A Good Day

I spent all day today at the SWALEC stadium in Sophia Gardens watching yet another one-day match, this time between Glamorgan and Essex.

It was overcast early on, as you can see from the picture (which for some reason has decided to rotate itself).

Glamorgan won the toss and batted, but lost both openers cheaply. Ingram and Bragg then dug in and slowly tried to build a decent total. By “slowly”, I mean very slowly. After 10 overs Glamorgan had crawled to 26 for 2. The batsmen gradually began to assert themselves but were prevented by good fielding and bowling from really cutting loose. Then Ingram decided to take the bull by the horns. He hit three towering sixes (including one over the top of the pavilion) on his way to a brilliant 142. Still, Glamorgan’s total of 281 for 7 off their 50 overs  didn’t really look enough…

Near the end of the Glamorgan innings I checked the football scores and discovered that Newcastle United had beaten Barnsley 3-0 while Brighton & Hove Albion let in a late equaliser at Aston Villa. That meant that Newcastle United won the Championship title. I celebrated in appropriate style in the Members bar between the innings.

Essex lost two very quick wickets – they were 2 for 2 at one point –  but captain Alastair Cook and Varun Chopra put together a century partnership. When Cook was out, Ravi Bopara joined Chopra for another 100 stand.

After 41 overs Essex were looking comfortable  on 214 for 3, needing just another 68 to win. Glamorgan’s bowlers had lost control at a similar point in their last match, so most of the spectators thought Essex would rattle off the runs without too much difficulty.

As so often happens in cricket, one incident turned the match. Chopra smashed a delivery from Meschede back at the bowler. It was a difficult chance and Meschede couldn’t hold on, but the ball ricocheted from his outstretched hand onto the stumps at the non-strikers end, with Bopara well out of his ground.

From that point the Essex batsmen came and went at regular intervals, as Glamorgan’s bowlers showed much greater discipline and common sense than on Friday. Aiming at the stumps has to be a good tactic in a situation when the batsman have to score at a reasonable rate: if the batsman misses going for a shot then the ball hits. Seems obvious, but it’s not what they did in the last game.

With 2 overs left, Essex had stuttered to 268 for 7 but were still favourites in my book. But with the first ball of the penultimate over De Lange clean bowled ten Doeschate (the last of four batsman to be bowled by full deliveries aimed at middle stump), making it 268 for 8. The pendulum had swung in Glamorgan’s favour. Or had it? Essex managed another 7 off the rest of the over.

Seven runs were then needed off the last over, with two wickets left. Hogan bowling,  the crowd buzzing. First ball: 2 runs. Groans from the crowd. Then two dot balls. Cheers. Then an awful mix-up and a run out. Five needed off two balls. One wicket left. Next ball: the batsmen ran a bye to the wicketkeeper. Four needed off the last ball..

…but they could only run two. Glamorgan won by one run.

It was a very exciting finale, and a much-needed  morale-boosting victory for Glamorgan. Well played both teams!

Oh, and when I got home I saw the news that France didn’t elect a fascist as President.

Yes, it’s been a good day. A very good day.


17 Responses to “A Good Day”

  1. “Oh, and when I got home I saw the news that France didn’t elect a fascist as President.”

    No, they elected a banker. What happened to the socialist that used to post on this blog?

    • telescoper Says:

      You think instead that a socialist should endorse a fascist?

      • Anton Garrett Says:

        Her economic policies were pure socialism. Her flagship policy was anti-Sharia. I think I don’t understand what the word ‘fascist’ means nowadays.

      • telescoper Says:

        You could try looking in a dictionary.

        You could also note that her party was founded by Nazi collaborators.

        I’ll grant that you could accurately describe her as a “National Socialist”, but that rather makes my point.

        The French courts accepted that Madame Let Pen could be called a fascist, and I see no reason to argue with them.

      • Anton Garrett Says:

        The usual use of ‘fascist’ today is simply an insult used by people who identify as Left (but elect bankers…) Given that, as you rightly point out, the economics of fascism are socialist, things really aren’t so clear.

