GOOGLIES & CHINAMEN
An Occasional Cricketing Journal
Old Wanker’s Almanac
I caught up with the venerable old gent earlier than expected this year.
As the transfer window opens, Manchester City announce that they have purchased Mbappe for £200m but say that he will have to play in the reserves for the next couple of seasons until a place can be found for him.
The England soccer team are still in their hotel room in Qatar. Someone told them that if they hung around long enough there would be a play-off match for seventh and eighth places.
The Met Office announces that the severe cold spell in December was due to global warming and the war in Ukraine.
At the FIFA Awards Dinner The Most Irritating Participants Award goes to the Linesmen who constantly attempted to “get in the game” particularly at corners but primarily for their delayed flag waving whenever offside was clear to all. The Runners up award went to the ludicrously biased English commentators and pundits who seemed to think that everyone was out to get their side.
The Rangers continue to lose all games since Michael Beale’s departure and having been top of the Championship in November are now mid table.
After an intensive internal Inquiry, the FA announce that the official reason for England not winning the World Cup was the war in Ukraine.
The Asshole Hall of Fame is opened and is inundated with nominations and candidates from all walks of life. But, nevertheless, Boris Johnson is unanimously elected Life President for his contributions to every aspect of public life that he has disgraced.
Sky announces that they will no longer be airing Women’s football because, although it is supplied cheaply, no one watches it.
The Rangers form gets no better and they are now just outside the relegation zone.
Rishi Sunak comes clean and finally admits that the country is broke and that inflation will continue. He announces that everyone in the UK must get used to a significantly reduced standard of living. Except, of course, the rich. He blames the selloff of most national assets in the eighties and nineties but mainly the war in Ukraine.
Following his resignation as an MP, Matt Hancock is made an honorary fellow of the Institute of Statisticians. When asked why, a spokesman said that his interpretations and explanations of statistics during Covid were so outrageous and farfetched that the institute could make a fortune hiring him out to any organisation who didn’t like the statistical results they were presented with.
Ticket sales for the Ashes series are down by huge amounts. Apparently, no one is prepared to purchase the extravagantly priced tickets for days three, four and five since the advent of Baz Ball.
The Rangers are without a win in 2023 and are relegated. Chairman Amit Bhatia states “Losing Michael Beale was a major blow but the principal reason for our decline was the war in Ukraine”.
England’s test team selectors are able to stop worrying how to fit Jonny Bairstow back into the team when Ollie Pope and Joe Root both break their arms in a critical arm-wrestling competition.
Sky announces that they will no longer be airing Women’s cricket because, although it is supplied cheaply, no one watches it.
After finishing tenth in the premiership level with Brentford Liverpool sack their manager, Jurgen Klopp. Afterwards Klopp said that he was sad to leave but it was inevitable after the war in Ukraine.
In the first Ashes test at Edgbaston England are bowled out on the first morning. However, they do score 270 in the process which is more than enough to give them victory by an innings. Wood and Archer do the damage bowling exclusively bumpers and short pitched deliveries throughout the match. For the first time in history England complete two innings of bowling without once having had a slip in place. Pat Cummins blames his side’s poor showing on the war in Ukraine.
Out & About with the Professor
It is a commonplace among historians that people living through revolutions are often unaware of the fact. If there are barricades and bullets, people do tend to notice, but “revolutions” of cultural, economic or social forms tend to be ex-post designations by scholars writing after (often long after) the events. People who lived through, say, the Industrial Revolution, may have noticed the odd factory popping up beside a river but they probably didn’t think to use the “revolution” metaphor for their own times. In economics there have been Classical, Marginal and Keynesian revolutions (we can ignore a Monetarist revolution as being ideology masquerading as theory) but few of the contributors would have thought of themselves as academic Jacobins. So what are we to make of the ”revolution” in the way Test cricket is played? Almost everyone who reads this journal knows exactly how Test cricket is played: you win the toss and bat for a day and then, if you can, for another day, and then another. By this time you have about 600 runs, there is no conceivable way you can lose and so you let the other side have a bat. If they fall apart, good…more likely you draw the game and go on to the next, where you do the same thing again.
Enter, you-know-who and suddenly everything is different. Now we try to get 600 in one day rather than three and give the opposition every chance of winning by early declarations.
It is Test cricket…but not as we have always known it. But is it a revolution in the way the format will be played or just an aberration, based on the instinctive behaviour of one (possibly two) man?
