Tag Archives: Lord’s

Cricket Umpiring, At The Highest Level, Has To Be Revamped — Too Many Outcome-Changing WRONG Decisions.

by Anura Guruge

From ESPN ‘cricinfo’, of course. Click to ENLARGE.

Of course DRS (Decision Review System) has made a HUGE difference, and for that we should all be thankful. I often, watching DRS in action, SHUDDER to think of ALL the bad decisions that must have taken place in cricket over the centuries — all of us having see our fair share, first hand.

There was a time, even up until quite recently, when the ICC ‘Test Panel’ umpires seemed to be doing extremely well, i.e., they had got most of their decisions RIGHT.

But, something has gone wrong recently and, OF COURSE, to the chagrin of all cricket lovers (who adore FAIR PLAY), the outcome of the ICC 2019 World Cup might have been the result of a bad call! And this is what kills me. There were 4 umpires and a match referee. Yes, 4 umpires & a match referee. So, between the FIVE (5) of them they did NOT know the overthrow rule? That is ludicrous.

Then we had the Eng. v Ireland Test and now the 1st Ashes Test. Wow. The number of bad or wrong decisions. Yes, of course, it is DRS that is highlighting these. Without ‘ultraedge’ and ‘ball-tracking’ we would not know what really happened. But, now thanks to technology we do.

We have to change the system for International games, i.e., Tests, ODIs and T20Is. At a minimum ALL out decisions should be checked, if nothing else for no-balls. It is not fair that the no-ball checking is only done for ‘special’ players — sometimes the batsman, often the bowler. But, let’s start by using DRS to make sure that every out is indeed a valid out. Yes, it will add delay but I think we will tolerate that. We now check some outs for no-ball. Just make that apply to all outs, no exceptions.

But, that leaves open, outs that are deemed not-outs. What do we do there? Yes, ideally we would review those too BUT that could get out of hand. Players will appeal for stupid stuff hoping against hope. It will become a time-waster. That is a problem. I do NOT have an answer for that. I am still thinking.

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by Anura Guruge

Were There Any Royals At Lord’s For The ICC Cricket World Cup — England vs. New Zealand?

by Anura Guruge

Click to ENLARGE. The Queen at Lord’s (when she was much younger).

It was THE CRICKET World Cup and England was playing.

But, I did NOT see any Royals on the TV coverage I have watched so far, and I have watched about 4-hours of it, ball-by-ball.

Yes, I saw soon-to-be ex-Prime Minister Theresa May and her husband. That was good and I am glad she was there. A nice way to show your support while having a day off. She sure has earned that right.

I did NOT see the Queen or expect to see her. Yes, she used to visit Lord’s, without fail, for the Saturday of the Lord’s Test Match and I have seen her there often — since I too, given that I lived outside London, used to be a Saturday man.

One or more of the Princes should have been there. They must like cricket. They have to like cricket.

I might have to look into this. I might have to write another letter to the Queen!

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by Anura Guruge

“Monty Python’s Flying Circus” Premiered This Day 48-Years Ago On the BBC; October 5, 1969.

by Anura Guruge

Click to ENLARGE and read here. Wikipedia: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monty_Python%27s_Flying_Circus

Though I had just moved to London (from Paris) I cannot say I saw the first episode when it aired. I was at a border, at a boarding school, viz. Mill Hill, and we did not have access to TV! Yes, I had a very deprived childhood (which will explain a lot).

Of course, I like the “Flying Circus”. Definitely my type of humor. In later years, when I did have ready access to TV, I would make a point of watching it. Plus, I have seen many of the reruns though I would be lying if I said I have seen all 45 episodes.

John Cleese once gave me a huge bear hug, looked into my eyes and asked me if I was “OK”! That was special. He was (and still is) a HUGE man in every way. This was at the Lord’s Cricket Ground, in London, the ‘Holy of the Holies‘. He like I is a HUGE cricket fan (and again, I have no option but to use that word). It was between the Mound and Tavern Stands at Lord’s. I always got tickets for the Mound Stand — IF it was not a Middlesex Game. [If it was, I, as a member, sat in the Pavilion.] John and I, quite literally, ran into each other — and given that he towered over me (in height (as well as stature)) it was like walking into a brick wall. I staggered backwards. He caught me, held me, uprighted me and checked I was OK. I knew who he was right away. Had the presence of mind to say: “I am fine John. Thank you.” We then went our merry ways. That being how cricket fans are. It is a very gentlemanly sport.

So, anywho … 48-years.

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by Anura Guruge

New Cricket Laws — “Laws Of Cricket 2017 Code” — Came Into Play, September 28, 2017.

by Anura Guruge

To read this MCC provided summary as PDF, click image to go the Lord’s website.