        I’m more interested in policies than one-word labels, as the information content is higher. She threw the founder of the party, her own father, out of it.

        Like the US election, a lousy choice of candidates is my view.

      • Dare I say that lack of PR in France is part of the problem?

      • telescoper Says:

        Well, I don’t see how you can have a proportions of a president…

      • Right. That’s the whole point. The whole idea of electing one person to represent a country is absurd. It might work if basically everyone in the country is in one of two camps (usually called “us” and “them”), but makes no sense in a more diverse society. It makes much more sense for the chief executive to be elected by Parliament, and for this Parliament to be elected by PR. (The UK has the first but not the second.)

        Another absurdity: suppose that one can roughly separate the population into two camps, one of which has three candidates and the other of which has two. It is entirely possible that the camp with three candidates gets more votes in total, but the two candidates from the other camp are in the runoff. If one insists on electing people directly, then anything other than some sort of instant iterative runoff is absurd. (For example, rank the candidates. In the first iteration, tally up the number of “1”s per candidate. Throw out the one with the least number of “1”s. These ballots now have their second votes put into the intermediate result. Repeat until there is only one candidate left. This benefits dark-horse candidates since one can vote for them without fearing that the vote will be “lost”. It benefits major candidates since they collect votes from those who drop out. It benefits voters because one can vote what one really wants to, with no tactical shenanigans, and get the best possible (i.e. that which most closely conforms to the collective wish) result.)

      • telescoper Says:

        Well, in the UK we don’t elect our Head of State at all, but then HRH does not have any executive power….

        Any system is a trade-off between being fair yet allowing government to function effectively.

      • Yes, the head of state (Liz) in the UK isn’t elected. I’m not too worried about people with little political power. Who holds the most power? The PM in the UK, and the President in France, and the Chancellor in Germany. The German and UK ones are elected by Parliament, the French one is not.

        I did say “chief executive” rather than Head of State (who is sometimes, but not always, a figurehead).

        Yes, there are often tradeoffs, but I don’t see why one is needed here.

    • All along the campaign, I have found this line of the “ni-ni” proponents pretty annoying: working in and for a bank does not sound like a rational argument to reject a presidential candidate. Not more and not less than being a cheesemonger or a welder. Not only the other candidate is a fascist, but she also hardly ever worked (as a lawyer) and got both her wealth and her political position as an inheritance from a father whom she later ejected from the Nazional Front he created.

      • Indeed. One of the biggest problems in society is that too many people don’t realize that if one has a choice between two evils, it is better to choose the lesser than not to choose at all. A bigger problem is a system which presents only such choices. But one cannot solve this even bigger problem by not voting at all.

        Some people really think that not voting has some effect other than (rightly or wrongly) sending an “I don’t care” message.

  2. Adrian Burd Says:

    It’s a good day when the world tips only 90 degrees!

    • telescoper Says:

      I don’t really understand this. The picture is rotated on one browser but not on another. Weird.

  3. Simon Kemp Says:

    So you finally saw a Glamorgan win, well done! I was listening to the last couple of hours on BBC radio this morning.
    Colin Ingram has now made a hundred in each of his three One-day Cup (50 over) matches against Essex, as well as a T20 hundred against them at Chelmsford last year in a rain affected match. I’ve been licky enough to see two of these hundreds live.

  4. Simon Kemp Says:

    —or lucky enough, even…
    As you’re a Glamorgan member you should try to get to Swansea for one of the games there later this month, a very pretty though not very traditional-looking ground by the sea, where Sobers hit his 6 6’s in an over about 50 years ago, and where Glamorgan beat the touring Australians twice in the 1960s. It’s not too well-maintained now but there are some nice vantage points, and seats on the grass, and the local supporters run their own cheaply-priced bar!
    I saw my first game of cricket there in 1975, Glam v Aus, and never visited any other ground until I moved to London for University in 1983.

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