One of the most important scientific books of the second half of the 20th century is that of the American philosopher Thomas Kuhn: The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Kuhn argues that the way we understand and explain the world can, from time to time, bump up against contradictory evidence which causes (often after much wrangling and ill-tempered debate) a new way of thinking – a new (to use the word he made famous) “paradigm”.
Now am I pushing this too far to find a parallel (or at least some referencing) in the way England have played Test cricket in the last nine months? Are we living through a Stokesian revolution? I know this is supposed to be a cricket journal…but stay with me.
The existing paradigm of Test cricket is the one parodied above. Much has been made of the fact that England has only ever won two Tests in Pakistan…but, as most of us know, they have only lost four. All the rest, draws. As far as I can recall, Pakistan have always played Test cricket that way; and so, pretty much, has everyone else. Of course, there have been brilliant attacking individual players and even, occasionally, brilliant attacking sides: Bradman’s Australians, Warne’s Australians, a couple of West Indian teams (…add your favourite here) but these teams were able to play that way largely because they could select individuals who were supremely gifted and could dominate any opposition. Pakistan has had some wonderful attacking cricketers of course: think of the World Cup final with Imran, Javed, and Inzamam… but in Test matches? Moreover, those countries which have fielded attacking sides in the past quickly lapse back into grinding mode if they think the players are not good enough – there was a decided absence of Calypso Cricket in the West Indies last March.
The upshot has been the “contradiction” that the cricket authorities in several countries continue to put on a public entertainment that hardly anyone attends. Oh, I know there are exceptions, and I don’t have comparative data to hand, but we all know how attendance at Test cricket has collapsed over recent decades. Just look at the empty terraces in Multan. So, is our boy Ben on to something? In addition to winning games, Stokes has declared his intention to bring the public back. The much quoted 8 from 9 includes, remember: a comprehensive thrashing of New Zealand 3-0, the highest ever run chase to beat India, and three games against South Africa which resulted in innings victories for both sides. If this is not a new paradigm, it is at least bloody exciting.
But a Kuhnian paradigm-shift requires something else; it requires everyone else to change as well. If Stokes’ England keep winning (or if, win or lose, they completely change the perception of Test cricket), will others follow? If the man down the pub says that in times of severe economic hardship the government ought not to introduce an austerity programme, that might be good sense, (it is), but it is not a revolution in thought. If Keynes “from the Treasury” says pretty much the same thing, and shows why, and other countries follow suit, that’s a paradigm-shift.
Time, of course, will tell. We may not be living in a revolutionary period; it may just be a chapter and the whole thing will unravel this summer against Australia, or even sooner in New Zealand. But few, I think, would argue that we are indeed living in a golden age for English cricket, no matter how brief: 8 from 9 and two World Cups is pretty much as good as it could be. It may not last very long, but I must say that I’m enjoying the ride.
This & That
I have watched some of the WC matches from Qatar and have been surprised at how fast and violent they have been. The referees have been prepared to let far more go than their Premiership counterparts. This may well explain why English commentators and pundits whinged about decisions that went against the England side. Nevertheless, they overlooked the benefits of lenient refereeing against them such as Stones appalling assault on an opponent when he injured himself towards the end of the France game. The advent of the endless slow motion replay and VAR have made the English game relatively soft and the fact that the referee is in charge and his decision is final are starting to be overlooked.
Ishan Kishan scored the fastest double hundred in one-day internationals against Bangladesh in Chattogram. He was recalled to India’s team following injury to captain Rohit Sharma and required only 126 balls to reach 200 beating the previous best set by Chris Gayle for West Indies against Zimbabwe in Canberra in early 2014 by 12 deliveries. When Kishan departed for 210, there were still a dozen overs remaining and he had hit ten sixes. He is the seventh player to hit a double century in one-day internationals along with Rohit (the highest with 264), Virender Sehwag, Sachin Tendulkar, Chris Gayle, Martin Guptill and Fakhar Zaman.
Earlier in the ODI series Bangladesh were reduced to 69 for 6 before Mahmudullah (77) and Mehedi Hussain (100 not out ) batting at eight put on 148 and enabled Bangladesh to reach 271 for 7 from their 50 overs. This set up a notable victory as India only managed 266 in reply.
