The Dobber

The Dobber

The Old Batsman asks are multiple formats of the game making modern batsmen forget how to, erm, bat?

The longer the batsman is asked to bat, the more nuanced his batting must become. The task in 50-over cricket is almost rote now, its formula exhausted by repetition, while the blunt challenge of T20 remains brutally simple to compute. By contrast the challenge of the five day game shifts under the batsman's feet even as he is at the crease. 

The Wasted Afternoons has dug up the most comprehensive run down of England players' endorsements of everything from insurance to car yards to puddleducks. The Dobber is seriously in awe of the Google Image Search mastery on display.

Cricinfo tells the story of Australian programmer Kevin Elz, who pioneered what we take for granted now - live scoring and text commentary online - way back in the early 90s.

As Elz pounded the keys in Melbourne, ESPN was still four years away from creating its own website... "You needed four things to get something like this going: access to cricket, an internet connection, time, and passion. We in American universities had three of these but there was no access to cricket. Elz had all four. So he was the chosen one. You could call it destiny."

Grantland's James Tyler is slowly coming to terms with the fact that England might be quite good:

Test matches are the ultimate in slow-drip entertainment, a game of chess on grass in which drama is sporadic but truly earned. If you enjoy Marcel Proust's In Search of Lost Time or Terry Riley's "In C," test matches are surely your playground. The touring English teams of my childhood were jovial, yet hapless to the point of parody, circling the globe with all the forced emotion and grim anticipation of a death-row inmate being led to the electric chair.

Short leg is not on every cricketer's 'top ten places to field' list, but there is glory to be had under the helmet, as these lightening catches prove. David Boon features more than once. 

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