England v Australia Champions’ Trophy match report

Sam writes:

Birmingham gets a lot of stick. I’ve never been sure why. I think it’s because nobody really knows what it is. Is it north or south? Is it Britain’s second city or just a collection of old car factories? The comedy accent doesn’t help, nor does the list of famous people hailing from the area. Jasper Carrot, Noddy Holder, Alan Titchmarsh, Karren Brady – although she was actually born in London, but you get my drift.

Anyway, I grew up in Birmingham and most of my family are still there, despite their best efforts. So I still have a soft spot for the place, and Edgbaston in particular, where I spent much of my youth freezing my nads off watching Warwickshire win yet another County Championship.

Edgbaston doesn’t have any Test matches this year, for the first time in living memory. So the powers that be obviously decided to make amends by giving them a load of matches in the Champions Trophy. I went to the first one. We were sat in the Eric Hollies stand, otherwise known as the “popular” stand. Which means it’s where all the drunken idiots in fancy dress congregate.

In front of us was a group of men, most of whom were dressed in overalls and hard hats and one in a long blue dress and necklace. It was only when he turned around and revealed his mask that I realised they were Thatcher and the miners.

We saw a couple dressed as Mr Blobby (he was a novelty 1990s TV character, kids. Ask your dad). There were also a group of extremely irritating people sitting near us who didn’t seem remotely interested in the action. At one point the most annoying man had his trousers pulled down by the others. They got steadily more intoxicated and didn’t come back after the break.

At the interval, we went to the shop. It was kitted out just like the rest of the ground – entirely in bland ICC branding. It was almost like someone had erased Warwickshire from the history of the sport.

My cousin was playing Kwik Cricket on the outfield. I couldn’t really make him out. I later discovered he had also been one of the mascots standing in front of the Australia players during the national anthems.

Having been behind the stand for the first innings, the sun finally made an appearance in the afternoon. We spent most of the remainder of the game unsure whether we were too hot or too cold. Every removal of cardigan or jumper seemed to prompt a re-appearance of the sun, and vice-versa.

As the end of the match approached (sorry die-hard KC fans, cricket mention alert) Nasser Hussain stood waiting at the boundary edge, poised for his presentation duties. As the last-wicket partnership dragged on he just stood there, clipboard and microphone in hand. Nobody spoke to him for what seemed like an eternity. He kept glancing at his notes and shuffling his papers, as if he was standing in the corner of a bar pretending he hadn’t been stood up.

Then we went home and played badminton in the garden.

Send your match reports to king@kingcricket.co.uk and on no account mention the cricket itself.

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31 Appeals

  1. You’ll get in trouble if you claim Noddy Holder as a Brummie. He’s from the Black Country.

    In other news: Graeme Hick appointed batting coach at Australian centre of excellence

    http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2013/sep/25/graeme-hick-cricket-australia-centre-of-excellence

    • Batsman won 65 Tests for England
    [ O RLY? Bet that doesn’t stay there for long]

  2. Meanwhile, excellent match report, Sam, despite the close to the wind sailing Nasser Hussain cricket mention.

    Don’t think for one moment that an alert lets you off the hook.

    Beware the wrath of the King. Who knows what he might do to exact punishment.

  3. In other news, my beloved Bears seem to have found championship winning form just at the wrong time.

    http://www.espncricinfo.com/county-cricket-2013/engine/current/match/593531.html

    From 140-7 on the first day, recovering to win by an innings and 168 runs. That’s some turnaround.

  4. Five wins and three draws in our last eight championship matches of the season

  5. Ok you bunch of know-alls. Pop quiz. No Googling.

    Since 1990, 14 players have scored 2,000 runs and taken 40 wickets in all competitions in an English season. Who was the only player to do it this year?

    And how many of the other 13 can you name?

    There is one that nobody will get.

  6. Phil Simmons had a mighty year for Leics back in 95 or 96. Perhaps?

    Otherwise, got nothing.

  7. Not Trott. Not Collingwood.

    For anyone who gives up, here’s the full list.

    http://twitter.com/OptaJim/status/383150758993989632/photo/1

    Feel free to avoid it and keep guessing.

  8. My knowledge of county cricket is pretty poor.

    Adam hollioake

  9. Craig white
    Darren lehman

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