To download the “2017 Code” as a PDF — click image. I had to create this PDF since the MCC download, at least for now, is as a Word document! OK? Got that? This is a PDF I created from the MCC original.

A brief introduction to the new Laws by the MCC. Click image to access official document.

Click for the cricinfo summary of the new laws.

These new laws, the “Laws of Cricket 2017 Code” came into effect September 28, 2017 — the day that two Test matches started: Pakistan v Sri Lanka & South Africa v Bangladesh.

To be honest I just found out about them while watching highlights of those matches. I had heard about some of these proposed Laws BUT had not realized that they had been approved and were coming into play in September 2017.

  • Limiting the thickness of a bat’s edge to 1.58″ is interesting — along with ensuring that it cannot be more than 2.6″ thick at any point.
    I still have the last bat that I bought, c. 1983 (so it is ~34 years old). It is a ‘Duncan Fearnley’ (which has tried up a tad over the decades). I measured the edge, 0.75″. Thickness, 1.5″! Wow.
  • Tethering the bails to the wicket could be interesting. I am not really sure that there ever was a desperate need for this. We will see.
  • Wow! Players can be sent off for misconduct! Wonder who will be the first to get sent off.
  • DRS rules changed. “Umpire’s Call” will not result in a loss of a review, BUT in Test matches the reviews are NOT RESET back to 2 each after 80-overs! Pakistan, already on Day 1, lost both their reviews.

Interesting stuff.

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by Anura Guruge

The Beatles’ “Abbey Road” LP Was Released This Day 48-Years Ago; September 26, 1969.

by Anura Guruge

Click to ENLARGE and read here. Wikipedia: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abbey_Road.

I think I remember this. I had just started at Mill Hill — my London boarding school. Music was BIG at Mill Hill, the kids, in general, affluent enough to indulge in their musical tastes in terms of LPs, record players etc.

In later years I would become EXTREMELY familiar with ‘Abbey Road’, the road and the iconic pedestrian crossing. Abbey Road was ‘next door’ to MY ‘Holy of Holies’ in LondonLord’s Cricket Ground.

When I started going to Lord’s for Test Matches and Middlesex matches, mid-1970s to 1985, I would park, for FREE, on Abbey Road — a bit further up north, and walk down to Lord’s. Often I would cross the pedestrian crossing for fun.

Click to ENLARGE. Google maps.

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by Anura Guruge

Today Is Cricket Captain Legendary, Clive Lloyd’s Birthday — He Having Been Born On August 31, 1944.

by Anura Guruge

Click to ENLARGE and read here.

I was there in 1979 at Lord’s — in that crowd.

I was among the first wave of those that hit the field.

That is, of course, Clive holding the cup
with my buddies Gordon and Viv in the foreground.

To say that he was one of my idols in the 1970s and early 1980s would be quite the understatement.

In my eyes Clive could do little wrong. Those were THE GLORY days of West Indies cricket and I was so lucky to see a fair bit of it live.

Clive was a gentleman. Polished and dignified. I think he was one of the greatest cricket captains ever though he was blessed to have exceptional talent in his teams.

Happy birthday Clive. You will always be a GREAT.

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by Anura Guruge

The Vatican Now Has A Cricket Team — Proving That They Are, Under The New Pope, Getting Much More HIP And Civilized.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

Anura Guruge

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++++ Search on ‘pope‘ for other pope related posts and there are quite a few  >>>>

Click to read NBC coverage ...

Click to read NBC coverage …

Hollywood has a celebrated cricket club that has been in existence since 1932.

There are cricket clubs all over the U.S. — anywhere where you can find a few hundred brown folks living. I played cricket in Cambridge, MA in 1992. I have seen a dozen cricket games in progress, on a Saturday afternoon, in D.C., around the Tidal Basin.

So it is time that the Vatican did get a cricket team. There are a lot of priests and seminarians in Rome from India, Australia and South Africa. All three of the players shown in the above photograph appear to be brownies, with the batsman possibly from Sri Lanka!

This is good. Cricket is the game of gods. Why else do you think that the most famous of cricket grounds in the world, in Marylebone, in London, is called Lord’s? look it up, if you don’t believe me.

Heartwarming Google Doodle For Cricket Legend John Wisden’s 187th Birthday On September 5.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

Anura Guruge

Last Google Doodle posts:
American Jane Addams’ 153rd birthdaySep. 6, 2013.
>> Google Doodle for my birthday — Sep. 4, 2013.

≡ ≡ ≡ ≡ Check CATEGORY ‘Google Doodle’ for other posts —>>> (side bar)


Click to access Doodle
from the Google Doodle Archive.

Click to access Wikipedia write-up.

Click to access Wikipedia write-up.

