Cricket has been the sub-plot to the summer so far, with the rain dominating proceedings, but last weekend saw the return of some cricket, albeit cut short by the temperamental weather.
The 1st XI managed 55 overs at North Marine Road in which Adam Lyth made 94. He has been allowed to play for Scarborough while Yorkshire have been on their superb t20 run, and had featured in the win over Lancashire the day before.
He combined with Samrat Sharma to add 149 for the third wicket after we had been in trouble at 9-2.
Samrat has fitted into the team superbly and has really shown his experience of playing in English conditions. He is a compact and dependable batsman, and already has a hat-trick in a less than friendly start for spinners. He’s also a nice guy which has helped him settle in with the lads at the club.
Lyth and Sharma’s partnership had meant Scarborough made 210 in their 55 allotted overs, but persistent rain fell during the tea break and the action wasn’t able to resume.
It was a similar story in Ripon where the 2nd XI were in action. Rain halted the game after 38 overs of the Scarborough innings with the visitors on 125-8.
The game had already been reduced to 40 overs after a break during the Scarborough innings, where we were in some trouble at 45-6.
Number 6, Kawsar Ahmed and myself got together and managed to add a valuable 50 partnership without taking too many risks.
I was really pleased with how Kawsar applied himself to the task, especially with his natural game leaning towards him going after the bowlers. I’m more of an accumulator and with both myself and Kawsar being quick between the wickets, we made a good combination in the middle.
That nudged us up towards 100 before myself and Sam Carver added another 24 until rain forced us off and we weren’t to return.
I finished 25 not out, and was pleased with my contribution having not batted much this season.
I generally bat around the number eight position and it’s key that all the batsmen lower down the order can add something to the batting, especially if we end up in a little bit of trouble like we did on Saturday.
We could have easily collapsed to 70 all out, but it was good to see some fight and grit from the other lads down the order.
The 3rd XI were also in the same situation, having managed some play but were unable to complete the game.
They might not have been affected too much though, as other games in the area fell victim to the conditions too.
Yorkshire have been putting together a string of impressive t20 performances, including a victory at Headingley over the old enemy Lancashire on Friday night.
I said a few weeks ago that Yorkshire should have a chance on paper, and they’ve shown their worth in the group stage so far.
There is a feeling the sides in the other groups such as Sussex and Somerset are stronger sides, but we’ll soon see how Yorkshire get on as they look certain to qualify for the knock-out stages.
England are also playing good cricket at the moment and look comfortable against the Australians in the current ODI series. Much had been spoken about the Australian attack and so far it has offered very little.
Michael Clarke has found himself trying to ‘invent’ something to get his team a wicket, suggesting the bowlers aren’t threatening too much.
If the bowlers are creating opportunities then there is no need to be inventive and force a mistake, but Australia just aren’t doing it.
Strangely, although I’m becoming more accustomed to it, England are dominating Australia, and we have become the firm favourite no matter what format we play them in.
It’s a stark contrast from what I remember growing up watching Ashes battles, in which we were always on the end of a hammering.
England once again had Ian Bell to thank, along with Ravi Bopara who made a very good 82 in England’s run-chase. I questioned his inclusion in the side before, suggesting someone else may be better off given the opportunity. I can’t deny that it was a good knock, but he once again frustrated me in not seeing the game through to the end. He got out with just two runs left to win, a sight that’s becoming familiar with Bopara.
It might not have made a difference this time, as England won comfortably, but in a tighter game where it is touch and go, he needs to be able to see England home and ensure we win, not get out at the vital time.
The experience of seeing us over the line will be invaluable and Bopara has missed that twice in the summer now, by getting out before the end of the t20 win against the West Indies and this weekend against Australia.
The ICC made a strange decision this week as they refused to make the DRS system mandatory, despite their own board suggesting that was the best thing to do.
It seems it has only been done to appease the one country that doesn’t want to adopt the system, India, who undoubtedly hold the power and money in the cricketing world. The ICC need to put the money up for the various cameras and tools to move the game forward and insist India embrace the new technology and the way the game is working. They can’t continue to bend over backwards for the Indians just to keep them happy. The system returns higher results of correct decisions, it is that simple.
While having a pop at the ICC, I have to commend them and the West Indies board on the decision to stage the West Indies t20 games against New Zealand in Florida.
They are trying to move the game beyond the small world market that it currently occupies, with this and cricket in the UAE examples of this.
Cricket might not traditionally be the American’s ‘cup of tea’ but if one thing will get them interested it will be t20 cricket.
There were good crowds at the games made up of people from all over that part of the Atlantic.
This side of the Atlantic, Scarborough 1st XI travel to Cleethorpes and will try once again to play their Yorkshire League Knock-out game at Harrogate on the Sunday.
The 2nd XI host Carlton Towers on Saturday while Martin North’s 3rd XI are shceduled to play Scalby 2nds at Carr Lane.