England v Sri Lanka, 3rd ODI, Riverside

Another bloody one-dayer. Chat away, if you can stand it.

World class facilities. Mine field pitches

Watching Warwickshire v Durham, Ian Botham made a good point about the pitch – which is quite obviously a mine field, as Durham are 32 for 6. Durham have improved their Riverside ground beyond recognition – it’s one ground I would love go to. As have, of course, Hampshire at their Rosebowl ground. Both of these have world-class facilities, both receiving millions in funding – yet both pitches are mine fields. While these two counties have forced the improvement of other grounds, such as Leeds, to reach their lofty standards, their pitches need improving if they are to ever be granted the honour of regular Test matches. A great shame – you’d think that the pitch would be the most important aspect of a ground’s regeneration; it seems all the glitzy, shiny, corporate bullshit is more important these days…

Whatmore admits Durham will be tougher

Dav Whatmore, he of “an impossible job” fame, has admitted he fully expects this week’s Test at Durham to be even tougher than the drubbing at Lord’s.

You might think things couldn’t get any worse, but we fully expect the Durham Test to be harder.

It’s going to be relatively scorching up in Durham, a whopping 20 degrees, but rain is forecast for Saturday.