‘Wisden’, the name borne by the annual bible on cricket (and for a time also a very popular cricket magazine that I used to subscribe to, airmail from the U.S.), is one of the most iconic names among cricket aficionados, only bettered by “Lord’s“.  [What other sports has a holy of holies named “Lord’s” — and that after the name of a rather ‘humble’ professional cricketer, as opposed to a blue-blood or mythical person?]

The Wisden Cricket Almanack is treat to any cricket lover: both tactile and intellectual.

I started buying them annually as of 1977. By then I was working for IBM and had my own money to indulge in cricket books. I just went and checked the price on what I paid for the 1977 edition. £3.75 (probably about U.S. $8.50) for the soft (cloth) cover. I really can’t remember what I was getting paid those days. The 2013 edition is £23 at Amazon U.K. and $64.80 in paperback on Amazon U.S. Wow.

There was a time that I had promised myself that I would purchase an ENTIRE Wisden collection for myself. If I remember right, in the early 80s, I could have got (close) to an entire set for about $4,000. I never did, and that was another bad decision on my part. They now have entire auction houses devoted to selling Wisden collections. There is even a book on how to collect Wisdens.

The last one I have is 1999. A client from the U.K. bought it and brought it for me when he flew over to meet with me in Manchester. Bringing me a Wisden, and saving me having to order one, was a guaranteed way to get a good discount from me on my services. Some of my U.K. clients had worked it out. Every £1 they spent on getting cricket stuff for me would probably get them $100 in reduced pricing from me. So it was ‘win-win’.

Not sure why I stopped collecting Wisdens. Probably because I didn’t have access to watching cricket, and unless you are really up to date reading the Wisden is pretty frustrating because you are not familiar with the backgrounds and context. Maybe I will start collecting. Maybe I will drive Deanna nuts by telling her I want the 2013 edition for Christmas. The other reason, to be honest, is the Internet! In the 1970s IF you wanted to check or verify a cricket record or check a player’s lifetime statistics your ONLY source was the latest Wisden. Now CricInfo has more statistics and records than even I know what to do with.

But, I am DELIGHTED that Google honored John Wisden.

Kind of bummed that they did NOT make it visible across all ICC countries. Possible that the folks at Google don’t know all the ICC countries and never thought of Googling it. That they only displayed it in Australia, India, New Zealand and the UK is kind of RACIST. Pakistanis should be BUMMED. Yes, I can appreciate that most of the folks at Google have never heard of Sri Lanka. But, what about South Africa? NZ and not SA? Come on Google. You can do better than that. But, I am not complaining. Kind of glad that Google renewed my interest in Wisdens. I think I still have a few magazines around too. Wished I kept them all!


My stash of Wisdens, 1977 to 1999. Click to ENLARGE.


The Wisdens, as they must, are on the top shelf of my cricket book collection.


Part of my cricket book collection: top shelf and the oversized books on the floor at the bottom. I have some others, even BIGGER, scattered around. I have stopped buying cricket books. Might have to rethink that.


What I had once aspired to. This does NOT look anywhere close to a full collection BUT it is sure bigger than mine and when it comes to Wisdens size is all that matters. I actually have the perfect room downstairs for a Wisden collection. Hhhmmm.

Livid About ESPN’s Lack Of TV Coverage Of The ICC World Twenty20 2012. I Am Beyond Bummed!

Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.

  by Anura Guruge

ICC World T20 Finals

Click image to access the ‘ESPN Video’ 15 minute highlights of the ICC World T20 Finals between Sri Lanka and West Indies, October 7, 2012.

What a GREAT uplifting image … from AFP posted at ‘cricinfo’. Click image to see FULL size image

As far as I can remember, all my life, I have been cricket MAD. It is still the abiding passion of my life, a just very few things getting precedence over my addiction to cricket. As a boy growing up in Ceylon I played some form of cricket everyday; if it was raining making do in our garage. My desire to study and analyze subjects in depth, to be a ‘guru’ on a subject, started with cricket. I would study the science of cricket for hours on end. I was good at reading games. Yes, I played, never that well BUT always memorably to all concerned. Yes, people would come to watch me, at all levels, just for the sheer entertainment value I would provide. Nobody, especially me, would be sure what I would do, but invariably there would be a flash of genius followed by long periods of ignominy. But, those flashes, though always fleeting, amused people. I played with gusto. All heart. No discipline. Non-stop action. I watched a LOT of cricket too. I was a member of ‘Hampshire Cricket Club’ and ‘Middlesex Cricket Club’ and was a regular fixture in the Grandstands at most home games.

