Essex v Australians at Chelmsford – match report

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Ivan The Smart Phone - Not a Selfie

My name is Ivan. I am Ged’s smart phone. One of the few things I cannot do is take a selfie; my friend Ida took this picture. I wear a protective cover in the style of an old-fashioned calculator. I am told that this is a joke.

I went with Ged to see a cricket match in Chelmsford, the principal settlement of the City of Chelmsford and the county town of Essex, in the East of England. We travelled to the ground by train and on foot. I could explain all the detail of the journey to you; I planned it after all, but Ged says that I must not be too wordy in my match reports. He also says that I shouldn’t mention the actual cricket. I can follow rules.

When we arrived at a little park across the river from the ground, Ged asked a steward for help, as for once I could not answer Ged’s question. The steward pointed to a security check in the park, near which we saw some chavs knocking back bottles of Champagne at 10.45am.

Ged went forward for his check.

“Do you have any glass bottles or glasses?” asked the steward.

“No,” said Ged. “I read the ticket carefully. So I brought only plastic bottles and glasses.”

“Stroik a loit, knock me darn wiv a fever and shoik me ‘and, squire,” said the steward, putting out his hand for Ged to shake. “Yer the first proper gent today.”

I identified the accent as Dick van Dyke.

I kept Ged and Charley the Gent Malloy in communication during the journey, so Ged knew exactly where to go to find Charley. Unusually, Ged did not wipe his feet as he entered the pavilion, but he did wipe them as he left the building, heading for the viewing benches in front, where Charley had saved him a good seat.

“No chance of us trying your famous bottle of red wine today then, Charley,” said Ged, showing Charley his little plastic bottles of wine. “Glass prohibition and all that.”

“Oh I pay no attention to that guff,” said Charley, producing a proper glass bottle of wine. “But I thought white would be better than red today; it was so hot yesterday.”

I had taken Ged and Daisy to Wimbledon that day and indeed it had been so hot my circuits overheated. I had to sleep for most of the day. I am pleased to report that no such overheating occurred on this occasion. I should say, though, that the Wimbledon surroundings were somewhat more salubrious than Chelmsford. Still, Mrs Malloy had prepared a similarly splendid picnic, with chicken rolls, cheese ones and also some with corned beef – the latter I think Charley rather hoped would be rejected by Ged, but Ged enjoyed his fair share of everything, including the nibbles, biscuits and cake.

Towards the end of the day’s play, we all relocated to the other side of the ground to get a different view. During a short rain delay, a steward protected the field of play. He was jerking around with Southern Dragon Kung Fu moves, as if fighting his own demons.

“Are you all right?” asked Charley.

“These bloody flies at this time of the evening,” said the steward. “They’re awful.”

Ged and Charley had not encountered any flies, but decided to leave that area and return to the pavilion.

Soon after that, Mrs Malloy joined us for a few minutes at the end of the day, during which time Daisy phoned in from the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show. All too soon, Ged and I were on our way back to the station, after agreeing that, one way or another, we had all enjoyed a splendid day in the country.

Send your match reports to If it’s a professional match, on no account mention the cricket itself. If it’s an amateur match, feel free to go into excruciating detail.


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  1. Good God. A talking car, a talking green monster, and now a talking “smart” phone? How long before we recognise this man’s an alien with weird powers who aims to take full control of a certain small section of London because, well, let’s face it – he hasn’t got enough firepower to go beyond that.

    1. …laughs manically with one of those deep baritone laughs that goes on for a little too long, stops briefly, then starts again, going on for far too long the second time, perhaps into a fade.

    1. You’ll have to ask Ged why that was. We’re very slow to publish match reports. Maybe he wrote this before they were really a thing.

      1. KC asks Ged, so Ged in turn asks Ivan.

        Ivan replies that, in common with the average smart phone, web browsing for information is a major part of his job these days.

        People probably don;t need to be told chapter and verse about Chelmsford either, but Ivan provides copious information about that town in the next paragraph.

        We need to make some allowances for Ivan when assessing his style of writing. He is, by nature, very matter of fact. Unlike Dumbo, who is all heart but not so strong on logic.

        I hope that helps.

  2. Ged’s made a massive error. To the trained eye, the reflection in the glass of the coffee table reveals a huge amount of data. Lights set into the ceiling, as opposed to the chandeliers we all assumed he had. Tiny white ceiling beams instead of huge chunks of finest English Oak. Pictures on the wall instead of ancestral portraits and axes. A few select drinks on the shelf instead of a massive cellar full of casks of Amontillado and signs of immurement. Even the fact of the coffee table being glass and not sturdy English Elm is a bit of a shock.

    I had you down as a man of good stock, Ged, a gentleman in the finest English tradition – yeomanry, Agincourt, serfdom, gout. But no, it turns out you are little better than those metrosexual Australians like Michael Clarke and Shane Watson. If these are the types of people allowed into Lord’s these days, we surely are in desperate straits.

    1. Excellent observation, Bert, except for one small flaw in your analysis.

      The photo was taken at Daisy’s hovel, not my mansion.

      Further, as was documented relatively recently in this report, Daisy comes from almost the right sort of family, but not quite the right sort.

      The picture you can see is not actually a picture on the wall but a photo on the mantelpiece. It is a very grand photo of me in full tilt cricketing splendour. I’ll upload the picture and post a link to it when I get back to the mansion later today.

  3. Here is a link to the photo on Daisy’s mantelpiece…

    …all co Charley the Gent for this picture. It makes it look as though I know what I am doing and even perhaps belong on a cricket pitch. My late father, who was a professional photographer/cinematographer in his youth and thus not easily impressed by a picture, was very impressed by this picture.

    Thanks for giving me the opportunity to link and point to this picture, Bert.

    1. Ged stared intently at her, his eyes captivating, impossible to ignore, a delicate, slightly mocking smile warming his lips. He knew the power he had over her, and he intended to use it. Much as she wanted to turn away, she knew she could not. He held her as surely by his gaze as if he had enfolded her in his strong, ursine embrace.

      “I’ll be with you in a sec, love.” he says, “Just as soon as I’ve finished scratching my groin.”

  4. Eoin Morgan on his concussion last summer: “It was ten days before I felt myself.”

    We’ve all been through a dry spell, Eoin. Treat yourself to a bottle of wine and a DVD.

    1. When did this summer become last summer? Did I miss the rollover date?

      To me it’s a contraction of ‘this year’s summer’. We won The Ashes THIS summer!!!

      1. ‘Last summer’ as in the last time it was summer.

        ‘Next summer’ as in the next time it’s summer.

        There is no ‘this summer’ unless it’s currently summer.

        Which, my nose and ears tell me, it most definitely is not.

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