Last month I noted how many serious world white ball players were involved in the Abu Dhabi T10 tournament. The owners of this event are planning to franchise it around the world into six further locations: North America, Europe (Netherlands), Africa, Asia (Sri Lanka), Far East, West Indies and Middle East (Qatar). They estimate that it will be watched by 2 billion TV viewers over 76 playing days. Put this alongside the IPL expansion plans and these two tournaments could dominate white ball cricket in the coming years. I don’t see The Hundred fitting in with this.
The desire to praise Gareth Southgate’s every move is baffling as his style of play is not only tedious to watch but also fails to win competitions. However, I do applaud his decision to exclude the Liverpool Trent who must be the worst right back in the Premiership. Mbappe would have had free reign had Trent played and France could have racked up a cricket score.
In the Big Bash the Adelaide Strikers could have been concerned when the only amassed 139 for 9 from their twenty overs. But they needn’t have been since they went on to win by 124 runs as the Sydney Thunder were dismissed for 15 in 5 overs and 5 balls. Brendan Doggett batting at number ten top scored and hit the only boundary of the innings. Henry Thornton took 5 for 3 and Peter Siddle (the top wicket taker in last year’s Big Bash) didn’t even get on to bowl.
In the first test between Australia and South Africa at Brisbane the hosts won by six wickets inside two days after nineteen wickets fell on the second day. It is the first two-day test in Australia for 91 years. In total, the match lasted 144.3 overs making it the eighth shortest completed match in Test history. It is the second shortest since 1935, behind England's defeat by India in Ahmedabad last year.
B Stokes is hinting at a return to 50 over cricket (after retiring in July) because of the temptation of the defence of the WC in India next year.
It was an astonishing day at the Test in Rawalpindi: England won the toss, chose to bat and closed the day on 506-4 (75). Crawley made 122 off 111 with 21 fours, Duckett 107 off 110, Pope 108 off 104 and Brook 101* off 81. England surpassed the all-time opening day record of 494-6 that had stood for 111 years. Other stats: Brook scored England's third fastest ton (80 balls), Crawley scored the seventh fastest (86 balls) and the fastest by an England opener, Crawley and Duckett's stand was the quickest 200 stand in England's history (beating Lees and Crawley's record set in Sept) and was England's highest since Strauss and Trescothick put on 273 in Durban in 2004. It was the third time that England have had four centurions on a single day and the first time they have had four centurions on the first day of a Test, indeed it is the first time that anyone has had four centurions on the first day of a Test, the 174 runs scored in the opening session of the first day was an England record and the second most in Test history. That's enough stats thank you... but a day like that is so rare that you have to revel in it!
Paul Farbrace is the new head coach of Sussex and Ryan Campbell (ex-Netherlands) is the new head coach of Durham.
The new chair of the ECB Richard Thompson has dismissed a reported £400m bid to buy a majority share in the Hundred saying it's value to the private sector was "a few billion".
The 82 year old Pele is in hospital with cancer and Brazil's assistant coach Cesar Sampaio wants us all to "say a prayer, do whatever you do and send positive vibes". Will this save him do you think?
Rawalpindi: England won by 74 and it is being called "one of their greatest victories". It is only the third Test win in Pakistan (the others were in 1961 and 2000) losing four of the others and drawing 18. Most runs in a Test: 1,981 SA v England Durban 1939, 1,815 WI v England Kingston 1930, 1,768 Pakistan v England Rawalpindi 2022 (not sure if these relate to all countries or just England). Ollie Robinson said that this was the proudest moment of his Test career. M Ramprakash says that McCullum and Stokes have "blown away the traditional fear of failure". The pair have only been in their roles for 7 months, have beaten four nations in Tests and have yet to take part in a draw, their record is played 8, won 7, lost one (to SA) and drawn 0.
B Stokes is prepared to "get even more adventurous" with his tactics in Test cricket and aims to "push the limits" of what is possible in Tests.
D Warner is withdrawing his bid to have his lifetime captaincy ban lifted, accusing the panel reviewing his case of conducting a "public lynching".
Durham have re-signed leg-spinner Nathan Sowter from Middlesex on a one-year deal following a loan stint last season.
Yorkshire have released ex-England batter Gary Ballance (on the condition that he does not play for another CC side in 2023) but have signed NZ pace bowler Neil Wagner for ten CC games.
Professional footballers are more likely to have worse brain health after they turn 65 compared to the general population.