I saw, in person, all of the GREAT players on the 1970s and 1980s; Barry Richards, Imran Kahn, Mike Proctor, Richard Hadlee, Andy Roberts, Viv Richards, Gordon Greenidge and all the British players. I ‘knew’ many of them from all the times we would be at the same place at the same time. I was there in Southampton the day a 19 year old Malcolm Marshall made his debut on a cold, April day. He bowled terribly and dropped a catch. Me, from my customary perch in the Stands, shouted out: ‘give him a bucket’. I cried when he died.

My son’s middle name is ‘Gordon’, after Gordon Greenidge. I was blessed to see a LOT of Gordon, both for Hampshire and the West Indies. Given that Gordon, Andy and Malcolm, all played for Hampshire (to which I belonged) and Viv played for Somerset (which was my 2nd home in those days), I was a HUGE West Indies fan.

Yes, I was there in 1979 when they won the World Cup.

That very, very briefly was a BIT about me and cricket before I moved to the States in 1985. During the first 10 years I still followed cricket quite a bit. I used to have the London ‘Sunday Times’ air mailed to me. I used to also get both cricket magazines from the U.K. delivered. Plus, I used to go back. During my first two years I used to fly back for weekends — and get a day of watching cricket in, at Lord’s, on Saturday! Fly out Friday night, fly back Sunday afternoon. back at work Monday morning.

Two years ago, I ditched Metrocast and got DISH. DISH offered 3-channels of 24×7 cricket for $20/month. Since this is my only indulgence is life, I rationalized that I can afford it. So, I have the DISH cricket package.

When I first subscribed, DISH did not bother to maintain the Program Guide for those 3 networks; i.e., you had no idea what was going to be shown. All that the ONLINE program guide would say was: cricket, cricket, cricket …

Took me 3 months to get that FIXED. They just could not understand. I had to keep on explaining that it would be like subscribing to HBO and having the guide just say: movie, movie, movie …

I did chronicle my woes … here. Check it out.

So we now come to the ICC World Twenty20 2012 T20 world cup that was held in Sri Lanka (the country of my birth) from September 18 to October 7, 2012.

Willow, Ten Cricket nor NEO Cricket had coverage of it.

The bloody ICC had sold the U.S. and Caribbean rights to SBOs at ESPN. What the heck do the clowns at ESPN no about cricket. Cricket is way, way too subtle and cerebral for those that can only appreciate crash-AD-bang-AD-wallop-AD sports.

I can’t find any bloody TV coverage of the T20 World Cup by ESPN. I don’t want to watch it on my PC. Yes, I have a 27″ HD screen, and yes it looks good, BUT I have a 47″ HD screen and that is where I want to watch the cricket — FULL SCREEN.

Bloody ESPN. May all of them get the POX.

London Olympics 2012 Opening Ceremony The Complete Musical Playlist.

Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.

by Anura Guruge

Related posts:
London Olympics 2012 Opening Ceremony, Gross, Unnecessary Distortion Of British History —
July 28, 2012.
London Olympics 2012 Opening Ceremony: The Muhammad Ali Moment Was A Unmitigated DOWNER! —
July 29, 2012.

Click for a rendition of Mike Oldfield’s ‘In Dulci Jubilo’

In general I liked the music at the London Olympics Opening Ceremony.

Much of it was from my ‘youth’ growing up in Britain. It was good to see and hear Mike Oldfield. I am sure that like so many I have really not followed Mike since the mid-1970s. The ‘Tubular Bells‘ LP came out in 1973 when I was at University, in Swansea. Music, much more so than now, was a big part of my life. I used to buy lots of LPs and attend any and all concerts I could — my parents, guilty that they had kind of cut me lose and abandoned me in the U.K. since I was 15, while my father pursued his diplomatic career were generous in their stipends.

When ‘In Dulci Jubilo‘ came on it stirred something in me deep inside. I knew the tune. I knew that I liked it. I kind of remembered it was Mike Oldfield. But, I had to go and find it on YouTube.

Anyway, I also found the ENTIRE playlist of all the music they played at the Opening Ceremony. So here it is:

Click image for the complete PLAYLIST from the U.K. ‘The Telegraph’.

At the start of ‘The Telegraph’ is the iconic picture of the Beatles crossing the Zebra Crossing in Abbey Road. The FAMOUS Abbey Road studio where the Beatles and so many others reordered so many of the songs we still know and love was an unprepossessing ‘light green’ house, with a small concrete front garden behind a short wall — just behind George. In the late 70s I started to visit Abbey Road on a regular basis and make a point of crossing the road at that Zebra Crossing. No, I was not going to the studio. I was going to Lord’s. My Holy of Holies in London. In those days, into the 1980s, you could park somewhere on Abbey Road and walk to Lord’s. I noticed that Lord’s is a venue for the 2012 Olympics. I saw some archery from there. I used to spend days at Lord’s.