A moment of applause, please

Congratulations to Pakistan’s Mohammad Yousuf, who has gone past Sir Vivian Richards’ long standing record for the most Test runs in a year. Well done that man. As I write, he’s still at the crease, so he could still push the mark beyond 1,750 runs. A remarkable achievement!

Life of Brian

“He’s not the Messiah. He’s a very naughty boy!” so said Brian’s mother in Life of Brian.

Life of Brian

Brian Lara isn’t the Messiah either, and I doubt his mum thinks he’s anything other than God’s gift to batting – and so do we. Commentators wet themselves at the very sight of him walking to the crease, adding his middle-name for added gravitas. “Brian Charles Lara has another hundred”. It always annoyed me hearing people get so sickly about one man’s genius, but it’s hard to deny them their enjoyment any longer. Another monstrous pile of runs today and he’s unbeaten on 196.

Who’s to say by tomorrow afternoon he won’t be approaching 400? Again.

A wasted opportunity

Cricinfo today features an open letter from Neil Manthorp, a South African journalist, criticising the President of the WICB for failing to accommodate the Stanford All Star XI game into their international schedule:

Mr Gordon, from here it looks like you prevaricated, confused and argued until the game’s biggest benefactor since Kerry Packer finally lost his patience and the richest game in cricket history was postponed.

I’m sorry to put it this way, but you – personally – were responsible for shattering a thousand dreams.

I can’t help but agree with the sentiment, if I lack full insight as to where the true blame lies. Earlier in the piece, Manthorp underlines the huge impact that winning the $5million game would have had on either team’s home development programs. I am sure that this is true. However, the loss of spectacle, in what would have been the first international Twenty20 match to only feature players who had proven their ability in the domestic format, is equally as saddening to the neutral viewer. But I’ll wait until 2008 – assuming that the next attempt at this fixture will not receive similar treatment.