More Test cricket for South Africa

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That’s not a chant. There are too many syllables. You’d have to rush through the ‘Test cricket’ bit to make it work and Test cricket ain’t for rushing through.

No, ‘more Test cricket for South Africa’ actually comes about because it looks like there is going to be more Test cricket for South Africa. They’re looking to extend series against Australia to four Tests and there also seem to be plans to do the same in series against India, which will be excellent right up until the point that the BCCI suddenly decide they want to do something different.

On that subject, the IPL’s going to start in the UAE next month. They decided that this week.


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


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  1. Can we have some more test cricket for Sri Lanka while we are at it?

    Sangakkara has never played in a ‘4th test’.

  2. Two of your interests are converging, KC – maybe you can write the same article on both of your websites with just the names changed.

    The Indian Premier League is somewhat defined, geographically speaking, by one of the three words in its name. Holding the start of it in a completely different country is therefore odd, no matter what the reason. Presumably it is only the relatively unimportant bits with not much going on that are being held abroad.

    I wonder if the Great Armenian Duckshoot will come to Carlisle next year.

    1. Just on this subject (since I don’t know much about it), how good is the racing likely to be in Yorkshire? I’ve seen stuff about the TdF that implies that because of the massive energy saving when following another rider, on some stages it is actually impossible to gain an advantage. Your opponent just sits on your wheel using far less energy than you till the end. So what the riders actually do is just pedal along in general agreement that it’s best for everyone if nobody actually races.

      I’m going to watch, on the Sunday, near Halifax. Will I see high energy full-on sport, or will I see a parade?

    2. That stage – stage two, from York to Sheffield – is actually the stage we’re most excited about in the entire race.

      It’s true that it’s much much easier to ride behind someone else – that’s the basic principle governing how they race – but the corollary of this is that you have to create gaps in the bunch wherever you can.

      Two major ways of creating gaps are on steep hills, when sitting behind someone becomes far less helpful; and on narrow roads, when the peloton is forced to stretch. The roads used on stage two offer both.

      It does depend on the riders – and they do tend to ride more conservatively early in the race – but we’re pretty sure that someone will try and create a glorious, unpredictable mess on that day.

    3. Should Bert, or anyone else for that matter, submit a report of his day out to Halifax to watch le Tour rampage through, should he:

      a) submit it here or on your site?
      b) mention the cycling?

      I’ve had mixed experiences of live bike races. I’ve been stuck in a mammoth queue in France waiting for the race to pass (before the internets, how were we to know where the route was going?). I’ve also stood at the side of the road as the Olympic Road Race pass near my house. It was a bit uneventful, but at 12 miles into the race, you’d hardly expect anything less.

    4. We’d publish it on the cycling site. And the reality of watching a bike race in person means that the non-mentioning will pretty much take care of itself.

      Perhaps we’d allow a recurring: “… and then they all rode past.”

    5. I’ll do a match report for sure. Maybe I’ll also do you a Tour de France themed cryptic crossword – I know how much you like them.

      Key answers to include – EPO, anti-Semitic, bulging, Pelly Tonn, inaccurately named, Kraftwerk, drawing pins, cuisses de grenouille, much too tight.

    6. What does it even mean to watch a live bike race? You stand in one spot and catch about two minutes of action watching all of them bike past you? Doesn’t seem like a smart use of one’s time.

      But then again, we are talking about cycling enthusiasts.

    7. You lie. I haven’t been to one cricket match where the spectators gave players alcohol.

  3. That’s the only available window for the IPL in the international cricket calendar, but the Indian general elections, the largest elections in the world, were recently announced for then. Security and police agencies have given them a no-go, so off to the UAE it is.

  4. Just been checking out the schedule for the World T20, which apparently “starts this weekend”. Except none of the main teams play until a week later, thanks to the group stage only containing associate nations. Way to spark everyone’s interest in a global tournament, ICC. They really do excel at finding new ways of sucking the life out of this sport.

    1. On the plus side, England are doing their bit to liven things up by playing a warm up against WI.

      I’m so glad they don’t just play the same team over and over again any more.

    2. I’ve been advocating the use of such a pre-series qualifying tournament for associate nations for decades. It allows many associate nations to participate in an ICC World Cup without making the main tournament ridiculously long and without the nonsensical aspect that half the first round matches (taking up three or four of the five or six weeks) are one-sided non-events.

      And it will spark interest in the tournament…in those very associate countries where the ICC is trying to generate more interest.

      Big ups to the ICC this time around for finally seeing sense.

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