Hampshire Cricket History

Thank You
October 5, 2016, 10:19 am
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It’s not difficult to discover horror stories in the media about the modern use of ‘social media’, with people using dreadful, aggressive language and indulging in personal abuse. In the past I have been involved in ‘cutting edge’ media/IT courses and had many discussions with students about these matters – to a degree I find some tolerance of this among younger people that I don’t share.

When I started this Blog I thought it would mostly look back, albeit acknowledging that history starts just a moment ago. Recently, most of what we have discussed are two controversial topics which impact on us all significantly as supporters clearly passionate about our county game.

As a consequence there are a variety of views and opinions on this site and I welcome them all, but most of all I’m very grateful for the manner in which those views are presented, engaged with and shared. I’d like to hope with each post/comment that collectively we are coming to a clearer and more meaningful understanding of the issues. I’m not always sure these days about the ‘Spirit of Cricket’ which I value greatly, but is not always apparent in the corridors of power or on the great cricketing occasions. But I think there probably is a ‘Spirit of the Blog’ and I thank you all for it.

Blog Too (Two)
October 5, 2016, 6:59 am
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One of our regular ‘Bloggers’ Jeremy has written a response to the T20 proposals and has posted it on what he thinks might be a ‘one-off’ Blog (I’m not so sure, it’s habit-forming)

It’s well worth a read and a Comment and well done to him



Kent’s Chairman
October 4, 2016, 4:17 pm
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Story on the BBC (interesting idea of him being “shouted down” at the ECB)



In the Headlines (3)
October 4, 2016, 4:07 pm
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The back (sports) page of the Times is dominated by”Durham relegated over loan” and a photo of Ben Stokes practising with England yesterday.  The punishment is described as “humiliating” and there is a leading comment about Kent’s “fury” (no not the boxer).

Mike Atherton (when did he stop being Michael?) describes early in his report how Kent are “taking legal advice” and he reminds readers that Rod Bransgrove had argued Hampshire’s case “last week”, before the punishment was known. Bransgrove is quoted as saying yesterday that the sanctions were “fair and considered”.

Atherton however, says that the punishment “will be seen as draconian” and points out that the seriousness of Durham’s “financial plight” is shown by the fact that they had “no option but to agree to the package”.

Some of the Paul Collingwood quotes (below) are repeated here and he acknowledges that the club “has not been run as efficiently as it should have been”. Apparently the ECB took their decision last Wednesday, before Tom Harrison flew to Bangladesh. A Durham delegation went to Lord’s two days later, hoping to negotiate, but were simply presented with a “take it or leave it” proposal.

There is more detail about Kent’s view. The Kent Chairman says he was “led up the garden path”, having been advised not to speak before the decision (unlike Rod Bransgrove presumably). He added “I am more than upset, I am appalled … I have lost confidence in the ECB. We are certainly going to appeal, we are talking to lawyers”.

Atherton reveals that “there was little support for Durham’s position among other (conflicted it must be said) clubs. many felt their continued competitiveness was a result of spending money they did not have”. (That bit reminds me of the recent problems of my home-town football club – from FA Cup winners to fourth division regulars in less than a decade).

There is a separate article by Atherton which will strike a chord with some ‘Bloggers”, headlined “Too much money and power has been taken from the counties”.

In the Headlines (2)
October 4, 2016, 3:48 pm
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Oddly on the front page header of the Guardian there is a picture of Jonathan Trott alongside “Cricket, breakdowns and burnout”. Who needs yesterday’s news?

On the Sports section’s front page, the main stories are about Trott (again), the sacking of two football managers, a feature on Gareth Southgate a photo and story about Tyson Fury (no, not the Northants fast bowler) and at the foot of the page “Collingwood describes Durham’s relegation as a kick in the teeth”.

Ali Martin tells how Collingwood “expressed his shock and anger” at the “unprecedented punishment”, telling Martin that “the players are seriously unhappy” while adding that they are “100% innocent”. Martin says that while other counties have larger debts (eg Yorkshire £22m) the “issue” for Durham “lies in the management of the debt”. There is also, according to Martin, a view from the ECB that “the punishment falls within its competition and financial regulations”. We are told that Hampshire’s survival “has angered Kent”and their Chairman had expected to put their “case” to the ECB.

In the Headlines (Part 1)
October 4, 2016, 3:35 pm
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You might have caught up by now but since the job of this Blog is to record history – including history in the making – here goes:

Daily Telegraph: Sport section front page, “English cricket stunned by ECB’s shock judgement”. Inside on pages 2 & 3 Nick Hoult’s report is headlined “Durham go down as ECB acts tough over debts”. He reports Paul Collinwood blaming Durham’s “inefficiency” more than the ECB and reports the suggestion from Kent that they intend to take legal advice. Also, “the ECB could not have sent out a stronger message to the other 17 counties”. On page 3, Scyld Berry’s piece is led by “Penalty alien to cricket’s tradition of fair play” and argues that only if there has been “criminality” (of which there is no suggestion) or “match fixing … is the punishment justified”. He adds “it is simply inappropriate to penalise Durham’s players so drastically for what their administrators have done”. Berry believes that Durham overreached themselves “on bricks and mortar and on staging Test matches” and implies that they need help which “is what friends should be for”.

Apart from Hoult describing Hampshire as “beneficiaries” there is nothing about them in either piece.

It was Tino
October 4, 2016, 6:58 am
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and Andy Carter, wot won it! Without their bowling performances in the two matches against Notts we would not (as Jo points out) have beaten them and today it would be Notts surviving. Always thought that Tino was a cracker (!)

Maybe my last thought (or question) on the matter. We keep hearing about the problems at Northants. Now the precedent has been set, where will they be relegated to if the worst happens? The Minor Counties?