Monday, August 15, 2005
Denis Compton for Arsenal (v Preston North End), War Cup Final 1941
I went out for a run through a park alongside the river Trent this evening. As usual there was a game of football taking place: small boys in the park, jumpers for goalposts... you know the kind of thing.
Do you know what though? I counted four games of cricket taking place in the same park. Four! 4-1!
It's the greatest, most exciting sport in the world and what's more, isn't it refreshing to see two sides giving absolutely everything they have to secure victory for their team, but at the same time respecting the authority of the officials and generally not behaving like overpaid, spoilt babies. Compare and contrast the behaviour of someone like Andrew Flintoff with someone like Wayne Rooney. Well, there's no comparison is there? The sportmanship shown by the Australians and the English in the Ashes series has been fantastic to see: England won an amazing game at Edgbaston, and the victorious Flintoff had the compassion to commiserate with the beaten Brett Lee as the rest of the team celebrated, and the whole Australian team went into the English dressing room to share a beer and congratulate the victorious side. What do you get in football? A foodfight in the tunnel after a game. Pretty much the first thing I noticed of the new Premiership football season was Ruud van Nistelrooy launching himself backwards in the Everton penalty area about 5 seconds after his shirt had been pulled.
To be perfectly honest, I will find it a little hard to get too excited by the new football season until the cricket has finished.
Roll on the Trent Bridge Test in 9 days time.