Once again there's been a long break since I last typed in this
particular slot. There have been a number of reasons for this, not the
least of which is the gathering and introduction of slide shows on the
site. It has taken no little effort to process the shots, sort and label
them and learn the software involved, which I have to say is not
particularly difficult once you've done it once or twice. You'll note
the URL of the company supplying the software on the corner of the pictures. I hope you
find it an interesting feature which enables me to introduce slightly
better resolution pictures.
During the winter I have also introduced new hardware at the picture
taking stage. With a manual for the kit running to well over 100 pages
and with many acronyms, some of which I was not familiar with, this has
also been a shallow learning curve. (Those of you with business
experience will know that the 'steep' variety has come into common
parlance meaning exactly the opposite of it original meaning).
So what has spurred me back into adding to this ramble? Well, it is a
few quotes I have noted down while I have been 'off-air'. Let's start
with the more apposite quote for the women's sport which came from the
Australian Ellyse Perry...
"Test cricket is something we really cherish.
To play a Test match is a
pinnacle, I dare say, for all of us.
I have only played 12 days of Test
cricket in my life but I could recount every day.
They certainly mean a
The rare sight of Ellyse Perry in 'whites' during the Ashes Test 2009
I wonder how many other internationals feel the same. With Tests
nowadays in the hen's teeth category I suspect quite a few, especially
from those countries who appear to have abandoned them altogether.
And then I found this...
"If tribal affiliation becomes something
more than the seasoning that makes the dish worthwhile, if it becomes
our only cause of interest, then we miss out on the true meaning of
I came across this in an article entitled 'Fair Weather Fans'
by Nadir Hassan on Pakistan's 'Express Tribune' web site. He writes that
he could not become a fan of women's cricket just because Pakistan had
won an Asia Cup gold medal. He suspected many of his countrymen had just
a fleeting acquaintance with the sport and that their enthusiasm would
fade as quickly as it had begun. But it occurred to me that there
was another layer of interpretation one could place on the quote, namely
that a sport is worth watching whether or not 'your' team is playing, or
even that there would be times when 'your' team may have lost but you
were forced to admire the skill and courage of their opponents. Or at
least a true fan of any sport would find that in themselves. A win by
'their' side would not be the only criterion on which they would base
their enjoyment of a sporting occasion. Indeed it might not even be the
And the men play cricket too...
I have mentioned previously in this diatribe my admiration for the
Sri Lankan's current men's skipper, Mahela Jayawardene. In respect of
Nadir's remark, my visit to Bristol was an occasion when the
were soundly beaten but I was treated to a match in the style mentioned.
True the England women won the earlier game that day, but the men's
match alone would have been a fine day out - apart of course from the
fact the weather was very far from fine! Jayawardene's innings was a joy
to watch and an exhibition of a master comfortable with his work. I
never thought I'd be saying this but it's a T20 innings I'll never forget,
which leads me to other quotes
noted down during the last few days watching the IPL and the earlier
series when England visited Sri Lanka.
Gallery/Slide Show from this match
"When you watch Mahela play you feel that's how batting is supposed
to be" - Mike Atherton
"A batsman who does everything beautifully" - Simon Hughes
"A privilege to watch" - Mark Butcher
"A special player and a special person" - Robin Jackman
"There are surgeons and there are butchers" - Ian Botham - leaving
you in no doubt about which camp he felt the Sri Lankan belonged to.
Superlatives like this are dropped around all the time it's true, but
I can't recall hearing quite so many, from such eminent mouths, in such
a short space of time before. I don't always agree with the experts but
on this, they'll have no argument from me!
And while I'm quoting - how's this for a neat piece of headline
writing from an Indian newspaper on the recall of Mithali Raj to the
captain's spot. (sadly this link appears to be dead - it read
"Return of the Raj".)