Broad bows out.


A magical Ashes series.

To take a wicket with your last ball, and hit a six with the last ball faced must be unique.

What a special cricketing family.

I have fond memories of sitting on a train South from Scotland and seeing a little red light appear on my phone every time Stuart Broad took one of those 8 wickets in Trent Bridge in 2015.

He has been the player with the ability to wow us.

Yesterday was no different. I had written it off. But you know what the Phoenix did.

Film to see

‘The Greatest Game’ is a super doc about the World Cup Final in 2019. It won’t be long before we’re all following the fortunes of the teams in India later this year, but the Final 4 years ago at Lords is unlikely to be forgotten any time soon.

I liked the way the filmmakers gave brief descriptions of the English players’ backgrounds. I didn’t realise Jason Roy was a motorcyclist or had moved to Chipsted from SA at the age of ten.

What an extraordinary game that was.


England win by 3 wickets.

The Ashes were on the line.

Head on the block!

More Newky Brown Ale Moments than Champagne Moments in this one. Lessons in Woodwork.

What a treat it was to watch Day 2 with Yorkie Roberto.

The two Yorkies who took centre stage at the start of Day 2 (Root and Bairstow) didn’t push on, and we saw 6 England wickets fall although the Aussies were seriously held up with yet more Stokes Fireworks. Subsequently 4 Aussie wickets fell including Moeen Ali picking up Smudge for 2.

It was an incredibly fun trip up to Leeds and the ground was bathed in sunshine.

Day 3 was a different story with incessant rain but those spectators that were patient were treated to late Aussie wickets. England were set 251.

Perhaps it was fate that I had a Sunday Lunch in the New Forest and could only sporadically dip into the score. It was certainly better for my stress levels.

What a Series.

To Manchester.


Between this …… (after inserting Aussies on the first morning)

and this …. (last afternoon whizz bang fireworks)

there were so many little (and big) tales.

It was a joy to follow.

It was a joy to catch up with Fred.

…and it was a joy to take Dad.

The Brightside Ground, Bristol. Gloucestershire v Sussex Sharks. Vitality Blast.

Sussex have some big guns in their squad but they are either too busy getting over injuries or preparing for the Ashes. No matter, Sussex still strolled past Glos. Although the cricket was one sided, what a joy to catch up with old friends.

Sussex Sharks won the toss and inserted Glos. Why have Gloucestershire not got a name? The Gloucestershire Glockenspiels. Catchy? The team seems to be struggling a little. Perhaps it needs a lick of PR chrome.

Jo’burg born Roelofsen scored a handy 41 and apart from a useful 31 run 10th wicket partnership there were precious few other contributions. Karvelas and Shadab each took 4 wickets. Glos posted 140 off 19.2 overs. Never enough.

Outside the gates where WG is commemorated.

The Sharks went in to bat and knocked off the runs in 13.2 overs. Ward got a 50.

A lateral conversion on the Penthouses?

Cracking Evening.

Dr William Gilbert Grace.

The Closest contest was saved for the After Party.

The Ashes Day 5 Edgbaston

No repeat of 2005, but a very very good game.

Ponting was safe in the commentary box this time.

In terms of time – the distance between now and ’05 is the same as ’05 and 86/87 and for cricket fans that’ll have some meaning. If only to make us feel a little older and realise “we are” entering another era in which “we” become the Statesmen, like it or not.

In ’05 I was backpacking my way down America’s West Coast and the communal computer in the hostel I was staying in was only sporadically available. Suffice to say when I did get use of the internet I searched for the scorecard, did the Maths, took in a bit of West Coast Culture and returned to watch the figures move in the favour of Flintoff and co. No cricket fans handy to celebrate with that day but a wide smile on my face.

It wasn’t to be yesterday.

Rain delayed the start. I finally managed to do something other than follow cricket for a few hours, and was pretty productive.

Aussies played the long game. England had to really toil hard. Khawaja was utterly brilliant until Stokes pulled a rabbit out the hat and got him to play on.

But hats off to Cummins. Captain, Bowler and 40 essential runs at the end. Aussies win by 2 wickets. It could not have been much tighter. To Lords.