County Cricket

County cricket: Somewhere only we know...

Well, here we go again. It is almost time for another, as fantastic-as-it-always-is County season. It seems long ago, and conversely, not-that-long-ago since a pink ball was being pinged about amid Canterbury twilight as both Kent and Glammy ushered out the 2011 season. Now its time for 2012 to steal the show.

I won’t lie to you. I can’t say with any great conviction that I know the format for the season ahead. Last I heard, David Morgan had recommended there be a 39th game in the United Arab Emirates. Did I hear that right? Or am I again confused with cricket’s boorish underling that keeps us from freezing on winter nights?

This week’s weather has been lovely. It is, however, the conditions I would like to bottle and save in reserve for the inevitable rainy days that are coming our way in the next few months. Why aren’t they out there playing now when we have such fine weather? Remember that when the game versus the Unicorns is washed out.

I’ll also remember it if, in a week’s time, I’m left sitting atop the Warner Stand at Lord’s peering out of the bar to see a deluge of water and a palette of grey. But it is part of the English cricket summer; we don’t just tolerate it because it is going to happen; we embrace the prospect (sometimes) of being consigned to the bar.

So is making silly bets about whether Jim Allenby will outscore Gareth Berg.

For Glamorgan, the pre-season has been delightful in its ratio of wins to failures. The cautious person in me hopes that it isn’t emptying the reserve before the real stuff has even started, but the optimist thinks that Matthew Mott has got his feet well and truly under the table after a full off-season behind him.

It’s also the #yearofthedragon.

The moment when the anticipation really starts to impress upon you is when the Glamorgan squad is announced for the annual MCC University Match in Oxford. It’s coincidentally the moment that you start wistfully looking out the window in an attempt to work out how many working days you can sacrifice for the cause…

Cricket doesn’t have one of those buzz terms to signify the start of something. It’s not a kick-off, a starting pistol or anything like that. But once the first Duke clips the top of the bails (or smashes all three stumps 10 yards towards the keeper), it will have started. As it has and as it always will be. Marvellous.


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