The G has a huge picture of "Argentinian Legend" Jorge Valdano running at Rs hero Terry Fenwick in the 1986 World Cup quarter final.
G Ballance has signed for Zimbabwe where he will play "domestic and international cricket in and for the country of his birth".
Rs have appointed Neil Critchley as their new head coach. The former Blackpool manager has signed a three-and-a-half-year deal to replace Michael Beale.
Azeem Rafiq (ex-Yorkshire) says he has been "driven out of the country by threats and abuse" because of his complaints regarding racism at Yorkshire and points the finger at the Yorkshire Post.
Arjun Tendulkar, son of Sachin, hit a century on his first-class debut for Goa v Rajistan.
Kane Williamson has stepped down as NZ's Test captain and will be replaced by Tim Southee, but Williamson will continue to lead in ODIs and T20s.
The G has a long article today on Jimmy Anderson and among the figures quoted are i) he is second in the Test bowling rankings (behind Pat Cummins); ii) he is third in the table of all-time, all-formats wicket takers (962) behind only Murali and Warne; and iii) he is top of the table of most Test wickets taken after the age of 30 (407).
A question was raised about the identity of a Hants, Barbados and WI opening bat who also played for Scotland in 1990... Gordon Greenidge wasn't it?
County ins and outs
This is the current position on player movements in county cricket:
Overseas players 2022: Dustin Melton (Zimbabwe), Shan Masood (Pakistan), Suranga Lakmal (Sri Lanka), Hayden Kerr (Australia), Hilton Cartwright (Australia)
Overseas players 2023: Suranga Lakmal (Sri Lanka)
Zak Chappell (Nottinghamshire)
Shan Masood (Yorkshire)
Matt Lamb (Warwickshire)
Dustin Melton (REL)
Mikey Cohen (REL)
Alex Hughes (RET)
Other news: Leus du Plooy has replaced Billy Godleman as captain in the Championship and One-Day Cup, while the county need a new T20 skipper after overseas signing Shan Masood joined Yorkshire. Alex Hughes has taken a role as an analyst with the club following his retirement from playing.
Overseas players 2022: David Bedingham (South Africa), Keegan Petersen (South Africa), Ashton Turner (Australia), Andrew Tye (Australia), Rachin Ravindra (New Zealand), Nic Maddinson (Australia)
Overseas players 2023: David Bedingham (South Africa)
Ollie Robinson (Kent)
Sean Dickson (Somerset)
Ben McKinney (YTH)
Matt Salisbury (Leicestershire)
Ross Whitfield (YTH)
Chris Rushworth (Warwickshire)
Nathan Sowter (Middlesex)
Other news: Head coach James Franklin left before the end of the 2022 season and has been replaced by ex-Netherlands coach Ryan Campbell. The county will need a new T20 captain if last season's overseas signing Ashton Turner does not return.
Overseas players 2022: Simon Harmer (South Africa), Mark Steketee (Australia), Daniel Sams (Australia), Grant Roelofsen (South Africa)
Overseas players 2023: Simon Harmer (South Africa)
Adam Wheater (RET)
Jack Plom (REL)
Overseas players 2022: Marnus Labuschagne (Australia), Colin Ingram (South Africa), Michael Neser (Australia), Ajaz Patel (New Zealand), Shubman Gill (India)
Overseas players 2023: Marnus Labuschagne (Australia), Michael Neser (Australia), Colin Ingram (South Africa)
Michael Hogan (Kent)
Ben Kellaway (YTH)
Lukas Carey (REL)
Ben Morris (YTH)
Ruaidhri Smith (REL)
Harry Podmore (Kent)
Joe Cooke (REL)
James Weighell (REL)
Tom Cullen (REL)
Tegid Phillips (REL)
Other news: Glamorgan will appoint a new white-ball coach, with current head coach Matthew Maynard focusing on the Championship side.
Overseas players 2022: Marcus Harris (Australia), Zafar Gohar (Pakistan), Naseem Shah (Pakistan), Glenn Phillips (New Zealand), Mohammad Amir (Pakistan)
Overseas players 2023: Marcus Harris (Australia), Zafar Gohar (Pakistan) - while Gloucestershire hope to register South Africa bowler Marchant de Lange as a non-overseas player
Marchant de Lange (Somerset)
Benny Howell (Hampshire)
Ryan Higgins (Middlesex)
Ian Cockbain (REL)
Other news: Robbie Joseph has joined the club as lead bowling coach, having previously been in a consultancy role.
