West Indies v Pakistan at Basseterre, 2nd Test

Wait a minute.  Something’s not right.  But I just cannot put my finger on it…

Oh, yes: No IPL matches today.  None.  First time in what seems like ages.  In fact, the only real cricket of note today is the match above.  And Pakistan look to be firmly in control there.  I am hoping that the Windies can hang on for a draw and take the series.  However, that is seeming more and more unlikely, considering how poorly they have been batting.  I predict a early declaration from Pakistan today – and heck I could see them taking all ten of the West Indian wickets today, as well.

In the IPL, however, the first playoff match (AKA, the “qualifier”) is tomorrow, with Bangalore taking on Chennai in Mumbai. The second match (AKA, the “eliminator”) is the following day, also in Mumbai, and features Mumbai and Kolkata.  The 2nd qualifier is the 27th and final is the 28th.  And then the cricketing landscape goes dark until the next T20 tournament starts up.   You know, because the IPL has killed cricket.  Right?

Not right.  In fact, a cracking summer of cricket is just getting started.  This week alone features county cricket, the first test between Sri Lanka and England at Cardiff, and, most intriguingly, an ODI between Pakistan and Ireland in Belfast.

I saw the latter match this morning on my Google Calendar and thought: “hm, that’s right, Ireland declined the ECB’s invitation to the CB40 to concentrate on international duties.   They must have a wholes series of ODIs this summer.”

So I looked it up.

Five.

Five ODI matches.  That’s it.  Two against Pakistan this spring, and then one each against Sri Lanka, Scotland, and England.  Five matches between the World Cup last April and the end of August.

Of course, their elite players, for the most part, play County Cricket and will play in the CB 40 anyway, but goodness, what about your non-elite players?  What better opportunity for them to play against some of the best cricketers in the world?

I just do not understand the decision.

Now, I like Ireland, and I like how they have become a darling of the cricket world, but honestly, as I have mentioned before, they seem to be letting things go to their head.

Oh, well, Sussex won yesterday and are now top of their group in the CB40, thanks, in part, to an Irishman.  So I guess I should stop complaining.  Until tomorrow.

Kemar Roach crunches one through the off side, West Indies v Pakistan, 2nd Test, St Kitts, 2nd day, May 21, 2011

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