Hampshire Cricket History

July 27, 2013, 5:52 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

There’s an interesting little debate developing on the previous Post and I’m with Bob – we met each other in a crowded bar after last night’s exciting run chase in which both sides batted better than they fielded/bowled and Hampshire once again displayed real resilience to come out on top and win a fourth consecutive Quarter Final place. There was a real buzz around the ground from the huge crowd, many of whom stayed on to celebrate Hampshire’s victory

Michael Carberry had another terrific night – in the field and with the bat – and was probably unlucky to be given out, while McKenzie (yet again) was the cool head who, with Ervine, saw Hampshire home. Hampshire did not bowl or field particularly well and Owais Shah played superbly on one leg but Essex supporters will have been less than happy with a ragged display in the field. Maybe their captain spent too much time and energy appealing for caught behind every time the ball came to him!

As for comparisons, well I’d still prefer to be claiming that Hampshire are the best Championship side in the country but you’d have to be over 50 to remember when that was last the case, so I’ll take this. I shall be at all four days of the Glamorgan game next weekend but I hope it’s better than a lot of Championship cricket this season because across the country around 50% of those games end in draws – and too many in dull draws as in Hampshire’s last match at Canterbury. This week’s Cricket Paper  began its report on that match with, “It would have needed six days to conjure a result from this turgid pitch”. There have been similar matches this year (Bristol, home v Lancs etc) and I’m fearful for the future of first-class county cricket because as Bob says, few of the occasional supporters who filled the ground last night will be back in seven days – even with a weekend fixture.


3 Comments so far
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David, I’d certainly agree with the comments about some of the turgid championship cricket we have seen this season and appreciate T20 brings some light relief as we are good at this form of the game.

However what needs to be done (in my humble opinion) is for the championship to be treated properly by the ECB. To start with they need to see there are decent financial rewards for success, ensure competitive cricket pitches are prepared (if they can fine clubs for producing pitches where games are completed too early then they should do the same when pitches don’t give any hope of a result in eight days let alone four) and ensure the championship is played in the summer months and not shoved aside for T20. After all it is county cricket which produces our test players – or is the plan to rely on South Africa to do this in the future?

A properly run championship would then be a much more attractive proposition for the new spectators introduced to cricket by T20 which could be run alongside the main competition.

The ECB make more than enough money from the counties resources in order to properly fund the championship but unfortunately they seem happy to bleed the counties dry whilst leaving them to cling to T20 to survive. I fear the biggest threat to championship cricket is the ECB.

Comment by SteveG

Steve, I’m with you entirely. I have written a piece for Hampshire’s next “Round Up” (match v Glams) which says much the same. I think the ECB have for too long simply treated Championship Cricket as a place to nurture Test players with hardly a thought to spectators like us who love it deeply for its own sake. That’s why it’s less interesting now. We should take delight that cricket can sustain different forms of the game – a bit like a good record company or concert hall with different/overlapping supporters of Classical, Jazz and Pop – and the healthy budget that produces! I’m not sure they will change though.

It’s delightful to have this discussion on here – thanks for all the contributions.

Comment by pompeypop

Happy to contribute David – it fills the time until “proper” cricket resumes!

Comment by SteveG

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