Overseas players 2022: Kyle Abbott (South Africa), Mohammad Abbas (Pakistan), Ben McDermott (Australia), Nathan Ellis (Australia)
Overseas players 2023: Kyle Abbott (South Africa), Mohammad Abbas (Pakistan)
Benny Howell (Gloucestershire)
Overseas players 2022: Matt Henry (New Zealand), Qais Ahmad (Afghanistan), George Linde (South Africa), Jackson Bird (Australia), Jacob Duffy (New Zealand), Navdeep Saini (India)
Overseas players 2023:Kane Richardson (Australia, for Twenty20)
Joey Evison (Nottinghamshire)
Matt Milnes (Yorkshire)
Michael Hogan (Glamorgan)
Darren Stevens (REL)
Ollie Robinson (Durham)
Harry Podmore (Glamorgan)
Overseas players 2022: Dane Vilas (South Africa), Tim David (Singapore/Australia), Hasan Ali (Pakistan), Will Williams (New Zealand), Washington Sundar (India)
Overseas players 2023: TBC
Liam Hurt (REL)
Hasan Ali (Warwickshire)
Overseas players 2022: Wiaan Mulder (South Africa), Naveen-ul-Haq (Afghanistan), Rahmanullah Gurbaz (Afghanistan), Beuran Hendricks (South Africa), Hamish Rutherford (New Zealand)
Sol Budinger (Nottinghamshire)
Ben Mike (Yorkshire)
Matt Salisbury (Durham)
Hassan Azad (REL)
Sam Bates (REL)
Nat Bowley (REL)
Alex Evans (REL)
Gavin Griffiths (REL)
Abi Sakande (REL)
Other news: Former Foxes player James Taylor has rejoined the club as batting coach, while Lewis Hill has replaced Callum Parkinson as Championship captain.
Overseas players 2022: Peter Handscomb (Australia), Shaheen Afridi (Pakistan), Jason Behrendorff (Australia), Chris Green (Australia), Pieter Malan (South Africa), Umesh Yadav (India)
Overseas players 2023: Pieter Malan (South Africa)
Ryan Higgins (Gloucestershire)
Nathan Sowter (Durham)
Nathan Fernandes (YTH)
Other news: Fast bowling consultant Jade Dernbach has left the club to rejoin Surrey.
Overseas players 2022: Will Young (New Zealand), Jimmy Neesham (New Zealand), Matt Kelly (Australia), Chris Lynn (Australia), Ryan Rickleton (South Africa), Lizaad Williams (South Africa)
Overseas players 2023: Chris Lynn (Australia, for T20)
David Willey (Yorkshire)
Nathan Buck (RET)
Ollie Sale (Somerset)
Ben Curran (REL)
George Gowler (YTH)
Brandon Glover (REL)
George Weldon (YTH)
Charlie Thurston (REL)
Other news: Luke Procter will lead the club in the Championship, replacing overseas signing Will Young.
Overseas players 2022: Dane Paterson (South Africa), James Pattinson (Australia), Dan Christian (Australia)
Overseas players 2023: Dane Paterson (South Africa)
Olly Stone (Warwickshire)
Joey Evison (Kent)
Tom Loten (Yorkshire)
Zak Chappell (Derbyshire)
Sol Budinger (Leicestershire)
Other news: The county need a new T20 captain as long-term overseas player Dan Christian will not return in 2023.
Overseas players 2022: Marchant de Lange (South Africa), Matt Renshaw (Australia), Peter Siddle (Australia), Rilee Rossouw (South Africa), Imam-ul-Haq (Pakistan), Sajid Khan (Pakistan)
Overseas players 2023: TBC
Tom Kohler-Cadmore (Yorkshire)
Marchant de Lange (Gloucestershire)
Sean Dickson (Durham)
Ollie Sale (Northamptonshire)
Shoaib Bashir (Berkshire)
Max Waller (RET)
Other news: Will Smeed has signed a white-ball only contract to the end of the 2024 season.
Overseas players 2022: Kemar Roach (West Indies), Hashim Amla (South Africa), Colin de Grandhomme (New Zealand), Sunil Narine (West Indies), Kieron Pollard (West Indies), Aaron Hardie (Australia)
Overseas players 2023: TBC
Dom Sibley (Warwickshire)
Other news: Gareth Batty been appointed head coach, after filling the role on an interim basis for the 2022 season. Azhar Mahmood and Jim Troughton have also been confirmed in their assistant coach positions, while Jade Dernbach has rejoined the club from Middlesex as second XI and bowling coach.
