The Edgbaston crowd

Cardiff and Lord’s hosted great Test matches, but the Ashes has really got going at Edgbaston. It’s the crowd.

We went on Saturday and much as we love eating sandwiches in the rain, Sunday showed what we missed. It clearly affects the players who were suddenly all very interested in talking to their opponents between deliveries.

The day ended with a healthy debate between James Anderson and Shane Watson. Watson’s mum must have been in the crowd, because he doesn’t seem the type to stand up for himself otherwise. Earlier on, Graeme Swann and Stuart Broad had sledged Mitchell Johnson, seemingly unaware that they were the batsmen and supposed to be on the receiving end.

Broad got an earful off just about everybody, but being posh and looking about 15 has doubtless provided good preparation for this sort of treatment. He gives as good as he gets and seems to really enjoy himself.

But the highest compliment you can pay the Edgbaston crowd, is that they somehow coaxed a batting performance out of Andrew Flintoff – 74 runs thumped off 79 balls.

  • Edgbaston + Flintoff + beer = atmosphere
  • Atmosphere + Flintoff = a Flintoff performance
  • A Flintoff performance + Edgbaston + beer = a crowd that improves England by about 10 percent
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11 Appeals

  1. Hm, simultaneous equations, eh? Let’s do some rearranging:

    From equation 1

    Flintoff = atmosphere – Edgbaston – beer

    Substituting for Flintoff in equation 2

    Atmosphere + (atmosphere – Edgbaston – beer) = a Flintoff performance

    (2 x Atmosphere) – Edgbaston – beer = a Flintoff performance

    Substituting for a Flintoff perfomance in equation 3

    ((2 x Atmosphere) – Edgbaston – beer) + Edgbaston + beer = a crowd that improves England by about 10 percent

    Simplifying,

    2 x Atmosphere = a crowd that improves England by about 10 percent

    So doubling the atmosphere improves England by about 10 percent. Note especially, boys and girls, that this is now independent of Flintoff, Edgbaston, and beer.

    Quod Errat Demonstrator

  2. all true.
    i went on friday and sunday and they were two of the best days cricket i’ve seen.

  3. King Cricket

    August 3, 2009 at 9:02 am

    And we went on the Saturday and it was the best day of cricket we’ve never seen.

    That comment hurt.

  4. Of less interest is the curious non-effect of Ian Bell on the atmosphere of his home ground. He seems to be the only player on either side who has no discernable effect on the crowd either way. One might almost suggest that no-one is really bothered about him one way or the other.

  5. I love that no-one gave a shit, when he reached 10000 first class runs.

    They would be interested if the runs were of the wild shits variety.

  6. I went on Sunday and listened to the Johnners tape on the way home

    I didn’t even feel that I was in Birmingham

    What an amazing day

  7. KC

    Sorry. I was due to go on Saturday too. I stayed at home and watched Field of Dreams.

  8. Oh my god!! Fresh on the heels of young Hughes’s Twitter mistake, Ben Hilfenhaus has only gone and revealed Australia’s entire tactical plan for today’s play:

    “We’ll look to bat for as long as we can, hopefully we won’t get bowled out but if we do hopefully we’ll have enough runs on the board to hold on,” he told BBC 5 Live.

    They’ve no chance now we know that.

  9. Why does Bell always snarl when he’s at the crease? It fools nobody. We all know he’s an insult away from crying for his mummy.

  10. Yes,highlight of Saturday was watching old Merv being interviewed.
    the toilets were better than OT.

  11. It is one of those sad truths about our great test match grounds north of Watford that the ghastly toilets at Edgbaston are indeed slightly less awful than the ghastly toilets at Old Trafford.

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