~ Posted by Tim de Lisle, April 10th 2015

    The best sound in cricket is the one that features in the celebrated speech in Tom Stoppard’s “The Real Thing”. It is not just the thwack of any old piece of willow on leather, but the sonorous pop of a well-made bat executing a well-timed stroke; a noise,” as Stoppard wrote, “like a trout taking a fly.” The second-best sound in cricket, for most of the past 50 years, has been a sentence. “And after So-and-So, it will be Richie Benaud.”

    As a cricketer, Benaud was very good. As a captain, he was one of the best. But, as a commentator, he was in a class of his own.

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    ~ Posted by Jasper Rees, March 26th 2013

    According to most standards of logic, cricket doesn’t compute. Last night, at the other end of the world, a game reached its conclusion after five days. Result of match: a draw. Result of series: a draw. Amount of what a curious outsider would understand as actual action: visible only under a microscope. Levels of tension suffered by anyone listening to the BBC's ball-by-ball coverage: the chart to measure it hasn’t yet been invented.

    Normally England would give New Zealand a disdainful going-over. For some reason it hasn't happened in this three-match series. Rain deprived New Zealand of victory in the first encounter, then did the same for England in the second. For the last in Auckland the home team were over the horizon by lunchtime on the fourth day. With zero chance of winning, all England could do was hope to bat for ten hours till the match’s official end and salvage a draw. That moment came at 5.15 this morning British time. All through the remorseless night, hearts jiggered against ribcages, nails were chomped and bags grew plump under sleepless eyes.

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    ~ Posted by Tim de Lisle, April 6th 2012 

    Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack, the oldest name in sports publishing, has a new editor, the youngest in living memory. At 37, Lawrence Booth has taken over a 149-year-old annual that acts as the conscience of cricket. And he is the first Wisden editor to have started as an intern.

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