Overseas players 2022: Mohammad Rizwan (Pakistan), Rashid Khan (Afghanistan), Cheteshwar Pujara (India), Josh Philippe (Australia), Tim Seifert (New Zealand), Obed McCoy (West Indies), Faheem Ashraf (Pakistan)
Overseas players 2023: Cheteshwar Pujara (India), Jayden Seales (West Indies, for first three months of season)
Bertie Foreman (YTH)
Luke Wright (RET)
Other news: Ian Salisbury, Sussex's head coach for Championship and 50-over cricket, has left the club and been replaced by former England assistant coach Paul Farbrace, while academy director Mike Yardy has departed to become England under-19s coach.
Overseas players 2022: Nathan McAndrew (Australia), Carlos Brathwaite (West Indies), Paul Stirling (Ireland), Krunal Pandya (India), Mohammed Siraj (India), Jayant Yadav (India)
Overseas players 2023:Hasan Ali (Pakistan, until end of July)
Ed Barnard (Worcestershire)
Dom Sibley (Surrey)
Moeen Ali (Worcestershire)
Olly Stone (Nottinghamshire)
Chris Rushworth (Durham)
Adam Hose (Worcestershire)
Hasan Ali (Lancashire)
Matt Lamb (Derbyshire)
Ryan Sidebottom (REL)
Other news: Director of cricket Paul Farbrace (who subsequently joined Sussex) and bowling coach Matt Mason left at the end of the 2022 season, with Mason taking a role as fast bowling coach for England Women. Stuart Barnes has taken over the bowling coach role, while Shaftab Khalid will coach senior players alongside his development role. The county will need a new T20 captain if overseas signing Carlos Brathwaite does not return.
Overseas players 2022: Azhar Ali (Pakistan), Colin Munro (New Zealand), Dwayne Bravo (West Indies), Mohammad Hasnain (Pakistan)
Overseas players 2023: Azhar Ali (Pakistan)
Oli Cox (YTH)
Ed Barnard (Warwickshire)
Rehaan Edavalath (YTH)
Moeen Ali (Warwickshire)
Adam Hose (Warwickshire)
Tom Fell (REL)
Matthew Waite (Yorkshire)
Josh Dell (REL)
Jacques Banton (REL)
Other news: Alex Gidman stepped down as head coach and has been replaced by his assistant Alan Richardson. Second XI coach Kadeer Ali steps up to become assistant coach.
Overseas players 2022: Haris Rauf (Pakistan), Shadab Khan (Pakistan), Finn Allen (New Zealand), Dimuth Karunaratne (Sri Lanka), Dominic Drakes (West Indies), Shannon Gabriel (West Indies)
Overseas players 2023: Shan Masood (Pakistan), David Wiese (Namibia, for T20), Neil Wagner (New Zealand, for County Championship until end of July)
Shan Masood (Derbyshire)
Matthew Waite (Worcestershire)
Matt Milnes (Kent)
David Willey (Northamptonshire)
Ben Mike (Leicestershire)
Tom Kohler-Cadmore (Somerset)
Yash Vagadia (YTH)
Tom Loten (Nottinghamshire)
Harry Sullivan (REL)
Josh Sullivan (REL)
Steve Patterson (RET)
Gary Ballance (REL)
Other news: New overseas signing Shan Masood will take over as captain in all formats for 2023.
For some inexplicable reason many of the Brazilian football side at the World Cup dyed their short hair white. As they swarmed up the pitch they resembled a field of mushrooms.
When Axel Disasi came on as a sub in the World Cup final his hair was pulled tight into a sort of ladder pattern on his scalp. It looked as if he had undergone major brain surgery.
Bob Fisher sent me the following
I was so sorry to read of the passing of Alvin Nienow, a fine cricketer and an even nicer guy. In the last couple of years having not seen him for ages, he turned up at Ealing Cricket Club to see us play against Shepherds Bush. I had a long conversation with him during which and I know that this sounds dreadfully conceited he said that he had only come to the game in the hope of meeting up with someone who knew him from his playing days. So pleased that I was around ! May he rest in peace.
All the back editions of Googlies can be found on the G&C website. There are also many photographs most of which have never appeared in Googlies.
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