England v India at Birmingham, 3rd Test, 1st Day

“How you gonna win a game from one-twenty-from-eight?” – The Trent Bridge Test, in Song, from Deep Backward Point.

Exactly.

For two reasons.

India have collapsed.  They are 115/7 and it isn’t even tea yet.  Anderson is 14-3-32-1, Broad is 12-4-33-3, and Bresnan is 14-4-40-3.  Sehwag went out for a duck, Sachin for one, Raina for four.

So, yeah, how are you supposed to win a game from one-fifteen-for-seven?

Well, you do it just like England did in Nottingham.  This is test cricket, folks, let’s all keep our eyes on the ball here, so to speak.  Yeah, India are in real trouble this morning in “Burm”, but nothing is set in stone, and as the one skit in “That Mitchell and Webb Look” says:  “This ain’t over until the full number of overs that have been scheduled to be bowled that day – HAVE BEEN BOWLED!!”

India are 130/7 now.  This is it, Dhoni, this is your chance to prove yourself the best captain in test cricket.  Your team is on the brink, you are at the crease…it’s time.

All of that said: I am sure fucking excited.  England are on the verge of becoming the number one test nation on the planet.

*************************************************

As is plain to see, the riots did not stop test cricket this morning.

There was a little back and forth between Cricket With Balls and Deep Backward Point last night.  The former thinking that the ECB’s press release detailing the reasons that they were going forward with the test (“people were looking forward to it”) was insulting, considering the volatile nature of riots and rioters.  That if these riots were taking place somewhere else when the English cricket team was visiting, that the ECB would have pulled their players out of the country.  The latter fired back:  maybe, but your riots ain’t nothing like our riots.

The above is neither here nor there, I think the main argument here is that, well, fuck: you can’t let the assholes win.  Cancelling the test would do that.

And that sport heals societal wounds.  Cancelling the test would make the wounds deeper, and leave uglier scars.

As long as the players and the fans the officials and the press are safe: go forward with the game.  You have to.  Forget the hypocrisy, forget the insulting press release, the game has to go on.

India: 157/7.  Dhoni is pulling them out of the fire.  Just like Broad did at Trent Bridge.

**************************************************

The alarm went off at 4:45am, and I thought about getting up for the first ball long and hard.  But it just…wasn’t…happening.  Maybe tomorrow.  Maybe Friday.  Maybe this weekend.

160/7…

Until tomorrow.

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