Aussie or Saffer or Windies pro cricketers with the right passport, so that their team’s quality is no longer in line with their rating. I can see the logic of the ICC having one qualifying slot per development region, but only one slot for Europe seems harsh when you look at how low Nigeria and especially Japan are in Shane’s rankings and see how relatively close to the lowest full members are Scotland and Netherlands. In fact Japan would likely be beaten handily by Denmark or Germany, so it isn’t going to be pretty to see them against India or the Aussies. If towards the end of my lifetime there are Test matches at the base of Mt Fuji then it will all have been worth it.

      2. Divan is pronounced Divan – obviously. Happy to help.

        Actually try Dee-vun. Dee as in “Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich”. Vun as in “vulnerable”.

  3. I thought the lead picture was your new house purchased on the back of all the pledges you received. Was about to make a comment on your very close and very industrial neighbours when I realised my mistake

  4. A podcast you say? One can imagine how the people of Japan felt when they heard their Emperor Hiro Hito’s voice for the first time prior to their surrender at the end of WW2. Perhaps with a northern twang.

    1. You must have missed those two things we did with Andy Zaltzman about 10 years ago (or probably more).

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